Chestnuts Roasting in a Warm Oven….December 29, 2009 at 1:10 pm | Posted in Dinner | 9 Comments
This meal came the day after the snowpocalypse 2009. Ned and I were looking to eat healthily, like we always do on Sunday evening to try and make up for the weekend of chips and frozen pizzas! (snow food you see!) Ned has been on a big chestnut obsession for awhile, so we finally got some from Wegman’s and then took to roasting them! We paired the chestnuts with grouper, swiss chard, and a pomegranate vinaigrette. I used my new App on my pink iphone for the epicurious recipe search. I typed in seafood and winter and this recipe is what popped up in the search!
The fish was so decadent and delicious, probably the most expensive of the flaky white fish selections, but it was worth it! I loved using swiss chard, so meaty and very green. The chestnuts added a nice flavor and texture contrast to the rest of the dish. It was actually pretty fascinating roasting them! (see pictures below..)
7 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 5-ounce striped bass fillets (we got grouper)
2 cups (packed) thinly sliced Swiss chard
1 cup peeled roasted chestnuts*, or jarred chestnuts, chopped
1/3 cup dry white wine
1/3 cup bottled clam juice
3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses (we used pomegranate juice- not the same thing, but it worked okay!)
1 tablespoon Sherry wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 large shallot, minced
Heat 3 tablespoons oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle both sides of fish fillets with salt and pepper; add to skillet and cook until golden, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer fish to platter; tent with foil to keep warm. Add chard, chestnuts, wine, and clam juice to skillet; cook until chard is just wilted, about 3 minutes. Using slotted spoon, place chard mixture atop fish; tent with foil. Boil juices in skillet to reduce slightly, about 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat; add pomegranate molasses, vinegar, mustard, and shallot. Slowly whisk in remaining 4 tablespoons oil. Season vinaigrette with salt and pepper. Spoon over fish and serve.
*To prepare fresh chestnuts, start with heavy, glossy nuts with firm, smooth shells. Cut a small cross on one side of each shell to let steam escape as the nuts roast and to make them easier to peel afterward. Place chestnuts in a shallow roasting pan; sprinkle with water. Roast in 400°F oven for 25 to 20 minutes. Wrap hot chestnuts in towl and squeeze to crush the shells. Keep nuts wrapped for 5 minutes before removing the hard outer shell and the brown skin inside, being wary of burning your fingers. One pound of fresh chestnuts equals about two cups when shelled.