Eat Acorns, Let Us Check The Ways Out
‘Eat Acorns,’ you might get surprised just but seeing the air quotes. There are a few strains of oak that grow acorns that can get eaten straight, but most of them require processing to remove the tannins that will make them bitter and inedible to humans. I have for the last few years made acorn flour from the red oak acorns in our local neighborhood with the following process:
Eat Acorns, But How? Let Us Check Them Out
First, gather the acorns and put them in a closed, non-airtight box for a week or so. Let them sit for a week. About a quarter of them have acorn weevil grubs in them, and this gives them time to mature and exit. After this time, throw out any acorns with holes in them (and any grubs).
Dry the acorns in a food dehydrator under low heat overnight; this hardens the shell to make it easier to crack and causes the nut meat to pull away from the shell.
Crack the shell (I use pliers for this) and extract the meat.
Now you want to separate the skins from the meat. The skins contain much of the tannin and are very bitter. To do this, I soak the meats, which causes the skins to separate from them. Tumbling the nutmeats underwater helps the process.
Then I grind the meats to paste in a blender and put them in the fridge to soak in tubs of water. Every day I strain the mash through cheesecloth and put them back in freshwater.
After two weeks of this, the acorn meal is sweet and has no trace of bitterness. Now I strain it through cheesecloth one last time, then put it in the dehydrator overnight to dry it.
It may seem like a lot of work, but a few weeks of a bit of work each day yields several pounds of acorn flour, which lasts for years in the freezer and is a good high-protein nut flour with a unique flavor.
Some Advice Regarding Harvesting The Acorns-
Regarding the harvest of your own acorns, there are a few key things to remember:
· Always harvest sustainably.
· Always, always, always harvest sustainably.
Different varieties of acorns have different flavors, some of which are highly unpalatable. The processing method to extract the starch, used to produce commercial acorn flours, removes bitter compounds called tannins; removing the tannins can be difficult to do at home, but is not impossible. In general, red-oak species are more tannic than white-oak species.
The best method of home tannin removal is to powderize the acorns in a high-powered blender and then cold-leach them over many days in many changes of water, keeping the mixture in the fridge to keep it fresh.
Therefore we learned some interesting things with this simple fruit. While we watched cheap and dale grabbing their acorns, we might have felt tasting it once in life. Additionally, we might have also thought what is so special about this fruit that Scrat made some changes to the entire universe. Well, it is not that special. However, we can have some special time eating this fruit.