Chestnut specialties = chic small plates

Besides roasting, chestnuts are fabulous for soups, entrees, appetizers and desserts.
Fante’s of Philadelphia has everything needed for chestnut roasting–year round. Also a designer mart to-the-trade for professional specialty utensils.
Fante’s Kitchen Shop is a family owned and operated retail business, located in the heart of Philadelphia’s historic Italian Market since 1906.
Keep the holidays festive.  Keep your menu memorable.
A few more small plate ideas.
Chestnut Bisque
1 medium carrot, diced
1/2 onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 tbsp. butter or canola oil
1 lb fresh chestnuts, peeled
3 C chicken bouillon
1/4 C apple juice
1/4 C fresh parsley, chopped
pinch ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
fresh ground pepper to taste
1/2 tsp dried tarragon
nonfat sour cream or yogurt  
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add carrots, onion, and celery, and saute until soft.  Add chestnuts and continue cooking 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add stock and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to simmer and add apple juice, parsley, nutmeg, salt and pepper.  Simmer 15 minutes.  Add tarragon and continue cooking 5 minutes.  
Puree the soup in a blender.  Return to saucepan and reheat.  Adjust seasonings as needed.  Serve with a dollop of yogurt or sour cream. Serves 4
Chestnut Souffle
1 cup unsweetened 
chestnut puree
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon brandy
4 egg whites
In a small mixer bowl, beat egg yolks until thick and lemon colored, about 5 minutes–set aside.  In another small bowl, beat the puree, sugar, milk, and brandy until smooth. Beat in egg yolks until well combined. 
In a large bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold the beaten whites into the chestnut mixture. Turn into an ungreased 1-½ quart soufflé dish. Bake at 350 for 35 – 40 minutes.  Serve immediately. Top with devonshire cream or lemon curd. 4 servings.
Chestnut Stuffed Quail
1 cup spinach
1/2 cup cooked, peeled  
1/4 cup dried apricots
1/4 cup goat cheese 
2-4 small quail 
assorted  rustic vegetables: artichokes, potatoes, carrots, turnips, parsnips and chestnuts
olive oil for roasting + season to taste
Work the spinach, peeled chestnuts, apricots, goat cheese and salt and pepper to taste with your hands until smooth. Stuff the quail and sear in olive oil, breast side down, until golden brown. Place quail breast side up and bake at 400 for 7 minutes.
For the vegetable bed: Brush vegetables with olive oil and roast until tender.  Place stuffed quail on top of vegetables. Deglaze searing pan with red wine and use as a sauce
—Chef Peio Aramburu, Trattoria Strada Nova,  Columbia, Mo
All recipes are from Fantes
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