Friday, 4 November 2011

Roast chestnuts

At this time of year the smell of roast chestnuts is everywhere.

For two or three euros you can buy a dozen roast chestnuts off a street seller and fill up your stomach with stodgy loveliness that warms up chilly hands to boot. These days they'll also sell you half a dozen... times are tough.

When you approach the chestnut "cart" the seller gets a sheet of telephone directory paper fashions it into a cone and drops in the chestnuts giving the cone a final twist to seal the heat in.

The chestnut sellers have a wonderful contraption especially designed for roasting the nuts - the design of which has probably not changed much in 150 years - that is oftentimes mounted on the back of a motorcycle. You only see them at this time of year - chestnut season - and I suspect that they've been under lock and key whilst their owners have been selling ice creams over the summer.

Hurrah for little warm parcels of Portuguese autumn pleasure!


  1. Hurrah to chestnuts, portuguese chestnuts from Trás-os-Montes, all roasted and hot!

  2. Delicious... just have to convince somebody to set up a cart outside my house!

  3. ... or outside mine in Notting Hill! It's cold enough for them over here!

  4. Quando você fez este post, em 4/11/2011, eu chegava em Portugal (Porto) pela primeira vez em 18 anos! E neste exato dia, um amigo comprou na rua e me ofereceu as primeiras castanhas assadas que eu comi na vida. E ainda posso sentir o gosto, só de comentar!
    Que SAUDADE! (nossa mais bela palavra)
    abraços de um carioca que se considera tuga-voluntário.