I’ve been looking at this recipe from the time I got this cookbook. It sounded like it would be so creamy and tasty. After all, I sometimes make a butternut squash soup with chestnuts that’s divine. I’ve been waiting a long time to finally make this.
Per usual, that also means that I never really read the recipe. Anyone who has ever read my blog knows this about me. It’s a failing. Oh well. So, this recipe is a little bit about pear, some chestnuts, and a lot of celery and leaks. There is an option for rosemary or thyme for the herbal note. I’m not the biggest fan of celery, though using Dorie’s (and my Mom’s) method of pulling out the strings makes it nicer – and thought would be important for this soup.
As I was prepping the ingredients, however, I noticed there was a lot of green. And white. And brown. I started to worry about how this would all come together visually. Of course, the aroma of sauteing leeks and celery was nice. Once they are nicely softened, then the herbs and pears are added, followed by the chestnuts and stock.
This all gets simmered together until the chestnuts are softened and the flavors meld together. Then the soup is pureed. I used my hand blender. Seasoned with salt and pepper. Then cooked a bit more to concentrate the flavors. Not so appealing.
I served it with some sour cream and home made bread. It was actually pretty tasty, and enjoyable. But, there’s really no way around it. It’s not very lovely. And I would not ever serve this to company, which is too bad because I like the idea. I think that the celery was a bit of an overwhelming flavor too. I’m afraid I didn’t get the “elegant and sexy” part. Tasty, sure. Kind of.
If you’d like to see how others completed this recipe, you can find their posts here.
16 thoughts on “ffwd: chestnut-pear soup”
Visually this isn’t that pretty is it? I had to break out the most colorful china that I have…the set I don’t use for anything on the blog because it is so busy. But i needed it to distract from this, um, brown, glop. lol. I have never strung my celery. I’ll have to look into that…
Yeah, the color leaves much to be desired..but it looks excellent in your red mug!
I agreee, this isn’t a pretty soup. I really wasn’t that fond of the taste.
Well, at least you tried it. That counts!
Call me crazy but I think your soup looks lovely. And, I think it played well against your red cup. Nice presentation. While I agree that it doesn’t have the fabulous color of a pea soup or carrot soup or the cheesy topping of the French Onion soup, it’s in a league of its own. I actually intend to serve this over the holidays when I have some gals in for lunch. I left my soup a bit chunky because I like that in the Winter but for the luncheon, I will make it smooth and silky like yours.
Yeah, not the prettiest soup, but tasty, right? I haven’t made butternut squash and chestnut soup in a while, but you’ve inspired me to make a batch soon. I have a lot of squash on hand. Nothing beats soup with homemade bread!
Great idea serving it in that gorgeous vessel! While it fails in appearance, it was delightfully light!
I won’t tell you what my kids compared this soup too… not pretty at all, maybe that’s why I’ve never seen it on a menu, even in a seasonally focused restaurant.
I’m with you…”tasty. kind of.” Thanks for clue-ing me in about de-stringing the celery, that would have helped mine in the texture department. Guess we can’t love everything, right? Happy weekend.
I actually enjoyed this soup, but not much on looks…theres only so much you can do with brown!
My husband wouldn’t even give it a try! Have a good weekend!
You are right Candy. This soup isn’t lovely. It tastes better than it looks but it IS hard to get past that first look!
I was laughing with the FF link where you wrote “not pretty”…..but then I opened your blogpost and saw that lovely header in the bright red mug. Genius !! You made it actually look pretty as well as taste great. Nice job indeed 🙂 And that butternut squash versions sounds yummy too.
Noooo, this one was not winning any beauty pageants, for sure 🙂
Wait, I have like the biggest veggie crush on celery and I don’t even know how to string them? Did Dorie mention that in the book? I think I may have missed something.. And I think you’re being too hard on your soup. It looks mega cute in that mug of yours. 🙂
Check out page 145. I don’t peel it using a vegetable peeler as Dorie suggests, but I pull out the strings (start at one cut end, grab some of the high ridges – the strings come out – and you get a pile of stuff like I had!! It really does make it nicer – in everything,
Oh, and thanks!!!
I had the same thought. I was almost embarrassed to eat my leftovers for lunch at work – the color just isn’t very attractive.