Recipe for Indian Acorn Cakes
Fall is here! The leaves are turning gold and red. The scent of wood smoke is in the air. If you are looking for a fun autumn project to try with your kids, making acorn griddle cakes is a little crazy, but fun! In grade school, children start to learn about the Native American peoples that populated the United States, before European settlement. They learn about their lifestyles: how they lived, hunted, customs, beliefs and their food. For many Native Americans, acorns were a staple of their diet.
One taste of acorn meal is enough for most people (it tastes awful!); however, making the cakes out of gathered acorns can be an invaluable learning experience. It is fun and educational. Your children can learn more about our country’s history and the self-sufficiency of the first Americans. It can show your children how early people utilized their environment for survival. Try this recipe and open up a fun and valuable dialogue.
Indian Acorn Mush Cakes
- Collect acorns from your yard or a local park. Be sure to pick out ones with worm holes and discard.
- Dry for a few days in an unlit oven, on a tray out in the sun, or in a dehydrator.
- Remove shells.
- Blend well in food processor with water.
- Lay a thin dish cloth or cheese cloth over a large bowl and pour acorn mush inside.
- Pour cold water over mush and let sit. This process leeches out the bitter tannins in the nut. Tannins also harm the kidneys and must be removed.
- Squeeze out water twice a day and add new water.
- Repeat this process twice a day for 8 to 10 days. Check for bitterness.
- When the mush is no longer bitter, squeeze out the remaining water and dry.
- The mush balls can be smoothed out on a cookie sheet and dried in the sun; a dehydrator works well too.
- The flour can be used to make Apache Acorn Cakes. This recipe comes from the San Antonio Natural Area Parks News website. Mix 1 cup acorn meal, 1 cup cornmeal, ¼ cup honey and a pinch of salt. Flatten into cakes and fry like pancakes. Eat and enjoy!