There is an absolutely fabulous Italian grocery store in the concourse of the Food Network building in Chelsea, New York. They carry a lovey range of imported dry goods, canned goods, cheeses, olive oils, balsamic vinegars chocolates and candies! Whenever we are in New York City I stock up! My best find has been dehydrated chestnuts! I’m sure we have something similar in Toronto, but it’s so much more romantic going all the way to Chelsea for my chestnuts! As an added bonus, there is a fantastic kitchen wares store in the same concourse…I’ve picked up a few lovely souvenirs there!
If you are using dehydrated chestnuts, then you will need to do this few days in advance (about 5 days). Soak the chesnuts in water until they are fully hydrated.
- 1/2 cup hydrated chestnuts*
- 2-3 cloves roasted garlic
- 2 tbsp onions, chopped finely
- 1 tbsp cognac
- pinch of nutmeg*
- pinch of all spice*
- pinch of white and black pepper*
- Roast chesnuts drizzled in olive oil, in a small square of parchment wrapped in foil paper (they will take about 45 minutes to 1 hour). Roast a head of garlic at the same time.
- Sauté onions until caramelized. Sprinkle with nutmeg and all spice and allow the heat to bring out the spices.
- Crumble chestnuts into the onions and cook with a little olive oil and water. The chestnuts should be moist. Add the roasted garlic and cognac and allow the alcohol to burn off.
- Pour ingredients into a food processor and process until smooth, adding olive oil until desired consistency is achieved (should be relatively thick). You can run this through a fine seive for a smooth pate, or leave it chunky. If you want this more of terrine style, you may set the pate with a little gelatine.
- Serve with my flatbreads.
*Updated December 31, 2013