Fresh chestnuts are a cold-weather icon. But vacuum-packed and pureed chestnuts are available year round, offering earthy flavor with a hint of sweetness.
Verfeuille Whole Chestnuts, from the south of France, are roasted and lightly steamed ($9 for 8 oz; Fairway Market, 212-595-1888).
Trader Joe's Whole Chestnuts, from Spain, have an intense flavor and luxurious texture that belies their bargain price ($4 for 14 oz; traderjoes.com).
Clément Faugier's Chestnut Spread Vanillée is a silky puree that will add complexity to desserts ($6 for 8.75 oz; wholefoods.com).