When I went to Bern two years ago, Summer introduced me to a delicious snack—roasted chestnuts. They sell them from stands on the street, and you just eat them whole with nothing else. They have a delicious meaty texture and taste. Once I returned to Halifax, I looked for them, and found a few specialty grocers in Halifax that sell packaged roasted chestnuts. They’re not quite as good as the ones I had in Bern, so I usually add them to dishes , as opposed to eating them plain.
Like most of the soups I make, this recipe was created because I had ingredients in the house that needed to be used up. But I was inspired by a recipe in September’s Canadian Living to make the crispy chestnut garnish, and these added a really interesting texture to the dish. This soup ended up being so good! It was simple to make, and made my house smell like Thanksgiving while it was cooking.
Ingredients (makes two lunch-sized servings)
3 parsnips, peeled and roughly chopped
Half an apple, peeled and roughly chopped
5 chestnuts, diced
1 slice of onion, diced
1 small garlic clove
1 cup vegetable broth
¼ teaspoon dried sage (obvious fresh would also work, but I didn’t have any on hand)
A few leaves of rosemary, half of it chopped
Sauté the onions in an oiled pan until soft, then add the garlic and sage. Once the garlic is browned, add the parsnip, apple, three of the chestnuts and the rosemary that was chopped. Add enough broth to cover the ingredients. Bring the soup to a boil and allow it to simmer until the parsnip is soft.
Meanwhile, melt butter in a separate pan. Add the whole rosemary leaves and cook until they begin to crisp. Then add the remaining chopped chestnuts into the same pan and cook those until they’re crispy.
Once the parsnip in the soup is soft, puree the soup.
Serve the soup topped with the crispy rosemary leaves and chestnuts.
|Olivia lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where she enjoys making fast-but-good meals on a budget, and exploring new restaurants and recipes.|
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