This soup was a best-seller! Creamy, savory and a bit sweet, this easy-to-prepare soup is satisfying on any fall or winter day! It’s a great soup to serve at a holiday party or just on a weeknight for your family.
3 tablespoons Earth Balance or olive oil
2 shallots, thinly sliced; or a 1/3 cup chopped yellow onion
1 large carrot, chopped (about 1 cup)
½ cup peeled and chopped celeriac
2 ½ cups chopped mixed mushrooms (any combination of button, cremini, Portobello, shiitake, oyster, etc), tough stems and/or gills removed
2 – 2 ½ cups roasted chestnuts; shells removed and coarsely chopped (I buy them already roasted and shelled, so simple!)
5 cups vegetable stock
¼ cup cognac or brandy
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs of fresh sage, leaves removed and chopped
2 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves removed
1 cup cashew cream*
Salt and Pepper to taste
To a heavy bottom soup pot over medium heat, add 1 tbsp Earth Balance (or olive oil, if using). Saute the shallots, carrots and celeriac until soft, about 10 minutes. Remove from pot with a slotted spoon and set aside.
Add remaining Earth Balance or oil. Saute the mushrooms and chestnuts until mushrooms have softened a bit, about 5 minutes.
Add about ¼ cup veg broth to the pot, return the veggies to the pot and stir to combine. Pour in the cognac and cook for a couple of minutes to allow the alcohol to burn off.
Add the herbs and the rest of the broth and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes.
With an immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth. You can also do this in couple batches in a blender. Stir in the cashew cream and add salt and pepper to taste.
Keep warm on the stove at the lowest setting, or in a warm oven. If the heat of the stove is too hot, the soup will thicken and the bottom may char. Serve with a simple salad and a loaf of crusty bread.
*Cashew Cream is super simple! Soak 1/2 cup of raw cashews overnight (or all day before you use them). Blend on high with 1 cup of water until smooth