One the most satisfying parts of my job is eating what we harvest. And I like to eat.
This year, with help from Lucy's classroom teacher and a school grandma who is Native American, we collected a bunch of acorns and then used the flour to make cookies.
Lucy's class made a bunch of batches and then we made them again at home.
Acorns were (and continue to be) an important part of local Native American Chumash diets.
Here is more than you probably want to know about acorns.
So after drying the acorns (or lightly cooking) we had to peel them. I remember trying to sell, yes sell, peeled acorns for $0.10 at the lake. Who knew I was actually supplying the neighbors with food.
After peeling and then gently chopping, the acorns have to leach out all their acids. This involved soaking in water for many days. And then the acorn pieces had to dry out again.
This is where the fun starts, the other stuff was a lot of work. Sadly, I don't have a picture of us grinding actual acorns. The above picture is Henry grinding wheat. Same idea, same amount of fun as you can see from his face. I grow wheat in the school gardens every year. That is why we have a grain mill to begin with. We haven't baked with wheat flour yet.
Acorn flour is darker and nuttier tasting that regular wheat flour. We made traditional chocolate chip cookies and used half acorn flour. They tasted great.