How to Roast Chestnuts

bringing the people behind our food to

life the way that we like to do it you

know a lot of instructions will tell you

to like make an X most people that are

into this professionally would cut the

chestnut either like this all the way

around and then it opens up very nicely

when it roasts or another type of cut is

what I call the clamshell cut and this

is the one we use at the market where we

cut around like that that it sort of

splits open like a clam by the way

another thing is is this is a specialty

knife made for chestnuts when you cut

the chestnut you’re trying not to cut

into the nut itself just the shell so

that is a knife like this or something

with a hook blade makes it nice and easy

here we are roasting a few chestnuts now

these have been out all for four or five

days anyway at room temperature so

they’ve some of the carbohydrates is

converted to sugar and they’ve developed

a little bit more flavor and we’re using

this pan with holes in it that’s a

traditional Italian or French chestnut

roasting pan I made this myself just

drilled holes in a common steel pan yeah

the reason why you use a pan with holes

in it is is it will char the outside of

the chestnut shell and make it quite

brittle and easy to peel it also imparts

a little smoky flavor on it so actually

the flame gets on the chestnut but you

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can use a cast-iron pan to in it with

very similar results so we got them over

the burner here and they’re partially

cooked now you can see they’re getting a

little charred on the outside and that’s

what you want on medium heat or so and


get them stirred up you see we’ve cut

these clamshell style so that when um

they open up nicely when when they’re


some of these alternatively we’ve cut

with a single cut across why is it bored

to cut them they’ll explode if you don’t

cut the nuts that’s you know the shell

is pretty much airtight and there’s

moisture inside there and so they will

pop and literally explode if you don’t

cut them I’ve had them on the pan here

for I don’t know ten minutes or so

ten or fifteen minutes and we’re getting

pretty close to being done how do you

know they’re done well you know you can

just take one in and sample it you know

and see people like them it’s like any

kind of food people like them some like

I’m from some people like I’m really

soft it’s just a matter of them your

personal taste really how long you cook

them but if if you don’t cook them it’ll

be sort of light a little bit like

eating a raw potato you know so when

they’re done see this one here hot and

steamy and are ready to eat

a little hot I’m pretty good to handle

hot stuff go there’s an inner skin here

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that you want to get off and you peel it

that’s how Bush tea babies act sweet

probably could have been cooked a little

bit weird on so it’s interesting on the

inside too okay

just popped out of it’s shell entirely

want to take a bite see what you think

it may not be done completely but there

may not be quite sweet enough either yet

these are very nutty these have been um

not been sitting now really that that

long you know like I said they generally

take but they’re not a nut they’re

they’re they’re like a grain on a tree

then nutritionally like brown rice I

said here’s another steaming hot is they

different writing wish to bet is out

I’ll try it

the idea is to um you know let them sit

out at room temperature until they kind

of get their maximum sweetness and you

can you just generally judge that I mean

you can sample them raw and kind of know

when they’re ready to cook when they

start to get sweet but then other than

that you sort of squeeze the nut and

when it starts to give a little bit you

know and gets a little kind of I guess

spongy for the lack of a better word

it’s usually ready to ready to cook and

you see as they start to cook more you

can see this more shells are starting to

open up now and that kind of as a judge

to of when they’re done these are great

with a glass of red wine like this one

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one of my favorite ways to use them is

is to put them in soups

you can go ahead and cook them like this

and then you know cut them up cook them

with vegetables commonly people people

like them a lot with brussel sprouts

sauteed with brussel sprouts they go

with pork and lamb and duck and meats

like that people even chop them up

finely and mix them with potatoes and

Kern wants one