Kaboch Squash And Chestnut Soup With Chipotle Creme Fraiche
- CHIPOTLE CRÈME FRAÎCHE:
- 1 cup ruby Port
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1 teaspoon canned chipotle chilies (or 1 tspn crushed dried chipotles)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 container crème fraîche - (8 oz) (or 1 cup sour cream)
- Vegetable oil as needed
- 2 kabocha squash - (2 1/2 lbs ea) halved horizontally, and seeded
- 8 cups canned low-salt chicken broth
- 1 1/2 jars whole roasted chestnuts - (7.4 oz ea)
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- Salt to taste
- Freshly-ground black pepper to taste
For chipotle crème fraîche: Combine Port, wine, chilies, and tomato paste in heavy small saucepan. Simmer over medium heat until reduced to thick paste, stirring often, about 12 minutes. Transfer to small bowl; cool. Fold in crème fraîche. Cover and chill at least 1 hour and up to 1 week.
For soup: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush baking sheet with oil. Place squash halves, cut-side down, on prepared sheet. Bake squash until very tender, about 1 hour. Scoop squash from skins.
Measure 6 cups squash and transfer to large pot (reserve any remaining squash for another use). Add broth and chestnuts to pot. Bring to boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer soup uncovered until chestnuts are very tender, about 30 minutes.
Mix maple syrup into soup. Puree soup in batches in blender until very smooth; return to same pot. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Refrigerate until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated.)
Rewarm soup. Ladle into bowls. Top each serving with chipotle crème fraîche.
This recipe yields 10 to 12 servings.