Meal sharing and food consumption were symbolic as well as functional practices for the Spanish-colonial residents of the Presidio of San Francisco. The diet and cuisine of the settlers is reconstructed through historical research (memoires, requisitions, and invoices), zooarchaeology (animal bone and shell) and archaeobotany (preserved plant specimens). The results showed that colonial settlers relied heavily on beef, supplementing their diet with chickens, sheep, goat, and wild game. However, shellfish, which was easily available on the local bayshore, was not widely eaten. Wheat, corn, and beans were supplemented by some edible wild plants. Ceramic analysis indicates that most foods were prepared for households or other small social groups. The military settlers shared a common practice of preparing liquid based foods such stews, soups, gruels, and atoles.
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