French Chestnut Soup

French Chestnut Soup

French Chestnut Soup
You don't have to be in France to do as the French do. This fabulous French Chestnut Soup provides an exotic taste right in the comfort of your own kitchen. Say au revoir to boring soups and bonjour to a palate-pleasing pottage.
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At a glance
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Serves:
6

Ingredients
1 potato, diced 
1 stalk celery, finely sliced 
1 onion, finely chopped 
2 cloves garlic, sliced 
40 g unsalted butter 
2 lb. chestnuts, peeled (yield will be half a kilo) 
4 –5 cups of chicken stock 
1/4 lb. creme fraiche 
Sea salt 
Fresh ground black pepper 
1 tbsp. armagnac or amontillado sherry wine 
Freshly ground young parsley

Methods/steps
On low heat, sweat the potato, celery, onion and garlic in butter in a heavy based pot for 5 minutes.
Add the chestnuts, stock and simmer, covered, for 25 minutes until the nuts and vegetables are tender.
Strain through a colander into a bowl and puree the solids in a food processor.
Return the liquid to the solids while holding back about 1 cup in case the soup is too liquid for your taste and strain back into the pot.
Add the creme fraiche for extra tang and simmer the soup for 15 minutes to allow it to reduce slightly.
Season to taste.
Before serving, add the liquor to the hot soup.
Garnish with chopped parsley.
The French would add a little shredded duck comfit warmed in the alcohol into each bowl just right before serving

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