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Last updated December 17, 2009

The M & P Chestnut Peeling Method

Click Here for the Movie

Meg and Phil have just developed a new method for hand peeling parboiled, halved chestnuts. This is FAR FAR faster and easier than any other method we've seen or tried. For people preparing a lot of fresh chestnuts for cooking, this is going to be a real breakthrough. Prep time is now drastically less- at least as quick as potatoes; maybe faster.

The critical tool is a small set of spring-opening pliers, with a good-gripping tip. The right set of pliers for the particular cook is going to be critical; they need to fit the user's hand. If they're not spring-loaded, the work will more than double.

The video, and practice, will show you how. This technique makes it possible to wear gloves, if desired, and will save your fingernails. You can also work with hotter nuts- those familiar with peeling know that as the nuts cool coming out of the parboil bath, the skins and shell start to stick. With the M&P method - the plier hand never touches the nuts, and a glove of any kind on the nut hand protects from heat.

Click on the image above to see a short video clip demonstrating this method! The actions in the video were slowed down, so you can see. After just a few minutes of practice, Meg was popping nuts out so fast you really couldn't follow the action on the camera. Irregular nuts may take an extra moment to grip and peel- but normally shaped half nuts- just zip out of their skins.

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