Information about Nuts: Chestnuts

About chestnuts, information about the nuts, production, history and uses, origins of the name.


There are more than 10 species of chestnut, classified by region, including the American, Chinese, Japanese, and European. The nuts of the latter 3 are exported in large quantities. In the 1920s, a blight wiped out most of the North American crop and today the U.S. imports the bulk of its chestnuts from the Mediterranean regions. Chestnuts are not to be confused with the "water chestnut," an aquatic fruit of the evening primrose. Chestnuts resemble acorns in structure. Roasted, the chestnut is a fragrant and appetizing food. Raw, it contains a certain amount of tannic acid, which may upset the stomach. In Korea, the chestnut is almost as important to the diet as the potato is in the U.S.

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