The Neanderthal approach to spiced food

Prehistoric food 525

A recent visit to Penzey’s recently was quite enlightening in showing how adding spices to foods has been kicked up to the next level – about half the store was dedicated to specialty spice blends named after geographic territories (Northwoods, Bangkok), purposes (BBQ 3000, Apple Pie), audience (Salad lovers, Forward!) and others.  Apparently, a sprinkling of plain paprika no longer suffices.

So this NPR article, Stone Age Chefs Spiced Up Food Even 6,000 Years Ago, is quite appropos. Archaeologists have proven that when our forebears roasted meats, it may well have been flavored.  Specifically, they discovered mustard garlic seeds crushed in cooking pots, mixed with  charred meat or fish. Crushed, these seeds add a hot “Wasabi-like” flavor, but no nutritional value, so it’s reasonable they were added solely for flavor.

Can the next spice blend – “Neanderthal” – be far behind?

Photo Courtesy of University of York

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One Comment

  • FuzzyChef  on  September 21, 2013

    Huh! I guess the Paleo dieters get to season their food after all!

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