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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Stage One...

1-First, the nuts have to be ejected from their cups, which are woody and thick--and often curve up around the nut. Tried pliers, slow. Used a hammer on a piece of concrete block, much faster and more effective.

I made the mistake of trying to dry them in the sun earlier today. The cups come off much faster if damp.

2-Then stood the acorns up on their flat ends and hit the pointy end with the hammer. Cracked the shell quite well.

Since I gathered these so late in the season, about 20% were bad (rotted or very wormy. EatTheWeeds says the worms are tasty too:xeye:) But the good ones were beautiful. White ivory-like meats as big as chestnuts. (Have to put them in water as soon as you hull them, or they discolor.)

3-There is also an inner dark brown skin. It fell away from some nuts, but with others I had to scrape it off with the edge of a teaspoon.

4/5-They're boiling in the second water now. First was cloudy brown. This one so far is clear reddish brown. Smells a tad like vinegar (tannic acid?)

More later...
 

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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
FYI

According to various sources (Wikipedia, Honest Foods, Rosesprodigalgarden etc) Burr Oaks are part of the White Oak group and therefore have sweeter acorns (less tannin.) They are also the biggest acorns in North America (maybe even in a much wider area...)

The trees are drought and fire resistant. However, they usually bear crops at two-year intervals, so probably won't have much next year.

One cup of acorn flour equals 500 calories/ 30 g fat/ 54 g carbs. Carbs are the hardest thing to get in the wild so this is interesting.

Boiling is the fastest leaching method, but the resulting flour (if I grind it) will not make cohesive bread, nor thicken soups. I think I will roast the rough grind I have now (done in one of those chopper jars with X-blades) and add the acorns to other foods, as if they were other nuts. Just need to taste them first and make sure the bitter tannic acid is gone.

More later as this experiment continues...
 

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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Results

Boiled the chopped acorns in the third water and tasted it. The finely chopped stuff was neutral but the larger chunks were still a tad bitter. Put it all back into boiling water again and cheated--added a heaping teaspoon of baking soda to two quarts of boiling water (to neutralize the acid.) It foamed up and the acorns turned red. (They were pasty white up til this point.)

Drained and rinsed. Dried in the oven. Tasteless, more or less, but so is flour. A very faint odor/flavor like the old-fashioned Bandaids??? (Maybe like iodine? but faint.) I ate a few teaspoons with a little salt on top. Not bad! If I get 500 calories from a cup of this it will enhance the food supply.

Now gotta do the rest of the 5 gallon bucket...tomorrow :D:. BTW I only picked up about one quadrant around the tree. That means 3 more 5 gallon buckets...Aaaargh!
 

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Peas and Carrots!
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36,850 Posts
Uploading Pics -

How you post a picture is a little different depending on the source of the picture. The size is dependent on a couple of things. The pic won't come out any larger than the original was so if you use a small pic you will get a small pic.

There is a way to preview the post to see what it will look like also which can be very handy when you are trying something new. If you are starting a thread, the post will already be in "Advanced" mode. If you are replying to a thread, at the bottom of the reply block is a button "Go Advanced." Once you get into the Advanced mode, there is a "Preview Post" button that will show you exactly how your post will look but doesn't post it. That way if you need to make some adjustments you can.

Pic method #1 - is to upload pics from your computer as attachments. You use the paperclip button next to the smiley face in the editor panel (right above your post) to browse and then upload pics. It is pretty self-guiding BUT it will always post thumbnail pics that people have to click on to see the big pic. It is the fastest way to get pics in a post but doesn't post them full size within the body of the post.

Pic method #2 - if you have a pic on your computer you want to use (or method #3 doesn't work), upload it into a photo management program such as www.photobuckets.com (there are others, I just use that one), I think tinyurls.com is one also. You have to open an account with them but it is free up to a pretty large number of pictures. Then there is "Get links" button on the pic once you've uploaded it into photobucket. You want the one that says "IMG codes" click it (which copies it) and then just paste that straight into your post. NOTE: If the picture on the photo sharing site is removed, it will remove the picture from your post also.

Pic method #3 - if you find a pic on the computer that you want to use in a post, right click the pic, copy image location (which will copy the url for the pic), then go to the post you are making, and select the picture/postcard/little yellow square with the mountain on it from the editor panel above your post. Paste the url into the block that comes up and it will post the pic.

I really recommend using the "Preview Post" button until you get the hang of it. Sometimes I've had some that look like they will post right by pasting it straight into the post but they don't. If it doesn't do that way, then use the little picture button and try it that way.

There's also a way to set up a photo album in your user profile that you can put pics in and use them easily in the forum but you have to have a VIP membership for that.
 

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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Burr Oak Seedlings

I've eaten cake and cookies made with acorn flour and they were quite good. I found a source for Bur oak seedlings and I plan to add some to my food forest.
A great idea, Buffy, but I believe they take a long while to start bearing acorns. These acorns are huge, however, so you get a lot of nutmeats for the work involved.

I once tried beechnuts...hours and hours for a cupful of tiny bits of nut encased in very difficult husks. :xeye: so I left them to the wild turkeys and deer.
 

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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Photos

I'll post photos in a few days. Sorry I was so involved in the experiment I forgot to take any the first time. And now Mels has re-educated me as to how to post the pix. Be patient :)
 

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Vampire Slayer
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7,249 Posts
A great idea, Buffy, but I believe they take a long while to start bearing acorns. These acorns are huge, however, so you get a lot of nutmeats for the work involved.

I once tried beechnuts...hours and hours for a cupful of tiny bits of nut encased in very difficult husks. :xeye: so I left them to the wild turkeys and deer.
I have other oak trees, but this one sounds really neat. My food forest plans are long-term. :)
 

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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Taste

I put the dried, leached, chopped acorns from yesterday into the fridge overnight. Ate some today, just with a spoon out of a small bowl. Again, a sprinkle of salt made them really good.

The flavor is what might be called 'earthy'. I like it! A little toward some mushrooms. More hopefully tomorrow or Saturday with photos.

Stay tuned for the next exciting episode....:rolleyes:
 

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Registered
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117 Posts
A true prepper's post here!
Thanks for sharing your adventures!
I would love to make a find like you have.
It would be great if you could do some nut, tree, leaves pics to help others identify them.
Not hard to google but many might never do that. Here:http://www.ohio-nature.com/bur-oak.html
Mostly black walnuts around here.
Useful but a lot more work in my opinion.
I did discover that walnut can be tapped for sap to make syrup and hope to do some this year if weather permits.
 

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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Tiny update

Well, didn't get any more done on the acorns yet. Sorry, ladies! Life intervenes.

But did something important: Called the state DOT and our town Road Dept to make sure the area hadn't been sprayed with herbicide. (The tree is on the edge of the woods along a wide, grassy hwy right-of-way. That is how I first noticed those huge fuzzy acorns lying in the grass and leaf litter.)

So glad to know neither of them spray that area. This isn't the old days, and we need to be sure of what's going on with the food supply.

(A few hundred years ago, we didn't have to think about these issues. But, I admit, starting 75 years ago we DO. My Grandpa used to spray everything with DDT--pest bugs, veggies, everything. It's a wonder my Mom lived to be an adult...)

Will get on the rest of those acorns and post photos hopefully tomorrow...really!:rolleyes:
 

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Prov 3:5,6
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716 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
How I processed the Acorns

Ready, Set, Go! Did it on my deck for the first segments of processing: Hammer, concrete block chunk, acorns and 1 bowl for caps after removal, 1 bowl for shelled acorns. (Didn't need the pliers.) Theoretically, you could do this with a couple of rocks.



Whack the acorn with the hammer. The woody cap will fracture and pop the acorn out. Better if the cap is a little damp, not too dry.



 
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