RECIPE | Italian Chestnut Soup3rd November 2015
Serves 2 (as a main meal, or 4 as a starter) | Prep 5 mins | Cook 25 mins
Wean yourself into accepting that Christmas is coming and get into the winter warming mood with this hunky hearty, earthy soup. Based on a traditional peasant meal from Italy but “jujd” up with some classic Christmas flavour; chestnuts, sage and rosemary.
For those carnivores out there refusing to eat a meal without meat, you could add some chopped smoked bacon at the same time as the shallots. You can make this a day in advance up to point 6 in the recipe, and then re-heat and continue as required
CHICKPEAS – 165g of chickpeas will provide you with the following of your recommended daily intake; 84% manganese (bone production, collagen & skin integrity, blood sugar control and protection against free radical damage), 70% folate (protection from heart disease, can reduce depression, and helps maintain brain function), 64% copper (essential for immune system), 49% fibre ( fantastic digestive support in this dish), 39% phosphorous, and 22% zinc. (SOURCE: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=58 )
CHESTNUTS – These relatively low in calorie nuts have an unusual nutritional content. 100g of chestnuts will provide 72% of your vitamin C DRI. Like chickpeas, they are also rich in folates (15% DRI per 100g). Also a great source of potassium, which helps counteract sodium and lowers blood pressure / heart rate. 100G will also give you 100% vitamin B1 (thiamine) DRI, which maintains muscle tone in the digestive tract and aids secretion of hydrochloric acid, a process essential for complete digestion of food particles. (SOURCE: http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/chestnuts.html )
1 ½ cans chickpeas (I use one full can and one of the half cans you can get), drained
200g cooked chestnuts
100ml white wine
4 sage leaves
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 shallots, finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1-2 rosemary sprig (dependant on how much you like rosemary!)
Parmesan / Pecorino Romano cheese- a good, heavy grating of
- Heat the oil in a deep sauce-pan, and over a medium to low heat let the smashed garlic, whole rosemary sprig and sage leaves sizzle slightly in the pan for a few minutes.
- Add the shallots and continue to cook for another few minutes until translucent.
- Add the wine and let it bubble out for a minute.
- Add the chickpeas and top the pan up with hot water so the chickpeas are just about covered.
- Bring to the boil and then transfer half of the soup into a blender, food processor, or use a hand blender in a jug. Blitz until smooth and return to the pan.
- Mix together to combine and now add your chestnuts. Keep the heat simmering the soup for the next 10-15 minutes.
- Remove rosemary sprig. Grate in your parmesan or pecorino romano cheese. You’ll want quite a bit but reserve some for sprinkling on top once in bowls. Serve.