It’s that time of year again! Stores are putting out decorations, festive music is being played, and people everywhere are planning out their Christmas gatherings. If you really want to get into the spirit this year, there are a various ways to implement new traditions into your holiday season. One activity we like to promote to all fireplace owners is chestnut roasting.
If you don’t know where to start, here are some tips.
Buying and Storing Your Chestnuts
According to thekitchn.com, when you go to purchase the best chestnuts in the market, there are a few things you should look out for. They should be firm, with a slight amount of give when you squeeze them. They should feel heavy and they should not rattle around. Try to find ones with no holes or markings, as well.
Once you have your perfect batch picked out, be sure to store them properly until use. Put them in a ventilated bag and keep them in the refrigerator, preferably in the crisper section. They will then keep for a few days, until you are ready to roast them. If you need to store them longer, the freezer is a better bet. Place them in a freezer-safe bag and they will stay good for a few weeks.
Get To Roasting!
Once you are ready to roast your chestnuts, keep these steps in mind to ensure you get the most out of the experience. First of all, note that you can use your oven… but if you’re looking for a more classic approach, then try roasting them over your fireplace! Here’s how you can do it, according to the Artofmanliness.com:
- Buy a long-handled chestnut roaster. These tools are the safest option when it comes to roasting chestnuts more authentically over an open flame. This device also makes the entire process a lot easier, especially when it comes to cooking everything evenly.
- Prepare your chestnuts by rinsing them with cold water, then cutting an “X” into each of them. This ensures that they will not burst in the cooking process. You will also want to dry them before putting them over the flame.
- Time to roast! Place your chestnuts into the roaster, then hold them over the fire. Shake things around every 5 minutes or so, to ensure they cook evenly. After about 25 minutes, you should be good to go! If the shell starts to open by the “X” mark or if you hear popping noises, those are both indicators that they are done, as well.
- Peel them as soon as you can to ensure easy shell removal. You’ll want to get this done while they are still warm and tender. If you wait too long, you will definitely face some struggles.
Now, all that is left to do is enjoy them!
As always, turn to Mason’s Chimney Service for all of your chimney and fireplace needs.
Have a safe and happy holiday season!