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Festive Treats from Citys 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 wont 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, Accordis 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

Monday, Sept. 1


Today marks the beginning of Lermontov-Fest, a fall festival celebrating the life of one of Russias most remarkable poets who, in a fate eerily similar to Pushkins, was killed in a duel at the age of 26. Organized by the Lermontov Library System, the next several months will see art exhibitions, concerts and public lectures focusing on the Lermontovs short yet prolific career. Check the Lermontov Library Systems website for more details.



Tuesday, Sept. 2


Join expats and practice your Russian during the Russian Clubs weekly meeting tonight at 7:30 p.m. The club is free to participate in although you need to be a registered member of Couchsurfing.



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