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yaahl 09-04-2013 10:39 AM

Neat Stuff Happening In Canada - Food! Glorious Food!
It's that time of year again - the deer, moose, elk, caribou and bison are in their ruts and in a few short weeks it's going to be hunting season.

If I can quote milehighsalute in his thread on hornos, No native person in August- September should be hungry.

I've been out and picked blueberries and saskatoon berries and I'm starting to make jams and spreads for the winter.

I'm gathering up muskeg leaves to dry and make tea.

Of course the smoker is fired up and smoookkking fish and making jerky.

I have a kicker brine to use for smoking:

1/2 cup of Morton's curing salt
1 cup of dark demerra brown sugar
4-5 shakes of allspice
4-5 shakes of ground cloves
3-4 shakes of garlic powder
6-8 shakes of onion powder
6 cups of water

mix it up, place your meat in to soak overnight and start the smoking process the next day.... yum...

(this is for a hot smoke - I have a recipe for cold smoking so you can do cheeses and softer foods - like peaches.)

OLChemist 09-04-2013 12:02 PM

I'll be by for lunch :)

yaahl 09-04-2013 01:22 PM

Tomorrow, I'm going to lye some corn and make Mohawk corn soup.... oh KMG where are you? It's corn from Quinte area... :D

subeeds 09-05-2013 03:06 AM


Originally Posted by yaahl (Post 1588124)
Tomorrow, I'm going to lye some corn and make Mohawk corn soup.... oh KMG where are you? It's corn from Quinte area... :D

What in the world does "lye some corn" mean? Lye like in soap?

OLChemist 09-05-2013 05:24 AM


Originally Posted by subeeds (Post 1588160)
What in the world does "lye some corn" mean? Lye like in soap?

Exactly like used in soap. If I'm not mistaken she's making hominy from scratch.

Lye, a mix of potassium and sodium hydroxides, or lime water, calcium hydroxide, are used in nixtamalization of corn. The kernels are cooked and then soaked in a lye solution. The alkaline solution is then discarded and the treated kernels repeatedly rinsed. The kernels are then dried for hominy or ground for masa. Nixtamalization is also at play in the production of piki.

This processing breaks down the hemicellulose and pectin in pericarp, loosening the hull of the corn. The lye swells the starch molecules and the cooking involved increases the bioavailability the nutrients from the germ. The resulting release of the bound niacin during nixtamalization is why Native populations using corn and beans as staples did not suffer from the pellagra epidemics that plagued poor European populations using the same staples. The treatment also reduces the levels of mycotoxins.

Lye and other hydroxides are not an uncommon food additive. They are used for disinfection, dehulling (potato skins are routinely loosened for commercial production of chips, fries, etc.), curing (olives), and releasing proteins. Lutefisk, specifically excluded from being defined as a toxic substance under the WI Worker's Right to Know Law, is probably most infamous lye treated food.

yaahl 09-05-2013 09:23 AM

If the lye scares you, you can substitute with baking soda. It just takes a bit longer for the corn husk to break down.

If you use baking soda, the first round makes the corn kernals go bright orange. When they return to their natural colouring it's time to rinse, and put them back on the boil.

yaahl 09-05-2013 09:35 AM

I'm also making a tomato chutney - while not not a native dish it is good for using up all those tomatoes left over from the garden.

To make about 5 half litre mason jars:

15 large tomatoes - blanched and skin removed
3 peaches - blanched and skin removed
3 pears - blanched and skin removed
3 onions (sweet works better) chopped coarsely
a 3x3" sachet of pickling spices in cheescloth - leave a long bit of string to tie on the pot handle so you can pull it our easily.
3 cups of white pickling vinegar.
2 cups of sugar (I like using demerra brown sugar)

Blanche, peel and chop the tomotoes, pears and peaches. Add the onions, spices, vinegar and sugar and bring to a boil. Once boiling leave on a low simmer for about 3 hours or until the liquid is reduced to a thick sauce.

Get your jars ready by sterilizing them, and heating them up just before bottling. Use a wide mouth funnel to prevent spills. Pour your chutney in the jars and seal the lid but down tighten them down until your hear the "pop" of the lid once the chutney cools down a bit. Then tighten the lids. Voila...chutney that goes with moose, deer, elk or chicken.

Grits & Beans 09-05-2013 02:49 PM

send me a tenderloin lol :eating:

yaahl 09-05-2013 09:29 PM

One Alberta Black Angus beef tenderloin coming right up...yum!

OLChemist 09-05-2013 09:46 PM

Forget that cow. I'll take the venison backstrap off your hands, LOL. With a nice red wine reduction with blueberries, juniper, thyme and rosemary. :) Some baby zucchini and yellow squash sauteed in butter, and some cornmeal mush with a dusting of sage.

*wiping drool off the keyboard*

White Powwow Dancer 09-05-2013 10:31 PM

Did you go to a cooking school?
in Russian Вы ходили в школу кулинарии?

yaahl 09-06-2013 12:20 AM


Originally Posted by White Powwow Dancer (Post 1588229)
Did you go to a cooking school?
in Russian Вы ходили в школу кулинарии?

I wish... my mom and granma taught me to cook... we spent the summer living in the fishing camps and the fall at the hunting camps. Я узнал некоторые русские блюда ... у нас есть очень много русских эмигрантов и здесь, в провинции Альберта и Юкон...

OLC, I have some really nice elk backstrap for ya... got it last year up near Swan Hills Alberta. Have you ever had Birch Syrup? Made from Birch trees instead of the traditional maple tree syrup.

I was lying corn today... made enough for 4 big pots of soup and about 6 freezer bags of just the corn for later.

Tomorrow is sausage day... got some moose, elk and deer to make up.. got a nice maple syrup mix for the deer... yum.. going to use a hot saskatoon berry mix for the moose.

yaahl 09-06-2013 12:27 AM

3 Attachment(s)
This is my bison herd... we had quite a few babies this year...

and my black angus bull... he's up for sale this year... big producer.. his name is Fluffy

and this is fluffy too...my grandaughter names everything and everyone Fluffy...lol

She did name the truck "Hihosilver Stewie.

subeeds 09-06-2013 02:03 AM

I had no idea you could do that with lye.

OLChemist 09-06-2013 03:21 AM

I won't recommend going out and getting the drain cleaner:) But lye extracted from ash is not uncommon in food preparation, particularly in traditional recipes.

Video of piki making:

Making Piki Bread - YouTube

UC Division on Agriculture booklet on olive preparation that talks about lye and food safety:


Our ancestors on both sides of the Atlantic were incredibly skilled practical chemists. The calcium ions from the CaOH2 also act as a crosslinking agent foe the proteins and polysaccharides to make a more elastic dough, which is why tortillas can bend and cornbread can't. The basic solution extracts the bitter phenylethaniod from olives. And on an on...

If you ever want to talk traditional dying, I can go on for a while, LOL. Indeed, a few years ago as part of the chem ed program at the annual ACS Southwest Meeting, we had several speakers do programs on the chemistry of Native dyes, pigments and pottery techniques for the high school kids. I tortured a bunch of poor teenagers with the spectroscopy of dyes stuffs used for dying quills.

wyo_rose 09-06-2013 09:15 AM

Gotta love this season of plenty!!

You can also get the slaked lime to nixtamalize corn. I forget the chemical name of it.

In the movie, King Corn, where he stood in the field of ... field corn and said how it was unfit for human consumption, it really got me how he did not even mention that it would be fine once it was nixtamalized.

My plan is to go to the field store and buy a few bags of dried field corn, otherwise meant for livestock feed, and pack it up in 5 gallon buckets, with a little baggie of slaked lime to nixtamalize it when ready. It should keep for years.

Anyway, just another INGENIOUS INDIGENOUS solution. (OLC...solution...heeheehee...or would it be a suspension? :rolleyes: )

I have ONE gallon of chokecherries in the freezer. That's all I have to show for my harvest season. Too late to even get a hunting tag. :(

OLChemist 09-06-2013 10:10 AM

LOL. I needed a good chemistry play on words this morning.

Slaked lime, limewater, Ca(OH)2 (aq) all the same thing.

OLChemist 09-06-2013 10:44 AM


Originally Posted by yaahl (Post 1588233)
Have you ever had Birch Syrup? Made from Birch trees instead of the traditional maple tree syrup.

No. I'd like to try it. I know it is heresy, but I've never much liked maple syrup. And I mean the real, from the Vermont woods stuff, not the miracle of modern organic chemistry stuff. One of the aromatic esters or aldehydes hits my nose the wrong way, probably the propanal. (Since my first encounter with it while running a DNP test in orgo, I've hated the smell. My closest near barf in a lab came when I was handed a test tube full of the stuff for my first unknown in instrumental. The prof handed it to me, I uncapped it and nearly hurled. Gagging, I blurted out the name of the compound before he even got done writing the number of the unknown in his grade book, LOL. Is this too much information, LOL?) But it whatever it is, it is mostly gone in maple sugar candy, which I love.

But having misspent some of my childhood in PA, I've had Birch Beer. I remember my horror when I ordered a Black Cow when I was doing my undergrad work in TN. It was made with A&W root beer. Everyone -- at least everyone in certain areas in PA -- knows it's supposed to be chocolate ice cream in birch beer. We had a short lived Philly Cheesesteak place, with real cheesesteaks, birch beer and Tasty Kakes. It lived about a year; everyone down here expects a cheese steak to be seasoned like carne asada and topped with a slug of nacho cheese sauce and pickled jalapenos.

yaahl 09-06-2013 04:57 PM

Don't feel bad OLC, I'm not one for maple syrup either. I put saskaton berry syrup on my pancakes or if we don't have any just plain old grape jelly.

I do love birch syrup though, not as sugary/sickly sweet like maple.

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