When you look at your average pine tree, rarely does one think that it has the ability to sustain you in a survival situation if the need ever arose. It’s sharp needles and gnarly bark give off the impression that it’s a less-than-friendly flora. On the contrary, pine provides some of the most readily available food sources in nature.
Yeah...well, let's just get this over with.
The first thing you’ll want to do is to choose a large, mature pine tree since it provides the most inner bark without harming the tree. If you have white pine in your area, consider yourself lucky since it’s one of the biggest and tastiest of all the pines.
- With a heavy duty knife, drive the tip of the knife through the outer bark with a strong stick (this is where a good survival knife comes in handy).
- Then begin to pound the back of the blade with a strong stick to drive the edge of the knife down the bark. Continue doing this until you’ve made a decent size rectangle.
- Peel away the outer bark making sure to peel off the tender cambium layer (the inner bark) that comes with it.
- Continue peeling the larger sections of the inner bark.
- With a knife or other sharp object, scrape away the remaining inner bark stuck to the tree (this is the most tender and sweetest part of the inner bark).
There are three ways to eat the inner bark:
- Drying and Pounding into Flour
I’ll be covering the first two.
I find this the least palatable of all the options. Just peel the inner bark collected from the last step into thin pieces and boil them. The end result is a softer, less chewy version of the raw inner bark. Only slightly better than peeling it off the tree and stuffing it in your mouth.
This is by far the best tasting way to prepare pine bark (even my wife likes it). Like in the boiling step, peel the the inner bark into thin strips and simply fry them in some butter or oil until medium brown and crispy. Add a little bit of salt and it tastes like potato chips.
Free J.J. Arrington jersey to the first person to go eat some pine tree.