Chestnut and Mushroom Soup

Post image for Chestnut and Mushroom Soup

By Nancy Buchanan

31 comments

20/11/2011

by Nancy Buchanan on November 20, 2011

Thanksgiving used to be simple, didn’t it?

I mean you had your turkey, stuffing/dressing, potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie, right?

Today, it isn’t always so simple – more and more of my friends and relatives have dietary restrictions  – gluten free, dairy free, reduced sodium, etc., etc. While the sheer number of dishes at most Thanksgiving spreads assures that everyone will find something to eat, I always feel a little bad for those who don’t eat turkey.

Since it’s generally the star of the meal, it seems like those who don’t eat turkey are kinda left out in the cold – relegated  to filling their plates with “side dishes” – and that is just not right. At all.

So, I’ve been playing with things that have a “meaty” flavor  that don’t  fall into the category of a “side dish”.  And no, a “tofu” turkey IS NOT the answer… I will do a lot of things for my vegetarian friends but THAT is not one of them!

Well, as they say, “this one’s for you” – a rich, decadent and  meaty soup  of chestnuts and mushrooms that’s laced with good Spanish Sherry and finished with a drizzle of truffle oil.

Chestnut and Mushroom SoupBC2 Chestnut and Mushroom Soup

This is definitely better than a tofu turkey, don’t you think??

Chestnut and Mushroom Soup

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

1 hour, 30 minutes

Yield: 6 - 8 servings

Serving Size: approximately 4 oz.

I used the vacuum packed chestnuts from Melissa's. For this soup, using a good Spanish sherry is important - if it's too harsh it will impart that flavor into the soup. If you have chestnut honey, by all means use it - if not, any good honey works fine or you can substitute agave nectar. I noticed that I had to puree this soup longer than I normally do with other vegetable soups.

Ingredients

  • 1 - 6.5 oz. packaged cooked and peeled chestnuts
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced cremini mushrooms
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 large shallots, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 stock of celery, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 plus 2 Tbsp. good Spanish sherry
  • 4 - 6 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1/2 tsp. honey
  • salt
  • white pepper
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • Garnish
  • 1/4 cup minced cremini mushrooms
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 Tbsp. truffle oil

Instructions

  1. In a large saucepan, melt the 2 Tbsp. of butter over medium high heat. Add the mushrooms to the butter and cook without stirring until mushrooms are deep golden brown - about 4 - 5 minutes. Flip mushrooms and continue to cook until golden brown. Remove mushrooms from the pan and set aside. Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter in the pan over medium heat and add the shallots and garlic, cooking until softened, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms back to the pan and increase the heat to medium high. Add the sherry and cook, scraping up the bottom of the pan and cook until almost all the sherry has evaporated, about 3 minutes. Add the chestnuts, celery, thyme and stock. Bring to a boil, cover the pan and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for approximately 1 hour until chestnuts have softened. Let soup cool slightly and then puree in a food processor. - if the mixture is too thick, thin it down with a little vegetable stock. Return soup to the pan and re warm, seasoning with salt, pepper and the honey. Add the half and half and the remaining 2 Tbsp. sherry. Garnish with the cooked mushrooms, fresh thyme sprigs and a drizzle of truffle oil.
  2. For garnish: In a small saute pan heat the 1 Tbsp. butter over medium high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook, without stirring for 3 - 4 minutes or until mushrooms are golden brown.
http://www.acommunaltable.com/chestnut-and-mushroom-soup/

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{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

Lana @ Never Enough Thyme November 21, 2011 at 4:20 am

Most definitely better than “tofu” turkey! It’s barely breakfast time here and I’m finding myself craving this soup. Sounds just delicious!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 7:45 am

Hi Lana!! Thanks!! It is really good – has a very earthy flavor and is very rich!!

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LiztheChef November 21, 2011 at 7:55 am

This is the chestnut soup recipe I have been searching for – mine is too “nutty”. Printing it as I write this – so nice to have met you at WOR in October. Hope to see you at their December event…

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:56 pm

I really hope you enjoy it Liz!! Loved meeting you too and yes I will be at the December event!!!

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Deliciously Organic November 21, 2011 at 7:59 am

Thank you for “no tofu” and a recipe made with “real” ingredients! I’ve never made a soup with chestnuts. I’ll have to give this one a try. Thanks!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:56 pm

Hi Dorothy!!

The chestnuts make it very rich but it is soooo good!!

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Emily (roots+platters) November 21, 2011 at 8:02 am

I have been looking everywhere for a good soup recipe for Thanksgiving (one that isn’t pumpkin or butternut squash)! This is PERFECT and will definitely be on my table this year! I love coming to your blog – I ALWAYS find inspiration, beautiful photos and delicious recipes! :)

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:55 pm

Awww. Emily thank you!! That so made my day and my week!! I hope you enjoy the soup!!! The mushroom cappucino is also really good and not quite as rich as this one if you need another idea!!!

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Barbara | Creative Culinary November 21, 2011 at 8:10 am

I would d without turkey I think for this soup. I made it for the tradition and the sandwiches the next day but this soup sounds divine from the start.

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:54 pm

Awww.. thanks Barbara!! I have to admit – I don’t think I could pass on turkey – especially your bacon and maple one!!

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Priscilla - She's Cookin' November 21, 2011 at 8:24 am

Way better than tofu turkey! I have chestnuts (and cremini mushrooms) because I decided to roast chestnuts for my dressing for this year – you’re making me change my mind with this wonderfully rich soup!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:54 pm

Oooh…roasted chestnuts in a dressing.. now that sounds delicious!!!

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Carolyn November 21, 2011 at 8:25 am

I haven’t had chestnuts in ages, but this soup sounds so wonderful! I’d love to try it, I love non-meat soups that have a rich flavour of their own.

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:53 pm

Hi Carolyn!!
This one is definitely rich!!

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Maria November 21, 2011 at 9:05 am

Great flavors! Love this soup!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:52 pm

Thanks Maria!! Enjoy this first Thanksgiving with the little Pea!!!

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aida mollenkamp November 21, 2011 at 9:39 am

So much better than a tofu turkey, Nancy! Bravo!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:52 pm

Thanks Aida – I have to agree!:-)

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Marla November 21, 2011 at 10:07 am

It is essential that I get my hands on some chestnuts! I am loving the idea of this soup for Thanksgiving and beyond!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:52 pm

They are such a fun ingredient to play with Marla – I bet you’d come up with some amazing things!!

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Jamie November 21, 2011 at 12:06 pm

Oh, Nancy, that is one stunning soup! Wow! Vegetarian or not, I’d gladly have a bowl of this….two of my favorite flavors in one soup. Just perfect!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:51 pm

Awww… thanks Jamie!!! I really love the chestnuts and mushrooms together too!!

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Esi November 21, 2011 at 12:32 pm

We just had a chestnut soup at our dinner party yesterday. I never even thought of it before and now i can’t get enough.

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:51 pm

It’s very good… and very rich.. perfect for the holidays!

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Magic of Spice November 21, 2011 at 3:53 pm

What a delicious pairing…gorgeous soup!

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Nancy November 21, 2011 at 4:50 pm

Thanks!! This soup is really earthy and dare I say complex?? Ok, now I am starting to sound like I’m evaluating wine – LOL!!

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HeatherChristo November 21, 2011 at 7:52 pm

This is just beautiful! I feel you- I am juggling like 3 different food allergies at my dinner for 20. That means a whole lot of cooking for me!

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sippitysup November 22, 2011 at 3:37 pm

I made chestnut soup too recently! I had to use all the non-photo perfect nuts up from my LA Times Thanksgiving Brussels sprouts and Chestnuts. GREG

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Georgia Pellegrini November 27, 2011 at 7:09 am

I wish this had been at my Thanksgiving table!

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Grant March 23, 2012 at 3:06 am

Sounds good! Been hunting for a nice mushroom and chestnut soup recipe (even though I know it’s completely not the season). I may just make my own, but use some of your ingredients as influence. I have some great truffle honey which sounds like it would be a perfect addition to the dish.

Anyway, just as a heads up, it’s “stalk of celery” not “stock of celery”.

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Nancy March 26, 2012 at 11:44 am

Hi Grant!!

Oooh, that honey sounds fabulous!! And you are so right, it definitely is “stalk” – ah…. spellchecker is not perfect – thanks for the catch!!!

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