This book by Alma Hogan Snell, has recipes included, but even richer than the food, are the stories that come from Native American culture. With November comes gratitude and reflection, so this year, I am reflecting on the change that needs to happen in the United States and where that begins. For me, I'm starting with my Thanksgiving dinner table and doing away with the colonized tradition and starting anew by going back to the past with indigenous recipes.
Drawing on the knowledge and wisdom of countless generations of Crow Indian women, the well-known speaker and teacher Alma Hogan Snell presents an indispensable guide to the traditional lore, culinary uses, and healing properties of native foods. A Taste of Heritage imparts the lore of ages along with the traditional Crow philosophy of healing and detailed practical advice for finding and harvesting plants: from the key to creating irresistible dishes of cattails and dandelions, salsify and Juneberries, antelope meat and buffalo hooves, to the secret of using plants to enhance beauty and incite love. Snell describes the age-old practice of turning wildflowers and garden plants into balms and remedies for such ailments and injuries as snakebite, headache, leg cramps, swollen joints, asthma, and sores. She brings to bear not only her lifetime of experience but also the invaluable lessons of her grandmother, the legendary medicine woman Pretty Shield. With life-enhancing recipes for everything from soups, teas, and breads to poultices, aphrodisiacs, and fertility aids, A Taste of Heritage is above all a fascinating cultural document certain to enrich the reader’s relationship with the natural world. A partial list of recipes: Wild Bitterroot SauceWild Carrot PuddingCattail BiscuitsDandelion SoupSalsify Oyster StewBalapia (Berry Pudding)Juneberry PieChokecherry CakeWild Mint TeaBitterberry LemonadeWheel BreadBoiled HoovesBill’s Mother’s Antelope RoastStuffed TroutElk RoastStuffed EggsOld-Time Moose RoastWild Turnip PorridgeWild Turnip BreadFresh Wild SaladBuffalo Cattail StewGround Tomato SaladGooseberry PuddingBearberry ButterSpicy Dried Plum CakeBuffaloberry Jelly
About the Author
Alma Hogan Snell (1923–2008) is the granddaughter of the famed Crow medicine woman Pretty Shield, on whose life the classic Pretty-shield is based. She is the author of Grandmother’s Grandchild: My Crow Indian Life, available in a Bison Books edition. Lisa Castle is a graduate student in biology at the University of Kansas. Kelly Kindscher is an associate scientist at the Kansas Biological Survey and the author of Medicinal Wild Plants of the Prairie: An Ethnobotanical Guide.
“A rich repository of recipes, folklore and advice for living and healing.”—Lively Times