Creamy Italian Chestnut Soup with a Parmesan Crema is a luxurious, decadent start to your holiday meal. Easier to make than you think, this soup will be a hit with your family and friends.
For the soup:
- 2 tablespoons bacon fat
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 large sweet onion, chopped
- 1 medium carrot, chopped
- 1 stalk celery, chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves
- 3 ½ cups chicken stock
- 1 cup dry white wine
- Two (15-ounce) jars whole roasted chestnuts, drained or 2 ½ pounds fresh chestnuts, roasted and peeled
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 large or 2 medium fresh sage leaves
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the parmesan crema:
- 1 cup mascarpone cheese
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, melt the bacon fat and butter together.
Add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic. Cook, stirring constantly until the onion becomes golden and the vegetables are soft – about 10 – 15 minutes.
Add the stock, wine, chestnuts, bay leaf, thyme, and sage leaves.
Bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat to medium and cook, covered about halfway, until the chestnuts are very tender and beginning to fall apart – about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the Parmesan Crema.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the mascarpone cheese, heavy cream, and parmesan until smooth. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
When the chestnuts are tender, remove the pot from the heat.
Discard the bay leaf, sage, and thyme stem.
Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth.
Stir in the cream, nutmeg, salt, and pepper.
Return to the stove over medium-low heat.
Cook until the soup is hot, stirring constantly, until thick and hot – about 5-7 minutes longer.
Taste and adjust for salt and pepper.
Serve warm with a dollop of parmesan crema and a sprinkle of fresh thyme, if desired.
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Category: Starters - Soups
- Method: Simmer
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: creamy Italian chestnut soup, holiday sides, Thanksgiving starters, Thanksgiving side dishes, soup recipes, Italian food, Italian comfort food, chestnuts, parmesan crema