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Chestnut time in Portugal

The days are shorter, the nights cooler - and you know what that means! Chestnut season in Portugal. Yes, chestnuts - once the starch of the people before potatoes came to Europe from the New World, the chestnut still has a special place in Portuguese cuisine. The inviting aroma of fire  roasted chestnuts (castanhas assadas) along with the cry of "Quentes e boas!" ‘(Hot and good!) echoes on street corners from Lisbon to Funchal. But them from a  street cart, and you pay by the dozen, roasted and cracked, ready to eat! Sadly the tradition of wrapping them in pages from the phonebook has given way to little paper bags or cones, but even without a touch of ink, Portuguese roasted chestnuts, with a dash of salt, are wonderful!

 

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