Pumpkins and Roast Chestnuts Soup for Halloween

By Chef H. Delgado

October 30, 2020

Today I have prepared a vibrant soup with these two ingredients so typical of autumn, especially in Halloween. This dish is Vegetarian, healthy and very easy to make. But before starting to cook, I would like to tell you two little histories about these beautiful products.

The Chestnuts

The Chestnuts were a symbol of new life, for the Celtic villages who lived in the north of the Iberian Peninsula.  The fall of the leaves meant the end of death or the initiation of a new life and the fresh fruit collected from within the pod represented life, the new to come, the beginning of winter. This teaching spread through the years from generation to generation.

   On the first of November, to welcome the Celtic New Year, they celebrated a great roast of chestnuts accompanied with cider or wine, and they shared it with their neighbors and family.  Possibly there we have the first origin of Halloween.  This ritual was called Samhain, which means the end of harvest in Gaelic.

 Today some towns in northern Spain continue to celebrating what they call it, "El Magosto". (Name of the fire that roasts chestnuts)

 The pumpkins.

A tradition that arose in Ireland was to turn carved turnips into lamps, alluding to the legend of Jack o 'Lantern, about a phenomenon of strange lights that twinkled in the marshes of that British island.

 The story is that a sure Jack made a pact with the devil that went wrong and he was condemned to prowl the eternal night, lighting his way with a piece of incandescent coal inside a turnip carved with holes.

 The locals began to carry these "Jack Lanterns" (Jack o 'Lanterns) around the villages and left them lit in front of the houses on Halloween night.

 They were supposed to represent supernatural beings or serve to scare away evil spirits.

 The tradition changed slightly when Irish immigrants flocked to the United States in the 19th century.  It was in this new continent that they found the fruit of a plant easier to carve: the pumpkin.

Pumpkin and Roast Chestnuts Soup.

Ingredients (Servers 4)

  1. Potatoes: 150 g.
  2. Leeks: 100 g.
  3. Onions: 100 g.
  4. A clove of Garlic.
  5. Pumpkins: 400 g.
  6. Roast chestnuts: 150 g.
  7. Cardamom 1 u.
  8. Ginger to taste.
  9. Olive oil.
  10. Salt.
  11. White pepper.
  12. Vegetable stock / Chicken stock/ Water: 1 l.
  13. Butter: 1 tbsp.
  14. Honey: 1 tsp.

Preparation

  1. Firstly we will roast the chestnuts. Wash them and make them a cut in the top part to avoid explosions in your oven and peel them easily.
  2. After 15 min approx in the oven at 200 degrees, take them out and leave them  cooling down.
  3. Then peel and preserve them for the soup and some of them for decoration.
  1. Peel and chop all the vegetables except the chestnuts.
  2. Keep some pumpkin cubes for decoration.
  3. Cover the bottom of a pot with olive oil a put on medium heat.
  4. Add the onions, garlic, leek and potatoes.
  5. After two minutes, add the ginger and the cardamom.
  6. Cook them all together until they are brown, then add the pumpkin and the roast chestnuts.
  1. Put salt and pepper and cook the for another five minutes.
  2. Cover the vegetables with the stock and cook them for another twenty minutes over slow heat.
  3. Blend the mix with a food processor or hand blender, and after that pass it troughs a strain.
  4. Put the soup in the pot again and bring it to the boil.
  5. Finally, you can add a little bit of cream if you want a smoother flavor.
  6. Correct salt and ready to the plating.

For decoration

  1. Put the butter in a pan over medium heat and then add the pumpkins dices.
  2. Sautee them for few minutes over high heat, and add a spoon of honey.
  3. Keep cooking until they get some color.
  1. Cut the roast chestnuts in the way you like it.
  2. Chop some chive and ready to plating.

Make you own way of plating this Traditional and Healthy Spanish dish.

Enjoy cooking as a family! And have a terrifying day!

I'm Chef H. Delgado

Love for the product, take care of the technique, elegant execution, and above all, nature and environment respect, are my values ​​as a professional.
It is a pleasure for me to invite you to discover the best dishes and ingredients of Spanish cuisine.

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