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Oh arse. Every recipe for chestnuts says use vacuum packed. How do I prepare and cook fresh ones?

(13 Posts)
FestiviaBlueberry Sun 23-Dec-12 13:28:07

Anyone know? I couldn't find any vacuum packed ones so bought fresh but am now looking doubtfully at them and wonder if I should just go and hunt for tinned ones somewhere...

Unless one of you lot knows how to cook fresh ones?

Yama Sun 23-Dec-12 13:32:02

I think they go in the oven. I seem to remember my sister roasting hers before going in with the sprouts last year.

FestiviaBlueberry Sun 23-Dec-12 14:04:17

Did she take off the shells first Yama? Or do you just put them in with the shells on and then take the shells off once cooked?

PoppyWearer Sun 23-Dec-12 14:07:54

If all else fails, Waitrose have frozen ones.

missingperson Sun 23-Dec-12 14:14:41

Here is recipe from Good Housekeeping cook book 1963 which is always good when modern methods fail:

Allow half as many chestnuts as sprouts. Put chestnuts in cold water. bring to boil. remove outside & inside skins (2012 update: the pithy stuff ). Cover nuts with stock, add stick of celery & 1 level tsp sugar. Simmer for 30-40 mins. Mix with cooked sprouts. Add butter.

Hope they're nice.

missingperson Sun 23-Dec-12 14:15:37

BTW if you are using them for something other than sprouts you can miss out the sprouts bit. smile

IsletsOfLangerhans Sun 23-Dec-12 14:20:25

If you are going to boil them, you should cut a cross in the shell to allow steam to escape. Simmer for 5 mins.

FestiviaBlueberry Sun 23-Dec-12 14:23:35

Great, thanks all!

Yama Sun 23-Dec-12 14:31:08

Glad you are sorted Festivia. I popped out to the park with the kids as the rain stopped. Still mega windy but it was good to get out.

Wheels79 Sun 23-Dec-12 14:33:00

To roast stab each one with a sharp paring knife. Place on roasting tray slits up. Roast at 180-200 for 15 minutes. Take a peek and if a few of the slits have opened they are ready. Don't over cook or they will explode. Allow to cool in oven with door open for a couple of minutes. Transfer to bowl (ideally not too cold because I've had them explode going into a cold bowl) and peel quickly. Do in small batches because as they cool they get harder to peel. Try to resist eating as you go along.

I have loads downstairs that I need need to roast tomorrow for Christmas Day sprouts. Very hard to resist but would play havoc with blood sugar (gestational diabetes). Like pringles, when I start I can't stop.

FestiviaBlueberry Sun 23-Dec-12 14:47:38

One more question: can they be done in advance? If I cook them today, can I just chuck 'em in the oven / microwave/ pan on Tuesday once I've cooked the sprouts? Am planning on chucking bits of bacon in as well, can they just be heated up with bacon and then sprouts added? Or will it ruin them to do them in advance?

WeAreEternal Sun 23-Dec-12 15:16:33

I have a large bucket of chestnut, I'm going to use them in a pate, stuffings and with the sprouts.

I just cut crosses in the shells and roast the in the oven for until the crosses open up. Then I let them cool until they are a touchable temprature and peel them.

I'm going to do them in a couple of batches later.
They keep fine in a Tupperware tub for a few days, I just give them a drizzle of oil to stop them drying out.

FestiviaBlueberry Sun 23-Dec-12 16:26:40

Excellent, thank you very much, I'll get on with cutting crosses in them then!

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