One of my most favorite things to do is ice fish! The best days to do it when it’s warm enough outside and all you need is a pair of sunglasses and a hoodie. Each spring we fish for a white flaky fish that we call “shee-fish”. I’ve never eaten tarpon, but some have said it’s similar. We use the traditional hook and line that we call a Nik-sik. There is nothing like the feeling of having a big fish bite on to your line and fighting as you pull it up.
James loves to fish with Mama!
James has been fishing with me since he could walk, one of the best parts about being his mom is passing down this tradition of subsistence. There are many ways to eat shee-fish, some like it baked, pan seared, battered and deep fried. One of my favorite ways to eat it is “sashimi” style. A lot of our native food we eat raw. Raw and frozen meat in my language is called “quaq” (start sounding “qua” as in saying the word quarter). When speaking in reference to any of our traditional food, we call it Niqapaiq (ni-qa-pack). There are so many variations to our food, in my grandparents and great-grandparents day when the “westerners” came to our land, we adapted a lot of their food into our diet. My grandparents grew root vegetables when I was a kid, so we ate potatatoes, turnips, carrots and radishes with our seal oil (which is a different post).