Chestnuts are grown in many parts of the
world but France, where they are called marrons, is one of its biggest
producers. Available during late fall and winter, they are often used in
holiday desserts. Their flavor complements that of cranberries, apples, pears
With its glossy, mahogany-colored
hard shell, these nuts have a mild, subtle flavor. However, they need to be
cooked and are fantastic roasted and eaten while still warm. To remove the
shell you need to make an "X" on the chestnut's flat side and bake in a 375
degree F (190 degree C) oven for 10-15 minutes. This loosens the shell and
makes them easier to peel.
Fresh unshelled chestnuts can be
stored at room temperature but once they are shelled, they will only keep a few
days in the refrigerator stored in an airtight container.
Chestnuts are available in many
forms; fresh in their shells; preserved in sugar (marrons glac?) either whole
or in pieces; sweetened or unsweetened pur?s in cans or tubes; chestnut flour;
and dried chestnuts.
"Chestnuts roasting on an
Jack Frost nipping at your nose......"
- The Christmas Song by
Mel Torm?& Robert Wells
The words to this famous
holiday carol probably originated in the tradition that chestnuts were
nestled in the hot ashes of an open fire where they were roasted until
cooked and easy to peel.
1 cup unsweetened puree = 260 grams
1 pound = 480 grams