Chestnut Soup (V)

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire… Met someone under the mistletoe and looking to impress them? Autumn brings a bounty of good ‘ol conkers and throughout winter we love using them in our kitchen, especially in chestnut soup – the ideal seasonal starter or winter lunch dish, served with some crusty bread.

chestnutsoup_GT

Throughout December (who are we kidding, right from autumn to spring too) we’re often found gulping batches of this stuff. Chestnut can be a bit of polarising flavour; it’s got a deep depth of flavour, a slight earthy tang but a real creamy sweetness. Cutting through this is a hefty dollop of cream of crème fraîche, your choice.

The lead up to Christmas can be a real stress with work deadlines, end-of-year parties and traipsing around collecting presents – rest assured, this is a complete cinch to make. If you can be bothered to make your own vegetable stock from scratch for this, you’re a far better person than we are! (Read: there’s really no need) Plus, this makes a generous batch, more than two people need, but we guarantee you’ll go back for seconds

cheeky chestnut soup

Chestnut Soup (V)

Serves two
  • 1 vac-pac (200g) of cooked and peeled chestnuts
  • 1 large shallot
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1.25L vegetable stock (we used Bouillon, follow packet instructions)
  • 3-4 sprigs of thyme
  • 75ml crème fraîche
  • Salt and pepper

1. Dice the shallot and fry in a little butter over a medium-low heat until just softened. Chop the garlic into slivers, tear the thyme leaves off their stalks and fry all together for a further two minutes.

2. Roughly chop the chestnuts from the packet and add to the pan, along with a good amount of seasoning. Let all the ingredients in the pan cook together and get to know each other for a minute or two before adding in the stock.

3. Bring to the boil and then reduce to a slight simmer on a low heat and allow to cook for 20 – 30 minutes. Add most of the crème fraîche and continue to cook for 10 minutes, until the chestnuts are falling apart when squeezed against the side of the pan.

4. Blitz with a hand blender or pour into a processor in batches to make silky smooth. Serve warm, drizzled with the rest of the crème fraîche and a tiny scattering of fresh thyme leaves.

[This chestnut soup freezes exceptionally well, by the way!]

This recipe for chestnut soup originally appeared in Gay Times Magazine, where we’re the food columnists with a monthly recipe. Do follow GT on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram and subscribe to the magazine if you like!
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