Rustic Chestnut Cake
Dark chocolate and a rich chestnut filling make a lovely pair in this rustic cake. Impressive but easy to make, this cake is perfect for any special occasion!
For the cake
1 cup chestnuts
200gr chocolate couvertura
200gr unsalted butter
3 cups caster sugar
1 ½ cup plain flour
¾ cup cacao
For the chestnut puree
½ cup sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp cognac
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp butter
Follow the link to see the steps that Maria and Yanna show you to make this tasteful
Chestnuts are the large edible fruit of the chestnut tree and are a popular food in Europe and China. Chestnuts can also be candied and ground into a flour that’s common in soups and desserts. Corsicans fry them into donuts. Hungarians, French, and Swiss sweeten and puree them. We are familiar with the line from the Christmas song, “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire,” but beyond that many of us have never cooked a chestnut in the kitchen, let alone on an open fire. This guide will take you beyond the “open fire” and give you more insight into this versatile nut.
Raw chestnuts are not fit to eat, and that’s why cooking chestnuts are so important.
The best cooking methods allow you to cook the nut in the shell, and then remove it when it’s softened. You’ll need to use a sharp pointed knife to slice either a horizontal slash or a large X along the flat side before roasting or boiling.
To boil, cover chestnuts with cold water, bring to a boil and simmer for three minutes. Remove from heat. Scoop out a few at a time and peel off the shell and skin with a sharp knife. As they cool, they become more difficult to peel, so keep them in hot water until you are ready to peel. Proceed with your recipe using the peeled nuts, making sure you finish cooking them completely within your recipe.
To boil and cook them completely in their skins, simmer for 15 to 25 minutes, then peel and use, but don’t be disappointed if they fall apart as you peel them. This boiling method to fully cook the chestnuts is best used when you will be mashing the chestnuts or pushing them through a sieve for puree.
To roast chestnuts, make cuts as described above. They can potentially explode from internal pressure if not pierced. Place on a baking sheet in a 200C oven for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve hot.
To roast in a fire, take an aluminum pie plate and punch rows of holes. Make cuts in chestnuts or puncture them—this will allow the nut to release steam—and place on a grill over white-hot coals. If you have a chestnut roaster for the fireplace, all the better.
Health Benefits of Chestnuts
Unlike most other nuts, chestnuts contain little protein or fat and chiefly provide complex carbs. That doesn’t mean they skimp on essential nutrients: Chestnuts supply vitamins and minerals that benefit your body from head to toe.
The fiber improves digestion.
Just 10 roasted chestnuts include 17% of what you need for the day — a major plus considering most of us don’t get nearly enough. Americans eat on average about 16 grams of fiber per day, half of the recommended amount of 25 to 30 grams. Fiber in plant-based foods like nuts can help maintain GI health, lower LDL (or “bad”) cholesterol levels, and contribute toward a healthy weight by filling you up, according to the Mayo Clinic.
The complex carbs will you keep you energized longer.
While almonds and peanuts pack in the protein, chestnuts predominantly contain complex carbohydrates, which your body digests slowly for a stable energy source. Foods high in fiber and complex carbs also have a less immediate effect on blood sugar, reducing potential spikes, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Nutrition Source states.
The vitamin C contributes to healthy tissues.
While it’s more famous for boosting your immune system, vitamin C actually supports the formation of blood vessels, cartilage, muscle, and collagen throughout your body. The antioxidant also protects your cells against the damaging effects of free radicals and aids in the absorption and storage of iron.
Copper helps form red blood cells.
Like vitamin C, this trace mineral supports the health of your blood vessels, nerves, immune system, and bones and assists in iron absorption, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. About 10 roasted chestnuts supply 21% of the recommended daily amount.