Beyond Bella

March 19, 2011

The past two days our team has been on the water getting the ‘lay of the land’. It’s no wonder when we remark on the beauty of this area the locals reply that we’re in ‘God’s Country’. The scenery is absolutely breathtaking.

Clark, our captain, fisherman extraordinaire and detailed knowledge holder, has been showing us areas where herring have spawned in both the past, as well as in the last few years. It has been great getting out on the water after gazing at maps in the office while conducting our traditional knowledge interviews, to put it all into perspective and start piecing together our herring story. We have been extremely lucky with weather and have had two calm, sunny days, allowing us to cover a vast amount of water. We even had a chance to fish so we could practice getting various samples we will be taking in the near future.

As if being out in the beautiful outdoors wasn’t fantastic enough, we also had the pleasure of sampling some delicious traditional treats provided by our lovely house mum Connie. First up was herring roe (eggs) in butter and garlic. Crunchy, chewy, squeaky, buttery goodness. Next up was Indian ice cream! Who knew that soapberries, sugar and water could whip up into such a magnificent desert?!  And don’t be fooled by the name, soap berries taste nothing like soap and the dessert definitely wasn’t frozen!

With all of these new tasty treats, we are looking forward to the potlatch we have kindly been invited to this coming week. Let the feasting and celebrating, oh ya…and research begin!


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2 Responses to Beyond Bella

  1. Rene says:

    Soap berries contain toxic saponins, and should not be ingested by humans. If eaten, the berries cause gastrointestinal pain and discomfort, although the plant only has a mild level of toxicity when eaten.

  2. Ryan Wilson says:

    Yeah, well the Heiltsuk peoples have been having this as a treat for generations and generations. So, maybe with high consumption these gems, their; “toxic saponins” could give us a tummy ache.

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