Today’s recipe, Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Chestnut Soup, is a holiday special and ideal served as an appetizer or hors d’oeuvre. Garnished with crushed walnuts and bacon, its rich flavor will likely evoke festive joy.
As you would expect, Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Chestnut Soup has a very seasonal taste. If you’re looking for a tasty soup to share at your holiday party this one will work nicely.
For richness, the soup is laced with sour cream and butter, and chicken stock provides depth of flavor. With that in mind, this soup is not suitable for vegans and vegetarians, but I have a plan for that. You can substitute the non-friendly ingredients by using vegetable stock instead of chicken stock, replace the regular butter with vegan butter and use coconut milk instead of sour cream. Whatever you do, don’t forget to get rid of the bacon too!
If when trying this recipe will be your first time shelling chestnuts don’t stress. If you bungle a few and have to break some of the chestnuts apart to pull away the meat from the shell it will not matter at all. This recipe is a great way to test your chestnut roasting skills, it will help you perfect the process. However, if you have trouble finding fresh chestnuts, you should be able to find roasted shelled chestnuts in your store or online.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Chestnut Soup is great as an appetizer too. If you’re looking for a wine to pair with this soup, I suggest dry sherry instead of a white wine to avoid flavor clash. Sherry is an aperitif and will help to open up the appetite, therefore it is perfect with this soup.
I like this soup best as an hors d’oeuvre served in shot glasses or cute small bowls. An array of small bites for parties is my preference as I like to keep serving up surprises. Whichever serving option you go with it will be a pleaser.
If you decide to give this recipe a try, let me know what you think by leaving a comment.
With a serrated knife, score an X across the top of each chestnut. A wide X across the top is ideal, make sure to cut through the membrane layer below the shell too. Be careful with the knife, chestnuts can be slippery, place them on a tea towel when cutting to stop them escaping.
Once all chestnuts are scored with an X place them in a saucepan and cover with cold water.
Place saucepan on a high heat and remove chestnuts as soon as the water begins to rumble. Tip chestnuts into a colander to drain the hot water.
Transfer chestnuts to a cooking sheet pan, X cut sides up, and place in a preheated oven at 425 and roast for 20 mins.
Trim brussels sprouts and remove damaged leaves, rinse and pat dry, then cut them in half.
Place brussels sprouts into a large bowl and drizzle with 2 tbsp of olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt, then transfer to a cooking sheet pan and place in oven.
Check how the chestnuts and brussels sprouts are doing a couple of times, you will notice the shell will open away from the chestnuts. Shake brussels sprouts around the cooking sheet to get color on all sides.
After 20 mins remove chestnuts and brussels sprouts from the oven.
When chestnuts are cool enough try one to make sure they're roasted properly, return to the oven if necessary.
Brussels sprouts should be cooked through with just a little bite to them. Set aside until needed.
Once the chestnuts are roasted tip into a tea towel to keep warm.
As soon as you are able to handle the chestnuts remove the shells and discard and set aside meat of the chestnuts until needed.
Cut bacon into thin strips and cook, then transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Set aside until needed.
In a saucepan heat butter with 1 tsp of olive oil on a high heat.
When butter is almost completely melted add onion and cook until flavor releases.
Add brussels sprouts and chestnuts and a bay leaf, then cover with 4 cups of chicken stock.
When the liquid begins to rumble remove from heat.
Add 2 cups of cold chicken stock to blender, add contents of saucepan, then add sour cream.
Blend on high until silky smooth, then return to saucepan and cook for 5-10 minutes to allow flavors to combine.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve when ready and garnish with bacon and walnuts.