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Chestnut Soup


When my mom asked me to bring a soup and a vegetable for her international Christmas eve dinner, I told her I'd make a chestnut soup. What country is that from? Ummm...Italy. Really? Well, that's where I first saw what a chestnut looks like fresh off the tree - seemingly inpenetrable balls of threatening brown spikes which then reveals the shiny, still ridiculously difficult to crack inner shell. It's where I became enamoured with the Italian sweet Marron Glace (candied chestnuts). The bags of chestnut flour I buy, when I can find them, are imported from Italy. Yes, really.

In a large soup pot I caramelized diced onions, shallots, and celery with fresh rosemary. When they started to caramelize, I added roasted and peeled chestnuts - thank goodness for Trader Joe's vacuum packed ones! - and cooked them for about ten minutes, stirring constantly. Then I topped all of that with organic chicken broth and added sliced brown crimini mushrooms and fresh bay leaves, bringing it to a boil and simmering until the mushrooms were cooked. I seasoned the soup lightly with sea salt and fresh pepper, finishing off the soup with some heavy cream. Remove bay leaves when serving.

Photobucket

Comments

  1. Camilla, as someone who doens't have a Trader Joe's anywhere near her but was able to find fresh chestnuts: how do you prep them? The packaging says carve an X, roast for 20 minutes and peel. Then what? I did that but they tasted pretty bad. It's been awhile since I had them, but I know they are delicious. What am I doing wrong? Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  2. @The Dutch Girl, I cut the x in the skin then soak them in warm water for about 20 minutes before roasting. Then roast for about 15-20 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Peel while hot...and THEN blanch them for 2 minutes. Good luck.

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  3. That sounds totally delicious, I love chestnuts :D Visiting from Rook #17

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  4. That photo, Camilla....I want to dive right in!!!

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