Favorite recipes and stories about home cooking. We love comfort food and dishes that warm the heart. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Roasted Chestnut Soup

Roasted Chestnut Soup

The first time I had chestnut soup was at a small French Bistro in the West Village. It was mid-December in New York City and I looked like a living snowman when I entered Bouchon Bistro and Wine Bar. My friend was a regular there and insisted I try their chestnut soup. It was love at first taste!

However, I moved to San Francisco the following year and couldn’t find this delicious dish on a menu anywhere. And after a two-year-long chestnut soup craving, I decided to figure out how to make it at home.

In the winter months, especially when it’s extra cold outside, this velvety rich soup is the perfect dish to warm you up. I guarantee you’ll love it!

Ingredients for Roasted Chestnut Soup- 6 cups stock: would suggest half duck and half beef. I usually make the duck stock from scratch.
  • 5 whole Star Anise
  • 2 cups Roasted Chestnuts: packaged is fine, but just to be clear, water chestnuts are NOT the same thing as chestnuts. Here’s a great link for easy chestnut roasting instructions.
  • ½ cup of brandy
  • Dash of Clove
  • Heavy whipping cream
  • Salt to taste

In a large pot, bring the stock to a boil. Reduce heat so that the soup is brought to a simmer. Add the star anise and continue to simmer for 10 minutes. Add the chestnuts and simmer for approximately 20 minutes – or until the chestnuts begin to break apart. Remove the stock from the heat.

Using a ladle, spoon soup and chestnuts into a blender – this may take 2 rounds. Hold the lid down firmly and start the blender on low, increasing the speed to high gradually (note: starting the blender on high may force the very hot soup to strongly impact the lid and possibly burn you – that would be bad). Blend the soup until it is completely smooth and one solid color – you can strain it if necessary.

Return the well-blended soup to the stove and simmer again. Add the brandy and stir thoroughly. Simmer for no more than 5 minutes. And now for the easy part:

Ladle the chestnut soup into soup bowls, add 1 Tb. of heavy whipping cream and…