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November 2017

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Stony Brook Celebrates Native American Heritage

Stony Brook celebrates  Native American Heritage Month throughout November with a variety of events and performances, but acknowledgement of the history and issues surrounding indigenous peoples is a year-round commitment on campus.

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Open House with Chef Lois Ellen Frank (Kiowa/Sephardic)

Wednesday, November 29 • 1pm to 2:30pm • Student Activities Center, Ballroom A

Open to students, faculty, staff, alumni and neighbors

  • Educational Seminar
  • Food Sampling
  • Book Signing

This program was made possible through a collaboration wtih LeManuel Lee Bitsóí, EdD, Chief Diversity Officer, the Native American Student Organization (NASO), Faculty Student Association (FSA), and CulinArt Group.

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VIP Dinner*

Thursday, November 30 • 6pm to 8pm • Simons Center Café

*By invitation only

Hosted by:

  • LeManuel Lee Bitsóí, EdD (Chief Diversity Officer)
  • Nadeem Siddiqui (FSA Executive Director)
  • Jay Levenson (Interlibrary Loan Clerk)

Enter to Win 1 of 5 seats to the dinner!


Blue Corn Bread

Recipe by Chef Lois Ellen Frank, Red Mesa Cuisine

corn bread


  • 1 cup blue cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbl sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ¾ cups buttermilk
  • 2 tbl unsalted butter, melted



Preheat the oven to 425° F. Grease 2 corn stick pans, 9-inch cast iron skillet or cake pan. In a large bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a seperate bowl, mix together the eggs and buttermilk. Gradually stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix well. Then, add the melted butter and gently stir again. Do not over stir the mixture, the breadsticks taste better if you just gently stir in the melted butter at this point. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan(s) and bake until firm, 25 to 30 minutes if using a cake pan or skillet and 10 to 15 minutes if using corn stick pans. The bread should be golden brown and spring back when touched.

Makes 1 pan of cornbread or 14 corn sticks

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Three Sisters Stew with Pinto & Kidney Beans

Recipe by Chef Lois Ellen Frank, Red Mesa Cuisine



  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • Olive oil cooking spray to coat cast iron pot
  • 2 cups chopped fresh Roma tomatoes  or (1) 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes with basil
  • 2 ½ cups cooked organic dark red kidney beans
  • 2 ½ cups cooked organic pinto beans
  • 2 cups cooked corn kernels (fresh, frozen or canned)
  • 2 cups green zucchini squash, cut into small cubes
  • 3 tbl dried red mild chile powder
  • 1 tsp salt



Heat the cast iron or soup pot over medium-high heat. Add onions, sauté for 2 minutes until translucent, then add green bell peppers and sauté another 2 minutes. Cut each of the whole tomatoes from the can into 8 pieces (a large dice) and add them to the onions and green bell peppers. Cook for another 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the zucchini squash and sauté for another several minutes, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Add the kidney beans, pinto beans and the booked corn and stir well. Bring the chile beans to a boil, and then reduce heat to low. Stir in the dried red chile powder and salt. Let simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Serve hot with no fry bread, or homemade corn or flour tortillas.

Serves 8 to 12 people

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Chef Bios

Chef Lois Ellen Frank (Kiowa/Sephardic)

Chef Lois Ellen Frank Lois Ellen Frank, Ph.D. is a Santa Fe, New Mexico based Native American Chef, a Native foods historian, culinary anthropologist, educator, James Beard Award winning cookbook author, photographer and organic gardener. She is the chef/owner of Red Mesa Cuisine, LLC a catering company specializing in ancestral Native American cuisine with a modern twist.

As a Culinary Ambassador Diplomat with the U.S. State Department and Office of Cultural Affairs, she and Chef Walter Whitewater have traveled to Ukraine, the United Kingdom, and Russia to teach about the history of Native American foodways, worked with food as a form of diplomacy, and educated on how the Native American food contribution changed the Old World.

Dr. Frank works with the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) on a program entitled The Power to Heal Diabetes: Food for Life in Indian Country using the Ancestral Native American diet for health and wellness in native communities throughout the Southwest. She is a consultant with The Cultural Conservancy (TCC) on their Native Foodways program in the San Francisco Bay area and is a cooking instructor at the Santa Fe School of Cooking. As an adjunct professor at the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA), she teaches about the indigenous concepts of Native American foods. As a native Long Islander, Lois went to elementary school and high school in Manhasset and spent her summers in Remsenburg where she learned organic gardening.

Chef Walter Whitewater (Diné (Navajo) Nation)

Chef Walter Whitewater Walter Whitewater was born in Pinon, Arizona and began cooking as a young boy after seeing people cooking at some of the traditional ceremonies his family attended. He began his professional cooking career in 1992 at restaurants in Santa Fe, New Mexico such as Café Escalera, Mu Du Noodles and Bishop’s Lodge. He currently works with Chef Lois Ellen Frank at Red Mesa Cuisine, a Native American catering company. Chef Whitewater remains active in many of his traditional ways at his home in Pinon, Arizona by returning for ceremonial obligations and helping his father with their flock of sheep which include the Navajo Churro breed.

He teaches cooking classes on Native American Foods of the Southwest with Chef Frank at the Santa Fe School of Cooking. Their cooking classes feature recipes from the James Beard Award winning cookbook, Foods of the Southwest Indian Nations. Whitewater also teaches private Native American cooking classes and does guest chef appearances at many restau- rants across the United States. He has worked on two public education DVD's featuring plant based ancestral Native American ingredients for healthy Native American cooking. He has appeared on several culinary television shows including Food Network’s “Southwest Cooking with Bobby Flay,” Iowa Public Television’s “Native Foods and Farming: Market to Market” and Greystone TV’s “The Secret Life of Southwest Foods.”

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