a life creative
Castagne Candite, Marrons Glacé…a candied chestnut by any other name. To make them is a long and love-laborious process, five days to be precise. It took a dummy run to get them perfect, though the first attempt was far from a failure – from the decadent ruins I made a chestnut and grappa mascarpone mix to have with the castagnaccio – which was demolished in seconds.
Was it worth the six days it takes to make them? Yes. Oh, yes. Please have insulin on hand.
Place whole unpeeled chestnuts in a large saucepan of water and bring to the boil for 4 minutes. Depending on the quantity [and this is something I’ll most likely do for ease of peeling in the future] you may want to do the boiling in batches. Anyone who has ever peeled chestnuts will know that it’s easiest done while they’re hot.
Take a sharp knife and work from the tail to the nose. If you can, peel the inner skin off then and there [see photo below for the one naked chestnut that complied at the time], otherwise set them aside until you have peeled the outer shell off all of them.
To easily peel the chestnuts’ fuzzy inner skin, bring a pan of water to the boil and dip three or four of them in at a time for about 20 seconds. Take them out and gently peel. Set them aside.
Pour sugar and water into a pan and bring to boil.
Turn down and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add chestnuts and vanilla essence to the sugar syrup and bring to the boil once more, simmering for around 8 minutes.
Turn off the heat and allow to cool.
Refrigerate overnight, then, 24 hours later, remove from fridge and bring to boil for one minute.
Repeat this process each day for the next 4 or 5 days.
[Incidentally, these are the the steps that I must have forgotten to photograph…never mind, not seeing all that sugar in one place probably is a good thing].
On the final day, turn oven on to fan force 70°C. Place chestnuts on a tray lined with baking paper and, with the oven door open, leave these to dry for 2 hours. Then…enjoy.
Before I vacuum packed these to send off the my sister in London solely in order to undermine her no-sugar-on-weekdays rule, I dusted them with vanilla icing sugar, just to be sure they’d be sweet enough.
Store in an air-tight container. They’ll be good for a couple of weeks… if they last that long.
Cheers and ciao,
custom retreats and workshops in tuscany
Fatos e Curiosidades sobre a Natureza e tecnologia
"per l' allegria il pianeta nostro è poco attrezzato. Bisogna strappare la gioia ai giorni futuri "
by Isabelle Warren
a resource for moving poetry
Linking collage work to the meaning of personal and universal symbols.
This is my adventurous story about buying, designing, and renovating homes in ITALY
guardian of irish mythology
Attempting not to make too little or too much sense
I help you unlock the peace and strength already within you
Book Humour. A Sideways Perspective on the Bonkers Business of Books
"C’è molta speranza, ma nessuna per noi." (Franz Kafka)
Finding my way back out of motherhood -- while mothering
Expatty-cakes: Diary of an American southerner turned expat
Grand adventures and global wanderings. Next stop: Italy.
Discover the truth about mental health
"El Mundo Visible es Sólo un Pretexto" / "The Visible World is Just a Pretext".-
Vignettes from a multi-lingual, multi-cake-eating freelance existence
Eyes ten degrees above the horizon
about women who do amazing things
by Mike McGuire
A Creative State of Mind
Writing for Children and Young Adults #amwriting
About fantastical places and other stuff
Underground Energy - Scientific Documentation of the failures of an OCD albatross + friends
A topnotch WordPress.com site
I write, I love, I run, I play, I break things.
In the Groove...
Blog e progetto editoriale di poesia
Words of Wonder, Worry and Whimsy
se non sarò serena, mi rasserenerò
Global issues, travel, photography & fashion. Drifting across the globe; the world is my oyster, my oyster through a lens.
Brian Marggraf, Author of Dream Brother: A Novel, Independent publishing advocate, New York City dweller
Bringing you love through spirit!
Poetry, musings and sightings from where the country changes
A peaceful place to relax while on my wild joyride to Egypt from South Carolina.
Sewing, illustration and design.