Nothing says happy holidays better than the welcoming aroma of roasting castanas! Here’s a quick guide on how to roast chestnuts at home using your oven. Enjoy!
Chestnuts roasting on an open fire… Chestnuts are best known in this classic popular Christmas song, and nothing says happy holidays better than the welcoming sweet-nutty aroma of freshly roasted Chestnuts in your own home! Warm, delicately sweet, nutty, and soft, this popular autumn and winter treat is easy to cook and will leave your home festive-smelling too!
Chestnuts or Castañas are fruits of the sweet chestnut tree contained in a spiny cupule called “burr.” The fruit has an inedible dark-brown outer shell that needs to be removed before eating.
They are bitter when raw but have a delicately sweet nutty flavor and a soft texture similar to a sweet potato when roasted.
In the Philippines, chestnuts are traditionally roasted in large woks with volcanic stones. The chestnuts and pebbles are tossed together in the wok over high heat. These stones/pebbles act as heat conductors that evenly cook the castañas.
How to select
- The shells should be shiny and hard with vibrant dark brown color. They should be intact with no signs of mildew or pinholes.
- They should feel heavy for their size and firm to the touch. They should not rattle when you shake them.
- Ask the vendor for a new crop, as the chestnuts get moldy or inedible and dry when they get too old.
How to serve and store
- Roasted chestnuts can be enjoyed as an after-dinner treat or a festive snack. You can also use them as stuffing, add in pasta and soups, or cakes and pies.
- Store peeled roasted chestnuts in an airtight container or resealable bag. They will keep well in the refrigerator for about 3 days or in the freezer for about 3 months.
- 1 pound chestnuts
- Preheat oven to 425 F.
- Using a sharp knife, cut a small X on the rounded side of each chestnut to prevent them from exploding during roasting.
- In a large bowl, soak chestnuts in hot water for about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Arrange chestnuts with the cut side up on a rimmed baking sheet and lightly sprinkle with water. Roast for about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and transfer into a bowl. Cover with a towel for about 10 to 15 minutes to allow to steam.
- While still warm, quickly peel the skins. If becoming hard to peel, warm them in the oven for a few minutes.
- Serve immediately or store peeled chestnuts in an airtight container or resealable bag and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
“This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.”