“corn fanner,” “corn riddle”
“American Indian Corn Dishes,” 1958
These baskets are made from split cane; sometimes the fanner is made of white oak withes but this is heavier to use than that of split cane.
The fanner is woven in the shape of a shovel about thirty inches long, with one end open and flat; the other end, with the edges rolled up about four inches forms a pocket-like receptacle. The fanner is held in the hands and shaken to toss the broken pieces of grain so that the husks gather at the front, open end and the broken kernels roll back into the pocket-like receptacle. During the process, the husks are blown off, or fanned off in the wind, at the open end of the basket.
The broken grain is next placed in the riddle, a coarsely woven basket used as a sieve, and the small pieces sifted into a large flat basket or container. This part of the broken grain is like grits, and is generally used for the plain boiled hominy. The large pieces of grain are set aside and used for making different dishes with boiled meats or vegetables.
Beulah Simms, 1970
Svlahwv — A sifter or sieve made of split cane or sometimes of stripped willow bark. It is woven into a basket and the holes in the bottom part of the basket are sized according to the size of the kernels of corn to be sifted so that the desired kernel size is retained in the basket and the rest is sifted through the holes in the bottom of the basket.
‘Senweskv — Some baskets were made with no holes and were used to separate the husks from the kernels. This was done by tossing the corn into the air. The lighter husk was blown away by the wind and the heavier kernels retained in the basket.