Green Beans with Chestnuts

serving in casseroleThis Thanksgiving side dish incorporates the Native American foods chestnuts and pine nuts tossed with Blue Lake green beans, red onion, shallot, and roasted almonds in a butter bath.


One pound Blue Lake green beans

1 Tb unsalted butter

1/2 red onion, chopped

1 shallot, sliced

About 12 -15 fresh chestnuts or a 5.2 oz. package peeled and precooked chestnuts,  (available at Trader Joe’s and Berkeley Bowl)

3 Tb pine nuts

About 1/4 tsp salt to taste

Several grinds black pepper

1/4 cup roasted almond pieces (available at Berkeley Bowl)


If you are using fresh chestnuts, lay them flat on the cutting board and make a cut across the long end on the rounded side with a serrated knife, piercing both the hard outer shell and the inner skin. If you like, you can also make an additional cut crosswise. Put them in a pot of cold water and bring to a boil. As soon as the water boils, use a slotted spoon to remove them to a roasting pan. Bake at 425′ for 15 – 20 minutes. Use the slotted spoon to place them in a clean kitchen towel to cool for 15 minutes. Use your hands to peel off the shell and the woody inner skin. Thanks to for the directions.

Chop the red onion and slice the shallot.  Melt butter in a heavy frying pan over medium heat. Sauté onion and shallot in the butter over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes until they are soft and beginning to crisp.

chopping chestnutsSlice chestnuts and toss them and pine nuts into the onions for a few minutes. Add salt and black pepper

Fill a 3 or 4 quart pot about half way with water and bring to a boil. Cut the ends off the green beans and cut into 2 inch pieces. Boil for 4 minutes, until they just turn bright green, then strain into a salad spinner basket or colander.

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Add drained beans to onion mixture and gently stir in.

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Serve as is, or make ahead and reheat in the microwave.