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In an outpouring of Holiday spirit I threw a couple bags of  chestnuts into the instacart today and googled up how to cook them. I proceeded to score them, bring them to a boil and then roast them at 425 for about 15 minutes. Blech. These things are awful at worst, at best the good ones taste like butternut squash.

Am I missing something? Did I cook them wrong? Or is there a reason these things aren't that common anymore?

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13 hours ago, Ron Swanson said:

is there a reason these things aren't that common anymore?

Chestnut trees used to be a common tree on every Eastern US street around a century ago but then this happened.

Go to the link for the full read.

Background on American chestnut and chestnut blight

Quote

 

History of the American chestnut and the chestnut blight

Before the turn of the century, the American chestnut was one of the dominant trees within its range in the eastern U.S. forests. Because it could grow rapidly and attain huge sizes, the tree was often the outstanding visual feature in both urban and rural landscapes. The wood was used wherever strength and rot-resistance was needed...

 

It is an interesting and little-known story.  Chestnut trees literally helped this country grow and the story deserves to be told.

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Great video that explains in detail the story of the American chestnut, well worth the time to view.

Shows how to spot with instructions on how to prevent the blight if you are lucky enough to have a chestnut tree.

🎥  AMERICAN CHESTNUT BLIGHT - Greatest forest loss in history

There were once almost 4 billion American chestnuts and they were among the largest, tallest, and fastest-growing trees in the eastern forest. The wood was long-lasting, straight-grained, and suitable for furniture, fencing, and building. The nuts fed billions of birds and animals. It was almost a perfect tree - that is, until it was killed by a blight a century ago. That blight has been called the greatest ecological disaster to strike the world's forests in all of history. A tree that had survived all adversaries for 40 million years had disappeared within 40.

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one thing about that song that never made sense to me is that yeah i get it people hang mistletoe and you are supposed to get a kiss under it but brohans who hangs a turkey up on a ceiling that it just silly take that to the bank bromigos 

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there is something about buying these from a street vendor that makes them taste better.  especially in italy.  that said, they are pricey here, i pay about 6.99 for a small mesh bag.  you need to score an X in them and oven roast @400 for about 20 minutes.  then hope you can actually peel them to eat without getting that hairy skin and ones that taste bitter and bad.  given the price vs enjoyment level, they are now a hard pass for me.

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13 hours ago, Bracie Smathers said:

Chestnut trees used to be a common tree on every Eastern US street around a century ago but then this happened.

Go to the link for the full read.

Background on American chestnut and chestnut blight

It is an interesting and little-known story.  Chestnut trees literally helped this country grow and the story deserves to be told.

:blackdot:

used to be tons of these trees around here. not anymore. now we have ash trees and those are dying rapidly due to emerald ash borer.

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Never fail recipe. Trust me on this.

Ingredients:


1/2 pound chestnuts (unpeeled, unroasted)

Tea towel or cotton cheese cloth

Baking rack or cookie sheet

Two ounces of good Scotch whisky

Ice

 
Steps to Take:


1. Gather the ingredients. Heat the oven to 425 F.

2. Using a sharp paring knife, make an X-shaped cut on the round side of each chestnut. This critical step keeps them from exploding from internal pressure when heated and makes peeling easier after roasting.

3. Arrange chestnuts on a baking rack or a baking sheet.

4. Transfer the chestnuts to the oven and roast them until the skins have pulled back from the cuts and the nutmeats have softened. The actual time required will depend on the chestnuts but will be at least 15 to 20 minutes

5. Remove the nuts from the oven and pile them into a mound in the tea towel or cheese cloth. Wrap them up, squeeze hard—the chestnuts should crackle—and let them sit for a few minutes.

6. While the roasted chestnuts are resting, pour two ounces of Scotch whiskey into a small wide mouthed glass (like a rocks glass) with a small amount of ice. This critical step is important for maximum flavor.

7. Pull and snap off the dark shells to reveal the yellowish white chestnuts. While peeling, make sure to also remove the papery skin between the shell and the chestnut.

8. Throw the chestnuts into the trash and drink the Scotch. Enjoy!

 

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13 minutes ago, James Bond said:

Never fail recipe. Trust me on this.

Ingredients:


1/2 pound chestnuts (unpeeled, unroasted)

Tea towel or cotton cheese cloth

Baking rack or cookie sheet

Two ounces of good Scotch whisky

Ice

 
Steps to Take:


1. Gather the ingredients. Heat the oven to 425 F.

2. Using a sharp paring knife, make an X-shaped cut on the round side of each chestnut. This critical step keeps them from exploding from internal pressure when heated and makes peeling easier after roasting.

3. Arrange chestnuts on a baking rack or a baking sheet.

4. Transfer the chestnuts to the oven and roast them until the skins have pulled back from the cuts and the nutmeats have softened. The actual time required will depend on the chestnuts but will be at least 15 to 20 minutes

5. Remove the nuts from the oven and pile them into a mound in the tea towel or cheese cloth. Wrap them up, squeeze hard—the chestnuts should crackle—and let them sit for a few minutes.

6. While the roasted chestnuts are resting, pour two ounces of Scotch whiskey into a small wide mouthed glass (like a rocks glass) with a small amount of ice. This critical step is important for maximum flavor.

7. Pull and snap off the dark shells to reveal the yellowish white chestnuts. While peeling, make sure to also remove the papery skin between the shell and the chestnut.

8. Throw the chestnuts into the trash and drink the Scotch. Enjoy!

 

Ya' know, when I saw the Scotch at the end of the ingredient list I thought I knew where it was heading. But I read it anyway. This is the recipe I'm following in the future.

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Elm trees were the greatest American loss, tough they never produced a Christmas nut. They provided beautiful canopies over Elm Streets and Main Streets everywhere. I think with the death of the Elm went the death of a certain kind of downtown. It's sad, really.  

I'm here to debate tree loss, dammit. 

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On 12/27/2020 at 6:18 PM, Ron Swanson said:

In an outpouring of Holiday spirit I threw a couple bags of  chestnuts into the instacart today and googled up how to cook them. I proceeded to score them, bring them to a boil and then roast them at 425 for about 15 minutes. Blech. These things are awful at worst, at best the good ones taste like butternut squash.

Am I missing something? Did I cook them wrong? Or is there a reason these things aren't that common anymore?

Did not read entire thread.  Being Italian Chestnuts are not boiled.  You take them make an incision across the shell cutting into shell and a bit of chestnut.  Put them in an aluminum pie plate and bake at 425 for 30 to 40 minutes or until cooked

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3 hours ago, rockaction said:

Elm trees were the greatest American loss, tough they never produced a Christmas nut. They provided beautiful canopies over Elm Streets and Main Streets everywhere. I think with the death of the Elm went the death of a certain kind of downtown. It's sad, really.  

I'm here to debate tree loss, dammit. 

Elms can kiss my ash.

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5 hours ago, rockaction said:

Elm trees were the greatest American loss, tough they never produced a Christmas nut. They provided beautiful canopies over Elm Streets and Main Streets everywhere. I think with the death of the Elm went the death of a certain kind of downtown. It's sad, really.  

I'm here to debate tree loss, dammit. 

I blame the Dutch.

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13 hours ago, rockaction said:

I'm here to debate tree loss, dammit. 

Haven't heard any Christmas songs extoling the edible Elm nut. Nat King Cole - Chestnuts roasting on an open fire

Video?  Effort to restore American Chestnut trees underway

Foundation?  TACF = The American Chestnut Foundation The American Chestnut Foundation

Chat?   CHESTNUT CHAT SERIES

Or videos of your chat?  Chestnut Chat: Finding and Conserving American Chestnuts in the Wild

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39 minutes ago, mr. furley said:

damn, how much did that cost you to have them taken down??

Not much. One of my best friends is an arborist. So the 6-7 that were within striking distance of the house he took down for me. He needed some help for a couple so I paid the help and bought my friend a new chainsaw. Once they were down, I did the rest myself. Was able to safely cut down the rest of them, or at least let them fall(a storm took out a few of them). 

I had a wood pile that was 100 feet long and 5-6 feet high. 

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8 hours ago, parasaurolophus said:

I lost 18 ash trees on my property. I legit feel your pain. 

Sorry about that, man. That seems so sad. Whenever they prune or cut down trees in my residential neighborhood, the neighborhood misses something and is never the same. Can't imagine around real wooded areas what it's like to lose them. Actually, I can. Used to live in a wooded area in the Northeast where ice would claim the occasional tree and kill it because of weight. Always sad and scary watching those majestic hundred year old trees lose out to the harshness of nature. When they would fall, it would sound like explosions going off. Thank God they never landed on our house.

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3 hours ago, parasaurolophus said:

Not much. One of my best friends is an arborist. So the 6-7 that were within striking distance of the house he took down for me. He needed some help for a couple so I paid the help and bought my friend a new chainsaw. Once they were down, I did the rest myself. Was able to safely cut down the rest of them, or at least let them fall(a storm took out a few of them). 

I had a wood pile that was 100 feet long and 5-6 feet high. 

thinking my true calling was chopping down trees. somehow i find it really enjoyable. we've got one that needs to come down, but logistically it's too dangerous for me to do. 

gonna cost us a cool 2 grand just to avoid having it wipe out my neighbor's fence, house and pool.

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5 minutes ago, mr. furley said:

thinking my true calling was chopping down trees. somehow i find it really enjoyable. we've got one that needs to come down, but logistically it's too dangerous for me to do. 

gonna cost us a cool 2 grand just to avoid having it wipe out my neighbor's fence, house and pool.

It is awesome. I hand split the wood for firewood too. Talk about fun. 

Highly recommend when it is like 5 degrees outside. Stuff just shatters. 

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