Foraging Tip: The Easiest Way to Eat Acorns

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Acorns can be a healthy and nutritious food source for foragers – or in a survival situation. Here’s a simple 10-minute method to process and eat acorns – the easy way!

If you’re a forager, you’ve probably come across acorns before and wondered how to eat them. Maybe you even tried, and experienced some discouragingly unpleasant results. Oak trees grow throughout much of the United States, and all of them produce acorns, all of which are technically edible – and this time of year they are plentiful. However, they taste pretty darned inedible unless you process them correctly to remove the bitter tannins they contain. (I have some unpleasant memories of my mom trying to make us eat acorn muffins that she made as an experiment when I was a child – I definitely would have described them as inedible!) Processing usually involves shelling the acorns, grinding them into flour, and then using either hot or cold water to leach out the tannins. This can be a time-intensive process, and may be difficult to do if you are in a wilderness or off-grid survival situation.

However, the article below shares a much easier and faster way to process and eat acorns – and it’s one that you can do anywhere that you have access to running water. Before you use this method, you will need to first shell your acorns, which you can do using a hand-crank nut cracker, a manual cracker, or simply two rocks. For best results, let your acorns dry out out for a couple of weeks.

Once you have your shelled acorns, you can prepare them to eat by using this simple 10-minute method (be sure to check out the link below for some recipes for using your processed acorns):

Start by dumping your shelled acorns into a blender. Add water. The quantity isn’t really important. You just want the blender to be able to function. Now start your blender and let it go until the acorns are ground to a pulp. The longer you let it go, the better this will work. A minute or two is probably good. In a survival scenario, you could accomplish the same thing with a rock. But until then, a blender is much faster and easier.

Now pour the “acorn smoothie” into a cloth strainer bag. In a survival situation, you could use a clean sock. Now close the bag and hold it under running water in your sink. Massage the bag, allowing it to absorb water and then squeezing it back out. Do this until the water runoff is clear. Now squeeze out all the water you can, open the bag, and have a little pinch of the acorn meal. If it’s bitter, go back to massaging it under the water. Don’t be afraid to massage it a bit longer than you think it needs. Lingering tannins can throw the taste of your food off. The massaging process will probably take 3-7 minutes.

In a survival situation, you could do this in a stream or in a bowl, with a few changes of water.

Now you can wring out as much water as possible and spread out the acorn meal on a dehydrator or drying tray, or put it in your oven on warm, until it is completely dry. Because this process preserves more of the acorn oils, your acorn meal may have a tendency to spoil. Stick your dried acorn meal in the freezer to maximize its life. In a survival situation, you would ideally store the acorns in their shells and only process as many as you needed. Acorns can stay good all winter if kept in a cool, dry place.

Learn more + find some tasty acorn recipes at TheGrowNetwork.com

 

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