Maple Moon Native Recipes

Fresh maple sap & syrup collected since ancient times is the basis for the sweetness in many recipes of Native Peoples in the Northeastern USA.

Fresh maple sap & syrup collected since ancient times is the basis for the sweetness in many recipes of Native Peoples in the Northeastern USA.

Check out the interview with Mohegan food expert Rachel Akitusu (She who reads) Sayet, to hear more about her lineage and the importance of revitalizing native foods. 

Modern Day Narragansett Strawberry Bread
from Dale Carson’s New Native American Cooking

This bread was originally made without sugar and eggs, and was noted in writings of the pilgrims to have been delicious.

1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup maple sugar
1 egg
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup finely ground walnuts
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Milk to make a stiff batter
1 cup wild strawberries, rinsed, stemmed and quartered

Preheat over to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and maple sugar. Add egg and beat until smooth. Add flour, nuts, baking powder, and salt. Stir and add enough milk to make a stiff batter. Gently fold in the strawberries and turn batter into an 8 or 9-inch square baking pan. Bake in the center of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let cool before slicing.

 

MAPLE BAKED BEANS
from Dale Carson’s New Native American Cooking

"Sorry Boston, but this was our dish first! Native baked beans are made with maple sugar, however, not molasses and salt pork. And, we serve it with pumpkin bread stuffed with dried wild grapes, perhaps the bread that inspired your famous Boston Brown?" - Dale Carson

1 lb. dried navy beans
4 cups water
1 tbsp. oil or butter (my note:  nut oil is great with this!)
1 medium onion, sliced
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup Real maple syrup
1 tsp. dry mustard powder (my note:  I like the mild type in this)
1 tsp. powdered ginger

  1. Add the beans to the water and bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours.  Drain the beans, SAVING the bean liquid, you will need two cups (if you don't have two cups, add water to the liquid to get the 2 cups).
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Meanwhile, heat the oil or butter in a skillet and saute the onions until golden. Add these to the beans, pour in bean liquid, and add all of the rest of the ingredients a mix well.
  3. Transfer this mixture to a baking pot (one that has a top is best for this, if you don't have cover, seal with aluminum foil).  Bake this for 2 hours, adding more bean liquid or water to keep moist.  Uncover and bake for an additional 30 to 45 minutes until the liquid is absorbed.  Let stand around 10 minutes.  Serve hot.  She suggests that it be served with Pumpkin Bread Baked with Wild Grape Raisins (Brown Bread, especially the type made with cornmeal is good too.)

    Variation:  Use Dried baby butter beans

Maple sap dripping from a tree as the days turn warm and the nights are still freezing, sap boiling down into syrup, and sap bottled at various stages of reduction as it darkens. 40 gallons of sap has to boil down to 1 gallon to give us the rich sweet syrup we pour on our pancakes. If you ever wondered why it's so expensive, that's why!