Chestnuts are really a nice treat to enjoy at this time of the year! Just roasted with some salt and butter on a cold evening in front of the fireplace. Aaaah!
But luckily you also can enjoy them even without the open fire. Like in this soup with chestnuts and crispy sage.
I often buy vacuum-packed chestnuts at my greengrocer. It is easy to have at home and when something quick is needed.That tend to happen around lunchtime… The chestnuts are rich in starch and is quickly filling making me ready for new adventures.
The chestnuts are easy to work with and can both be cooked, oven-baked, fried or mashed into a puree. Moreover, one can often find chestnut puree in cans that can be used for cookies and cakes. More and more, you also can find chestnut flour in the stores. The flour has a funny, slightly bitter taste and is often used to make waffles and pancakes with.
The whole chestnut has a rather sweet and slightly floury taste that needs to be well balanced to to avoid a complete take-over. Lemon and something spicy such as chili, chipotle or Tabasco works well. In this particular recipe I also added a bit of extra autumn flavors with crispy sage and hazelnut oil.
Make sure you get a hold of the sweet chestnuts for cooking (also called “Spanish chestnut” in the US) and not the regular horse chestnuts as they are poisonous! Often you will find fresh chestnuts in the shops during October and November. Buy it there to avoid any unnecessary risks!
Let’s get started with the lunch!
Soup with chestnut and crispy sage
Serving for 2
1 yellow onion
Olive oil to fry the onion in
200 gram vacuum-packed chestnuts
0.5 liter flavorful vegetable broth
2 teaspoons dried and ground porcini
2 cups of cashew milk
Salt and pepper
A few drips of Tabasco
A few drips of fresh lemon juice
3 pieces of the vacuum-packed chestnuts
A few drops of hazelnut oil
Finely grated lemon zest
4 nice sage leaves per person plus olive oil
How do I do it?
1. Peel the onion and chop it finely. Fry the onion in a small amount of olive oil in a saucepan until transparent.
2. Add the remaining ingredients and let the soup come to a boil. Lower the heat and let the soup simmer for another 10 minutes.
3. Slice in the meantime the three chestnuts for garniture. Separate the sage leaves from it’s stalk.
4. Blend the soup with a hand blender. If necessary, dilute the soup with a smaller amount of cashew milk. Season the soup well. It is important to balance the sweetness of the chestnuts! Keep the soup warm while you frying the sage.
5. Place a small skillet on the stove and make it hot. Pour 1 cm of olive oil in the pan when the pan is on temperature. Add the sage to the hot oil and quickly deep-fry them. Divide the leaves and fry them in portions. If you add all sage at once you will end up just oily leaves instead of wonderfully crispy … This is due to that the oil gets cold to quickly otherwise.
Place the deep-fried sage on some paper towel to drain. Sprinkle some salty flakes on top.
6. Serve the soup in plates and garnish with the fried sage, grated lemon peel, a few drops of hazelnut oil and the sliced chestnuts. Another few drips of tabasco or chili can also be nice to add at then end. Enjoy!
This recipe is free from lactose, gluten and sugar.