The History Of Marrons Glacés
"Marrons Glacés" or Candied Chestnuts (Glazed Chestnuts) are a French delicacy and the symbol of Christmas and the New Year's Eve, especially in Europe, France and Italy precisely. The brown nut was for so many years the food of poor people, until, Italy knew sugar in the 15th century, it was transformed to a luxurious food only for royalty and wealthy people.
In the 16th century, the first Marrons Glacés (Glazed Chestnuts) was born, as we know today, the transformation was quite simple and delicate at the same time. The secret of the perfect confection was in in syrup, if you succeed to make a good syrup, you'll get not sticky, glazed chestnuts; also, the chestnut itself, some characteristic are quite important, for these things, to buy a glazed chestnut is better than to make it at home.
How To Make Homemade Marrons Glacés?
1 jar of chestnuts in syrup
- For the sugar syrup
- 1 kg granulated sugar
- 250 g chestnut syrup water
- 1 soft vanilla pod, split in half lengthways (Optional)
- Drain the chestnuts and keep the water. Scrape vanilla pod seeds with the flat of a knife.
- In a copper or stainless steel bowl, mix together the water, sugar and vanilla seeds to start cooking the vanilla syrup.
- Cook the syrup at 114 °C, use a kitchen thermometer.
- Dip quickly six to ten chestnuts in the sugar and vanilla syrup.
- Don't let sugar crystals to form: Using a spatula, scrape the crystals as soon as they begin to form around the side of the pan, and stir constantly. Don't add water.
- As soon as the syrup begins to become cloudy( burning stage), reduce heat, and carefully remove the chestnuts.
- Drain the glazed chestnuts on a wire rack, serve warm or slightly cold, at room temperature.
La Dorure's Notes
- Keep an eye on the crystallization of the syrup, don't let the liquid to be hard or produce small beads.
- Glazed Chestnuts are an important ingredient in so many pastry recipes, in form of "purée", like "The Mont-Blanc" dessert.