Connecticut Yankees have always taken pumpkin pie pretty seriously, especially at Thanksgiving, according to culinary educator, food journalist and TV chef Prudence Sloane. When the Connecticut River froze early in the fall of 1705, creating what might have been called The Great Molasses Shortage of 1705, the leaders of Colchester, Connecticut, postponed Thanksgiving until enough of the precious brown goo could be shipped in for the requisite pies. Sloane will expand on this delicious topic, and share other Thanksgiving gastronomic tidbits and trivia during her presentations at the upcoming 18th Century Thanksgiving Dinner at the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum, on November 17, 2013, from noon till 3 p.m.
Dressed in period clothing, Mr. and Mrs. Silas Deane will host the authentic Thanksgiving feast for up to 130 guests. Dinner will be preceded by a wine reception with light fare and 18th century music in the musicians’ gallery. Guests can explore the Silas Deane House and engage the Deanes and Sloane in conversation before dinner.
Shortly before 1 p.m., a servant will ring the dinner bell and invite the guests to the Webb Barn for dinner. Prior to the first course and again at dessert, Sloane will give entertaining presentations on table manners, foods, cooking and recipes of the New World in the 18th century.
Planned by a food historian, the authentic menu will include dishes typically served at Thanksgiving in the 1700s: venison pie, roasted goose and turkey, chine of pork, pottage of cabbage, leeks and onions, puddings and several vegetables, and, of course, pies of pumpkin and apple.
Tickets for the 18th-Century Thanksgiving Dinner are $85 per person, and include the wine and hors d’oeuvres reception, 18th century music and an optional tour of the three historic homes at the museum following the event. Reservations are required and available by calling (860) 529-0612, ext. 12.
211 Main Street
Wethersfield, CT 06109
The museum will also offer Thanksgiving tours every weekend throughout November, beginning Saturday, November 3. Guides will highlight Thanksgiving traditions in Colonial America in one-hour tours of the three meticulously restored homes at the museum. Thanksgiving Tours – Weekends throughout November: Saturdays, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sundays, 1 to 4 p.m. $10 per adult; $9 per senior over 60, AAA member and active military; $5 per student and children (5-18), $25 per family (2 adults + children).