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The region I grew up in has vermicelles every fall. Vermicelles means "little worm" in French and is a dessert made from chestnuts. However, since there were no chestnuts in our forests, we had to buy our vermicelles. 

When I moved to the south of Germany, we collected chestnuts in the first autumn and made vermicelles from them. Here it is teeming with sweet chestnut trees. One is right in front of our kitchen window.

Isn't that wonderful?

Sweet chestnuts fresh from the tree! What we have already done with it:
Roasted chestnuts with red cabbage, baked chestnuts with oven vegetables, chestnut flour for muesli. And my favorite: vermicelles.  

Photo: Mieko Azuma

Here is a recipe for your own vermicelles:

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg of chestnuts
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
  • 2 dl water,
  • 75 g sugar
  • 1 vanilla pod

Use a knife to make a cross on the curved side of the chestnuts. Cook in boiling water for 4 to 6 minutes. Sieve and peel as hot as possible. The peel is much easier to remove when it is still hot and damp. If possible, remove the furry inner skin as well. This inner skin does not fit in a dessert because of its bitter taste.

Roast the peeled chestnuts in a frying pan with coconut oil.
Bring the sugar, water and vanilla pod to the boil in a saucepan and let it steep.
Put everything in a bowl and puree.

We freeze some and eat the rest fresh. Traditionally, the paste is pressed through a press and served with cream and meringue. We often eat our vermicelles as a block with vanilla ice cream.

Even easier: chestnuts from the oven

If that's too time-consuming - here is the easiest chestnut recipe ever:

  • Collect chestnuts
  • to wash
  • scratch a cross on the curved side with a knife
  • bake (maybe together with oven vegetables)

Bon Appetite!

Do you like tree recipes? Here is the link to a plum chutney.

Andreas Hunkeler
Graduated social and cultural anthropologist with a focus on sustainable and participatory green space design in cities.
 
My vision is to bring together: people and trees, nature and culture, population and urban authorities.
 
If you have any questions, suggestions, interesting stories or exciting knowledge on this topic, please write to me: andreas@baumbad.de. I'm looking forward to your message!

Great idea, easy handling and everything from ordering to delivery.

Michael K.
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