How to Peel and Roast Your Chestnuts
There are many ways to prepare chestnuts - roasting, baking, microwaving, even barbecuing.
Cut an "X" on the shells and place the nuts in a pan or popcorn popper over a quick fire, dropping oil or butter over the chestnuts, one teaspoon to one pound of nuts.
To prepare fresh chestnuts, choose a heavy glossy nut with firm smooth shells. Cut an "X" on one side of the shell and to make the nut easier to peel. Place the chestnuts on a cookie sheet and sprinkle with water. Roast at 400 degrees, to taste, approximately 25-30 minutes. Wrap the chestnuts in a paper towel and squeeze to help split the shells. Keep the nuts wrapped for about five minutes before moving the shell. Be careful not to burn your fingers! One pound of fresh chestnuts yields about two cups of nuts when shelled.
Cut an "X" on one side of the shell. Cover the chestnuts with water and boil for 15-25 minutes. Drain and remove shells. You can now eat the nut or the nut should be tender enough to go through a puree strainer. If not, continue to boil them.
Cut an "X" on the shells and place the nuts on a rack on in some foil on the rack. Allow 10-15 minutes of cooking time. Wrap the nuts in newspaper or a paper towel and roll them to assist in removing the shell.
Cut an "X" on the shell and place in microwave for about 20 seconds or until the shell is removed easily. Glaze with garlic butter or some brown sugar.
How to Store Your Chestnuts
Fresh chestnuts can be placed in a zip lock bag and stored in the refrigerator. Cooked chestnuts should be shelled then placed in an airtight bag or container for the freezer. For longer storage, get a plastic storage bin with lid. Poke a few holes in the bin and lid so it is not completely sealed/airtight. Find/buy dry sand and pour into bin. Bury your chestnuts in the sand, close lid, and then store in a cool storage area. This way if you want a few chestnuts to cook, you can grab what you need but still keep some for future eating/cooking.