Roasted Chestnuts

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire . . .

My first taste of roasted chestnuts was on Regent Street in London one Christmas.  My parents took us to see the Christmas lights and store windows, and on a corner was man roasting chestnuts in a little brazier.  They were warm and buttery and rich tasting, and I was hooked.  I probably only had chestnuts two or three times while we lived in England, and didn’t see them again until a zillion years later when I was an adult.

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I’ve tried many ways to roast them, and have ended up disappointed by skins that won’t come off or shells that were impossible to open without destroying the nut inside . . . until . . . until . . . LAST NIGHT!   Here’s a foolproof method — you can throw out those winterberry and cranberry candles and now perfume your house with the fragrance of roasted chestnuts!!!  Who needs an open fire, anyway?

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Using a serrated bread knife, make a long cut across the rounded side of the chestnut.  MUCH easier than cutting X’s and it’s way easier to pull the shells off at the end.

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Place the cut chestnuts in a pot of water and bring those to a simmer.  As soon as the water begins to simmer, drain the nuts and place them on a baking sheet, and pop them into the oven.  Roast for 15 minutes or until the shells begin to peel back at the cuts.  Place the nuts in a bowl and cover them with a dishtowel for 15 minutes–this will make them easier to peel.

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That’s it!  Pull the shells apart and eat them up!!

 

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