This soup is really quite easy to prepare, and with the right garnish you can make it seem very elegant for a dinner party. Some nice garnishes could be a drizzle of truffle oil, slivered chestnuts, fried sage and/or a drizzle of roasted nut oil.
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp garlic, coarsely chopped
2 cups onions, coarsely chopped
1 tbsp fresh sage, coarsely chopped
1 ½ lb celery root (after peeling), cut into 1″ dice
1 medium Yukon Gold potato, peeled, cut into 1″ dice
1 cup peeled chestnuts (found in foil packets at most grocers)
1 cup stout or dark ale
4 cups beef (or vegetable) stock
1/4 cup 35% cream (optional)
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1. In a large pot over medium heat melt butter and cook garlic for one minute, add onions and sage and cook for 5 minutes.
2. Add stout and cook on high for 2 minutes.
3. Add celery root, chestnuts and stock. Bring to a boil then lower heat to simmer. Cover and simmer until all vegetables are very tender, about 45 minutes.
4. Let cool slightly before straining the solids from the liquid (reserve the liquid).
5. Working in batches pureé the solids in a blender until velvety smooth, adding enough liquid to blender to allow for movement, if needed top up with water.
6. Gently rewarm all the puréed soup in pot along with cream and additional water if needed to thin the soup, do not let boil. Season generously with salt and pepper and serve.
Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout (Japan)
St Ambroise Oatmeal Stout (Quebec, Canada)