Friday, 6 July 2012

Chestnut Puree

Chestnut puree forms a base for many recipes.There are many ways to have chestnut puree, both sweet and savoury.

Basic Chestnut Puree

Chestnuts (peeled* or soaked dried)

Milk, water or stock

Put Chestnuts in saucepan, cover with liquid, and simmer gently until soft. Mash and put through a mouli or blend in food processor.

Can add salt or sugar to taste.


*The easiest way to peel chestnuts for puree is to cut the fresh chestnuts in half using secateurs. Then working  in batches drop a few at a time into boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat. Using a slotted spoon remove the nuts a few at a time, most of the skins will fall off  but if they need a little help you can slide a small knife between the nut and skin and flick the nut out.

Nirvana’s Special Chestnut Purée

Use in place of mashed potatoes.Goes well with rich meats- especially Goose or Venison.

(10 cups chestnuts, shelled and peeled) 250g dried chestnut pieces soaked overnight as above.

2 or 3 celery stalks, chopped Salt

3 cups brown stock

Bouquet garni (3 or 4 parsley sprigs, ½ bay leaf and 1/4 tea spoon of thyme, tied in a cheese cloth bag)

5 or 6 tablespoons butter

½ cup milk salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Peel chestnuts (fresh) or after soaking overnight (dried) place them in a saucepan with chopped celery, brown stock (add a little water if this is not enough to cover nuts), the bouquet garni, and simmer slowly are tender but not mushy. Drain chestnuts, remove celery and bouquet garni, but reserve liquid. Purée chestnuts in a food mill, return to saucepan, beat in butter and a little of the stock. Turn on medium heat and beat in enough milk to give the purée the consistency of mashed potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. If purée is too thick, beat in a little additional stock. Keep hot until serving time. Makes about 6 servings.

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