Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2013 Rewind #1

I used to eat a lot of Rock Bass when I first left the City and moved upnorth for real. Considered low on the list of desirable aquatic table fare, I really didn't care- if it weren't for the rockies, I would truly have been a starving artist at times, during those olden days. They were always willing to bite when nothing else would, so they provided a lot of free protein. Now, some thirty years on, I still have a soft spot for catching a few of these thick golden panfish each year. They don't go in the frying pan anymore however, rather they bring back memories of  much less cluttered days that at once seems like both a lifetime ago and yesterday's passing breeze. I still fish for them at least once a year, deliberately looking for the elusive state record - 2.0 lbs and/or 13.5 inches.They continue to live in the old places that I used to find them because......well.....  nobody eats them.

So looking back on the year past, what wild things went down the old fellow's gullet ?

Fish:                                        Berries:
Crappie                                    Strawberry
Bluegill                                     Juneberry (service berry or Saskatoon)
Northern Pike                           Raspberry
Walleye                                    Thimbleberry
Brown Trout                              Blueberry
Brook Trout                              Blackberry
Lake Trout
Coho Salmon                           Nuts:
Sockeye Salmon                       Black Walnut
Ruffed Grouse                            Big Game:
Mallard                                      Whitetail Deer
Ringneck Duck                           Elk

Fungi:                                        Greens:
Puffball                                       Fiddleheads
Gem Studded Puffball                 Sting Nettles
Chicken of the Woods                 Ramps
King Bolete
Chanterelle                                Grains:
Oyster Mushroom                      Wild Rice
Wine cap

Pretty fair variety there, but the list looks a little skinny in the bird and big game departments, and there are definitely more fungi and greens to forage for in the coming year. Perhaps a few rabbits, some squirrels. Pheasants, definitely. Turkey? Snipe, Sharptails? How about a buffalo....................... Hello 2014


  1. Envious of that list.

    You should walk out your door and plant some lettuce and spinach though too. Nice addition. Or maybe here you are just listing gathered food.

    1. Oh yes, this is just the wild stuff. I forgot to put a couple more items on the list like chokecherries and the too ephemeral pincherries. Also I should have included cattail shoots, although I didn't gather and cook any this year, just munched some raw while fishing in May. The walnuts are yours and the elk is from a brother-in-law and the hickory nuts came from an ex-neighbor's woodlot in eastern Iowa. I should mention that dandelions are not on the list because while they grow wild, they are really a garden green gone invasive, I think.