Dancing to the Rhythms of Kitchen Flavors
Chicken with Mushrooms and Chestnuts
By AVISHAG BEN MENASHE
Chestnuts, those sweet, earthy flavored fruits of the castanea beech tree, are one of the most versatile and healthy foods you can find.
Suitable for use in both sweet and savory recipes, chestnuts are low in fat and high in vitamin C.
Consumed by cultures around the globe for thousands of years, chestnuts can be eaten raw, roasted, ground into flour or mixed into pastries. Moreover, chestnuts are also a great source of antioxidants, rich in gallic acid and ellagic acid, and contain minerals such as magnesium and potassium that are known for their heart-healthy benefits.
For me, chestnuts bring back special childhood memories. When I was little, back in Israel, one of the neighbors would frequently come downstairs with a tray of chestnuts and roast them in our common garden area.
All of us would sit on the benches around our apartment complex, taking in the scent of the freshly roasted nuts, anxiously anticipating their rich, buttery flavor.
The smell was amazing, and the texture and taste divine were divine.
Many years have passed since those childhood days, but my love for chestnuts has never waivered.
Here, then, I offer my personal homage to those delicious memories from my youth, a recipe I created using simple ingredients enveloped in a loving dose of chestnuts.
1 kilo of shank or chicken thigh
1 cup of chestnuts (peeled and ready to cook)
1 large onion, sliced
4 cloves of garlic, sliced into slivers
15 fresh mushrooms, cut in half
1/3 cup freshly chopped coriander
3 tablespoons of cooking oil
1 teaspoon of ground turmeric
Half a teaspoon of paprika
Half a teaspoon of ground black pepper
1 tablespoon of chicken broth
Half a teaspoon of dry spicy red chili
Salt, to taste
In a large pot, fry the onion slices with the oil until the onion is golden.
Put the poultry and garlic slices into the pot, and brown everything together for 5 to 7 minutes.
Then add the chestnuts and the mushrooms. Fill the pot of water until the chicken is covered. Add the spices and bring to a boil.
Cook the pot for about an hour over medium heat, until the liquids are reduced and the sauce becomes thick.
Once the chicken is ready, turn off the heat and sprinkle with the chopped coriander, which will add a refreshingly zesty flavor and color to your dish.
AVISHAG BEN MENASHE is an Israeli-born mother and wife who loves to cook, write recipes and share original tips and ideas that will make cooking in any kitchen a true celebration of life. For more recipes and culinary inspiration, check out her Instagram page.