If you’re looking for a deliciously seasonal dish that will chase away those cold-weather blues, this recipe is definitely for you! It’s fair to say that every season has certain indicators that really drive the point home that that particular season is upon us. From fresh summer berries to the omnipresent pumpkin that’s impossible to escape from, there’s always something to remind us of the time of year and get us excited about it; in this case, we’re celebrating chestnuts and how much they brighten up our winters.
While we normally associate chestnuts with Christmas–roasting on an open fire and all–these nuts are multi-functional and should be fully appreciated as such! We’ve already waxed poetic about how great soups are during the cooler times of the year, so it only made sense to turn our favorite nut into a creamy, delicious soup that tastes great before or after the winter solstice!
Creamy Roasted Chestnut Soup
- 2 1/2 pounds whole chestnuts
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 white onion, chopped
- 2 shallots, chopped
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- Place chestnuts in a large bowl and soak in hot water for at least 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Place chopped carrots in a bowl, season with salt and pepper and toss with olive oil until thoroughly coated.
- Transfer to a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes, or until tender.
- Take your chestnuts and use a paring knife to make a small X” on the flat side of each one.
- Transfer to a second baking sheet, cut side up, and roast (along with the carrots) for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
- Once cool enough to handle, use a spoon to scoop out chestnut flesh. Roughly chop and set aside, reserving 3/4 cup chestnut flesh for garnish (optional).
- Heat butter in a soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat and sauté onions and shallots until softened and tender, 5-7 minutes.
- Pour in chicken stock and add carrots, chestnuts, ginger and allspice, and bring mixture up to a boil.
- Cook for 2 minutes, then reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for 30 minutes, or until vegetables are very tender.
- Stir in heavy cream, then taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
- In small batches, transfer soup to a blender (or use an immersion blender) and puree soup until mostly smooth.
- Ladle soup into bowls and serve hot, garnished with remaining roasted chestnuts.
Recipe adapted from Meatless Monday