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The Medieval Cookbook

by Maggie Black

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404744,658 (3.65)5
"This book takes the reader on a gastronomic journey through the Middle Ages, offering not only a collection of medieval recipes, but a social history of the time. The eighty recipes, drawn from the earliest English cookbooks of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, are presented in two formats: the original middle English version and one adapted and tested for the modern cook. In a fascinating introduction, the author describes the range of available ingredients in medieval times and the meals that could be prepared from them--from simple daily snacks to celebratory feasts--as well as the preparation of the table, prescribed dining etiquette, and the various entertainments that accompanied elite banquets. Each chapter presents a series of recipes inspired by a historical event, a piece of literature, or a social occasion. Here we find descriptions of the grilled meats consumed by William the Conqueror's invading forces; the pies and puddings enjoyed by the pilgrims in Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales; and the more sumptuous fare served at royal feasts and Christmas celebrations. The author ends with a discussion of herbal recipes for various ailments. Beautifully illustrated with lively dining scenes from illuminated manuscripts and tapestries, this book serves up a delightful literary and visual repast for anyone interested in the history of food and dining. "--"Explores the cuisine of the Middle Ages within its historical context, examining its relationship with religion and with different classes of society. Includes recipes drawn from medieval manuscripts and adapts recipes for modern cooking"--… (more)

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» See also 5 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
The new edition is better set than the old one. Otherwise very little change.
  MarthaJeanne | Dec 2, 2018 |
I am yet to try any of the recipes. However it has good chapter introductions and interesting recipes - quite a few of which I do want to try.

A few points of critique - which is properly due to the age of the book
- She is using a blender quite a lot which makes it harder to see how to use the recipe in a reenactment setting.
- I don't read old english (as english is not my first language) so when she refers to the original recipe (printed at the top of each page) she looses me.
- I am really missing a introduction to each recipe - many of them complacently foreign to me both because of the name and the age of the dish.
- I really wish for pictures of the dishes - luckly the internet can often help with that.

But it was an inspiring read and I read it all in a day.

My review: http://www.mackat.dk/postej/2016/10/20/the-medieval-cookbook/ ( )
  macthekat82 | May 26, 2018 |
Want to throw a medieval feast? This is the book you need. Lots of great recipes and stories to give you a foundation of historical background on feasting in the Middle Ages. The barley bread recipe is fantastic! ( )
  Steve.Bivans | Jul 20, 2014 |
good collection of recipes, better if each recipe included time period and geographic spread ( )
  chuckre | Jan 10, 2010 |
Recipes with redactions with some history thrown in there ( )
  SeraSolig | Feb 18, 2009 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
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Medieval Cookery: Recipes and History, English Heritage (2003) is not the same book as The Medieval Cookbook, Thames & Hudson (1996)
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