Tuesday, August 29, 2017


This recipe looks a little difficult, especially when dealing with fresh chestnuts.  I bravely tried this recipe when I came across the fresh chestnuts at Tesco Store.  Having no idea on how to remove the nutshell, I bought some for this dish.
I painstakingly removed the nutshell, then boiled the nut for almost an hour to soften them.  This is not the correct way after I searched the net on 'how to remove the chestnut nutshell'.  Please refer here for the various ways.

*How to Steam Chestnuts to Peel Them

Bring an inch or so of water in a large saucepan, set the prepared (shells cut) chestnuts in a steamer basket, and put the steamer basket over the boiling water. Cover the pot and steam the chestnuts until the shells pull apart and the nuts inside are tender to the bite (or to a toothpick stuck in their centers), about 20 minutes
Anyway, this dish is lovely.  The chestnuts are tender, fragrant and sweet.  Both the chicken pieces and chestnuts are full of flavours.  It’s awesome with fresh salad leaves and rice.

Recipe adapted from Chinese Cuisine Cookbook with modifications
[serves 3-4]
3 chicken thighs – deboned and cut bite size pieces
Marinade – 1 tbsp each light soy sauce and wine and dash of pepper
9-10 chestnuts
Some sliced ginger and cut spring onions
Some salad leaves to line platter
2-3 tbsp light soy sauce
¼ tsp dark soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
¼ tsp each of msg and ground black pepper
1 tsp sesame oil
125 ml water
Thickening – ½ tbsp cornstarch + 1 tbsp water
  1. Marinate chicken pieces with marinade for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Slit chestnuts shell then steam for 15-20 minutes to soften and remove the shells and membrane.* Boil chestnuts in a pot of boiling water until tender.  Drain.
  3. Line salad leaves in a claypot or deep plate.
  4. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a non stick
  5.  pan, pan fry chicken pieces to brown, push aside, add in ginger and spring onions.  Saute until aromatic and mix with fried chicken pieces.
  6. Add in chestnuts and seasoning, stir to mix well before adding water.  Bring to boil, cover and lower heat to simmer until chicken and chestnuts are tender.
  7. Thicken with cornstarch water.   Transfer to claypot.  Garnish with some coriander leaves and serve immediately.
Cookbook Countdown

I am sharing this post with Cookbook Countdown Event #20 hosted by Joyce and Emily of Kitchen Flavours and Emily's Cooking [Makan2] Foray respectively 


PH said...

Kimmy, I like chestnuts especially the ones roasted in the pan by hawkers when I was small. Now they have those ready in packets. I wonder if those are suitable for this dish.

kitchen flavours said...

I have not cooked with fresh chestnuts before for a dish. I've only roasted them a few times for snacking. I have cooked a similar dish too, but I've used the ready to eat prepacked chestnuts, because I cannot find my pack of dried ones. And found it a few weeks later, stashed in a corner of my messy fridge!

Kimmy said...

Hi Phong Hong, these fried ones may have the roasted aroma. The fresh ones are sweet, fragrant and tasty. I bought another batch the other day and will use it to cook chicken soup. Hope it will turn out nice.

Kimmy said...

Hi Joyce, that's usually the case. I exercise lots of control when buying food ingredients to avoid unnecessary purchases, hehehe!