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Sweet and earthy roasted chestnuts are the best snack to enjoy, especially during the holiday season! They’re a classic winter warmer, unique among other nuts as they’re rich in iron, vitamin C, and a variety of antioxidants. Here’s how to cook chestnuts.
It’s Chestnut Season, the Perfect Time to Learn the Easiest Ways to Cook and Prep Them!
It’s holiday season! This means it’s the perfect time for cozy chats and warm snuggles. My favorite winter memory goes back to the time when we all gathered around the fireplace, chatted about life, and nibbled a simple pleasure.
Whenever this time of the year comes around, I’m immediately reminded of the joy we felt while waiting for chestnuts to cook on a Christmas evening, or any chilly evening for that matter. These goodies are warm, fulfilling, nutritious, and make the perfect winter treat.
As holidays won’t be complete without roasting chestnuts, I bring to you one of the best ways to cook, boil, and roast chestnuts.
These Roasted Chestnuts Are Perfect For Christmas Evenings or Any Holiday Snack!
Why Your Diet Should Include Chestnuts
Chestnuts make an excellent blend of sweet taste and health benefits. They are a good source of nutrients great for your heart. For instance, they contain antioxidants which help protect the heart against oxidative stress – a condition that raises the risk of heart disease.
They are also high in fiber which can help you stay full for a longer time, and contain fewer calories per one gram compared to other nuts. For that, chestnuts are among the foods that aid weight loss.
How To Pick The Best Chestnuts
While buying chestnuts, it’s important to select the ones that feel heavy for their size, with undamaged, firm shells. Nuts that have mold on their surface or tend to rattle in their shell means they’re old.
So look for the largest ones you can find, with shiny brown, hard shells.
Fresh And Shiny Chestnuts Make An Amazing Holiday Treat
What To Do With Leftover Cooked Chestnuts
While they are delicious on their own, chestnuts marry well with lots of savory and sweet dishes as they’re naturally easy flavored and not overpowering. So believe me, you can get VERY creative with chestnuts! Even if you’re not a huge fan of them, you’ll love these holiday worthy chestnuts recipes!
Chocolate Chestnut Cake
This is chocolate cake that comes out nice and fluffy and moist. It uses rich chestnut purée, which you can either make or purchase, along with melted chocolate, eggs, softened unsalted butter, and sugar.
Not too sweet or over nutty, this cake can make the perfect treat that can be served on differing festive occasions. To top it all off, it will leave your kitchen smelling wonderful! Just another great way to put leftover chestnuts to good use!
Christmas Isn’t Complete Without Roasted Chestnuts!
You don’t want to miss on this wholesome chestnut soup. It’s a simple winter soup made with different vegetables. First you sautée minced carrots, celery and onions, add them onto vegetable broth, then combine with parsley, cloves, bay leaves, and the roasted and peeled chestnuts.
Next, you bring the mix to a boil then cover to simmer on low heat. After that, take it off the heat, remove the bey leaves and purée using a blender until smooth.
Finally, you put it back on the stove, pour in a ¼ cup of milk – use soy milk as a vegan option – and stir over low heat. Season with salt and pepper and enjoy!
It’s a simple 4-ingredient smoothie that combines chestnuts, oat milk, bananas, and yogurt to give a sweet nutty flavor, perfect for Christmas mornings! I recommend you top this goodness with a sprinkle of cinnamon, not just for aesthetic purposes, but also for extra comforting aroma!
Tips and Tricks On How To Cook Chestnuts
Tip 1: The shell is not rock hard like other nut shells, so make sure you don’t cut too deep into the chestnut.
Tip 2: Make sure you peel the chestnuts and remove the inner, bitter paper like membrane while they’re still warm. Once they cool down, they become harder to peel. So, you have to work quickly!!
Tip 3: In case you don’t have a chestnut cracker, you can use a knife to cut a cross shape on the bumpy side of the nut. It is more tedious, so please use with caution.
Tip 4: It’s better to cook the chestnuts soon after purchasing them, as they can go rotten quickly.
Enjoy This With Your Loved Ones
Frequently Asked Questions
You can store your cooked and peeled chestnuts in plastic bags and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Just make sure that the bags have ventilation holes in them to prevent the nuts from getting moldy in case they were uncooked.
For a longer storage period, freeze in airtight containers.
You know your chestnuts are done when they start to smell nutty and become hot to touch. Make sure they don’t turn black while in the oven. This means they’re overcooked.
It is NOT recommended that you heat your chestnuts using a microwave. This might set them on fire! Instead, heat them in a pot on medium-low with some butter to prevent them from getting dry.
Add about 6 cups of cooked and peeled chestnuts into a saucepan along with 1 cup of sugar and 1 ¾ cup of water then bring to a boil. Next, let the mix simmer for about 30 minutes on low heat. After that take the pan off the heat and transfer the chestnuts into a food processor while keeping the liquid aside.
In a blender, purée the chestnuts until smooth then gradually add the reserved liquid while you keep blending until you reach the desired consistency.
- 1 lb raw chestnuts
How to Cook Chestnuts
First, preheat over to 450°F, then place the flat side of the chestnut to the flat surface of the chestnut cracker. Carefully pierce down into the chestnut to create a cross shape indent.
Next, drop the chestnuts into boiling water for 7 minutes, this will make them super soft. After that, strain from the water and arrange on a baking sheet then bake for 20-22 minutes until the nutmeats soften.
The cut will open up and the shell should be easy to peel off. Now the chestnut is ready to be enjoyed!
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How to Cook, Boil, and Roast Chestnuts
- Chestnut cracker
- 1 lb raw chestnuts
- Preheat over to 450°F
- Using the chestnut cracker, place the flat side of the chestnut to the flat surface of the chestnut cracker then pierce down into the chestnut to create a cross shape indent.
- Drop the chestnuts into boiling water for 7 minutes, then strain from the water and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 20-22 minutes. The shell should be easy to peel off. Now the chestnut is ready to be enjoyed!
- Be sure to peel the chestnuts while they are warm. Once they are cooled, they tend to get harder to peel.
- If you don’t have the utensil I mentioned to easily cut your chestnuts, you can use a knife to cut a cross shape on the bumpy side of the nut. It is more tedious, so please use with cautious. I definitely recommend that you purchase the nut cracker.