2 October 2010

Foraged chestnuts

Hubby picked up a whole load of lovely sweet chestnuts from a tree beside the car park we use for school pick-ups/drop-offs.

I've spent an entire evening shucking roasted chestnuts, then grinding them down.  They're now in the freezer awaiting use in some pastry.  I've yet to decide what sort of tart to use the pastry in, but fingers crossed that when I do, they'll come out of the freezer as deliciously nutty as they went in!

It's all an experiment, but this is the thing with foraging - you pick up a glut of something, then need to establish ways of using this free bounty before it goes off!

For further foraging information and site news, go to Hubby's site at http://ukforage.blogspot.com/


  1. Ahh now I know what I should have asked you when I saw you yesterday: Would you like, can you use some jam jars, some Kilner-style jars and a large preserving kettle, complete with thermometer (which we bought in France) ... wish I could find a picture. Basically a gurt big galvanised kettle thing you put your preserving jars in, and then boil up like mad to steralise and preserve.

  2. Oh yum! Do you know, I haven't a clue what the difference is between sweet chesnut trees and horse chesnut trees. Must dig out Mr Thrifty's tree books and see if I can find some in the local area.

  3. Lozzie - we'd absolutely LOVE all your preserving stuff, if you're sure you won't be using it again! Gosh, yes! Thank you so much!

    Thrifty Mrs - it's fairly easy to tell the difference between the two nuts, so long as you've got the cases they came out of! Sweet Chestnuts (edible) come from a very prickly case that's almost like a hairbrush. Horse Chestnuts (conkers, inedible) come from a much fleshier type of case, with far fewer, much more robust spikes. There is also a difference in the leaves between the two - but that's probably best dealt with by photographs! :)

  4. Points upwards - an idea for Chilli Bob's next post, perhaps?

  5. Hmmmmm, not sure I want to play with blogs anymore.....

    Anyways, back to chestnuts. The other main difference is the nuts themselves. Sweet Chestnuts have a slightly ridged case whereas horse chestnuts are smooth and more polished looking.


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