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Chili Smith

Arikara Yellow Beans

The Arikara Yellow heirloom bean is creamy and very flavorful with a hard shell that holds its shape when cooked. They are a favorite in soups and stews as well as the Three Sisters Mash.

This Slow Foods Ark of Taste ingredient has a long cultural history. First documented by Lewis and Clark, these indigenous beans were once the primary food source for American Indian tribes in the Missouri Valley. Thomas Jefferson grew the Arikara Yellow Beans in his own garden at Monticello. There he described it as “one of the most excellent we have had.”Unfortunately after being moved to the Fort Berthold reservation near Bismarck, North Dakota, the Arikara tribe has relatively little land to farm. Thankfully seed savers and small scale farmers have saved the Arikara Yellow from extinction so that you can enjoy it.

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