Human evolution Intelligent Design

Cooking skills in Australia at 65,000 years ago

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At Madjedbebe in Western Arnhem Land:

Australia’s first people ate a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts and other plant foods, many of which would have taken considerable time and knowledge to prepare, according to our analysis of charred plant remains from a site dating back to 65,000 years ago…

Among the charred plant remains are fruit pips, nutshells, peelings and fibrous parts from tubers, and fragments of palm stem. These are the discarded leftovers of meals cooked and shared at the rockshelter tens of thousands of years ago…

Some foods, such as fruits, required minimal processing. But others, such as the man-kindjek or cheeky yam, needed to be cooked, leached and/or pounded before being eaten. Some of these preparation techniques can take up to several days…

There is also evidence for the further processing of plants, including seed-grinding, left as microscopic traces on the grinding stones found in the same archaeological layer at the site. This represents the first evidence of seed-grinding outside Africa.

S. Anna Florin, Andrew Fairbairn, and Chris Clarkson, “65,000-year-old plant remains show the earliest Australians spent plenty of time cooking” at The Conversation

Paper. (open access)

The researchers say that these complex food preparation skills show that these people groups were technologically innovative and did not just forage, eating shellfish and such.

Like the Neanderthals, they get smarter each time we run into them. Must be something in the water.

2 Replies to “Cooking skills in Australia at 65,000 years ago

  1. 1
    EDTA says:

    But did any of them have their own cable cooking channel? Hmm?

  2. 2
    polistra says:

    Even more amazing, the ancients did all this without wearing masks or Lucite Darth Vader Helmets. How did they ever survive? How did they fight viruses without Lucite? Maybe they had some kind of mysterious internal mechanism that we haven’t discovered yet?

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