From:Ft. Worth, TX Region: Southwest Topic: Edible Plants Title: Edibility of bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa) acorns Answered by: Nan Hampton and Damon Waitt
Is the acorn of the Bur Oak edible?
Yes, apparently the Chippewa, the Ojibwa, the Dakota, the Ponca, the Winnebago, the Pawnee, the Cheyenne and the Omaha Indians all used the acorns of the Quercus macrocarpa (bur oak) as food as well as for medicinal purposes. The acorns were roasted or boiled or otherwise treated before eating. You can see the references in the Native American Ethnobotany database from the University of Michigan-Dearborn. In general, acorns (nuts) are edible after tannins are leached or boiled out. Gather nuts during the fall from September to October. Only gather the ripe tan-to-brown acorns rather than the unripe green ones. To remove bitterness, shell the brown ripe acorns and remove any corky skin layers dice the meat and boil the chunks in water from 15 to 30 minutes until the water turns brown. Then pour off the water and repeat the process until the water clears indicating that the tannic acid has been removed. During the last boiling salt water can be added; then the acorns can be deep fried or mixed in a soup. Finely chopped acorn meats can be added to bread doughs and muffin batters. After the leaching process acorn meat can be frozen. To make flour the boiled acorn meat can be split in two and dried by slowly baking in a 200 degree oven with the door cracked to allow moisture to escape. Crush or grind and use as a thickener or a flour. Another method is to roast the fresh acorn to work well in a grinder or blender. After grinding place the flour into a cloth bag and boil to leach out bitterness. Leached acorns after they are roasted until brittle can be ground and used as a marginal coffee substitute. Warning: Acorns (seeds of nuts) and young leaves have low toxicity if eaten. Symptoms include stomach pain constipation and later bloody diarrhea excessive thirst and urination.
More Edible Plants Questions
Edible plants native to Austin, TX August 05, 2009 - Hello,
I am a chef from Buenos Aires Argentina visiting Austin, Texas and would like to learn about native, edible plants in the region.
Please let me know if there are any native, edible plants... view the full question and answer
Jersalem artichoke as a medicinal herb February 05, 2011 - I am having trouble with high cholesterol and coming up on being borderline diabetic and I am overweight. I know that Jerusalum Artichoke helps lower blood sugar. Am into herbs and J.A. is hard to l... view the full question and answer
Ground cover plant that tastes like cucumbers December 18, 2011 - It is a native ground cover plant that is edible and tastes like cucumbers. Found in the Edwards Plateau. What is the name? view the full question and answer
Worms in wild plums June 03, 2009 - Wild Plums... They are just starting to get ripe here in East Texas. Picked a few today and they all had dark spots on them. When I cut them open there were tiny worms inside. Does this mean they a... view the full question and answer