Mesquite Bean Flour Notes
1 paper grocery bag of mesquite beans yields about 3# or 10 cups of excellent flour.
- Collect mesquite beans just before they fall off the trees, usually in late July, but depends on location, rainfall. Beans are just right when the seeds start to rattle.
- Taste several trees. Some are sweeter than others – and they say that a sweeter tree will be sweeter, year in, year out – so make a note of one. (although I haven’t found that much difference).
- The taste (like molasses) and carbs come from the pod itself, the protein from the seed. It’s a smart tree – the critters eat the pods due to the sweetness of the pod, and the seed passes on through the digestive tract and winds up in a damp compost pile to germinate …
- The seeds are really tough to grind, but eventually do after a few passes.
- Dry at 170 – 180 F for 1.5 hrs (if beans have already dried in the sun prior to that).
- Grind them right from the oven – otherwise they will re-absorb the moisture, and gum up the mill.
- An inexpensive “Corona” mill, which is ubiquitous throughout Central and South American, works fine. Also available at www.lehmans.com
- Start the first grind coarse, plan on about 2 passes, maybe 3.
- Store in a ziplock bag, in the freezer.
- Combine with regular flour or pancake mix, half and half, to make great pancakes.