Put a cut into the bottom of each chestnut using the heel of a knife. The cut should be about 5 mm, and you just need to pierce the outer shell!
Put the pierced chestnuts and 1 cup of water in a pressure cooker, bring up to pressure over high heat, then cook under pressure for 7 minutes over medium heat.
Turn the heat off, and bring the pressure down by running cold water over the lid.
When the pressure gauge comes down, remove the lid. The chestnuts will be hot to start, so remove out one at a time with a spoon, covering with the lid each time to keep the rest warm.
Dip the hot chestnuts in a bowl of cold water quickly, then start peeling with a spoon. One!
Soak the peeled chestnuts in water.
If you want to eat the chestnuts as is, let the pressure of the cooker come down naturally and then start peeling.
Story Behind this Recipe
I always have a hard time peeling fresh chestnuts every year. After trying a lot of ways to do it, I found this great method.
I tried cooking the chestnuts under pressure for 9 minutes, but they were too soft to use in recipes. If you want to use for chestnut rice and other recipes, cook for 7 minutes under pressure. When I just put random cuts in the chestnuts, the ones with big cuts or the ones pierced through the inner skins came out overcooked, so be sure to make your cuts even!