One Meal, Three Sides, Cherokee Style
This dish is a full meal that comes in small parts so it can be eaten as you like, and is not only something that adds a bit of a fancy air to the simple, but is even fun for younger people at the table to enjoy, and allows pickier eaters to pick their meal accordingly. The style involves five components: A cereal (in this case, hominy or wild rice), a soup, and three side dishes designed to go with the cereal. A selection of simple to prepare sides accompany this dish, but the formula can be used with anything you can imagine. The serving method is simple and preparation is minimal, so this can be thrown together in a pinch, or can be as fancy as you want it to be. It’s best to think of this version as a basic template to build on, rather than a concrete plan. The soup is a traditional Cherokee egg soup, made to put a bit of your starch into. Fish is our protein here, it’s healthy, flavorful and light on the stomach, and goes well with our cooked greens. Finally, for something fresh, a southern accompaniment of tomatoes and cucumbers round out the whole meal.Note: This dish requires two pans, and two pots to make, so be prepared, and remember to take it slow and careful during preparation.
- hominy or wild rice
- ramps or wild greens
- 4 eggs
- wild or green onion
- chicken stock or water or water and bouillon
- wall-eye, salmon, or thinly sliced chicken breast
- tomato fresh
- cooking oil
- lemon juice
- red pepper
Fish (or chicken)
- Boil and prepare your rice or hominy until done. Cover and set aside to keep warm.
- Set oiled skillet to medium and let the greens or ramps sauté until soft and done.
- Season fish as desired: salt, pepper, red pepper, and/or garlic powder.
- In a separate pan, set to high heat. Add oil. When hot, add fish, skin side down if it is salmon, and sear for one minute. Flip and sear other side for 1 more minute, then flip again and let cook for another two minutes until done. Top with a bit of lemon juice.
- Slice and mix tomatoes and cucumber into a salad, including some of the green onion.
- For a dressing, blend cooking oil and lemon juice with a fork until well mixed. Add the pepper, salt, and oregano. Olive oil testes best, but any vegetable oil will do.
- Bring three to four cups of water or stock to a boil, then whisk the eggs as if you were scrambling them. When they’re completely whisked, add salt and pepper and drop into the boiling water or stock. When the eggs have cooked, add the green onions after taking the soup off the heat.