Creature comforts from Budapest

It may officially be spring, but winter's lingering bluster here in Boston makes this recipe all the more enticing. Whether you're looking to warm up on a chilly day, to lift your spirits, or to be reminded of home—soup can revive your body and soothe your soul. The satisfying bowl that top-rated Program Director and Budapest native, Krisztina Almasi, turns to time and again is Hungarian mushroom soup, also known as gomba leves. This hearty soup can eat like a meal and leave even the staunchest of meat lovers happy and full.

Mushroom Soup (Gomba Leves)

Soups and stews are staples in Hungarian cuisine. Typically served before the main course, rich, creamy soups can be found throughout Budapest while enjoying our Old World Prague & the Blue Danube, Eastern Europe to the Black Sea, or The Best of Eastern Europe vacations. This traditional recipe for mushroom soup is sure to bring the comfort of home while giving you a robust taste of Eastern Europe.


5 Tbsp. butter
1 large onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
12 ounces mushrooms, chopped (cremini or white button)
2 Tbsp. paprika
2 tsp. fresh dill, chopped
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
2 Tbsp. flour
1 cup milk
2 cups beef broth (vegetable broth can be substituted)
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
½ cup sour cream
1 splash lemon juice
Parsley, chopped for garnish
Extra sour cream, for garnish


  1. Melt 2 Tbsp. of butter in a small sauté pan over medium heat and cook onions until they are translucent and begin to brown just slightly.
  2. Add the garlic and mushrooms and sauté for 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the paprika, salt, pepper and dill. Stir, then set aside.
  4. In a Dutch oven, melt the remaining 3 Tbsp. of butter and gently stir in the flour, creating a roux. Constantly whisk for several minutes until the mixtures turns a medium, caramel brown.
  5. Whisk in the milk, broth and soy sauce. Once the mixture is smooth, add the mushroom mixture, and bring to a boil over high heat.
  6. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in sour cream and lemon juice, and allow to simmer for another 2 minutes.
  7. Serve immediately, adding chopped parsley and dollop of sour cream as a garnish. It also pairs well with a crusty bread of your choice!

Serves: 4