Chestnuts & Cranberries

Here I am back with one of the ideas from a great book – Chestnut & Cranberry Soup, a recipe from “Homemade Soups” by Grace Mulligan & Dilwen Philips for the Women’s Institute, © 2012.

As it says, this recipe is ” developed to use up Christmas leftovers – sweet chestnuts and sharp cranberries combined to give a delicious, satisfying soup.”

As long as you like the two combined. I do.

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I liked the idea and fancied it as an inspiration for the Christmas time, or winter in general if you like.

As it mentions in “tips”, I also made this soup earlier, using frozen cranberries and canned chestnuts. But of course, as you go with fresh ingredients for your Christmas table, this soup could make a lovely starter for sure –  not only leftovers.

You will need :

6 shallots,  3 celery sticks, both chopped; 1 litre vegetable stock; fresh thyme – a sprig and few more leaves to garnish if you wish so; 450 g chestnuts, peeled and cooked; 115g fresh cranberries; 4 tbsp port; 2 tbsp lemon juice; salt and freshly ground pepper; 150 ml double cream.

To make the soup you will:

Put the shallots , celery and 2 tbsp of stock in a large saucepan to soften over the low heat. Then add the remaining stock and thyme, bring to boil and leave to simmer for about 10 mins. After that add the chestnuts and cranberries, let simmer for further 5 mins. At this point you can remove few tbsp of drained vegetables for the garnish.

Remove the soup from the heat and let cool for a while, then blend until smooth. Stir in the port and lemon juice to taste – I used half the amount of lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning to your liking and reheat if needed. Serve with a good swirl of cream, and the reserved chestnuts & cranberries.

The soup was very pleasant, with its nicely refreshing tones of the cranberries and soothing sweet chestnuts – a lovely treat for the season!


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