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In Season

In Season

Hunger Games, page 155, on pine bark: “I slowly chew the stuff as I walk along…it’s a little hard to choke down…” Katniss Everdeen, the heroine, conserves her food reserves in  the Hunger Games by chewing on the soft inner bark of the pine tree. The American Indians used to chew on this in the middle of winter to keep up their levels of Vitamin C when there wasn’t too much else available and also as an appetite suppressant.  They DON’T use the outer bark of the tree or the woody core but inside the two: the living tree. I have a small grove of overgrown planted white pine trees  and so tromp outside and select a big one, scraping off the outer part carefully with a small knife to expose about a 5″ x 10″ patch.  Pull back the layers of soft pine that are not yet woody. I peel off small thin whitish strips. They smell sweet and faintly aromatic. I pop it in the refrigerator with a moist paper towel to keep it soft.

Eddy infuses the soft bark in a simmered broth (1 cup water for ½ ounces pine bark) and add a little fish or  a wild bird like pheasant, very nice…cooked not chewed!


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