Now that it's November, people turn to the traditional autumn harvest foods - the squash, the cranberries, even the bird. But the Soup Lady's favorite food of autumn is chestnuts. Yes, chestnuts in all their glory - roasted, pureed, candied, brandied and sugared.
Today we take a look at Chestnut Soup. This simple perfection comes to us from Lily Wallace's The New American Cookbook (1941). My review of this very vintage cookbook can be found here, buried within a review of an inferior book. I knows my soup but I don't knows my Moveable Type and cannot separate it to link in the sidebar. Anyway, The Soup Lady loves this old cookbook because they give directions that assumes the cook will know how to render lard, to make white stock, or where to find a tureen. Nevertheless, this is a classic recipe that stands the test of time
1 quart of chestnuts
1 tablespoon of chopped lemon rind
1 teaspoon chopped parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1 quart of white stock*
1 tablespoon of butter
1 tablespoon of flour
2 beaten egg yolks
Boil chestnuts 15 minutes. Shell, remove skins and chop fine. Put in a saucepan. Add 4 cups water, lemon rind, parsley and salt. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer 1/2 hour.
Press the chestnut mixture through a sieve. Return it to the pot and add the stock. Bring to a boil. Add butter and flour, blended to a smooth paste. cover and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Put egg yolks in tureen. Pour in soup. GArnish with croutons. Serves 4.
Don't blame me for this - I'd use canned chicken broth. But these directions for white stock come from the same 1941 cookbook.
1 knuckle of veal
2 stalks celery
2 teaspoons salt
Cut veal from the bone. Dress, wipe, and disjoint fowl. Put veal, veal bone, and fowl in kettle. Add 1 quart water for each pound of meat and bone. Add other ingredients. Cover and simmer 5 hours. Strain and cool. The veal and chicken meat can be used for loves, croquettes or any left-over dishes.