Published on November 20, 2012
Curious about how the first Thanksgiving feast may have looked like back in 1621? Some of the traditional foods have modified over the years, but many have remained the same. For starters, the Wampanoag Native people and the Pilgrims enjoyed several protein-rich meats, not just turkey, which included duck, geese, venison, cod and pigeon. The Plymouth Rock feasters also had their own versions of stuffing and gravy to accompany their meat. Mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes were absent from the dinner table, but turnips, carrots and artichokes were staples. Sweet foods like cranberry sauce and pumpkin pies were actually healthier back in 1621 because they were made without sugar, an ingredient that was not readily available or affordable. Despite the differences among Thanksgiving dinner then and now, it remains a day to gather with family and friends and give thanks for health and happiness.