This wild rice salad—recommended by Albert Lukas, supervising chef at the National Museum of the American Indian’s Mitsitam Café—celebrates the annual rice harvest among Native tribes in the Great Lakes region. Northern wild rice is a species of grass that grows in shallow lakes. The traditional Ojibwe method of harvesting rice was to pole a canoe through the lakes and knock kernels off the tops of plants into the boat. Back on land, men and boys would dance on the rice to remove the hulls. Ojibwe women would winnow the kernels by tossing them in a birch bark basket. Today, Ojibwe families in Minnesota still harvest wild rice in canoes, but many now process the kernels in mechanized mills.This dish combines cooked wild rice with pine nuts, pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries for a hearty taste of fall.
Published October 2022 in IMPACT Vol. 8 No. 3
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