Sunday, August 23, 2015

Building a food container out of birch bark

At another recent kids workshop hosted here, we learned the new (yet old) skill of turning a piece of birch bark into a water-tight container.  We worked to peel down the layers of birch bark until we had a thin sheet, then dipped it into boiling water so it became very flexible.  It can then be shaped into a round or curved vessel or container, and is water-proof enough to hold liquids.  Birch bark is naturally anti-bacterial and anti-fungal, so is perfect for storing food.  During the workshop we even learned how it's possible to "cook" in our birch bark containers, simply by adding hot rocks (heated in a fire) to a cool liquid in our container to warm it.  Our birch bark containers were held together by simple natural "pegs" made of dogwood. 

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