Saturday, January 8, 2011

Cheers! To Native Americans!

If you ever wondered, what did Native Americans drink, this post is for you.

Contrary to what is believed, they did have alcohol. As an example let us look at the Tohono O'odham Indians who had their own alcoholic drink from saguaro. Saguaro is a cactus and happens to be the largest one in the world. The drink is called tiswin and was brewed from corn. However, it is not so potent as the alcohol brought to America by the white settlers.

Here you have a recipe how to make it:

Saguaro Cactus
Tiswin (Traditional Pueblo Corn Drink)
5 lbs dried white corn
      2 gallons water
      1 1/2 c brown sugar
      2 dried orange peels
      3 cinnamon sticks
      1 t ground cloves  
Oven-roast corn at 300 degrees until light brown, stirring frequently.  Grind
 coarsely in food chopper or in small quantities in blender.  Wash (using several 
 rinses, clean water each time), and discard hulls. 
 Put in crock and stir in water and other ingredients.  Cover and let sit in a barely
 warm place for five or six days or until fermented.  Strain through cheesecloth
 and serve.  
Another Indian drink (soft one, this time) is called pinole.
It originates from the central part of the American Continent and from Mexico. 
Pinole is a hot corn drink, which is sweet thanks to sugar and cinnamon 
that are added to it. 
Intriguied? Here is the recipe:
 Pinole (Hot Corn Drink)

2 c blue or white cornmeal
      1/2 c sugar
      1/2 t cinnamon
Brown the cornmeal in a hot 425 degree oven for 8-10 minutes by spreading
 in a thin layer on a cookie sheet, stirring several times to prevent scorching.  Add 
 sugar and cinnamon and use like cocoa in about the same proportions, stirred into 
 hot milk and simmered for 15 minutes.
Recipies taken from HERE.


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