Veteran's Day the Chestnut Way.


November 11th is veteran’s day celebrated all over the U.S. It’s time for reflection, respect and paying homage to the war heroes who dedicated their lives for the cause of a nation. Apart from this I had no knowledge about any other significance this day could have. For me everyday there is a new learning experience waiting to unfold. Every day is a new journey with its little delights to enthrall you. Little did I know that it is the day to eat chestnut and party all day till I started my little conversation with my Portuguese friend over my morning cup of coffee. I have had this opportunity to delight myself with this wonderful chestnut while I visited Paris in France. They were sold by the vendors who set up their small ovens all over the sidewalks. A little intrigued by the wonderful buttery smell coming out from open pans with the brown nuts being roasted I decided to stop by. The tired feet walking from one end of the town to the other got a chance to co-ordinate with the slurpy tongue in me! The utterly buttery taste of the roasted chestnuts melting in my mouth was something I never experienced before.In Kolkata the city where I grew up had similar sights on the sidewalks but the difference was in the nut itself! I was used to warm peanuts roasted over a numb fire on a bed of sand. Here in Paris I have chestnuts which are the size of a cookie, brown on the outside and off-white in the inside .A small bagful of chestnuts made my walk through the streets of Paris a little more charming and unforgettable no doubt. After this wonderful interaction of mine with chestnuts on the streets of Paris I have great reverence to this not so hard nut!!

The Portuguese people seem to take the chestnuts a little further on this veteran’s day holiday. They party around chestnut being roasted and cooked at home, baking it with some salt and   little water to moisten it enough. The warm buttery piece of heaven is then served with some red wine and an ambiance of merriment is assured all around.

Food Source: Street Vendors
Location: Side walks of the Opera District, Paris, France.