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Wild food (Read 12637 times)
Masiakasaurus
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Re: Wild food
Reply #15 - Aug 15th, 2015 at 1:02pm
 
Thearos wrote on Aug 15th, 2015 at 5:18am:
Fussy, indeed. Tannins are unfit for human consumption in any quantities, I assume (people speak of tannins in red wine).

What Bill said. I'd just like to add that tannins aren't bad in and of themselves, but the amount in acorns is excessive. Tannins are the source of the bitter flavor and astringent mouthfeel in some red wines and teas. In fact, tea is almost entirely tannins dissolved in water. The concentration of tannins in acorns is many thousand times that of tea and wine and pushes it from being a flavoring to being a poison. (Also, bitterly astringent flour isn't as appetizing as a sweet and nutty flour.)
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Pikåru wrote on Nov 19th, 2013 at 6:59pm:
Massi - WTF? It's called a sling. You use it to throw rocks farther and faster than you could otherwise. That's all. 
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Re: Wild food
Reply #16 - Aug 16th, 2015 at 1:37pm
 
The best way to make get the tannins out prior to making flour as Mas describes is to first smash the acorns into small pieces about half the size of rock salt.  Place these pieces in some sort of porous fabric like cheese cloth and place them under some sort of running water.  A clear, fast running stream will work if you're in the wild; a spigot if not.  How long this process takes depends on several factors like the size of your acorn chunks, the speed of the water current, the mesh of your fabric, etc..  It will take at least a full day;  more than likely several.  After the tannins are washed out then dry your tiny chunks and grind them into flour.  The flour is extremely nutritious and makes a pretty good bread.  From the dawn of time until fairly recently it was a major food source for humans.  Acorns are still consumed in many parts of the world today.
    If you had to survive on your own now would be the best time for people at my latitude.  This is harvest time when many of the wild fruits and vegetables are ripe. It would be difficult to starve to death in the wild this time of year in the Northeast U.S..
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Masiakasaurus
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Re: Wild food
Reply #17 - Aug 16th, 2015 at 2:09pm
 
This thread has inspired me to share some wild food with my friends and coworkers. Smiley Here's a tip for all y'all, you can substitute acorn flour for all or some of the cornmeal in your favorite cornbread recipe with no other changes. I'm going to try making this French chestnut bread by substituting leeched whole acorns for the chestnuts and acorn flour for the cornmeal once I have a good crop of acorns. Maison Kayser’s Chestnut Bread Hopefully it turns out well.
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Pikåru wrote on Nov 19th, 2013 at 6:59pm:
Massi - WTF? It's called a sling. You use it to throw rocks farther and faster than you could otherwise. That's all. 
~Engineers like to solve problems. If there are no problems handily avialable, they will create their own problems.~
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perpetualstudent
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Re: Wild food
Reply #18 - Aug 17th, 2015 at 9:15am
 
Huh. That's interesting.

I've heard historical accounts of pigs eating/being fed acorns. Are they able digest unprocessed acorns?
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"Facts stand wholly outside our gates; they are what they are, and no more;they know nothing about themselves and they pass no judgement upon themselves. What is it, then, that pronounces the judgement? Our own guide and ruler, Reason."
 
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Masiakasaurus
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Re: Wild food
Reply #19 - Aug 17th, 2015 at 9:36am
 
perpetualstudent wrote on Aug 17th, 2015 at 9:15am:
Huh. That's interesting.

I've heard historical accounts of pigs eating/being fed acorns. Are they able digest unprocessed acorns?


As far as I know, yes. Horses, cows, and other ruminants definitely can, so the ability to eat acorns isn't a rare thing in the animal kingdom.
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Pikåru wrote on Nov 19th, 2013 at 6:59pm:
Massi - WTF? It's called a sling. You use it to throw rocks farther and faster than you could otherwise. That's all. 
~Engineers like to solve problems. If there are no problems handily avialable, they will create their own problems.~
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perpetualstudent
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Re: Wild food
Reply #20 - Aug 17th, 2015 at 2:05pm
 
You're probably right. The reason I ask is that I read a fascinating book on food during WWII, and one of the odd facts I picked up was that cows can't digest unprocessed soy. We discovered how to process it so the protein was available to the cows in part due to the demand of WWII.
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"Facts stand wholly outside our gates; they are what they are, and no more;they know nothing about themselves and they pass no judgement upon themselves. What is it, then, that pronounces the judgement? Our own guide and ruler, Reason."
 
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Re: Wild food
Reply #21 - Aug 17th, 2015 at 2:32pm
 
I asked an "agvocate" friend of mine (writer for Cooperative Farmer News Magazine and part owner of a cattle farm) about feeding acorns to pigs. Acorns give the meat a gamier tasted are the preferred feed -almost exclusively- for swine that will become Black Forest ham. Some are raised on acorns, others are raised on other feed and switched to nothing but acorns for a couple months prior to slaughter. Most pigs, however; are indifferent to the taste of acorns. They tend to spit out the caps and usually ignore acorns when other food sources are present.
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Pikåru wrote on Nov 19th, 2013 at 6:59pm:
Massi - WTF? It's called a sling. You use it to throw rocks farther and faster than you could otherwise. That's all. 
~Engineers like to solve problems. If there are no problems handily avialable, they will create their own problems.~
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Re: Wild food
Reply #22 - Sep 9th, 2015 at 7:17am
 
In Jordan there are still oak/acorn groves that the Romans planted up near Jerash. Not sure what variety they are, but they were huge, biggest acorns I've even seen by far. The trees looked like overgrown bonsai with fat trunks and branches kept low to make harvest easy. Oddly, no one there seemed to eat them.
Didn't see any Querquetulanae though….
Grin
I also seem to recall using lye to remove tannins...
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Re: Wild food
Reply #23 - Sep 10th, 2015 at 10:16pm
 
That's interesting.  I know a professor who is researching how the Native Americans processed corn that was going to be ground into flour.

The NA's would soak the hard corn kernels in lye water until the skins became loose and then would tumble them in a special basket that had holes in it that would let the smaller pieces of skin fall out but keep the rest of the kernel.  They would then wash the kernel and then grind them for flour.

The reason this is important is because the NA's didn't suffer any of the various problems with mineral deficiencies  in their diet that later Europeans who ate the same foods did, minus how the corn was prepared.  Europeans just ground the whole kernel into grits, meal or flour depending on which setting the mill was set up for. 

His theory is that the lye soak makes the minerals in the corn more digestable  and also removes a lot of the sugars that attacked and destroyed the Europeans' teeth.

Don't suppose you heard how the Romans prepared their acorns?
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Re: Wild food
Reply #24 - Sep 12th, 2015 at 6:18pm
 
There are several other plants that the American indians processed with lye, which is what made them edible or nutritious. The corn flour used to make tortillas is still treated in a solution of lime water  Wink
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Re: Wild food
Reply #25 - Oct 8th, 2015 at 6:32am
 
Right now Jerusalem Artichokes are in bloom. They resemble tall, skinny sunflowers that grow in clusters. Around the roots are tubers that are perfectly edible. Just peel them and prepare them like a potato. they have a nutty flavor to them.
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Re: Wild food
Reply #26 - Oct 9th, 2015 at 9:07am
 
Jerusalem artichokes don't grow wild here cause its too dry, so we grow our own. They also make a great privacy fence Smiley
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Re: Wild food
Reply #27 - May 28th, 2017 at 9:16pm
 
But elk do!
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Re: Wild food
Reply #28 - May 28th, 2017 at 10:57pm
 
For the past several years I have been trying to get ground nut or Indian Potatoes established around my ponds. The are called Ah'hah by Eastern Muscogee, Ah'hee by Western Muscogee and hopnis by Cherokees

Apios Americana is a legume that forms tubers on its roots.  It has a small pea pod, which is also edible.  However, it is only about 3 inches (75mm) long and only about 3/16ths in diameter (4mm) and the actual peas are about the size of a BB or only about 2mm.  Which means you have to pick a lot for a meal. 

The tubers range in size from about golf ball sized to about tennis ball sized.  They will be a line of round tuber on a root, it will look like a string of pearls.  They can be prepared any way you cook potatoes or beans.  They can also be diced, dried and ground into flour.
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Re: Wild food
Reply #29 - May 29th, 2017 at 12:09am
 
Not well known to u.s. students, it was A. apios that the pilgrims relied on (as well as corn) for the first few years. They were also the main course for the early settlers of Concord Mass.
It is still plentiful in central Tennessee.
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