The Medieval Cookbook by Maggie Black

There are a few “medieval” cookbooks floating around, but this is the best I’ve seen so far. It’s the kind of cookbook that you can actually sit down and read through.

The recipes are divided by era, social class, and function. There’s a chapter on foods that were primarily associated with the cloister, for example, and a section for remedies. There are simple dishes with few ingredients that would be most appropriate for a side-dish or breakfast, and there are elaborate meals that belong more properly to a great feast.

Each recipe comes with a short introduction or with a contemporary passage describing the dish, followed by the ingredients list and instructions. Some license is taken with substitutions – sometimes multiple substitutions are indicated for choice – to deal with the fact that many of the ingredients are hard to find these days or no longer exist at all.

illustrations from contemporary sources are plentiful and printed in full colour, making this book a lovely source of medieval art as well.

I’ve tried a couple of the recipes over the years and enjoyed them. I’d love to throw a “Period Party” someday to really make use of this book.

Get cooking! Buy The Medieval Cookbook from Amazon to get started on your feast!