If you’re looking for the quintessential Thanksgiving experience then plan to visit Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, MA. http://www.plimoth.org/
Plimoth Plantation is a bi-cultural museum that has exhibits about the Wampanoag People and the Colonial English community in the 1600s.Additionally, they have special programs and live interpreters. Each year, nearly half a million modern-day “Pilgrims” come from all over the world to step almost four centuries back in time and become part of the living history experience at Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts. Through its primary living history exhibits, the 1627 English Village and the Wampanoag (Wampanoag) Homesite, Plimoth Plantation seeks to re-create the people, time and place of 17th-century Plymouth. Specially trained staff members, painstaking research, period costumes and dialect, authentically reproduced buildings and artifacts are some of the vital components of this unique experience. On the third of the museum’s main sites, Mayflower II (a full-scale reproduction of a 17th-century vessel), visitors learn about the Pilgrims’ 1620.
Stick around and enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving feast:
When: Thursday, November 26, 2015, 6 – 7pm
Where: Henry Hornblower II Visitor Center (casual dress)
Cost: Non-Member Adults, $95.00; Non-Member children (under 12), $69.00; Member Adult, $75.00; Member Child, $56.00. Prices include museum admission and tax.
Split Pea Soup
Roast Native Turkey with Giblet Gravy
Traditional Stuffing with Bell’s Seasoning
Steamed White Turnip
Hot Crusty Rolls
Homemade Pumpkin Pie
(Meal includes Wood-pressed Apple Cider and Fall Harvest Fruits & Assorted Nuts)
FYI: The First Thanksgiving was a celebration of the first harvest had by Pilgrims in the US, and was a festival with the 50 or so Pilgrims plus just under 100 native Americans. The food therefore was a mix of what the English settlers knew about and/or brought with them, plus what the native Americans brought in to the feast. A letter written by one of the pilgrims mentions that they served venison (wild deer) and wild fowl – probably turkey, duck and goose. Rabbit would also have been served. Other traditional items served at an English feast would have included cornbread and pudding. Cheese was a tasty treat. Vegetables would have included corn, onions and pumpkin. They did NOT eat corn on the cob at the time, the corn was only suitable for dishes and meal. Fish was usually not served at great feasts because it was too “common”, but there might have been some lobster or cod. Note that the first Thanksgiving would not have had sweet desserts, and there was no popcorn at the time. Feasters were usually too stuffed by the end of the meal to think about eating anything else! As you might imagine when cooking for 150+ people, the meal was not high on intricate cooking. However, the food was very tasty, as both the English and the native Americans knew about how to plan for large parties. There were no forks at the time – just knives and spoons, and plates were usually wooden. Here are some suggestions for recipes with a 1600s flair. Note that the early pilgrims did NOT have pigs so anything involving ham or bacon would be inappropriate. Also note that cranberry was not introduced until many years later.
Cornbread – admired by both the English and Native Americans
English Cheese Pie – cheese was important to the English
Venison – five deer were brought by the Native Americans
Wild Turkey – Native Americans and English alike enjoyed this meal
Garlic and Onions – staples of the diet
Pumpkin Pudding – there wasn’t pumpkin pie at the time
Indian Pudding – can be served as a warm or cold dessert