I've been posting ideas for the Christmas season on the usual days that I blog. Well, there are just too many ideas! Too many things I want to make, bake, and try creating. So, I've decided that from now until Christmas I will be posting something new everyday. Hope you don't get sick of me.
I wanted to start with a simple, simple recipe (would you even call it a recipe) that we know very well from "The Christmas Song." I've been wanting to roast some dang chestnuts for years! Do you know how hard it is to find chestnuts? Very, apparently. I finally found them at a grocery store in the refrigerated produce section (I would've never guessed). This is all you need in order to roast chestnuts. Just the chestnuts, if you can find them. I hope it's easier for you than it was for me.
Okay, you'll also need a baking sheet. I lied a little. Chestnuts and a baking sheet. You can handle that, right? Easy. I decided to not go with the "open fire" method, but to stick them in the oven instead. It seemed a lot more foolproof.
The package even tells you what you need to do in order to roast these guys! How can it get any easier? You need to cut little X's into each of the chestnuts before you stick them into the oven. It was surprisingly easy to slice through the shells. Have I mentioned I had never tried chestnuts before at this point? Yeah, I hadn't. This was all a big adventure for me.
I guess the little X's help them...to roast? I'm not exactly sure what it does, but I am guessing it is fairly important. What happens when they roast is what led me to definitely believe it is an important step. Anyway, at this point you stick them in a preheated oven set to 425 degrees (Fahrenheit) and let them cook for 20-30 minutes.
You'll watch them and let them roast until they pop open! Well, somewhat split. Maybe pop was too exciting of a word.
The shell does this nice little split for you that provides an easy way to take off the shell. Seriously, this could only get easier if the chestnuts could just roast themselves. Wait a few minutes until you can handle the chestnuts and then peel of the shells. They came off very easily. Just be careful not to burn yourself. You'll still want them a little warm though because I'm assuming that's part of enjoying roasted chestnuts.
Then you eat them! If you have never tried a chestnut, be prepared for something you never expected. I totally expected it to be super crunchy and nutty. Guess what? It is soft on the inside! Soft as in a potato-like texture. It is the most bizarre thing I have ever tried. I personally enjoyed them, but would love to try to figure out a way to flavor them up a little. If you've ever wanted to try roasting chestnuts, now you know it is quite simple (at least with an oven-method).
Until next time.