soak chestnuts in water

This helps the chestnuts’ hard outer shell soften up a bit, making it easier to cut an “x” over the top (a.k.a. “scoring”), which opens up the meat of the chestnut. The hard outer shell would be even more difficult to open up after cooking or baking, so the scoring process gives you a leg up on breaking them open and enjoying once they’re cooked. For my baked chestnut recipe, click here.

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