Chestnut Mushroom Soup
For the last two months, I’ve been meaning to try a chestnut soup since they are in season. I have searched high and low and there are so many chestnut soup recipes floating around on the internet. It seems like a very popular soup especially in the US for Thanksgiving as well as Christmas.
A recipe that interested me the most was with chestnuts and mushrooms on Oprahs website. I modified it a tad though.
I also saw alot of tweets talking about chestnut brussel sprout soup – I may have to try that in near future as well.
The verdict? This chestnut mushroom soup was very tasty, rich, smooth and hearty. I would almost serve a little bowl or cuppacino cup (vs a mid-sized bowl) to guests. It is a perfect soup for an appetizer for Christmas dinner!
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 (2-ounce) chunk pancetta
- 1 cup shallots, chopped
- 1 cup celery root, chopped
- 5 cups button mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
- 1 1/2 cup gourmet dried mushrooms (porcini, shiitake, yellow boletes, oyster)
- 1 1/2 pounds (4 cups) dry-packed chestnuts, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup cognac
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh sage
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 7 cups low sodium chicken stock
- 3/4 cup half-and-half cream
- dash of pepper and salt to taste
- Soak dried mushrooms in hot water for 20 minutes (while prepping everything else), then drain and chop.
- Heat olive oil in heavy pan over medium-high heat. Add pancetta, shallots, and celery root; cook 5 minutes, or until shallots are softened. Scrape out of pan and set aside.
- In same pan, heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms (button and dried mix) and chestnuts (reserve a few for garnish); cook 5 minutes, or until mushrooms are tender. Add cognac with pancetta-shallot mixture.
- Tie together bay leaf, sage, and thyme; add to mushroom mixture, along with chicken stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and gently simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove pancetta and herb bundle from soup; discard herbs. Cut up and brown the pancetta to use as a garnish (optional).
- Working in batches, transfer soup to blender or food processor; puree until smooth. Be careful with the hot liquids.
- Return soup to saucepan over low heat. Stir in half-and-half and cook just until heated through (do not boil). Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- To serve, ladle hot soup into bowls and top with reserved chopped chestnuts, thyme and piece of fried pancetta. Serve immediately.
Original Recipe:: http://www.oprah.com/food/Chestnut-Soup#ixzz1gwBBHONm
What I changed from original recipe:
- replaced butter with olive oil
- added gourmet dried mushrooms (porcini, shiitake, yellow boletes, oyster)
- used low sodium chicken stock
- used 1/3 cup more of celery root
- used 1/3 cup more of shallots
Soup Mistress Rating for Chestnut Mushroom Soup:
Healthy (+ slimming + low sodium): (3.5/5)