We’ve slid in to my favorite time of year…Fall! The leaves are changing color, the temps are cooling down and Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Do you know what else Fall brings? Acorns!
Did you know that acorns are edible? They’re a great source of Vitamin B, Protein and Complex Carbs. Pretty spiffy, huh? I couldn’t help but wonder, “could I make a delicious desert that even the kiddos would approve of?”. Turns out, it can be done – and i’m going to show you how.
Note: It’s crucial that you follow the instructions as I’ve written them. If you do not leach the tannin from the acorns, they’ll not only be bitter but they can make you nauseous and constipated.
Chewy Acorn Fudge Recipe
1. Collect your acorns. Avoid acorns that have holes in them, appear rotted or are green. Green ones aren’t ripe and and acorns with holes or that appear rotten, likely have weevils inside.
2. Crack the acorns (and place in a large bowl of water). We prefer to kick it old school and use a rock, just like the Native Americans did, but you can use a hammer, a heavy book or anything else with some weight and a flat surface. You do not need to whack them hard. Acorns have a fairly soft shell. You want to crack the shell without crushing the nut. As you crack them, toss them in to a bowl of water to prevent oxidation.
I couldn’t post this recipe without showing how adorable my 6 year old is, cracking acorns.
3. Leach the tannins from your acorns. Drain the water from your shelled acorns (which will be a brown color) and rinse them off. Bring 2 pots of water to a boil. Place the shelled acorns in one of the pots and let it boil for 10 minutes. The water will be brown, which is completely normal. Pour the water and shelled acorns into a strainer and rinse the acorns again. Now, place the acorns into the second pot of water and boil for another 10 minutes. While that’s going, rinse the first pot you used and fill it halfway with clean water. Bring it to a boil again. You’re going keep boiling the acorns for 10 minutes at a time, draining and rinsing them, until the water no longer turns brown.
4. Lets get cookin’. Place the acorns into a cast iron pan and toast them over high heat. Stir them around every few minutes so they don’t burn. When they appear dry, mix in the agave and sugar. Continue stirring do all of the acorns are heavily coated.
Next, mix in the butter, cinnamon and all spice. Continue stirring until the acorns and the mixture thicken and turn brown. You don’t want it to burn, you want it to caramelize.
5. Set your fudge. Spoon the mixture onto a non-stick surface, such as wax paper, and form it into a rectangle. Pop it into the fridge until it firms up (about 45 minutes).
6. Melt the chocolate. Pour the chocolate chips into a microwave safe bowl and heat them for 15 seconds at a time, stirring in between. Spoon the melted chocolate onto the fudge and spread it over the whole surface. Put the fudge back into the fridge until the chocolate firms back up (about 20 minutes).
7. Cut and serve. Using a sharp knife, cut the fudge into squares. This is best done by cutting strips in one direction and then cutting again in the opposite direction. Once you have your chewy acorn fudge all cut up, they’re ready to eat!
When all is said and done, you’ll end up with this delicious treat, made from acorns that you foraged: