Oyster Mushroom Soup (Mock Tripe Soup)

faketripeSome of you might wonder why the hell anyone would want to pretend a soup is made with tripe. Actually, tripe lovers are quite a big number in several – not only European – countries and I’m a proud one too. Tripe soup, when boldly seasoned and containing well prepared, non-smelly tripe, is one of my favourite Polish dishes. Apart from the lack of the disgusting smell (sought after for example in French tripe dishes which I hate), the seasoning is what differenciates it from other national tripe stews or soups (marjoram and dried ginger playing here a crucial role), so this mock version is flavoured exactly like a real one would, but the tripe is replaced with oyster mushrooms.

If you have ever had tripe, you will notice that thinly sliced oyster mushroom with its gills at first sight resembles sliced cow’s stomach. Oyster mushroom doesn’t have much taste (at least the farmed one), so the typical Polish tripe soup seasonings dominate this dish. Everyone prepares tripe soup in a slightly different way, but the dried ginger, the marjoram and the chilli powder are obligatory. My soup is slightly dark because I always add some… soy sauce (many people add Maggi instead). It is often thickened with a mixture of flour and water, but I often skip this step if I want to obtain a lighter result. Apart from reminding me of the delicious tripe soup, this is also one of the best oyster mushroom dishes I know.

TIPS: If you cannot really find marjoram, which is crucial here, you might try dried origan, but the taste will be only vaguely close.

Do not use fresh ginger! Dried ginger differs a lot in taste and aroma and is the only form accepted here.

Preparation: about 30 minutes

Ingredients (serves two):

1 litre stock (vegetable or chicken) or water

250 g (about 1/2 lb) fresh oyster mushrooms, sliced diagonally (tough stems discarded)

1 small onion, sliced

1 carrot, julienned

1 slice of a medium celeriac, julienned

(1/2 small parsley root, julienned)

(leaves from one small leek, if you use only water, not stock)

2 allspice berries

1 small bay leaf

1 flat teaspoon dried ginger in powder

1 – 2 teaspoons dried marjoram

(soy sauce or Maggi sauce)

salt, pepper, chilli

Put everything together in a big pan and cook at medium heat about 20 minutes (or until the carrot softens).

Just before serving you can thicken the soup: mix 1 tablespoon flour in several tablespoons cold water and add to the soup, stirring, until it thickens.

Adjust the taste and add more salt/soy sauce/marjoram/chilli/ginger…

Discard the leek (if used) and serve sprinkled with more chilli powder.

32 Replies to “Oyster Mushroom Soup (Mock Tripe Soup)”

  1. I’ve never been brave enough to try anything with tripe. They have a couple of dishes on the local dim sum restaurant menu that feature it but I always let them go by. I’m not too familiar with oyster mushrooms either but I’d be more likely to try a soup featuring them … without that distinctive name. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I suppose it’s a question of being brought up with certain dishes… When the whole family eats tripe, you never wonder if it’s disgusting or not. you just taste and judge for yourself. I thought that oyster mushrooms are popular all around the world. They are very cheap and widely available here.

  2. That’s exactly what I was wondering – LOL! (just kidding). Very original Sissi ;-). I’m all in favour of using every part of the animal, it’s the definition of whole foods eating after all. I just personally have a less developed repertoire :). Mushrooms of all variety however I have a big appetite for and your seasonings, inspired by the Polish tripe soup, are delightful. I don’t think I’ve come across allspice berries — I generally use the powder — very cool, must work nicely in soups. Yay for soup season (I could sip soup morning, day and night these days…).

    1. Thank you so much, Kelly. It’s actually not my invention! In Poland quite a lot of people make it, though it’s not even half as popular as tripe soup. Allspice berries are very popular in Poland. Especially in pickles. They add a lovely aroma. Oh, yes… I keep on eating soups too. All the time.

  3. Beats me. I always wondered wether cleaned and precooked tripes have some special flavor or not. Most of the time I ate tripes without noticing much because the sauce was hell of spicy (in China). Maggi, mayoram and chili turn almost everything in something tasty (laugh) – the soup sounds delicious.

    1. Thank you, Kiki. I would say tripe tastes a bit like… white chicken meat. Not much flavour, but most of all the texture (which I like a lot if they are not overcooked). To be frank, I have tried making tripe soup several times and it was a failure every time…

  4. You’re very smart – the tripe does look/taste similar to oyster mushrooms!! Genius! My husband eats tripes. I’m okay. I don’t particularly order it but nothing against it. I think it’s great that you gave the best substitute/alternative for tripes! This soup looks comforting and delicious!

    1. Thank you so much, Nami. (In fact in Poland some people make this soup too. Not my invention alas ๐Ÿ™ ).

  5. What a clever dish!
    I remember eating tripe a couple of time in France, one of them where it seriously needed some some seasoning… not the best restaurant experience ever, but when well prepared tripe can be seriously delicious, would love to try the Polish version!

    1. Thank you so much, Gintare. I totally agree… In France in general pork dishes lack seasoning. I remember some French friends having a Polish tripe soup, loving it and they didn’t want to believe it was actually made with tripe. No wonder. Their tripe stinks and has no taste.

  6. Tripes are really something that is frowned upon even just a mention of it because of its gamey smell and after-taste. I would blame the cook more than I would blame the poor tripes, haha. If it’s not prepared and seasoned right, it just wouldn’t be appealing at all. I was amazed by your creativity on this dish. I first glanced at the dish and I thought — Tripes! And then, not it’s mushroom. Nicely done Sissi! I hope you are having a great week! ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I totally agree with you! Blame the cook. Tripe is not easy to cook (I must say I don’t know how to prepare them well either). Thank you so much for the compliments. This soup is definitely easier to prepare than the real thing ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. What a smart soup! I have to admit that my love of tripe is limited (love it fried!) and I’ve never cared for it in a soup or stew, so THANKS for coming up with this absolutely beautiful vegetarian version. The oyster mushrooms do look like thin sliced strips of tripe. As always, your use of herbs, especially marjoram is spot on! I grow my own marjoram, so I have plenty. It’s cold here and I know this soup will warm me up inside and out. Thanks Sissi!

    1. Hi, MJ. I have never tried fried tripe! Sounds delicious. Thank you so much for the compliments. I hope you would like this soup too.

  8. Sissi, I’m such a soup lover…can’t get enough of it. Your oyster mushroom soup is amazing! I love oyster mushroom, and you have created a very flavorful and perfectly matched spices with this light version; which I think is the best way to make this aromatic and delicious light soup!

  9. Ah yes, tripe! The Hungarians make a wonderful tripe seasoned generously with paprika, the sauce is runny and quite bold โ€” it can be hot too, depending on the cook. But tripe is definitely an acquired taste. I love its texture. I’m glad you mentioned that you hate the French cooked tripe because it is on the menu at my favourite French restaurant and I’ve been thinking of ordering it but you’ve talked me out of it. The oyster mushrooms are a lovely substitution. I’m starving now.

    1. Thank you, Eva. Yes, tripe has to be well seasoned, but most of all the way it’s prepared is crucial, so if your restaurant makes it the same way they do in France… they happily leave the awful smell… But maybe I’m wrong. Maybe they have changed it? In France if you have one person having tripe in a small restaurant the whole room smells it. Hungarian tripe sounds excellent.

  10. Thank you! I’ve always thought that these mushrooms looked like “something”… I could just never quite put my finger on what it was. I didn’t think the answer would be tripe, but you’re very right – I agree!

    I’ll give “tripe” soup a miss, but I’d definitely go for this mushroom substitution – it looks really nice Sissi – nice title too ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. Thank you, Charles. Oyster mushrooms also don’t have much taste (like tripe), so it’s a good idea to spice them up with herbs and other seasonings, like here.

  11. Clever one sissi! Can’t believe I missed this one! In Asia, mushrooms or some sort of fungus is often used to mimic the feel of meat, and is one of my favourite sources of vegetable protein (not as much comapred to meat or beans of course but still)!

    1. Hi, Shuhan. Thank you so much! I’m glad you also like mushrooms as an alternative to meat/seafood. I am a big carni- and piscivore and frankly only mushrooms make me forget there is no dead animals in my meal ๐Ÿ˜‰ It works also sometimes with cheese dishes, but not always.

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