Roasted or dried berries of mountain-ash can also be used as a coffee substitute : a tablespoon of berries with boiling water, let infuse for 10 minutes.

Cane Coffee root of reed
Wash and dry the roots. Roast and grind the dry residues to use as coffee.

In times of famine, the fruit of the oak was popular. You can make acorn pulp as raw material for food. You can eat acorns raw or roasted. The bitter taste is sweeter if they’re roasted in ashes. By first cooking acorns (optionally 2x) or soaking them in water and periodically refresh it in several days a large part of the bitter tannin can be extracted. Ground acorns can be used as flour in baked goods.

It can also be used for acorn coffee. Peel the acorns and cut them into pieces. Give them some
minutes to dry in a moderately hot oven (175 to 200°C) or by the fire. Roast them brown and grind them (with a pounder) to powder. Take ten grams of this powder acorn, let it cook for fifteen minutes in 1 liter of water. Then (you sieve the mixture and) you got acorn coffee.

Difference oak - sessile
There are many species of oak. In the Low Countries we mainly have two, and they are much alike. Ca.95% of them is (summer) oak, the rest is sessile. It’s the prevalent oak thanks to the fact that it produces many more seeds, and thus may have more offspring. And he was more loved by the more yield of mast (acorns, food for pigs).


Sessile, Quercus robur

Oak, Quercus petraea


1-9 mm, less than half the width of the leaf foot

10-29 mm, more than half the width of the blade foot


asymmetrical leaf, bald, widest above the middle, groups in short shoots near the tops

symmetrical, widest part is approximately in the middle, glossy dark green and harder, more evenly distributed

lobes on both sides of the leaf

3-5 (to 7) wide and irregular,

5-7, narrow and regularly, shallow lobed

ears (lobes at the leaf base)

usually clearly developed, heart-shaped

often unclear or none

lateral veins

irregular in size and progress

regular flow and gradually decreasing


2-3 cm long with 5-12 cm long handle

smaller, 15-25 mm long with short or (almost) no stem

young bark

smooth and weak gray green glossy


old bark

deeply and irregularly furrowed, gray-green, often with transverse grooves

only in the longitudinal direction and regular grooved, gray grey color

(Mnemonic : winter = cold, we wear long pants or (leafs) garment, and smoking outside a short pipe (acorn stem) to get back in quick. )

In addition we have natural hybrids (Quercus x rosacea) of sessile and oak.
(Acorn flour : see <Note, kernel, bean... >)