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Acorns

 
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tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44283
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 10:47 am    Post subject: Acorns  Reply with quote    

Just been reading up on acorns, I knew that the nuts were somewhat edible but I didn't realise that in some parts of the wiorld they're actually used for cooking oil, apparently some varieties can yield 30% of an excellent cooking oil.

Anybody tried eating acorns or even extracting oil from them?

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I've ground them and used them as chopped nuts; you de-hull them, grind them a bit, roast them off and then use them like chopped hazel nuts or almonds. Bitter, but not totally unpleasant. I've not done it often, I'd rather spend my time on nicer nuts than those.

Take it a step further and burn them a wee bit and you have a coffee substitute. It's vile But I wouldn't have known till I tried.

I haven't ever extracted oil. I'd be curious to know how that works out.

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44283
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

According to Martin crawford the tannins from the acorns need to be removed before eating for most oaks, he reccomends the following procedure:

De-hull the acorns and whizz them up in a food processor, put into a jar with triple the volume of water to acorns place in the fridge, change water daily until it stays clear, should be less than two weeks. Once this is done the acorn meal should be dried before storage/usage.

Bernie66



Joined: 14 Jan 2005
Posts: 13967
Location: Eastoft
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 3:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

cab wrote:
I've ground them and used them as chopped nuts; you de-hull them, grind them a bit, roast them off and then use them like chopped hazel nuts or almonds. Bitter, but not totally unpleasant. I've not done it often, I'd rather spend my time on nicer nuts than those.

Take it a step further and burn them a wee bit and you have a coffee substitute. It's vile But I wouldn't have known till I tried.

I haven't ever extracted oil. I'd be curious to know how that works out.


Can second that, the coffee is probably the worst taste i can recall.
On the subject of oil, has anyone tried making oil out of beech mast?

Bugs



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 10744

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

A couple of days ago I read somewhere that beech mast is very tasty and nutritious...I can't remember where that was...wasn't here was it?

Gertie



Joined: 08 Jan 2005
Posts: 1638
Location: Yorkshire
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 4:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I thought acorns were poisonous?

Bugs



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 10744

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Nasty tasting - and possibly liable to upset you in large quantities if you don't treat them right? like sour apples? - but not poisonous...isn't there a type of Spanish ham from pigs largely fed on acorns?

ButteryHOLsomeness



Joined: 03 Apr 2005
Posts: 770

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

i wish i could remember where i found it (years ago) but there was a woman online that ate loads of acorns. she had loads of recipes and gave a very detailed process for removing the tanin, though i think the water method mentioned already would work easily and quite well.

sadly we don't have many oak trees around here (not that i've seen) but i'd could have done with this tip when i was still in the states...oh well!

i'd love to know more about uses for beech nuts(mast?) as we've got a huge one growing in the backgardens here. i knew it was a beech tree last year when it had nuts (copius amounts!) but i didn't know what to do with them. is it true that beech trees don't fruit every year?

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Gertie wrote:
I thought acorns were poisonous?


In bulk, yes. A little nibble isn't likely to harm you. The process Tahir described ought to be good to remove the upsetting tannins.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 05 5:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

ButteryHOLsomeness wrote:

i'd love to know more about uses for beech nuts(mast?) as we've got a huge one growing in the backgardens here. i knew it was a beech tree last year when it had nuts (copius amounts!) but i didn't know what to do with them. is it true that beech trees don't fruit every year?


I believe (although I could be wrong) that they fruit prolifically every three or four years. They're tasty nuts, Richard Mabey compared them with young walnuts, but I think they're more like good hazelnuts. Only trouble is that they're small and hard to get into; only try with the fat ones, and do it as early as you can because they wither up and there's soon nowt left.

Beech nuts can be crushed for oil, but it's awfully hard work shelling enough of the little blighters to make it worthwhile; I've never tried, so if you have a go, let me know how you get on

If you want a really good use for your beech tree, try making beech leaf noyau. It's a gin based liquer to make in early summer, and it's great stuff. Let me know ad I'll dig out a recipe.

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