5 Best Thanksgiving Dishes from Native Foods

 It is officially November and Thanksgiving is around the corner.

Ever wonder what native plants and animals were served at the first Thanksgivings?

Here are five dishes that feature native plants and animals to North America. Whether you’re looking for something simple to cook up for yourself or something to impress the entire family with, your cooking prowess, here’s a recipe for you:

 

1. Three Sisters Salad

In Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) villages, as in many other Native communities, women planted, hoed, weeded, and harvested communally, often working in large groups. The staple crops they grew — corn, beans and squash — came to be known as The Three Sisters. Not only do the three foods grow well together (the beans climb the natural trellis provided by the cornstalks, while the broad-leaved squash plants spread out below, preventing weeds and keeping moisture in the soil), but when cooked together they provide nearly complete nutrition.

For the full recipe please visit the Native American Thanksgiving Menu

 

2. Acorn or Festival Squash stuffed with Simply Native’s Wild Rice Cereal

Fall’s quintessential vegetable, roasted acorn squash can do double duty when filled with a hearty mixture of wild rice, pecans, and cranberries. It can stand in as a substantial side, or star at the center of the plate. For pointers on safely splitting open hard squash, check out this video tip. The wild rice mixture can be made up to 2 days ahead; keep it refrigerated in an airtight container. And you can assemble the filling up to 6 hours ahead; just keep it covered in the fridge till you’re ready to stuff.

For Full Recipe: Acorn Squash stuffed with Simply Native’s Wild Rice Cereal

Native Foods: Festival Squash Stuffed with Wild Rice Cereal

3. Cornbread

At first, this may remind you of southern cooking. However, most Native Indian tribes prepared dough from maize, since it grew throughout the Americas. The Wompanoag did, too. At the first Thanksgiving, it is possible that this starchy staple came served with curds -- a dairy product similar to modern-day cottage cheese.

For many delicious full recipes: Cornbread – The Evolution of a Recipe

 

4. Wild Rice and Dried Cranberry Stuffing 

Perfect to stuff the big bird or have on the side. Enjoy all native plants in this delicious recipe. Also possible to use Simply Native Quick Cooking Wild Rice Cereal for a great base!

For the full recipe: Wild Rice and Dried Cranberry Stuffing

 

5. Pinon Soup

Leaving the most adventurous for last. This toasted pine-nut soup with a lamb bone, wild bird, and milk broth has hearty and hot components, owing to red chile powder, coriander, mint, and plentiful scallions.

For the full recipe: Native Pinon Soup

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