Skip to main content

Forkways #26: Native American Foodways

Southern Utah has been home to different native groups for thousands of years. The first people here used spears to hunt big game, like bison and wooly mammoth. They supplemented their diet with smaller animals and by gathering fruits, nuts, and roots.  After the time of the Paleoindians, as the climate began to change, various tribes called the landscape of Southern Utah home. Anasazi, Fremont, Southern Paiute, Hopi, and Navajo people have wandered the Great Basin, Colorado Plateau, and Canyonlands. As the large game became more scarce, native groups focused on smaller animals like deer, mountain sheep, rabbits, and prairie dog. All native groups in Utah also began to utilize some form of agriculture.  Although the Anasazi, Fremont, and Southern Paiute had different lifestyles, many of the food items they relied on were the same. All three groups used the three sisters method of agriculture. They gathered amaranth, beeweed, sunflower seeds and roots, cactus fruits and pads, serviceberries, and pine nuts.

Native Americans who gathered and farmed in the Great Basin generally transformed much of what they found and grew into flour for cakes or porridge. This included corn, yucca seeds, Indian ricegrass, mesquite beans and pod, screwbeans, tansy mustard seeds, and wild oats.

Rabbits would be dried or roasted. The dried meat would be stored. In the winter the dried meat would be ground into a fine powder and mixed into water for a soup. Even the bones would be included.


Popular posts from this blog

Fun Friday

Alice came to the fork in the road.
"Which road do I take?" she asked.
"Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat.
"I don't know," Alice answered.
"Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."
- Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Repost – My FAVORITE Actor

This is a repost of a blog I did about a year ago. I decided to repost it because I wrote this early on in my exposure to comic books and graphic novels and because, as you will read, it features my favorite actor of all time. When I told a friend I was reading Rumble Fish by S.E. Hinton, he brought to my attention that it was also a movie and the movie happened to have Nicolas Cage in it. I highly dislike Nicolas Cage and I think my friend likes to bring up his name as much as possible just to annoy me. (why would anyone EVER want to do that? He must have a death wish.)

But I actually appreciated it this time. It has been interesting to read about the movie in which Cage plays the minor role of Smokey Bennett. It was also brought to my attention that Nick Cage isn't Nick Cage at all, but Nicolas Kim Copula. I remember vaguely hearing in the past, since he is the nephew of Francis Ford Copula. Who happen to direct Rumble Fish and The Outsiders. Cage was asked to help out his uncle…

Short Story Saturday - The Machine Stops Part 1

I was first exposed to "The Machine Stops" by E.M. Forster through a book called Scraps of the Untainted Sky. The title of the book, in fact, comes from the closing line of the short story, which the author considers to be "one of the first instance of dystopian narrative." I purchased this book several years ago in order to gain insight into my interest in dystopic literature.This interest has been newly rekindled and broadened into science fiction in general. If you call yourself a fan of science fiction and you haven't read this story, do so now or you are a fraud. If you think you don't like science fiction, I suggest you read this story and make sure. (Audio and full text are available online for free.)This short story, if you can classify it as such at 12,000 words, has 3 chapters and was published in 1909. The date of publication is overwhelming when one takes into consideration how many technological advances the author was able to predict. The…