Bart Vander Puy: Parching wild rice at Wolf Point

By Nick Vander Puy
Reserve, Wisconsin (IndianCountryTV)

Bart Vander Puy is learning how to parch (roast) wild rice.  He's been knocking rice from a canoe with me in northern Wisconsin the past three weeks.

After knocking and drying wild rice the next step in processing is parching. It sets the rice up and preserves it.

To parch or roast, get a fire going underneath an old fashioned cast iron kettle.

After the kettle heats up toss two or three large handfuls of rice into the kettle.

Using a wooden paddle stir the rice in a circular motion inside the kettle until it smells roasted and the husk separates easily from the kernel.

The aroma of wild rice (mahnomin) roasting on the shores of a pristine northern Wisconsin lake in fall is one of the rare delights of our territory.

"The cast iron kettle holds the heat really well."

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