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I love making acorn flour at home because it has a mild nutty flavor and is gluten-free. It will add a unique texture and flavor to cakes, cookies, and other baked goods. It’s a great alternative to regular flours.
Making acorn flour requires some preparation. You cannot just grind the acorns; you must leach them first. This process removes the tannins from acorns that give them their bitter taste. The result is an incredibly flavorful flour with no bitterness or astringency.
I’ll show you how to make homemade acorn flour using the cold leaching method. It’s fun and inexpensive, and it’s an excellent gift for your loved ones.
Here’s What You’ll Need for the Entire Process:
Let’s get to work. To cold leach the acorns and prepare the flour, you will need:
- 3 pounds of acorns
- large jar
Cold Leaching the Acorns
As I mentioned before, acorn flour is made by using a cold-leaching technique beforehand. In case you don’t know, leaching means to pull something out of a food. In the case of acorns, you want to pull out tannins that can create a bitter, astringent flavor.
Cold leaching is particularly good for preparing acorn flour because, unlike the acorn hot leaching method, it allows the starches in the nut to stay raw for good binding when making baked goods. Starch is essential because acorn flour lacks the gluten that allows wheat flour to create fluffy results.
Technically, it’s possible to use the hot leaching method to make acorn flour. But the high temperature will precook the starch and make it unusable as a binder. Therefore, you would have to add an extra binder to the flour.
Everything must be done correctly from the very beginning. So pay close attention to every step, so that you leach your acorns the right way.
- Shell the acorns in a bowl of cool water
It should take about an hour to shell 3 pounds. The benefit of using water is that you’ll stop your acorns from oxidizing during the process.
- Puree the meat of the shelled acorns
The best way to do this is to add a little bit of warm water to your acorns after putting them in your blender or food processor.
- Place them in a jar
Pour the pureed acorns into a large jar before setting them in a cool place. Make sure the temperature of the waiting spot is no warmer than 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping your acorns in a warmer spot will trigger the fermentation process.
- Wait 5 days
The waiting game begins! Your acorns will need to stay in their cooling spot for five days. Do make sure that you’re carefully pouring out and replacing the water in the jar two times per day.
- Taste the acorns on day five
You’re looking for a very bland taste. If you detect hints of bitterness, that means you need to wait another day. Continue to change the water while doing daily taste tests until the bitter flavor is gone.
The Acorn Flour Preparation
After leaching, I take the following additional steps to make the actual acorn flour with plenty of texture and flavor. I call it rustic oak acorn flour.
1. Use the strainer with a cheesecloth
It’s action day! Once you confirm that bitterness is gone, it’s time to move your wet acorn meal to a strainer that’s lined with cheesecloth. Spend some time straining as much water as possible. The water that has been leached out is extremely starchy. Allowing it to stay in your flour will influence how your flour bakes up.
2. Lay out the meal for drying
This could take several hours. Continue to feel the meal with your hands until it seems adequately dry. You can leave it drying overnight in a dry place and check it in the morning.
A good way of speeding up the drying process is to use a dehydrator. But do not use high temperatures; use the lowest possible temperature in your device, not to cook the starch. If the meal gets too dark, it’s often a sign that the temperature is too high.
You can also lay out the meal on baking paper and use the oven to dehydrate it. Again, you should be careful with the temperature you choose.
3. Blend it
Add your dry meal to a grinder or blender to create a fine consistency that matches regular wheat flour. There should be some thickness but no nut pieces.
How to Store Acorn Flour Properly?
Avoid keeping acorn flour at room temperature because heat can cause the fatty oils in the meal to become rancid. It should be stored in a cool, dry place where there is no moisture.
It’s crucial that you store it in a tightly sealed container. Ensure the lid is tight enough to prevent any oxygen from entering the container.
One of the best ways of storing acorn flour is in a jar in the fridge.
How long does acorn flour last?
The acorn flour shelf life depends on how well you store it. Refrigerated acorn flour in a properly sealed jar can last for up to a year.
Have Fun Making Acorn Flour and Using it in Recipes
Are you excited to try a recipe using acorn flour for the first time? While this isn’t something you can pick up easily at your local grocery store, you can find the main ingredient pretty easily in your own yard. I have so much fun every time I make acorn flour, except for the five days I have to wait.
You can do so many things with this flour, from bread to cookies, cakes, pies, pancakes, and more. It’s a versatile ingredient that can really enhance any recipe. And remember that acorn flour and wheat flour can be mixed. Because of its gluten content, wheat flour can be added to acorn flour to add texture.