Another way to use these nuts and I’ll bet you have never tried them.
- 3 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup EACH of finely chopped celery, carrots and onion.
- 2 flat leaf parsley sprigs
- 2 whole cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 cups chicken broth
- 1 jar peeled, cooked whole chestnuts, crumbled (approx. 15 ounces)
- 1/4-1/3 cup Madeira
- 1/4-1/3 whipping cream
- cheesecloth and some string
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over low heat and stir in the carrots, celery and onion and….this is different….cover the vegetables with parchment paper that has been buttered on the side touching the food, cover with a lid and sweat for about 15-16 minutes. The veggies, not you!
Wrap the parsley, cloves and bay leaf in the cheesecloth square and tie off with some string.
Discard the parchment paper, add the broth and the cheesecloth bundle and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered for about 20 minutes. Add the chestnuts, Madeira and simmer, covered for about 3 minutes.
While hot (and be careful here) pour in a blender in small batches and puree until smooth. Strain into a clean pot, add the cream, pinch of salt and pepper and reheat. Do not boil now or it will separate. Stir occasionally to mix well and serve.
This makes an elegant first course for you and your guests.