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Hearty Winter Soup


This is a warm and hearty soup!  You’ll be amazed when you taste it that there’s no meat in it.  It seems way too satisfying.  The original recipe called for chicken stock but I often use beef. 
The original recipe used vacuum packed chestnuts which you simmer for 30 minutes and then blend into the soup.  Several years ago I discovered cans of chestnut puree at a local Italian market and have used that instead ever since – it’s much easier and tastes virtually the same.  The one thing you want to make sure is that you get puree that is made only from chestnut (and maybe a little water).  Do not get the sweetened version – it’s intended for desserts.  Check the ingredients on the label to make sure you know what you are getting! 
Chestnut Soup with Cognac Cream
      • 4 Tbsp Butter
      • 2 Tbsp Olive oil
      • 2 Celery stalks, chopped
      • 2 Small carrots, peeled and chopped
      • 1 Medium onion, chopped
      • 2 tsp Minced fresh thyme
      • 8 cups Chicken or Beef stock or broth
      • 22 oz of Chestnut puree (unsweetened)
      • ½ cup Whipping cream
      • 4 tsp Cognac
Heat butter and oil in large, heavy saucepan until butter is melted. Add celery, carrots, onion and thyme. Sauté until vegetables are tender about 10 minutes.
Add chestnut puree and stock, stirring occasionally to thoroughly mix the puree into the stock. The warmer it gets the more easily it will blend with the stock. Heat for about 30 minutes until only small lumps of puree is remaining.
Puree soup in batches in blender (be careful to hold top on with a kitchen towel) or use an immersion blender in the pot. Puree until all chestnut is well blended and vegetables have been completely pureed. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Soup can be held overnight at this point. Cover and chill.
Whisk cream and Cognac in medium bowl until cream is thick but not stiff. Set aside.
Bring soup to a simmer over low heat (if needed). Ladle into warm bowls. Swirl a spoonful of cream into each bowl and serve.
  1. Jennifer permalink
    10-Jan-2008 5:54 pm

    LusciousandLovely! I imagine savoring spoonful after spoonful of that unusually great sounding chestnutty soup.Fine Photography too!As you know you are fine as well.-j

  2. Culinary permalink
    11-Jan-2008 6:48 am

    Thanks, jen!  The soup is really good.  Try it some time! 

  3. Principessa permalink
    11-Jan-2008 12:48 pm

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