It’s a raw, cold day today in the UK. Winter certainly has come in. But there’s no better time than this to think about roasted chestnuts. Ideally they remind me of autumn visits to London, especially the British Museuem and the chestnut sellers outside. Unfortunately I haven’t got an open fire at home, so the oven has to do. It’s not quite the same, but rather that than missing out on lovely hot chesnuts. Mmmmm……….


·     chestnuts, as many nuts as you reckon you can eat


1.  Preheat oven to 200°C (gas 6).

2.  Using a very sharp knife, cut a 2.5cm/1 inch cross into one side of each nut. The intent is to allow steam to escape gently instead of by explosion, which can be very messy.

3.  Put in a roasting tin and bake until the skins open and the insides are tender after about 20-30 minutes.

4.  Hot chestnuts peel easier than cold ones, so it’s best to eat right away. So when you remove them from the heat, immediately cover them with a towel and keep them covered as you remove one at a time to peel. Peel away the skin and the pithy white bit inside to get to the sweet kernel.