Come Together 

Viet-Pueblo Dinner merges Vietnamese and Pueblo cuisine

Chefs Ray Naranjo (Santa Clara Pueblo) and Hue-Chan Karels almost seem surprised that Indigenous and Vietnamese cuisines would mesh so well, but it turns out the similarities are many. Plus, as both are inventive culinary masterminds at Open Kitchen and the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center respectively, learning to make the disparate styles harmonize has been an exciting challenge.

The upcoming Viet-Pueblo Dinner brings together Karels' lifelong pursuit of keeping and sharing Vietnamese cooking traditions with Naranjo's combination Cordon Bleu training and self-taught Indigenous culinary methodologies. The result is a thrilling and creative prix fixe menu that starts with a vegetarian and gluten-free five spice popcorn and rice amuse, wends through Bánh Nậm tamale style dumplings with shrimp and pork wrapped in banana leaves and blue corn tamales with agave-brined roasted turkey and pairs dishes like Cá Kho Tộ (caramelized, braised sea bass) and Puebloan braised duck with wild plum and amaranth—and that's not even mentioning the caramelized bananas in red chile and chocolate piñon sauce for dessert.

"I think it's going to be such a mind-blowing meal," Karels tells SFR. "We're talking foods that are prepared very similarly, and the textures, the vibrancy of what we're making…in essence, what is really wonderful is, for the Indigenous, it's reclaiming, it's reminding, it's remaking; for the Vietnamese, we've been carrying these practices and foods around the world. It's people holding onto their customs."

For Naranjo, this means continuing his mission to reeducate the people of the Southwest about Indigenous food as anthropological powerhouse.

"Amaranth," he says, "was the first crop outlawed by European settlers, and I find that I'm reteaching people. This is a food culture that hasn't been practiced for 100 years, so some of it is revival."

Both Karels and Naranjo say they start with traditional ingredients and approaches, setting the stage for familiar flavors they can then tweak.

Even better? They're extending preorders an extra day for readers of SFR to get in on the action—but you'll need to order through the Open Kitchen site today, Wednesday, Oct. 7. Come Saturday, you'll have the option to pick up your meal from Open Kitchen downtown, or you can choose from a number of delivery times throughout the day. (Alex De Vore)

Viet-Pueblo Dinner:
Various times Saturday, Oct. 10. $65.
openkitckenevents.com

Face It

Courtesy April Holder

Faces dominate multi-media artist April Holder's (Sac & Fox Nation of Oklahoma) work. Portraiture has almost always been her main focus, and through projects large and small, in ink and in paint, on canvas, in prints, on queen-sized bedsheets, she's created expressive and powerful pieces that often stare right back, telegraphing how her subjects feel. In most cases, they're Native women she knows and admires; sometimes they're self-portraits—sometimes her subjects seem to melt into the landscape, illustrating that they're of the land. In all cases, they're magnetic. "Part of it is there is something with portraiture that you can't capture with other art forms," Holder tells SFR. "It's not just relating to another human being, but really trying to see how so we see ourselves? When I paint other people, it's about me seeing something that's more than just their physical being." Holder shows at La Fonda on the Plaza throughout the weekend.(ADV)

Artist in Rezidence with April Holder:
10 am-6 pm Friday, Oct. 9-Sunday, Oct. 11. Free.
La Fonda on the Plaza,
100 E San Francisco St.,
982-5511.

Dance, Dance Resolution

Courtesy Wheelwright Museum of The American Indian

We're quite lucky to have no small number of local museums dedicated to the works of Indigenous artists from both near and far, old and new, traditional, non-traditional and…well, we've got a wide gamut of institutions here. So when one like, oh, say, the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian holds a sale, you fire up the ol' credit card, get a mask on and you go to those three days of auctions. Thus far we've only seen a smattering of offerings from artists like Cippy Crazy Horse (Cochiti), Charlie Bird (Santo Domingo/Laguna) and Jolene Eustace (Cochiti/Zuni), but countless others are waiting. Note that the first day runs $20, but subsequent days are free to attend! (ADV)

Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian Annual Benefit Sale:
4-6 pm Friday, Oct. 9. $20; 10 am-4 pm Saturday, Oct. 10. Free; noon-4 pm Sunday, Oct. 11. Free.
Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian,
704 Camino Lejo,
982-4636

Cinema Indigenized

Courtesy IMDB

For those not in the know, Indigenous Peoples' Day (Oct. 12) usually brings tons of local tribal culture together on the Plaza, but with COVID-19 restrictions blocking mass gatherings, observing the annual holiday might be a little more staid this year. Luckily, the Santa Fe Indian Center has partnered with Motorama at the Downs for a screening of the Native-led Neither Wolf Nor Dog, a 2016 film about an aging Lakota man (David Bald Eagle) who hires a white writer to help tell the tale of his people. Based on the Kent Nerburn novel of the same name, it's a must for anyone interested in film, Indigenous culture or just plain excellent storytelling. Can we all agree the drive-in is awesome, too? (ADV)

Indigenous People's Day with Santa Fe Indian Center: Neither Wolf Nor Dog:
7 pm Monday, Oct. 12. $15. Motorama at the Downs,
27475 W Frontage Road,
facebook.com/motorama.santafe