Tuesday, September 15, 2009

book of seasons: A brief history of Thanksgiving

clipped from www.mentalfloss.com

blog it
Mental Floss has a nice, brief history of the first Thanksgiving, including a few of the foods that were served at that first festival (which was three days long).

There were no pumpkin pies or cranberry sauce, no sweet or white potatoes. Yes, there was turkey, but there was also venison, swans, ducks, partridges and seafood including lobsters, clams and eel. The vegetables were usually stewed: squash (including pumpkins - a new treat for the Pilgrims) onions, beans, peas and carrots. There was no sugar available, so they satisfied their sweet tooth with corn pudding and dried berries.

All this was cooked primarily by the nine surviving females: four married women and five adolescent girls. Fire roasting (such as venison) was handled by the men.

Water at the time could easily be contaminated, so the Pilgrims and their Native American guests drank beer and occasionally goat's milk. No cows at that time, either.

There are some good links to authentic recipes and more history, too.


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