Chestnuts roasting… in a baking pan?

October 22, 2014

Chestnut trees are often planted as an ornamental tree in Oregon which is something that I don’t entirely understand. They are attractive trees for sure, but the nut itself grows in a spikey pod which, if left un-picked, drops to the ground to become a lethal weapon to feet and wheels of bikes or lawn mowers.

 

Growers wishing to sell the nuts must first wrestle them out of the spiny “cupule” (there are usually multiple nuts inside one cupule). I tell you this because I want you to appreciate what goes into bringing chestnuts to market. When I see the large display table loaded with chestnuts in Little Patch Farm’s booth, I think not only about how delicious they are but how much work went into getting them to this point.

 

Once you get your chestnuts home, they must be scored, roasted and peeled, before you can eat them.The folks at Martha Stewart Living demonstrate an easy way to accomplish this CLICK HERE


Of course, there are special pans with holes in the bottom made expressly for this purpose and they work really well. Since I don’t generally like kitchen equipment that is only good for a single task, I use a rimmed baking dish and it works just fine.

For those of you who really want to roast them over an open fire, you might want to try this method using a foil nest with holes poked in it to resemble the official pan.

Roasting chestnuts takes a fair amount of effort so I am going to assign the task to my family on Thanksgiving day.  We will use the fire pit on my patio, (if you don’t have a fire pit, use a barbecue). This project is a win/win because it will give my holiday guests something fun to do, the end product will be delicious to eat, and it will keep them out of my kitchen while I am cooking dinner.

 

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