Chestnut Flour

Chestnut flour is a grayish tan colored flour made from ground chestnuts. It contains no gluten and makes an interesting flavor addition to many recipes, as in the cake recipe below.

Cooking Tips

chestnuts
  • Although the fact that it contains no gluten makes this flour of interest to people with celiac disease, it does work best when mixed with regular gluten containing flour to make cakes and breads. Typically a proportion of twenty to fifty percent chestnut flour to regular flour will give good results.
  • The flavor of chestnuts marries especially well with chocolate, almonds, hazelnuts and honey.
  • Add this flour to your favorite crepe recipe, pie crust, or use the Corsican cake recipe given below.
  • It also makes an interesting ingredient in pasta recipes. If you make your own pasta, try substituting part of the regular flour with chestnut, then topping the pasta with a pine nut sauce for a delicious flavor combination.
  • For those suffering from gluten intolerance, you will find some good recipes that contain this gluten free flour mixed with other gluten free alternatives at Chestnuts On Line.

More Ways to Enjoy Chestnuts

  • Chestnut Puree: Try this in both the sweetened and the unsweetened version for a super ingredient in dessert and other recipes. Or just enjoy it as it is: delicious.
  • Marrons Glacés: These are candied chestnuts and are the holiday treat in France.
  • Canned Roasted Chestnuts: Chestnuts are a sensational ingredient in many savory dishes as well. By using canned chestnuts you'll be able to easily make such dishes as chestnut stuffing and chestnut soup.
  • Return from chestnut flour to Gourmet Cooking Supplies.

Chestnut Cake Recipe

When we were living in Corsica, I had the chance to taste many local specialties containing chestnuts including an unusual chestnut beer.

Up until the start of the 20th century, chestnuts were a very important part of peoples' diets in Corsica and in other places in the world. Because they are very nutritious, people could subsist on chestnuts with little need for meat or wheat products, making it the perfect poor mountain man's food.

This simple cake recipe is very similar to what you'll find served sometimes in Corsican restaurants.

Gâteau à la farine de châtaigne

Ingredients

  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup chestnut flour
  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds

Directions

  1. Start with the eggs at room temperature. Separate them into two mixing bowls. Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease and flour a 9 inch cake pan.
  2. Sift together the flours, baking powder and salt.
  3. Beat the egg yolks with the sugar until creamy and light yellow. Beat in the dry ingredients, the milk, and the melted butter until smooth.
  4. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff. Stir one third of the egg white into the batter until thoroughly combined, then very delicately fold in the rest of the egg whites.
  5. Pour into the prepared pan and top with the nuts. Bake for 30 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool 10 minutes before removing from pan.

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