Chestnut, Choi & Bacon Soup
This is possibly one of my favourite seasonal soups (gluten-free) which takes under 10 minutes to make assuming you have chicken stock and peeled chestnuts on hand. It's an Asian adaptation of the chestnut, kale and bacon soup from the River Cottage cookbook by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall (my secret crush). Chestnuts are available in the wet markets or you can pay 10 times the price for vacuum packed ones in the supermarkets. That said, the price differential is lower than the cost of a manicure which frankly is what you will need after peeling a bag of chestnuts....
What you need:
6 cups of chicken stock
4 rashers of bacon
1 cup of peeled chestnuts
1 cup of choi or kale leaves
If you have bought whole chestnuts, place them on their flat back and make a cross incision in each. Boil for 15 mins then peel while warm.
Fry your bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan and chop into pieces. Leave on one side.
Add the chicken stock to the bacon pan (to get the bacony flavours) and bring to the boil.
Chop half the chestnuts and mash the others with the fork. This gives the soup a little texture.
Add all the chestnuts with the greens to the pan.
Once the greens are wilted or cooked (as you prefer), serve in soup bowls, scattering the chopped bacon on top with a good grind of black pepper.
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