Chestnut puree can be used in a variety of dishes including stuffings and desserts. It has a wonderful nutty and creamy texture.
Below is a standard recipe for making the puree but you can also add more ingredients into the mixture such as rum, cocoa powder, and whipped cream.
2 lbs of chestnuts
2 cups (230 grams) of confectioners’ sugar (optional)
1/2 of a vanilla bean, cut lengthwise or 1-2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract
Using a sharp knife, make a crisscross cut on one or both sides of each chestnut. Place the chestnuts into a large saucepan filled with 3-inches of water.
Cover the saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-high, and boil the chestnuts for about 20 minutes.
Remove chestnuts from saucepan and allow to cool. Peel off the shell and skin.
Combine the chestnuts and milk in a saucepan. Using the tip of a paring knife, scrape seeds from vanilla bean into pan, and toss in pod. Bring to a simmer, and cook, partially covered, until chestnuts are very soft, about 20 minutes.
Pour mixture through a fine-mesh sieve with a bowl, reserving chestnuts and cooking liquid separately and discarding vanilla pod. Process chestnuts in a food processor or blender until very smooth, adding reserved cooking liquid and additional milk if needed, 1 tablespoon at a time, until mixture is the consistency of a thick spread. Add sugar or any additional flavors to mixture if desired.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.