A Cook's Notebook - reflections on food and cooking in our kitchens and in our lives - airs weekly on WAMC Minaho Fish Cakes aired on WCAI in June, 2003 PROMOS AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST Accompanying recipes available at www.cooksnotebook.com
You know all that stuff that sits in the yard or the garage - like broken lawn mowers or maybe a dull chain saw - there's a word for that stuff and it's not 'junk' - it's minaho.
Minaho is a concept that comes from the Woodland Cree Indians to account for why we keep this stuff around. The reason is because it all has potential. In a pinch - the chain saw chain that's too dull to cut wood will make a good boat hitch someday. Minaho lies in wait (and sometimes in rust) to creatively solve problems. As a cook I keep my minaho in the refrigerator and on the pantry shelves.
I store it like a squirrel packing nuts away for the winter and become very territorial if someone tries to throw it out. There's always a windfall of minaho after the holidays or when houseguests go - they leave behind half -used jars of sauces, ketchups, jams and jellies. Or maybe a gift - an exotic concoction wit...
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