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Nov 20, 2018

Thanksgiving is a time when we pretty much know what's going to be on the dinner table. It's almost religion that we have turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie, cranberry sauce. But here's some hard truth: almost NONE of that was on the table at the first thanksgiving in 1621. CultureCast food editor Sasa Woodruff is here to blow our collective minds! 
Sasa also has some ideas for  old-school recipes for a more authentic Thanksgiving dinner. This come to us from Mrs. Hale's New Cook Book

Cider Shortcake:

"Cider cake is very good, to be baked in small loaves. 1 1/2 lb. of flour, half a pound of sugar, quarter of a pound of butter, half a pint of cider, 1 tea-spoonful of pearl ash; spice to your taste. Bake till it turns easily in the pans. I should think about half an hour."

Pumpkin Pie (American)

"Take out the seeds, and pare the pumpkin or squash; but in taking out the seeds do not scrape the inside of the pumpkin; the part nearest the seed is the sweetest, then stew the pumpkin, and strain it through a sieve or cullender. To a quart of milk, for a family pie, 3 eggs are sufficient. Stir in the stewed pumpkin with your milk and beaten-up eggs, till it is as thick as you can stir round rapidly and easily. If the pie is wanted richer make it thinner, and add sweet cream or another egg or two; but even 1 egg to a quart of milk makes " very decent pies.” Sweeten with molasses or sugar; add 2 tea-spoonsful of salt, 2 table-spoons-ful of sifted cinnamon, and 1 of powdered ginger; but allspice may be used, or any other spice that may be preferred. The peel of a lemon grated in gives it a pleasant flavor. The more eggs, says an American authority, the better the pie. Some put 1 egg to a gill of milk. Bake about an hour in deep plates, or shallow dishes, without an upper crust, in a hot oven."

Pumpkin Pie (English)
"Take out the seeds, and grate the pumpkin till you come to the outside skin. Sweeten the pulp; add a little ground allspice, lemon peel and lemon juice ; in short, flavor it to the taste. Bake without an upper crust. "

Carrot Pies
"These pies are made like pumpkin pies. The carrots should be boiled very tender, skinned, and sifted."

Squash Pie
"Pare, take out the seeds, and stew the squash till very soft, and dry. Strain or rub it through a sieve or cullender. Mix this with good milk till it is thick as batter: sweeten it with sugar. Allow 3 eggs to a quart of milk, beat the eggs well, add them to the squash, and season with rose water, cinnamon, nutmeg, or whatever spices you like. Line a pie plate with crust, fill and bake about an hour."

Custard Pie
"Beat 7 eggs, sweeten a quart of rich milk, that has been boiled and cooled; a stick of cinnamon, or a bit of lemon peel should be boiled in it. Sprinkle in a salt-spoon of salt, add the eggs, and a grated nutmeg, stirring the whole together.

"Line 2 deep plates with good paste, set them in the oven 3 minutes to harden the crust ; then pour in the custard and bake 20 minutes."