6000 years ago, our ancestors were roasting chestnuts on open fires in the Mediterranean mountains. Chestnuts were key to their survival thanks to their complex carbohydrates and B vitamins. These ingredients contribute to both brain function and energy levels, which was of course, essential in keeping them alert and fit for hunting in the harsh environment. Today, these same vitamins keep us going through the stressful periods in our lives as well as exercising and partying. In addition, chestnuts are rich in iron, magnesium, copper and phosphate, all important for healthy red blood cells and keeping the immune system strong.
Chestnuts also provide us with a gluten free flour, great for making cakes or bread and ideal for coeliacs or anyone avoiding gluten. In fact, many places around the world including China, Japan and northern Europe, nicknamed the chestnut tree as ‘bread tree’. Chestnuts are also a fabulous vegetarian source of protein, so it is a perfect festive all rounder! So, let’s get back to basics and indulge in this seasonal gift. Perfect for making soups, stuffing or simply roasted.
P.S Do not mistake conkers for chestnuts! They are not edible and come from a different tree!
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