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Native American Cuisine: A Time-Traveling Guest Post from Professor Ione D.

Pinon Cakes and Bullets

Photo by @ from her Steampunk Collection

Good day to all! I am writing this during my journey to the American West. I always enjoy my quests here. The people are friendly and the homemade food is a divine pleasure.

One of the main characters in Vaughn Treude’s latest book Fidelio’s Automata, is Tallulah Hightower, a Choctaw Indian opera singer. This inspired me to research authentic Native American cuisine. I chose piñon cakes, from Tallulah’s native Oklahoma, and “bullets” (the edible kind) from the Chippewa of North Dakota. I served them with boiled potatoes with butter and chives, a simple green salad, and for the sweet tooth, a traditional warm raisin and rice pudding. I chose to pair the meal with a traditional herbal tea.

Cherokee Tribe Piñon Cakes


3 cups piñon nuts
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoon oil

Puree the nuts or chop them and roll them with a rolling pin to make coarse meal consistency. Add water and salt and blend Let the batter sit for an hour at room temperature.
Heat oil in a skillet. Drop batter into the oil and form each into a little cake about 3 inches across.
Lower the heat slightly, Brown on each side.
Serve either hot or cold


Chippewa Bullets

2 lbs. ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 pepper

Mix ground beef and onion. Add remaining ingredients. Shape into balls about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Roll the balls in flour.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil’ Drop balls into the water. Cook about 25-30 minutes until there is no pink in the middle of the balls.

Until next time, happy eating!

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