Lily's Chestnuts

Roasted chestnuts are available on nearly every NYC street corner in the winter. This recipe, by Martha's friend Lily Mei, calls for salt to concentrate the flavor and a wok for the actual roasting.


  • 50 to 55 (about 1 3/4 pounds) raw whole chestnuts

  • 5 cups coarse salt


  1. Place chestnuts in a wok, pour salt over them, and stir to combine. Cook over medium high heat, stirring every 2 minutes, until chestnuts color slightly and begin to crack open, about 20 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove to a baking pan to cool several minutes. Serve warm.

Cook's Notes

One important note: To keep the chestnuts from bursting while cooking, be sure to make a cross-shaped incision, 1/4-inch per cut, on the rounded side of the shell.

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