Watercress Soup with Shiitake Mushrooms

Recipe Information

Total Time: 

1 hour



From Daniel Klein of The Perennial Plate. Peppery watercress leaves give this soup its amazing flavor and bright green color. Grilled shiitakes on top are meaty and delicious. Check out the recipe and video.



  • 10 large shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 bulb green garlic, minced
  • 1/2 bunch oregano, minced (reserve stems for optional mushroom stock)
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar (or rice vinegar with a bit of honey)


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 green garlic bulbs plus stalks, chopped
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 7 cups vegetable stock (or stock using mushroom stems, see instructions below)
  • 4 cups watercress (reserve stems for optional mushroom stock)
  • Salt to taste



Remove the stems and marinate the mushrooms with the herbs, garlic, olive oil, salt and vinegar for as little as an hour, or overnight. I did it for the length of time it took to cook the soup. When the soup is ready. Grill the mushrooms. The way I like to do it is to char both sides – just so it has a bit of color. Do this on the hot part of the grill, and then set them aside to finish cooking through. Try a mushroom to see if it is done.

Mushroom Stock (optional)

To make a stock using the stems of the shiitakes, roast them in the oven at 400 degrees F with an onion until they have a bit of color. Then add to a stock pot, cover with water, add the oregano and watercress stems. Bring to a boil and simmer for an hour.


  1. Saute garlic in the olive oil with salt until translucent. Add potatoes and cook until halfway done (about 10 minutes) add vegetable stock and simmer until potatoes are cooked through. Puree and season.
  2. Puree watercress with a little water.
  3. Combine the potato puree with the watercress, and garnish with the mushrooms.

Serving Suggestions

This dish can be served cold as well (in fact I recommend it!). Also, a little bit of nice olive oil on top would be good, and a few shavings of Parmesan!

More Details

Check out Daniel's blog for Co+op, about his visit to the mushroom growers, Curly and Carole Anne of Sweden Creek Farms and Ozark Natural Foods as well as his video below, which details his visit and soup preparation!

Nutritional Information

Calories: 181, Fat: 13 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sodium: 76 mg, Carbohydrate: 14 g, Dietary Fiber: 3 g, Protein: 4 g