The power of nuts
In a recent blog we talked about the goodness of hazelnuts. We even used hazelnuts to make some healthier homemade Nutella!
Acorns are nuts, too. But are they a food? Sure! Hazelnut and Acorn are friends.
Food trivia: How cowboys prepared acorns
An acorn has enough power under its little cap to sprout a giant oak tree. In the early days of the wild west in North America, folks knew the power inside those tough little shells. Cowboys taught by Native Americans on the trail used acorn meal as flour or mush, or pounded with meat, fat, and berries to make pemmican.
But there’s a catch. All the goodness of acorns is imprisoned by an enemy called Tannin. Our forefathers put their crop of dried, shelled and ground acorns in bags and left them for days in a swift-running stream. The running water washed the harmful tannins away.
But today we can choose from so many delicious kinds of nuts from around the world that we no longer need to rely on acorns. Pistachios, almonds, walnuts, chestnuts, and even the lowly peanut are only a few of the delicious and healthy nuts we can find just by going to our neighborhood grocery store. There we can get them in the shell or out, plain or roasted, salted or spiced, whole, sliced or ground, or, best of all… made into nut butter.
Although it’s not necessary unless the nuts are not fresh, some people who make nuts a large part of their diet soak all kinds of nuts, to increase their digestibility. Check the link to learn more.
Just remember… all good things in moderation. Nuts pack lots of nutrients but at the same time provide a lot of calories ounce for ounce. Keep the serving size down to a handful a day, and live long and prosper.
Happy Trails Snack Mix
Listen to the song while you mix this up
Good cowboys and cowgirls need a little something to tide them over as they ride the range. Trail mix is a healthy snack!
Mix together 1/4 cup of any of these things you have in your pantry:
- hazel nuts
- shelled pistachios
- sunflower seeds
- dried cranberries
- dried currents
- dried apricots, dates and/or mangos, chopped
- any other nut, seed, or dried fruit you have in your cupboard…
For every five ingredients, you can add 1/4 cup chocolate chips. It’s probably better to leave them out, because of their high sugar content. But if you use them, choose DARK chocolate. The dark stuff contains antioxidants (cancer fighters).
Eat a handful whenever you feel weak from hunger and your next meal is more than a half hour away.