and a few other notes…….
There are no forks, just spoons and knives and fingers – be sure to wash you hands before the start of the meal!
Napkins are a good size and belong in your lap, or for the men if they so choose, over the left shoulder.
The table has a tablecloth, because eating off of bare wood is for hogs at a trough.
Salt and bread are placed on first – they are the least hospitality. They will also be the last things removed.
This bread is known as cheate bread. It is made from wheat that hasn’t been sifted; that is, whole wheat flour. In the 17th century there is also white bread (sifted flour) and brown bread (sometimes dried pease or dried beans were ground and added to the unsifted flour). Cheate is the common household bread. In New England cornmeal is added as well as wheat.
A platter of grapes, prunes (dried plums) and cheese are set to daintily eat while conversing.
A sallet of cucumbers is a salad made from cucumbers, vinegar, oil, salt, pepper and a little sugar. Salads are more like condiments then side dishes in the 17th century; they add flavor and variety to the meal.
The commonest drink in early New England is water. The Wampanoag name for Plymouth is Patuxet, meaning place of many springs.
Turkey is served with a sauce of onions and breadcrumbs. (Sauce for Turkie)
Squash is served stewed (Stewed Pompion).
Indian Pudding is called that because it uses Indian, or corn meal. (Indian Pudding)