Choose chestnuts that have a sheen. Wash them in water.
Soak the chestnuts in plenty of water for about 10 minutes.
Make a horizontal cut in the top of each chestnut as shown.
Put the chestnuts in a pressure cooker and add enough water to cover. Turn on the heat and lock the lid on. When the cooker comes up to pressure, cook for 30 seconds and turn off the heat.
Leave the cooker to cool down for about 15 minutes. When the pressure gauge has gone down or you can open the lid, remove the lid and leave the chestnuts to cool down until you can handle them. Be sure to cool them with the lid off!
Then just remove the outer shell and inner skin with your hands, using whatever peeling method you prefer.
To make boiled chestnuts, cook them under pressure for about 3 minutes. This varies depending on the size of the chestnuts, but this timing is right for large ones. For small ones, 2 minutes or so is enough. All other steps are the same.
This method cooks the chestnuts on the surface only, so they should be cooked further after they've been peeled. Use them in chestnut rice, for chestnuts in their inner skins in syrup, peeled chestnuts in syrup and so on!!
Story Behind this Recipe
Peeling chestnuts is easy If you boil them in a pressure cooker and then peel them. If you boil them for a bit longer, you can make boiled chestnuts. Using this method, you can make chestnuts in syrup in their inner skins, peeled chestnuts in syrup, or chestnut rice.
If you are doing this in a regular pot, follow the recipe up to Step 3. Put the chestnuts in a pot with enough water to cover them, and simmer over medium heat for about 7 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the chestnuts in the water to cool down. Then you should be able to peel the chestnuts. For boiled chestnuts, cook them for another 12 minutes and they should be done, although it depends on the size of the chestnuts. You can bring the chestnuts along for sports festivals at school or fall foliage-viewing outings!