Creamy Chestnut & Mushroom Soup
Welcome to December’s Flavor of the Month, chestnuts! Every year around this time, I get excited when I start to see chestnuts in the stores. Derek just laughs because he knows I’m going to put them in as many dishes as I possibly can (pancakes, cookies, you name it!). That’s why I’m so excited to make it a Flavor of the Month this year. I can’t wait to share some recipes with you, including a few savory ones like this soup!
Chestnuts are a lot different that other nuts because they are more starchy, with only a small amount of fat. I felt like this would add an interesting thick texture to a soup, so I gave it a go! I also thought that the earthiness of mushrooms would balance well with the sweetness of the chestnuts.
Let’s get to it!
You’ll start by sautéing the onions and mushrooms. Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or other pot and add the mushrooms, onion and salt.
I like cremini because they have more flavor than white button mushrooms. They are actually baby Portabello mushrooms. However, if your grocery store doesn’t sell cremini go ahead and use white button mushrooms. Sauté for fifteen to twenty minutes or until the mushrooms and onions are tender.
Now add the chestnut pieces and cook another two minutes.
Then pour in the white wine and scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan (this is also known as “deglazing”). I recommend a dry white wine like Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay. Next, you’ll pour in the vegetable stock and thyme. Bring it up to a simmer and cook for another ten minutes.
At this point, you’re going to take the soup off the heat and puree it. I did this with an immersion blender, but you can also puree the soup in batches in a food processor or blender. Just be careful when transferring the hot soup! Puree the soup until it’s completely smooth. I did notice that something about the chestnuts makes the soup foam when it’s pureed. I didn’t mind the foam, but if you don’t like it just skim it off the top.
Now put the soup back on the heat and stir in the heavy cream. Cook another minute for the cream to heat through.
This soup is creamy and slightly sweet from the chestnuts. I also like that it’s a luxurious dish that happens to be vegetarian! It’s a lighter soup, so it would make a great starter. We had it for dinner with some cheese bread on the side. It would also be a lovely light lunch with a salad.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 12 ounces Cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups roasted chestnut pieces
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 8 cups vegetable stock
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven or other pot over medium heat and add mushrooms, onion and salt. Sauté 15-20 minutes or until tender.
- Add chestnut pieces and cook another 2 minutes.
- Pour in white wine and scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
- Add vegetable stock and thyme. Bring up to a simmer and cook another 10 minutes.
- Puree until completely smooth.
- Put the soup back on the heat and stir in the heavy cream. Cook another minute for the cream to heat through.
- Serve hot.
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