We hosted our first primitive cooking workshop on October 20th where we used the power of fire in various ways to cook up a hearty feast!
The sun came out and, other than some fierce wind on occasion, it was a perfect day for cooking outside. And thank goodness it was a pleasantly cool fall day because that fire was HOT!
We started by building up a sizable "main" fire, which we used to heat up a pile of stones.
Once the rocks were glowing red, it was time to start the steam pit. After placing some hot stones in the bottom of the pit, we added a thick layer of cattail leaves, then a layer of whole vegetables, more cattail leaves, and then sealed up the pit with deer hides and dirt.
We then affixed a whole chicken to a spit and suspended it over a bed of hot coals while we cooked up some vegetables, scallops and pork chops on the rock grill.
Perhaps my favorite cooking method was the rock boil. We boiled pots of shrimp, scallops and ears of corn by placing hot stones in the water until it came to a rapid boil. So cool!
We enjoyed eating bites of the various foods as they were prepared, making it hard to save room for the contents still steaming in the pit and the chicken as it cooked slowly on the spit, dripping its juices onto the coals. In the meantime, we experimented with some ash cakes and potatoes on the coals and munched on cattail biscuits with homemade wild persimmon jam.
And, maybe two and a half hours later, what a sight it was when we unearthed the goodies in the steam pit. Everything, including whole squash, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, onions and carrots were cooked to perfection.