The first thing you might be thinking is: why would I ever want to soak my pecans?
Pecans are a great source of vitamins and minerals. They contain vitamin B1, Copper, Magnesium and Manganese, Zinc, and much more. However, like other nuts and seeds, pecans contain enzyme inhibitors, tannic acid, and phytic acid. These substances can mess with your digestion and absorption of nutrients. Thus the healthy properties in nuts are kind of negated.
What's a health-conscious girl to do?
By soaking your pecans in a briny solution you can deactivate the negative properties. The salt in the soaking water also activates enzymes in the nuts that neutralize the enzyme inhibitors.*
Once your pecans are soaked for the proper amount of time you can dehydrate them to make them a lovely, crispy texture.
You can read more about the benefits of soaking nuts in this great blog post by Kimi of The Nourishing Gourmet. She also gives methods for soaking other nuts here.
Note: It's important to dehydrate your nuts at the proper temperature. If you go higher than 150 degrees F (65 C), the beneficial enzymes that you activated by soaking can be destroyed. My oven only goes down to 170. Next time I'll leave my oven door open a tad to lower the temperature.
Soaked and Dehydrated Pecans
Ingredients: (can increase amounts as needed)
- 1 cups of pecans
- 1/2 teaspoon real salt
- Filtered water to cover nuts
Place the pecans and salt in a glass or stainless steel bowl. Add enough filtered water to cover. Stir. Place a kitchen towel on top and leave in a warm part of your kitchen for at least 7 and up to 12 hours.
Drain in a colander, spread on a stainless steel cookie sheet (or dehydrator trays) and place in a warm oven (105 to 150 degrees) until the pecans are nice and crispy, stirring occasionally, about 12-24 hours.
Store in an airtight container in a cool place for a few months, or longer in the refrigerator.
*From Nourishing Traditions, p.512
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