I grew up visiting Spain.
My grandparents live there, and we used to go and visit often. That is where I fell in love with chestnuts (also known as castanas in Spanish). In Spain, in the winter, people sell fresh hot roasted chestnuts on street corners in their little stands, just like hot dogs and soft pretzels in Manhattan.
I remember going to the market, buying some fresh chestnuts, cracking them open a little, and roasting them in the oven at my grandparents’ house. We would all enjoy them as an after-dinner snack.
Freshly roasted chestnuts are different than store-bought ones. While both are delicious, if you can find fresh chestnuts near you, I recommend giving them a try!
How to Roast Chestnuts:
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. With a knife, cut a large ‘X’ on the flat side of the chestnuts and place on a baking sheet with the X facing up.
3. Bake for around 15 to 25 minutes until the shell of the chestnut is peeling back.
Shabbat Menu- Chestnut Themed
Creamy Celery Soup by Brynie Greisman
This soup is a notch above in taste and texture. The chestnuts and almond butter add a welcoming note of nut flavor and creaminess to this soup. Delicious parve or fleishig.
Caramelized Onion, Honey, and Chestnut Chicken by Tammy Israel
Full of flavor and easy to put together- you can’t go wrong with adding this chicken, caramelized onion, and chestnut dish to your menu.
Sherry Wine Brisket with Chestnuts by Vera Newman
The combination of ingredients yields the most delicious, buttery-soft piece of meat, with an element of surprise from the chestnuts. A slice of perfect savory meat to serve with a sweeter chicken to balance the meal.
Green Beans with Chestnuts, Pomegranates and Lemony Tahini by Ruth Fox and Vicky Cohen
A crisp, hearty, and sweet green bean dish with lemon-tahini dressing.
Truffle Mushroom Roasted Chestnuts by Shay Siff
The perfect side dish! The mushrooms have a great texture, and the crunch from the chestnuts is a delicious surprise.
Honey-Garlic Squash by Michal Frischman
There is something about the fresh tomatoes and roasted tomatoes together that really works in this dish! Even if you’re not usually into chestnuts, they’re worth a try here!
Caramel Chocolate Pie with Fried Chestnut Topping by Chaia Frishman
Caramel chips mixed with chocolate liqueur make for a wonderful marriage of yumminess. These fried chestnuts are used for the topping, and the results speak for themselves.
Caramelized Chestnuts by Faigie Davidowitz
These sweet, sticky, and nutty chestnuts are a uniquely, delicious dessert that will have everyone running for more!