For quite a while I have been wanting to experiment with chestnut flour, I think this stems from a holiday memory in idyllic Tuscany, when we stayed in a house over looking a chestnut grove and in it was the cutest rustic drying house. I was fascinated with the gnarly trees, the nuts and the recipes they were used in, chestnut flour is used in Italy to make pasta, pancakes and cakes amongst other things.
Chestnut flour is naturally gluten free and is something you will need to seek out if you want to bake with it as its not routinely stocked in most health food shops, this is possibly due to a shortish shelf life but you can obtain it easily by mail order and most shops will happily order it in for you. If you are baking for a coeliac ensure the flour is truly gluten free.
Chestnuts are synonymous with the festive season so I decided to come up with a biscuit recipe which uses this lovely flour, combining it with maple syrup to give a lovely smoky earthy flavour and use my lovely snowflake cutters to give a seasonal twist to this bake.