Where have the London roasted chestnut street sellers gone? Not that long ago, they were all over the place- in Piccadilly, outside The Ritz, several in the Charing Cross Road; quite a few near Oxford Circus. I liked the way they stacked up their hot chestnuts on their grimy braziers- in rows, and in little paper bags.
I love Chestnut Stuffing. Buy a packet of peeled chestnuts. Cut them in half, and then fry 225g of chopped streaky bacon. Turn up the heat, and add the chestnuts. Fry them on a high heat. Remove the chestnuts, and add 50g of butter to the pan, so that it mixes in with the bacon. Add 110g fresh brown breadcrumbs, and fry until brown. In a separate bowl, mix up the chestnuts, the breadcrumbs and bacon, a bunch of chopped watercress, a beaten egg, and season with lots of sea salt and pepper, and a tablespoon of caster sugar.
Still on the subject of chestnuts, if you've ever wondered, here's how they make marron glacés in France: the chestnuts are blanched in lightly salted water to loosen their membranes. The membranes are removed. Next, the chestnuts are simmered in a vanilla flavoured sugar syrup for up to twenty four hours. Finally, the marron glacés are dried out in a hot oven.