Squirrels watch out, we’re after your nuts!

Acorns are the latest food fad. They have been elevated to the status of superfood by their proponents in South Korea. They are rich in protein, fats, fibre and essential minerals. Apparently, they can be roasted for coffee and ground down to make flour. And they’re easy to find, all you have to do is pop along to your local park or woods to pick up a few. Beware though, like a lot of wild foodstuffs they can be poisonous, don’t eat them raw. Leave that to the squirrels.

The Woodland Trust has a piece on its website about acorns.  But enjoying them requires some preparation. It’s not as simple as grabbing a couple of handfuls and taking them home to eat. Raw acorns contain tannins which can be toxic to humans and cause an unpleasant bitter taste. They are also poisonous to horses, cattle and dogs.

So why eat them? Well, by leaching them to remove the tannin, they can be made safe for human consumption. This can be done with hot or cold water, depending on how you want to use the acorns afterwards. The Woodland Trust has all the details and even a yummy (?) recipe for Acorn Brittle.

It’s not too late to harvest some acorns but you’ll have to fight off the squirrels. They will be watching out that you are leaving some for them.