Kanuchi (Soup)

Kanuchi is a real delicacy to the Cherokees in Oklahoma! A kanuchi stump, or kanona, is used for preparing kanuchi. A heavy log is hollowed out a few inches in depth. Then a long heavy stick is used for the pounding, and the large end is at the top. This is used as a weight. Kanuchi making takes a lot of effort, but sure is worth it. The instructions for the making of kanuchi follows:

     Hickory nuts, gathered in the fall are allowed to dry for a few weeks prior to preparation. The hickory nuts are cracked and the largest pieces of the shells are taken out. You can pick them out by hand or shake the pieces through a loosely woven basket. Usually, both.

     The nuts (don't worry if there are some small pieces of shell) are put in the 'bowl' of the log, and are pounded until they reach a consistency that can be formed into balls that will hold there shape, about three inches in diameter. They must be kept in a cool place; today, most people freeze them. 

     When you are ready to prepare the kanuchi for serving, put one of the balls in a sauce pan with a quart or so of water. Bring it to a boil, and the ball should dissolve into the water. Simmer about ten minutes, then strain through a sieve. This separates any of the shell that is left. It should simmer until it is about as thick as a light cream. Add two cups of hominy to each quart of kanuchi. Most cooks add some sugar or honey. It should be served hot like a soup.

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