Whole Chestnuts are starchy nuts encased in a hard shell. They can be peeled and eaten raw or roasted to enhance their slightly sweet, nutty flavor. We source authentic Italian chestnuts with their shells intact.
Rehydrated Whole Chestnuts can be used in the same ways as fresh peeled chestnuts. To rehydrate dried chestnuts, simmer in water for 30 minutes.
Storage & handling
Store in a dry, cool place.
Chestnuts. Contains tree nuts.
Chestnuts (Castanea sativa) are the seed of a deciduous tree, growing two or three in a single, burr-covered husk. Chestnuts are among the largest nuts eaten by people, with edible kernels that are much larger than other tree nuts like almonds, hazelnuts, pecans or walnuts.
Once picked from the husk chestnuts can be boiled, steamed, roasted or deep fried and eaten. Chestnuts are also easily dried to preserve them for later. Dried chestnuts can be boiled to rehydrate or ground into a powder and used as a flour or flour substitute.
Species of chestnut tree have been traced back to at least three continents: Africa, Europe and North America, although most of the chestnuts commercially cultivated today are varieties which originated in Mediterranean Europe. Evidence suggests that many prehistoric cultures relied on chestnuts as a food source, often treating them more like starchy vegetables such as potatoes or even a starchy grain like rice.
Chestnuts are low in protein and fat but high in carbohydrates especially when compared to other tree nuts. In addition to their high carbohydrate content, chestnuts also provide vitamins B6, C and E, along with calcium and potassium.
Classic preparations of chestnuts vary by culture but include Japanese kurigohan (steamed chestnut rice) and Korean yaksik (a sweet dish made from glutinous rice cooked with chestnuts, jujube fruits and pine nutes). Perhaps the most familiar to Americans is the use of chestnuts in dressing to celebrate Thanksgiving, or roast fresh chestnuts or glazed chestnuts (marrons glace) in the European tradition.
These whole chestnuts are peeled and dried after harvesting to preserve their mild nutty flavor. Reconstitute by simmering in fresh water to use as you would fresh chestnuts, or chop or grind them while dried to use as you would other tree nuts.
Chestnuts are poised for a holiday indulgence — or a cold-weather pick-me-up — this tangy, silky, sherry-spiked soup employs crème fraîche for richness, which plays off of the earthy nuttiness of roasted chestnuts.