I've often heard children say, "There's nothing to do today". I beg to differ. I'd like to inspire you to do something. Anything. Read. Bake. Hike. Fish. Plant. Sail. Climb. Play. Reach. Move. Laugh. Dream; and take time to sit with me on The Old Granite Step.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

An easy way to cook chestnuts.

Chestnuts are a popular treat this time of year. 

Not only can they be found at the supermarket, you may even be able to find hot "roasted" chestnuts in the city from a vendor.  They can be roasted in the oven or boiled as I've done here. 
 Being very careful and using an extra sharp knife, score a cross into the chestnut.
 Add chestnuts to boiling water.
 Boil for approximately 25 minutes.
 You'll see the chestnut begin to open.
Once you remove them from the boiling water, place them on a paper towel.  The chestnuts will begin to "pop" open.
Take a few out of the water at a time; not all at once.  They are much easier to peel when they are hot but be careful not to burn your fingers.  It becomes more difficult once they begin to cool.
It's a messy job and once you get the outer "shell" off, you need to peel the next layer off as well.
Resembling shelled walnuts, the chestnuts are now ready for use.

The Village Blacksmith

Under a spreading chestnut-tree
The village smithy stands;
The smith, a mighty man is he,
With large and sinewy hands;
And the muscles of his brawny arms
Are strong as iron bands.

His hair is crisp, and black, and long,
His face is like the tan;
His brow is wet with honest sweat,
He earns whate'er he can,
And looks the whole world in the face,
For he owes not any man.

Week in, week out, from morn till night,
You can hear his bellows blow;
You can hear him swing his heavy sledge,
With measured beat and slow,
Like a sexton ringing the village bell,
When the evening sun is low.

And children coming home from school
Look in at the open door;
They love to see the flaming forge,
And hear the bellows roar,
And catch the burning sparks that fly
Like chaff from a threshing-floor.

He goes on Sunday to the church,
And sits among his boys;
He hears the parson pray and preach,
He hears his daughter's voice,
Singing in the village choir,
And it makes his heart rejoice.

It sounds to him like her mother's voice,
Singing in Paradise!
He needs must think of her once more,
How in the grave she lies;
And with his hard, rough hand he wipes
A tear out of his eyes.

Onward through life he goes;
Each morning sees some task begin,
Each evening sees it close
Something attempted, something done,
Has earned a night's repose.

Thanks, thanks to thee, my worthy friend,
For the lesson thou hast taught!
Thus at the flaming forge of life
Our fortunes must be wrought;
Thus on its sounding anvil shaped
Each burning deed and thought.

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