Bringing Native American cuisine to WUSTL

article photo Chef Nephi Craig (Apache/Navajo), founder of the Native American Culinary Association, conducts a traditional Native American cooking demonstration in the Danforth University Center Nov. 3. Craig’s presentation, “Maatibi. Imokwayli. Ittanahli. Hunt. Fish. Gather,” centered on Native American foods and their resurgence in American cooking culture. Craig, trained in the French classical style of cooking, was working at a five-star restaurant when he realized he wanted to honor his heritage through his culinary talent. Now he cooks and travels the country promoting his dream: to restore and reinvent the largely forgotten cuisine of his forebears. America’s “green” movement is essentially a return to indigenous foods, he told the crowd. “I always say, ‘going green is going Native,’ ” Craig said. About 100 were on hand to witness his preparation of Iłkisyu Taagi ła’íí, Izee Tsebika Golchine (Three Sisters — corn, beans and squash) and Nest’ą’ iłtá at’ééhí obe’ła’íí almond biyigé łił nadísgeed (South American Ayacucho Quinoa Salad). Craig explained how corn lacks amino acids, and by adding beans and squash, a well-rounded meal is created, showing that Native American diets are not necessarily carnivorous. The event was hosted by Bon Appetit Management Co., in partnership with the Brown School’s Kathryn M. Buder Center for American Indian Studies, one of the most respected centers in the nation for the academic advancement and study of American Indian issues related to social work. Credit: Sid Hastings/WUSTL Photos (2)article photo