Craft Your Own Homemade Condiments
A common recipe ingredient is a can of “cream of mushroom” (or chicken, celery, etc.) soup. These condensed soups evolved over the years as an easy way to substitute for a thick white sauce. Condensed soups have an ingredient list full of items you can’t pronounce, so if you prefer whole-food ingredients, give this recipe a try. It makes the equivalent of one can of condensed soup, but it can easily be doubled or tripled based on how many cans the recipe calls for. You’ll feel an immense sense of pride and know-how when using real ingredients.
2 tablespoons minced onion, mushrooms, or celery*
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon instant chicken base or equivalent of bouillon, optional
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/3 cups whole milk
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Hot sauce, optional
Worcestershire sauce, optional
In small saucepan over medium-high heat, sauté onions, mushrooms or celery in butter for 2 minutes. Add chicken base, if using, and stir until melted and combined. Add flour, and cook and stir constantly for 3 minutes.
Gradually add milk, whisking until smooth. Cook until thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Season with pinches of salt and pepper, and/or a dash of hot sauce or Worcestershire sauce.
NOTE: Soup can be made ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 2 days, or it can be frozen for up to 1 month.
Plastic Ball canning jars work well for storing.
*For cream of chicken soup, use onions; for cream of mushroom soup, use mushrooms; for cream of celery soup, use celery.
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