Vpvske

totcornvpvske
“parched”
cold flour

Lilah D. Lindsey, 1902

Three quarts of hard corn, boiled half done, drain. Have a pot on the fire with two quarts of ashes, hot, put corn in and stir with wooden paddle until brown. Remove corn to a riddle and sift off all ashes, put this in mortar and pound into meal. It is then ready for use.

Two tablespoons to a cup of cold water with one teaspoon of sugar makes a delightful drink, especially for summer.

James H. Hill, ca. 1936-40

When flint corn gets ripe, before it hardens, they shell it, put ashes in a big kettle, put it on the fire with the shelled corn, parch it, dry it in a sunny place, and keep lots of it stored away.

And when they went hunting, they parched that corn again and kept it and made lots of it without grinding it and called it hockvtē (flour) and took it with them hunting. When making that kind of osafke, they called it vpvsk-osafke (parched corn osafke), or tak-vpvsk-onepke (coarse cold flour) and ate it.

They kept this same parched corn and when they passed it through a fine riddle, they sifted it and kept it very fine, mixing in water, and called it vpvske wvpaksv (swollen parched corn), mixed in lots of liquid, and if they liked it that way, they sweetened it with honey and drank it.

Acee Blue Eagle, 1956

Use roasting ears just before hardening. Break a grain to see if kernel is moist. Gather as much corn as you desire to parch. Shell corn in large pan.

Sift one-and-one-half gallons dry wood ashes into large iron kettle. Build a fire of medium heat, place kettle over it tilted at a forty-five degree angle, pour corn into the ashes and stir continually with wooden paddle until corn is brown. Remove corn and ashes, sift ashes from corn and put back into pot. Continue process until all corn is parched. Pound or grind corn into fine meal.

Take two heaping teaspoons to one glass of water, sweeten to taste, and you will have the delicious Creek Indian drink called vpvske.

Hokti's vpvske

Beulah Simms, 1970

Place one-half gallon vce-cvlvtwe (flint corn) into a large iron kettle and place the kettle so that it is tilted to one side. From a wood fire, remove ashes and smoldering coals and place in the kettle with the corn. With an vtapv, stir until the corn turns a toasted brown in color. Cool.

Place in a svlahwv and sift out the ashes. Wash the remaining ashes out of the corn in clear water and dry out the corn.

You may now place the corn in a clean cloth bag for storage, or, place the toasted corn in a keco and with a kecvpe pound the corn into a fine powder. Using a svlahwv, sift the fine powder from the coarser grains (vpvske nerve or vpvske wa pvkscv).

Use the powdered corn for an instant drink. Add one teaspoon of powdered corn to glass of cold water. Add sugar to taste as in a glass of iced tea. Very tasty with meat dishes. Very easy to mail to friends in distant parts of the country as a gift.

American Indian Recipes, 1970

Need half bushel bucket of half-green and dry yellow corn. A half bushel bucket of strong dry ashes sifted and put into a heated wash pot that is hot enough to scorch, adding the corn and stirring with a paddle until parched done.

Next remove the corn sifted from the ashes and then beat lightly in a mortar, removing the burned skin by putting in a pan and tossing up and down and getting it clean, and beating it while it is hot and sifted.

This makes about three pounds of fine meal and about a quart-and-a-half of coarse meal. The fine meal can be eaten with sugar and water or milk like dry cereal.

Melissa Seigfried, 1971

Parch dry yellow corn in ashes over open fire, in a big black pot. Pound or grind into fine pieces or powder. Put into large utensil. Cover with water. Stir good. Serve to drink with sugar to sweeten to taste.

Cookbook of the Five Civilized Tribes of Oklahoma, 1976

Cook semi-hard roasting corn in ashes until it is brown. Beat corn til fine.

Add an eight-ounce glass of water, two tablespoons vpvske, three teaspoons sugar and mix. Add ice and it is ready to drink.

Native American Recipes, 1996

Boil ten to fifteen young corn (a bit too hard for roasting ears) for about ten minutes. Cut corn off the cob and spread in the sun to dry. You can use cookie sheets for this or some other large flat utensil like pizza pans. Make sure it is protected from wind or animals while drying in the sun.

Put clean wood ashes in kettle and heat until they sizzle if a drop of water is added. Add dried corn and stir until the corn is browned. Sift to separate corn from ashes. Using keco and kecvpe grind until corn is desired consistency.

If more finely ground, add water or milk to make into a drink. Sweeten to taste if you wish, but most prefer it plain. Very nutritious.

Bertha Tilkens, 2004

To make vpvske, corn is put in a big kettle over an open fire. The corn is stirred constantly so that it does not burn but is instead parched to a brown color. The parched corn is then pounded into a very fine meal, resembling cornmeal. The pounded corn is put into an airtight container for storage. To make a drink, the vpvske meal is combined with water and a little sugar.

pinole

Sources

Ero

deepforkero
squirrel

The Indian Cook Book, 1933

Dress squirrel and wash clean, place on fork or stick in front of open fire, turning often until thoroughly brown.

Squirrel soup is made by first barbecuing squirrels whole, and then cut into pieces and place in vessel of cold water. Season with salt and pepper. Boil slowly and serve as broth.

James H. Hill, ca. 1936-40

If they kill a lot of squirrels, they cooked them by boiling and ate them, but if it was just one, they singed off the hair by laying it near the fire and covered it with hot ashes, and when it was done, one person or even two used to eat it.

Even now the squirrel is still very much eaten.

Beulah Simms, 1970

Begin the cleaning of the squirrel by burning off all the hair over a direct flame. Scrape all the singed hair off. Remove skin, dress, clean, and cut into smaller pieces as you would a fryer.

If the squirrel is old, boil in salt water until it is tender.

Place about one tablespoon of lard in a frying pan and pan fry the squirrel over a low flame with the pan covered with a lid until slightly cooked. Pour in about one cup of water and simmer down until thoroughly cooked. Salt and pepper to taste.

Hokti's eroSome Creek tribal towns traditionally have stewed squirrel dinners before the first Stomp Dance of the season and after the last Stomp Dance of the season.

American Indian Recipes, 1970

Make a fire outside with dry limbs and place the squirrel into the fire, watching it very carefully not to burn. Burn only enough to singe the hair off, scrape and put back in fire long enough to brown and brittle the skin.

Next wash and clean the squirrel, cut into pieces and cook in water. Season with salt and pork drippings and cook long enough to be real done and serve.

John Lowe, 1992

Wash the squirrel well to remove all hair or fuzz. Cut a young squirrel into serving pieces. Rub with lard and salt. Roll in flour and fry in lard until brown.

Add a few drops of water and cover. Steam for thirty minutes over a low fire. Remove squirrel from the pan and make gravy from the drippings.

Brown two tablespoons of flour in four tablespoons of the fat in which the squirrels were fried. Cover with water and let cook until it is about medium thick.

Old squirrels may be boiled until almost tender then fried in grease as young squirrels, except they are not to be rolled in flour.

Serve with biscuits or fry bread.

Seminole Indian Recipes, 1996

Cut two cleaned squirrels into serving pieces. Mix salt and pepper and one cup all-purpose flour, and dredge the squirrel pieces in the mixture.

In a large skillet, heat six tablespoons lard or bacon drippings and fry squirrel pieces, turning occasionally until golden brown. Remove squirrel from the skillet and set aside.

Pour off all fat except about three tablespoons. Add two cups water to the skillet and bring to boil. Return squirrel to the skillet; bring to boil again, cover, and reduce heat. Simmer for about one and one half hours or until the meat is very tender.

Serve with corn bread.

Creek Muscogee Recipes, Cooking Tips and Lore, 1999

Cut two squirrels into serving pieces. Place flour and salt and pepper in paper bag, place squirrel in bag and shake until coated.

Fry in skillet in six tablespoons grease until golden brown, pour off excess grease and add two cups water. Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover and simmer for one hour.

friedsquirrel

Sources

Cvtvhakv

bd platecvtvhakv
“stone-resembling”
blue dumplings

Charles Gibson, 1918

A gallon, or more if needed, of shelled flint corn should be soaked overnight in a strong solution of ash-lye (water with ash-lye drippings).

Pour off any excess solution in the morning. Pound the corn in the mortar and break the grain into large pieces. Clean off the husks from the grain in a fanner. Pound the clean, broken grain to meal, taking the mass out of the mortar and sifting it from time to time until all the grain is pounded down to a fine meal. Mix a quart of this meal to a stiff dough with boiling water to which add about a cupful of strong ash-lye drippings. A larger amount of dough can be made by using the same proportions of meal and ash-lye drippings. Form pieces of the dough into the shape and size of ordinary doughnuts, with a hole in the center, and bake these in a Dutch oven until thoroughly done. Place the freshly baked bread in the sunshine until perfectly dry. It will be hard as wood. The rings of hard bread were strung on heavy string, and hung on the wall or rafters to keep indefinitely.

Creek Indian hunters used to carry strings of this bread tied to their saddles, on long hunting expeditions, without cover from rain or snow or any kind of weather. The backbone joints of fresh game—antelope, deer, buffalo—were stewed until tender; then a dozen or so of the hard, dry corn bread rings were put into the pot and after cooking for a little while they softened and mixed in the stew. It is told that this was the Creek Indian hunter’s choice bread; it was his ration on the war path.

Lilah D. Lindsey, 1933

bd bowlScald whole white corn in lye water, drain until dry, pound into meal. Burn pea hulls (black eyed or cow pea, or any kind) and pound to a powder, sift and add to your corn meal; using hot water, knead into balls size of baseball, drop into boiling water and cook one-half hour. To one part of meal use one-half part pea meal.

James H. Hill, ca. 1936-40

Shell black corn, put water in a pot to boil, set it over the fire, put in a small amount of strong ashes without any charcoal, and when it boils, put in the shelled corn, and after it boils, take out the corn, and wash it off until all the corn skin is removed; and when it’s dry, put it in a mortar, and when you pound it with the pestle, add fine ashes from bean hulls or burnt corn cobs, pound it fine, sift it with a fanner, remove the fine portion, stir in some boiled beans that have been cooked, mix it with water, and when it’s stiff, break off about one handful, squeeze it, make it into a ball, or make it flat and round, and when they’ve been placed in boiling water and have cooked, they call it cvtvhakv.

It’s good to drink the soupy juice.

Beulah Simms, 1970

Soak two quarts flint corn in water until it is soft. Pound in keco with kecvpe while the corn is soft and wet. Sift in a ‘senweskv and separate the large kernels from the fine powder. Mix pea hull powder with the corn meal. Drop in three or four drops of kvpe-cvfke for flavor.

Mix with boiling water and form into biscuits and drop into boiling water and boil until cooked. It should boil about one hour. Beans or sweet potatoes may be mixed in before making into biscuits.

Serve with fresh pork.

Native American Recipes, 1996

Put one-half cup ash-lye in a large pot of water and boil. Use enough water to mix with four cups cornmeal and three tablespoons bean hull powder and form into dough. Form into balls a little larger than golf balls and drop into a pot of boiling water. Cook for one hour. Serve hot.

When using corn flour (Spanish flour may be substituted for cornmeal), prepare in same way except pat the dough balls until thin. Cook in boiling water until done, about one hour.

Marquis Martin, 2006

Mix about four pounds masa cornmeal and three tablespoons of bluing, add warm water until thin enough to roll into golf-ball size balls. Boil in water until they float to the top.

Bertha Tilkens, 2009

Grind dried corn until you have a very fine meal, like cornmeal. The meal will be white or maybe slightly tan in color. To make the bread blue, color is added by using dry bean hulls.

To cook the blue bread, put water in a pot (the amount of water and size of the pot depend on how much blue bread you plan to make) and bring it to a rolling boil. Use some of the water to mix with the dried corn/bean hull mixture. Add just enough so that the dough sticks together, about the consistency of pie dough. When it comes to the right consistency, pinch off golfball-sized pieces of the dough, roll it in your hands, and pat it to flatten it somewhat, then drop the dough in the boiling water. This makes a very moist bread that is done when the dough has floated in the water for some time.

bd pan

Sources

Tafvmpuce

tafvmpucetafvmpuce
“onions-little”
wild onions

The Indian Cook Book, 1933

Two bunches of wild onions, bacon grease, salt and a little water. Cook ten or fifteen minutes then break six or seven eggs and scramble in with the onions and serve hot.

As this is one of Will Rogers’s favorite dishes, Mrs. Rebecca Swain suggests we call it Will Rogers Delight.

Beulah Simms, 1970

Wild onions can best be found in early spring time or even late winter, as soon as the winter snows have melted and the ground has thawed. The onions with long slender leaves and onion smell are found on creek banks or in shaded, wooded areas. Dig up sufficient quantities; about four hands full.

Clean and wash thoroughly, making certain all the soil is washed out of the leaves. Cut into one-inch lengths. Place the onions in a skillet with one-half cup water and simmer until the onions are tender. If the onions are old, simmer in salt water. Pour off the water and add two tablespoons bacon grease and cook until the onions are wilted. Add one teaspoon salt and six beaten eggs and stir until the eggs are completely cooked.

Hokti's tafvmpuceA Creek Indian has not fully prepared for the advent of summer until he has eaten his fill of wild onions in the spring, and it is even better if the meal has been shared with good friends.

The flowers of the wild onion are rose, reddish-purple and white in color. The leaves of the wild onion are two to four inches or more high. “Crow’s Poison” looks very much like the wild onion but has flat leaves and does not have the onion smell.

Cookbook of the Five Civilized Tribes of Oklahoma, 1976

When wild onions are nice and tender in early spring, gather them using a table knife and digging (modern way, a shovel). Clean by snipping the roots close to bulb.

When desired amount is clean, wash and cut into about two-inch lengths and place in warm bacon dripping. Cover and cook, adding small amounts of water until tender. Add four eggs and cook longer, stirring with a fork.

Creek Muscogee Recipes, Cooking Tips and Lore, 1999

A favorite use of wild onions is in combination with scrambled eggs. The particular recipe varies with each individual or family, some like lots of wild onions with only enough scrambled eggs to hold them together. Others prefer to have their scrambled eggs flavored with a small amount of the onions to taste.

To cook wild onions with eggs, chop onions into small pieces. Add two to three tablespoons of bacon drippings or oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions, one-quarter cup water and salt to taste, simmer and stir until onions are tender. When most of the water is cooked out and the onions are tender add six slightly beaten eggs and scramble.

Serve hot with fry bread and honey.

Cinda Wind, 2000

You just cut them, clean them up, and wash them. Just get a skillet—a big skillet—and put three ounces of cooking oil or one-half cup of grease, preferably pure lard, in there. Put the onions in there along with a little warm water. Let them go to cooking. Then after a while, when they go to getting done and get tender, you can put a little bit of eggs in there, as many eggs as you like. Then stir it up and simmer covered on low heat for thirty to forty-five minutes until it gets done, then it’s ready to eat. That’s all I know.

I like to eat salt meat with mine.

Bertha Tilkens, 2009

Wild onions are found in early spring, around small creeks or in areas where the ground stays pretty moist. Dig them up and clean them like you would garden onions (remove the outermost skin and wash them well).

Cut them up, place them in a skillet with cooking oil, and add water. Cover the pan and let it simmer until the heads (white parts) of the onions are transparent. Add beaten eggs and cook until the eggs are done.

Serve with salt pork or bacon.

Dicey Barnett, 2011

Pick two bunches of wild onions when young and tender in early spring.

Wash and cut into one- to two-inch lengths and place in warm bacon drippings or two to three tablespoons oil over medium heat. Cover and cook, adding small amounts of water until tender. Add four eggs or more, depending upon how many onions you have, stirring with fork until done. Salt to taste. Stir and simmer covered on low heat a few minutes longer and then serve and enjoy!

tafvmpuce2

“Wild onion season bridges tradition with a good meal,” in Oklahoma Indian Times 6, no. 3 (March 31, 2000): 2.

“Wild Onion and Eggs” by Dicey Barnett, in Mvskoke Food Sovereignty Initiative Newsletter 4, no. 3 (March 2011): 6.

Other Sources