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Festive Treats from City’s Top Chefs

Cook your way into the hearts of friends and family this holiday season with these gourmet recipes.

Published: December 25, 2013 (Issue # 1792)



  • A delectable take on the classic Russian New Year favorite from the chef at Grand Hotel Europe.
    Photo: Grand Hotel Europe / For SPT

  • Andrea Accordi, the executive chef at the Four Seasons Hotel Lion Palace.
    Photo:

Another year is coming to an end and St. Petersburg is beginning to prepare itself for the upcoming holidays. Like Thanksgiving in America, New Year is a chance to overindulge around family members who won’t judge you when you refuse to stop eating. In the spirit of giving, The St. Petersburg Times would like to offer a couple of suggestions for appetizers that can liven up your own New Year celebrations and make it all the more difficult to get up from the table.

Chestnut and Almond Soup with Black Truffle Pesto

For 6 People

If there was ever a time of year to get ambitious with your food, this is that time. For all those looking to leave their fellow partygoers in a state of gastronomical ecstasy, try this soup recipe given to us by Andrea Accordi, the executive chef at the Four Seasons Hotel Lion Palace. Since starting to cook at the age of 14, Accordi’s renowned ability in the kitchen has taken him all over the world, from the fog of London to the smog of Bangkok and now to St. Petersburg, and won him a Michelin star along the way.

For the Chestnut Soup:

- 100 grams of pancetta, sliced into large pieces

- 600 grams of fresh, cooked chestnuts (boil them for one hour and scrape out the meat)

- 2 cloves

- 1 bay leaf

- 4 juniper berries

- 50 grams of butter

- 30 grams of honey

- 500 grams of milk

- 500 grams of chicken stock

- Salt and pepper to taste

Make a bouquet of spices by wrapping the bay leaves, juniper berries, and cloves in a piece of cheesecloth. In a pot, melt the butter and add the pancetta and bouquet. Throw in the chestnut meat and honey, and roast for five minutes before adding the milk and chicken stock. Sprinkle some salt and pepper to taste and let it all simmer for 20 minutes. Remove and discard the pancetta slices and bouquet and pour the soup into a blender and mix until the broth is fine and smooth.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Sept. 19


SPIBA’s newest addition to their Cultural Discoveries events is “Handmade in Germany,” an exhibition featuring unique handmade objects of a significantly higher quality than mass-produced items. The work of over 100 German manufacturers will be displayed during the event, which opens today in the Lutheran Church of Saint Peter and Paul on Nevsky Prospekt and runs through Sept. 28.



Saturday, Sept. 20


Starting on Sept. 18 and ending tomorrow is the Extreme Fantasy Wakeboarding Festival in Sunpark by Sredny Suzdalskoye lake in the Ozerki region of the city.


Those after something more laid back can instead head to Jazz and Wine night at TerraVino with legendary jazz guitarist Ildar Kazahanov. 12/14 Admiralteyskaya Emb.



Sunday, Sept. 21


Learn more about African culture and get some exercise during today’s “Djembe and Vuvuzela,” a bike ride starting in Palace Square that includes several stops where riders can listen to the music of Africa or watch short films about the continent. The riders plan to set off at 4 p.m. and all you need to join is a set of wheels.



Monday, Sept. 22


Do you love puppetry? If so, then be sure to go to BTK-Fest, a five-day festival that starts on Sept. 19 celebrating the art. Contemporaries from France, Belgium, the U.K. and other countries will join Russian artists to put on theatrical performances involving a variety of themes, materials and eras. Workshops and meetings are also scheduled for a chance to discuss the artistic medium in further depth.



Tuesday, Sept. 23


Marina Suhih, Director of the External Communications Department at Rostelecom North-West, and Yana Donskaya, HR Director for Northern Capital Gateway are just some of the confirmed participants of today’s round table discussion on “Interaction with Trade Unions” being hosted by SPIBA. Confirm your attendance with SPIBA by Sept. 22.


Kino Expo 2014, an international film industry convention, will be at LenExpo from today until Sept. 26. The third largest exhibition of film equipment in the world, the expo focuses on not only Russia but former Soviet republics as well.



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