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Native American recipes have seen a resurgence in the US into the 2000s, through interest in traditional American foodways. The original recipe for this dense meatloaf-style dish comes from the Cherokee tribe who used wild onions, wild game, and buffalo berries. A cast iron Dutch oven, heated over a grill or hot coals, comes close to replicating the originally-used pottery vessel that was placed over hot stones. Poyha slices can be served topped with sauces like gravy, cream, or ketchup, eaten in sandwiches, or on frybread.

Recipe Servings: 8

Prep Time
15 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Total Time
1 hour 15 minutes
Gluten Free
Dairy Free


  • 1 can (28 oz) whole kernel corn, drained (or 2 cups frozen corn, thawed)
  • 2 cups green seedless grapes, finely chopped
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • Paprika, to taste (optional)
  • ½ tsp garlic salt (optional)
  • 3 Tbsp oil
  • 3 slices bacon, chopped
  • 2 lbs ground beef, venison, elk, turkey, or chicken
  • 1¼ cups coarse yellow cornmeal
  • Nonstick cooking spray, as needed to grease Dutch oven


  1. Process the corn into small pieces in a blender or food processor, stopping before it liquefies.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat together chopped corn with chopped grapes, onion, eggs, and pepper. Add paprika and garlic salt, if using. Set aside.
  3. Heat oil and bacon in a large skillet set over medium heat.
  4. Add the ground meat and brown.
  5. Drain the meat, and then add it to the corn mixture.
  6. Add the cornmeal to the mixture and combine, working with hands. Add more cornmeal if needed.
  7. Grease a Dutch oven using nonstick cooking spray and then pack the dough into it.
  8. Cover and grill over medium heat, or cook over hot coals, for 45–60 minutes.
  9. Let cool for 15 minutes.
  10. Serve immediately.

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