Acorns: Edible or poisonous?

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Are acorns poisonous or edible? This question does not arise for older students, because our grandmothers and grandfathers certainly know about acorn coffee from the post-war period. Eichelbrot and other foods that you could bake with flour were also made from acorn meal in times of need. So this is not about culinary fairytale stories, but preparation methods, which slowly but surely fall into oblivion in our time.

Acorns: Edible and poisonous

Acorns are edible, but also poisonous - which sounds strange at first. The acorn contains a very high proportion of tannins in the raw state, giving it a very disgusting taste for us. If this is not already deterrent enough, the tannins lead to severe gastrointestinal complaints such as nausea, abdominal cramping and diarrhea.
So to make acorns edible, these tannins must first disappear. This is achieved by carefully roasting the collected acorns in the pan, peeling and watering them for several days. During washing, the fruits release the tannins to the water, which turns brownish. The water has to be changed daily. If the water remains clear at the end of the day, the tannins are washed out of the acorns and they can be dried and processed further.

Roasted acorns

Fruits of red oak (Quercus rubra). After roasting in the pan and peeling, the acorns are watered to remove the bitter substances

Use acorns and enjoy

Once the tannins are washed out, they can either be pureed and made into a paste that can be frozen well, or they can be dried and ground into flour. In this state, their ingredients come into play, because acorns contain a large amount of energy in the form of starch, sugar and proteins (about 45 percent). In addition, there is a 15 percent share of oil. All this together gives the flour a good adhesive effect in the processing, which makes it ideal for doughs. These acorns are a real power food, as the long-chain carbohydrates release energy over a longer period of time to the body.

acorn bread

From acorn flour can bake a really good power bread, which provides a lot of energy over a long time

Tip: Depending on the type of acorn used, the taste can be very neutral, which is why a previous tasting of the dough is recommended. In addition, longer acorns are easier to peel than the more round varieties.

Video Board: Ancient Flavors: Acorns for Food.

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