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Duck a delicacy on the GNP

I love traditional foods, especially those that focus on local moose, caribou, rabbit, seal and other game animals. Earning a living from the sea for so many on the Great Northern Peninsula brought an abundance of seafood to our diets, which was supplemented by local farming of root crops, especially potatoes, carrot, turnip, cabbage and beets.

Growing up, duck was not served at the table. My father always hunted turr and we had the odd partridge. I believe in the Straits the presence of duck is less, making them more difficult to obtain than other parts of the Peninsula.

The more I travelled, the more opportunity I had to try duck on the menu of restaurants that served it. I love duck, and consider it a delicacy.

I’ve been quite fortunate to have an avid duck hunter from the tip of the Peninsula share with me. This meal will not be forgotten.

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Duck served with rice, potatoe, carrot, turnip and bread roll.
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If you have the opportunity to try local duck on your visit, I highly recommend.

Bon apetit! 

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Traditional Newfoundland Cuisine – Rabbit

A visit to my Grandmother from Nameless Cove after being in the cabin was quite the treat. A wonderful meal of wild rabbit, stuffing, peas, carrots, turnip and potatoes – all topped off with gravy. I enjoy this traditional meal as it brings back memories.

As a young boy, I would go with my father to check his slips (or rabbit snares). We would go on his Yamaha Bravo! He had the skill to well place a slip, adding twigs or tree limbs to ensure the rabbit would have to hop through the hole. Sometimes we would take our snowshoes to prevent us from sinking too deep into the snow.

My uncle Douglas, who has since passed. He would spend a significant amount of time in the woods, whether it would be trapping, rabbit catching or berry picking. I would be assured that there would be a rabbit or two for me each season.

For me it is important to now learn the process of rabbit catching from my uncles who continue this tradition. I must learn these skills to pass on to future generations. As well learn how to skin a rabbit and prepare the meal.

For me it is important to learn the ways of the land, that has enabled people to survive for thousands of years – well before the Vikings came more than 1,000 years ago to this Peninsula.

Live Rural NL –

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

 

 

 

Rabbit Soup on Saturday

 

Wild Rabbit Soup

The utilities company noted they would be doing some upgrades to the main power line, leaving local residents from Castor River to Eddies Cove without electricity until 11:00 AM. This delayed my traditional lunch at grandma’s house.
 
 Early in the morning, I lit a fire. The heat from locally cut wood, provided much warmth. I did some chores and brought out some light trash. I dropped in to visit my grandmother, who faithfully had the pot on the stove and noted she was cooking “Rabbit Soup”, but it would not be ready until about 1:30 PM. We chatted for a bit  and she had also proudly showed me all her knitting. She certainly keeps quite busy.

Rabbit

The table was prepared, with homemade bread, the salt & pepper shakers, the rabbit had been taken from the pot and soup ready to be poured into each bowl. The rabbit was delicious. My grandmother and I always have a good chat, whether it is about the hockey game, curling, gardening, weather or past times. I had told her I was looking at old photos earlier, some of which included my grandfather, father and of  course my childhood.RabbitMany good memories.
 
I enjoy traditional recipes of rural Newfoundland. My grandmother and I discussed how traditions are dying as far fewer people of the younger generations are cooking with wild game. Modernization and the convenience of pre-packaged food is having an impact on the dishes that have been served on Newfoundland tables for centuries.
 

 

RECIPE FOR NEWFOUNDLAND RABBIT SOUP
 
 1 lb. Salt beef
2 qts of cold water
1 Wild game rabbit (cleaned and cut up)
3 carrots
1 lb turnip
4 med. Potatoes
1 med. Onion
few drips of gravy browning
3 ½ – 4 qts. Cold water
 
Cut salt beef into small pieces. Place in large saucepan and add 2 qts. cold water. Bring to a boil. Place salt beef, rabbit and remaining 3 ½ qts (cook 1 ½ hours). Add vegetables  and browning. Cook 30 minutes.
 
Bon Apetit!
 
Live Rural NL 0
Christopher Mitchelmore
 
 

Got to Get Me Moose by’

Moose

September 11, 2010  marks the start of moose hunting season for most areas across the province of Newfoundland & Labrador. It is a time of year that is highly anticipated by many local residents and visitors from out of province to partake in such an important traditional and cultural activity. 

“The traditions and culture associated with hunting and trapping are quite significant in our province, and I encourage everyone to take advantage of the many wonderful opportunities that exist,” said Minister Johnson. “As a public resource, wildlife must be managed so that it benefits the diverse interests of all stakeholders, while ensuring that populations of animals and their habitats can be sustained for future generations” (Click for more info on the 2010-11 Hunting and Trapping Guide and Big Game Licence Applications). 

Hunting presents an economic boom for outfitting lodges and many small local businesses for supplies, transportation needs, accommodations and meat processors. We must use extreme caution on our highways and watch out for our brightly orange dressed companions in the wilderness as we spend time with our buddies in search of delicious moose meat. At the bottom, I’ve included a Moose Stew Recipe. 

The activity has been popularized through song written and performed by Kevin Blackmore and Ray Johnson of Buddy Wasisname and the Other Fellers. Lyrics below: 

Like to go a-moose hunting, hunting in the fall,
Like to go a-moose hunting, answer the hunting call:
“Gotta get me moose, b’y!”
 

Well first to get a moose licence you apply for six whole years,
At thirty-five dollars a crack, old man, with a partner for half shares;
And when you get the licence, “cock” ’tis area twenty-eight,
Nowhere near civ-il-i-zation, three hundred miles away.
But I gotta get me moose, b’y!! 

Like to go a-moose hunting, hunting in the fall,
Like to go a-moose hunting, answer the hunting call:
“Gotta get me moose, b’y!”
 

To get ya where you’re going it’s a Hilton on four wheels,
Gets easily stuck, and the gas tank leaks and something up front squeals;
We met four fellas on a trip and we got on the beer,
They were on their way to our back yards and we was off to theirs.
Gotta get me moose b’y!! 

Like to go a-moose hunting, hunting in the fall,
Like to go a-moose hunting, answer the hunting call:
“Gotta get me moose, b’y!”
 

Trottin’ on the bogs for miles with a pack sack on your back,
And you know he’s always just ahead, the fresh buttons in his tracks;
Well maybe he can hear us, b’ys, or maybe it’s his snout…
I allow it’s not hard to get a whiff of we after five or six days out!
Hah! Gotta get me moose, b’y!! 

Like to go a-moose hunting, hunting in the fall,
Like to go a-moose hunting, answer the hunting call:
“Gotta get me moose, b’y!”
 

At last we saw a great big bull and oh my, what a fuss!
Fired ten shots and had to run! He started chasing us. Hah!
But when we got him killed, me lads, I had to panch his gut!
Me manly hunting instinct left and me supper all heaved up.
Whoop! Gotta get me moose b’y!! 

Like to go a-moose hunting, hunting in the fall,
Like to go a-moose hunting, answer the hunting call:
“Gotta get me moose, b’y!”
 

Jack, we got to lug ‘im out, you were fine to have along,
But my next partner will be a wrestler, twice as big and strong;
And never again will I go out across the bog so far,
I’ll wait till I sees one on the road and I’ll wing ‘im with me car!!
Hah! That’s how I’ll get me moose, b’y!! 

Like to go a-moose hunting, hunting in the fall,
Like to go a-moose hunting, answer the hunting call:
“Gotta get me moose, b’y!”
 

I highly recommend if you are coming from a way and want a superior hunting and guiding experience, you will want to stay at the Tuckamore Lodge at Main Brook, NL. Check it out for yourself http://www.tuckamorelodge.com/ 

Moose Stew

MOOSE STEW 

  • 3 lbs moose, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 lb butter
  • salt and pepper

Brow moose meat in hot butter. Add water, salt and pepper. Let simmer, adding chopped onion after about an hour of cooking. Cook for another hour. 

Then chop and add: 

  • 2 carrots
  • 1 small turnip
  • 5-10 potatoes

Cook for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Make dumplings if you wish. 

Public safety is off the utmost importance. Although the government has increased moose hunting licences and noted they have purchased groomers and will be grooming parts of the province, are they doing enough? There have already been a number of moose vehicle collisions this year, as with any year. How many more do we need to have before the government steps up to the plate and follows other provinces, like New Brunswick and implements appropriate animal fencing?  

Safe and happy hunting in rural NL – CCM 

  

 

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