As is often the case when I accumulate large amounts of foods that I’m inexperienced at cooking, I was excited to make something fun with our chestnuts. The drawback to cooking them in large batches is that it’s time consuming and, for the sake of full disclosure, pretty annoying. I should photograph all of the little scratches I have around my fingers from those pointy little shells, but I’m too embarrassed. Because of the amount of work involved, I decided it was easier to prepare a big batch of chestnuts at once and keep it on hand so that I could use it at more convenient times. So I discovered a way to make a Chestnut Puree.
For this recipe I used a whole cookie sheet full of chestnuts (It came about to a little over 3 cups when measured) I followed the directions from my post about how to roast them, peeled them, lightly chopped them, and added them to three cups of water. Bring to a boil. Stir in half of a cup of sugar and until it’s dissolved. I took a fresh vanilla bean, split it, scraped it, and dropped it in for a little extra yumminess. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for half an hour. Pour into a food processor and blend until everything is finely processed.
You can store this in the freezer for up to a year until you are ready to use it, then just pull out the amount you need when the time arrives. What can you use it for? So far I’ve topped cookies with it, blended it into a pie crust, and mixed it with ice cream. I’m sure I can find many other ways to use it, and the batch is big enough that I don’t have to be shy about experimenting with it.