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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 6

Poisonous in a Raw State

Poisonous in a Raw State.

Tubers—pounding, Desiccation.

42. Caladium macrorhizon, Vent. Hakkin (Rockh. tribe), Banganga or Nargan (Clev. Bay tribe).—In moist shady places. A strong herbaceous plant, with very largo sagittate leaves. The young bulbs, of a light rose colour inside, found growing on large old rhizomes, are scraped, and divided into two parts, and put under the ashes for about half an hour. When sufficiently baked, they are then pounded by hard strokes between two stones—a large one, Wallarie, and a small one, Kondola. All the pieces which do not look farinaceous, but watery when broken, are thrown away; the others, by strokes of the Kondola, are united by twos or threes, and put into the fire again; they are then taken out and pounded together in the form of a cake, which is again returned to the fire and carefully turned occasionally: this operation is repeated eight or ten times, and when the Hakkin, which is now of a green greyish colour, begins to harden, it is fit for use.

43. Typhonium Brownii, Schott. Meirin.—In sandy shady places. A small herbaceous plant. Leaves sagittate, entire, or three lobate. Flowers purple, dark, of a disagreeable odour. The tubers, which are yellow inside, are manipulated in the same way as the Hakkin but none are watery, and they are made to adhere together after the first roasting.

Seeds—pounding, Maceration, Desiccation.

44. Entada scandens, Benth. Barbaddah (Clev. B. tr.)—A strong climber. Pod 2 to 4 feet in length, and 3 to 4 inches in breadth. The seeds, 1½ to 2 page 47 inches diameter, are put into the stove oven and heated in the same way, and for the same time as the Egaie; they are then pounded fine and put into a dilly-bag, and left for ten or twelve hours in water, when they are fit for use.—Murrell's Testimony.

45. Cycas media, R. Br. Nut Palm. Baveu.—Very common on the mountain sides and in valleys. A graceful tree, with a crown of fruit the size of a walnut, yellow when ripe. The nuts are deprived of their outer succulent cover (sarcocarp), and are then broken; and the kernels having been roughly pounded, are dried three or four hours by the sun, then brought in a dilly-bag to the water stream or pond, where they remain in running water four or five days, and in stagnant water three or four days. By a touch of the fingers the proper degree of softness produced by maceration is ascertained. They are afterwards placed between the two stones mentioned, reduced to a fine paste, and then baked under the ashes in the same way that our bush people bake their damper.

Seeds—pounding, Maceration.

46. Encephalartos Miquelii, Ferd. Mueller. Dwarf Zamia. Banga.—Mountains and valleys. Found generally in the same locality as the palm nut, with a large cone-fruit not unlike a pine-apple. The seeds, orange red when ripe, and separating freely, are baked for about half an hour under ashes; the outside covers and the stones are then broken, and the kernels, divided by a stroke of the Kondola, are put into a dilly-bag and carried to a stream or pond, where they remain six or eight days before they are tit for eating.

47. Encephalartos Denisonii, Ferd. Mueller. Leichhardt's aborescent Zamia. Prepared in the same way as E. Miquelii.