Chestnuts are rich in benefits and can be used in many recipes. Let’s see what are the best ones.
Chestnut are fall typical fruits, very tasty and rich in beneficial properties. Those that we eat are normally the Castanea vulgaris, or the fruits of the chestnut tree.
They look like the horse chestnut tree seeds which, however, are not fruits; they are toxic and not edible. It is better, then, to avoid collecting chestnuts in the woods, if you can not recognize them.
Chestnuts: properties and side effects
Chestnuts are an excellent source of proteins, lipids and carbohydrates. They also contain important mineral salts, such as iron, potassium, calcium and phosphorus. These fruits are cholesterol free and rich in fiber. On a nutritional level, chestnuts are similar to cereals. They do not contain gluten, so people suffering from celiac disease can safely eat them.
Their high content of iron and folic acid makes chestnuts perfect for people suffering from anaemia and for pregnant women. It is not recommended, however, to those who suffer from diabetes, obesity, colitis, and liver diseases.
Chestnuts need to be collected from the end of September to the first days of November.
Chestnuts: nutritional values
These fruits are rich in calories. The nutritional values per 100 grams are the following:
– 193 kcal / 808 kj
– Water 42,4 g
– Carbohydrates 41,8 g
– Sugars 10,7 g
– Protein 3.7 g
– Fat 2.4 g
– Cholesterol 0 g
– Fiber 8.3 g
Chestnuts are a real autumn wellness
Rich in vitamins and folic acid, they are great for dealing with a pregnancy, Chestnuts also seem to promote good mood thanks to the magnesium they contain, which stimulates our nervous system. Muscles, bones and mind all benefit from the vitamin B they are rich in, and phosphorus helps our bodies maintain high concentration and memory.
How to use chestnuts in your recipes
These tasty fruits should be always eaten cooked, or they are not easy to digest. In winter, you can make roasted chestnuts by cooking them in the oven or the grill. Due to their high calorie levels, they are very good to deal with cold temperatures.
Boiled chestnuts are lighter: you can make a puree of them and use it in savoury dishes or to make cakes or pies. For your dessert dough you can also use chestnut flour, which is also perfect for thickening soups and vegetables purees.
How to store raw chestnuts
After having carefully cleaned them, you can store the raw fruits the refrigerator, at a temperature of 37°F, for about a month.
Chestnuts can be frozen in special food bags. In the freezer, they last for 6 months.
How to store cooked chestnuts
After having cooked chestnuts in the way you like (roasted, boiled, etc.) leave them to cool and then freeze them in food bags.