Seen at The Festival of the Tree

...if you would be happy all your life, plant a garden ~ Chinese proverb

Monday, 14 November 2011

Chestnut and Mushroom Soup: Seasonal Recipe

Our local supermarket was selling off tins of chestnut puree very cheaply recently, so it can introduce slightly smaller ones of the same brand at the previous price. Naturally I was very happy to score quite a few of the larger cans for my store cupboard :)

Last week, I decided to make chestnut and mushroom soup for lunch and devised this very quick and simple recipe.

Ingredients
  • 1x 435g can unsweetened chestnut puree
  • 250g well flavoured mushrooms e.g. chestnut (!)
  • 1 tbsp oil (I used olive oil for its fruity flavour)
  • 1 litre vegetable stock (or 1 stock cube made up to this amount)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
Method
  1. Empty the tin of chestnut puree into a large pan, swilling it out with stock to ensure all the puree is obtained
  2. Add the remaining stock to the pan
  3. Bring the liquid slowly to the boil, stirring well at the beginning to ensure the puree is dispersed into the stock
  4. Meanwhile thinly slice the mushrooms
  5. Add the oil to a frying pan and add the mushrooms
  6. Fry the mushrooms - you're aiming to sweat them so their juices are released
  7. Add the mushrooms to the stock and bring to the boil
  8. Add salt and pepper to taste (salt won't be needed if a stock cube is used)
  9. Cover the pan and simmer for 5 minutes
  10. Turn off the heat and leave to cool slightly
  11. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary
  12. Whizz the soup together with a handblender
  13. Rewarm, and serve piping hot with plenty of crusty bread
Serves 4-6

This soup is delicious and very uplifting on a gloomy November day. It's also ready in 20 minutes! A more luxurious version can be made by adding some sherry or other fortified wine to the stock and serving with a swirl of cream, [low fat] creme fraiche or Greek yogurt. If you've been on a fungus foray, then using some of your spoils to make this soup would be very evocative of your walk in the woods.

If you don't have any chestnut puree to hand, then you might like to try my Garlic Mushroom Soup instead.

My thanks to Cally over at Country Gate Gardens for confirming that soup would be a great way to use my spoils. Petra at Oxonian Gardener suggested chocolate cake and kindly tweeted the link to this HFW recipe. @simiansuter also reminded me that my River Cottage Preserves bible has a fab recipe for Chestnut Jam. I'm looking forward to having a go at making all of these over the next few weeks :)

There's lots more seasonal recipes for you to try in my Easy Recipe Finder.

7 comments:

  1. That looks yummy, I wonder if my local supermarket has a similar deal - and if there is any left...

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  2. Janet - it is delicious, even though I say it myself! Good luck with your chestnut hunt :)

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  3. Mmmmm! It's only 9.35am and already I feel hungry. Thanks for the recipe, VP, and I'm going to check out the garlic one too.

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  4. Victoria - I'm getting hungry too! I see I posted the garlic recipe at around the same time 2 years ago, so perhaps I'm starting a semi-regular event!

    Hermes - enjoy :)

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  5. Mmmmm - already have the main ingredients - just need a crusty granary roll and something green to garnish :)

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  6. Anna - flat leaf parsley is pretty good if you have some :)

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