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Another Lick

Guess I’m on a roll, so–speaking of shit you find lying around outside: The Pikes Peak region is “semi-arid” and pretty sparse, so far as dinner plate items from Nature’s bounty are concerned. “Pioneers”, (which of course is proto-Orwellian for “conquerors”), had rather more game around til they killed it all for the sheer glee of it, so if your caught out now things can be even rougher. To top off the chicken thingy I used strictly ingredients found outside. Lying around.

Take and harvest a bunch of prickly pears–the fruit are nice and ripe at this very moment! Use a razor sharp knife, and don’t take more than half the fruit from a single plant. Thank whomever you like to Thank as you harvest, and be gentle. We caused our Moms enough grief as teens; we don’t need to carry on so with our Mother.

Find some other kind of berries or other fruit for variety, anything that’s not apt to poison you will do just fine, as will skipping it.

Hunt down some kinda wild mint. There are several varieties around. Keep track of your living stash and you can harvest till the Apocalypse. The shit’s like weeds, only tasty.

OK, wild honey. You really can, I promise, find bee trees by following bees. Look for a good field of flowers and be patient with the difficulty of the task. Even if it takes all summer, it’s worth it. WATCH OUT FOR BEARS! I’m not joking at all about that one. It’s even more important to exercise great care when harvesting, given the delicate position of bees, lately, and their crucial function to the current Manifestation. Also, they might sting you, but that’s minor. Use smoke to quiet their anger–if you are serious and find a good tree, it’s worthwhile to get hold of a smoker from an apiary supply^. Agave nectar would probably render a more “authentic” version of this, if such a thing exists, but you’ll have to figure out how to get it yourself, (let me know). This is strictly a thing of mine, but I can’t believe no indigenous gatherer ever worked it out before.

One thing–I used a little lemon juice, both for flavor, and for its marvelous preservative quality. It’s not necessary, by any means, but if you want the effect and if you really want to be a purist and go all native and shit, you’ll need to sort out a local source of citric acid. Or, duh–it dawns on me the pricklies probably suffice for that, too.

I used the other half of the jalapeno from the chicken thing, too, which I found in it’s natural environment at the bottom of a Whole Foods donation box. It’s awful tricky to find a wild pepper around here, but not impossible….

Pluck the fuzzies from the pears and seed them. You can blanche and peel them very much more easily, but the skin has half the flavor and even more of the nutrients. Besides, the plucking offers an excuse for sitting around a table with your family without an idiot box blaring inanities, though I recommend blaring some jammin’ tunes. Look me up on Facebook and I’ll post some for you.

Put all the ingredients except the honey in an appropriately sized saucepan, add a little water so it don’t burn while the juices are coming out, cover, and simmer til you get sick of simmering.

Add honey to taste and use for ice cream, a kind of chutney, or whatever. Mixes well with cream, too, if you’re not too aggressive about the process.

Best when built as a family project from top down, side-to-side, and suffused liberally con molto amore!

(Reprinted from Hipgnosis)

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