February until April, gathering wild onions is big event for many members of Five Civilized tribes in Oklahoma. Wild onion dinners are the fruits of their labor. The dinners are traditionally held in homes, community centers and churches. Wild onions are sometimes prepared with scrambled eggs (although not always) and poke sallet.
Some dinners have been served in the same place for nearly a century-like Haikey Chapel in Tulsa. On a recent Saturday, there was a line about a hundred deep waiting to eat wild onions with scrambled eggs, salt pork, beans, corn, fry bread and grape dumplings. Some have attended this dinner since they were kids, others were in line for the first time. Many said it was the cooking that kept them coming back.
Haikey Chapel has a long history in the community and many descendants of the original family attend church here-one was even doing the cooking on Saturday-Sunrise Tiger Ross. As she sauteed onions alongside her sister and cousin in a tent near the church she said, “Hopefully our grandmothers are happy with what we’re serving today.”