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How to Roast Chestnuts

How to Roast Chestnuts

Chestnuts are roasted in various different ways. The traditional way of roasting them is over an open fire.
Tastessence Staff
Some people like to sprinkle the peeled nuts with salt or dip them in melted butter. However, they are most delicious when eaten hot. There are several ways to roast chestnuts; one may do so in the oven, over an open fire, or in the microwave. Here are some instructions on how to roast them at home.

Roasting Chestnuts in the Oven
  • Start by heating the oven to 425 °F. Use a damp towel to wipe the chestnuts, and then place them on a cutting board. Use a sharp knife to make a cross-shaped cut in each chestnut. This cut is required so the steam may escape while the nuts roast and don't explode in the oven.
  • Now, transfer the chestnuts to a baking pan, cut side up. Place the pan in the oven and roast for 20-30 minutes. When the chestnuts are ready, the cut will be open, revealing the golden brown chestnuts inside. One must be careful not to over-cook or under-cook them.
  • Take the chestnuts out of the oven, and allow them to cool just a bit. When they are warm enough to handle, start peeling them, but be careful not to burn your fingertips. Expect a few of them to turn out bad.
Another method you could explore is soaking the chestnuts in salt water first. Make the cross shaped cut in about 2 dozen large chestnuts. Stir in 2-3 tablespoons of salt in a large pot of water, and soak them in it for about 60 minutes. Then, take them out of the water and use a dish towel to dry them. Transfer them to the cookie sheet, cut side up. Roast them in the oven at 425 °F for 10 minutes, then turn them over and roast for another 10 minutes. As mentioned above, peeled back shells are an indication that your chestnuts are ready.

Other Ways to Roast Chestnuts
  • In a Pan: One way to roast chestnuts is in a pan over an open fire. These pans have long-handles and holes in them. Make the above mentioned cuts in the chestnuts and place them in the pan. Keep the pan about five inches from the flames and keep shaking it while the nuts roast. They can get roasted in between 10-30 minutes, and an indication of them being done, is blackened skin.
  • On the Stove: Make the cuts on the chestnuts and place them in a single layer in a heated, heavy pan. Sprinkle with water and cover. Place over medium-heat and shake the pan often. Cook for about 10 minutes.
  • In the Microwave: Make the cuts on the chestnuts and place them in a microwave dish. Cook for 30 seconds on high.
Roasting Chestnuts for Stuffing

Ingredients
  • 8 tablespoons, butter
  • 3 cups, turkey stock
  • 3 celery stalks with leaves (chopped)
  • 1 lb sourdough bread
  • 16 oz. chestnuts
  • ¼ cup, chopped parsley
  • 1 large chopped onion
Directions

Preheat an oven to 400 °F. Cut an "x" into the flat side of each chestnut, and bake them in a baking sheet for 30 minutes, or until the outer skins begin to peel. After taking off the outer skin, use a knife to take out the thin inner skin, and chop them coarsely. Take a large skillet and melt a little butter in it over medium heat. Fry the onion and celery in the butter for about 10 minutes. Empty the contents of the skillet into a large bowl, and add cubed bread, parsley, and about 2½ cups of stock. Add in the chestnuts, and season with salt and pepper. This stuffing is ideal for poultry.