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How to Cook Medieval

Medieval and Renaissance Wedding Feasts

The Wedding Feast of Ammabelle and Rhuadhagan, June 5, 1993

For this wedding, the bride and groom were both medieval enthusiasts, but wanted food that their non-medieval friends and family would appreciate. The menu was therefore a mixture of authentic, semi-authentic, and modern foods, with hearts and cherubs as a motif. The bride herself chose many of the items, including most of the hors d'ouvres and the subtleties (the desserts). The bride also made a beautiful wedding cake decorated with fresh flowers; champagne & wine were served throughout the dinner.

  • Hors d'Ouvres
    • Pandemayn and Butter - freshly baked white bread with bowls of whipped butter, presented on a cutting board for guests to serve themselves.
    • Sugared Almonds - this recipe is found HERE.
    • Cucumber Hearts - large cucumbers were peeled, then sliced into thin rounds. Each slice was cut into a heart-shape using a cookie cutter. A dab of creme fraische was placed in the center of each.
    • Honey-Mustard Eggs - hard-boiled eggs, cut in half, with the yolks removed. The yolks were blended with honey & French mustard and then were decoratively piped back into the hollow of the egg halves.
    • Puff Pastry Cheese Straws - puff pastry was blended with freshly grated Romano & Parmesan cheeses, then rolled out & cut into long strips. Each strip was twisted cork-screw fashion, then baked.
    • Scones and Spiced Jelly - a traditional recipe for scones was used, and were served with bowls of various spiced jellies.
  • Second Course
    • Chilled Fruit Soup - this recipe is found HERE.
    • Sallet - this recipe is found HERE.
    • Pickled Carrots and Pears - this recipe is found HERE.
    • Rys of Mousserounes - this was a simple dish of rice cooked in broth, along with sliced sautéed mushrooms, and colored a golden yellow with with Turmeric.
    • Egurduce (Sweet & Sour Chicken) - this recipe is found HERE, substituting chicken for rabbit.
    • Cherry Hearts - small, heart-shaped tarts, filled with cherry sauce. The top of the tarts had a small, heart-shaped opening in the center which revealed the red cherry sauce within.
  • Subtleties
    • Rolled Pizzelles - this recipe is found HERE. As soon as the pizzelles were removed from the iron, they were rolled around the handle of a wooden spoon to create a hollow tube, then were allowed to cool & harden in that position. Just before serving they were stuffed with whipped cream.
    • Fresh Fruits - strawberries, grapes, etc.
    • Chocolate Hearts - large heart-shaped cookies made with extra rich baker's cocoa.
    • Croquembouche - the traditional French dessert; small cream puffs filled with lemon cream were arranged into a tall cone-shape and then glazed with caramel. The final product was decorated with cherubs made of sugar paste.
    • Mock Swan - a swan was crafted out of an oval-shaped loaf of bread and a S-shaped loaf of bread; the oval shape had the top cut off and the inside was hollowed out. The S-shape was was cut, fitted, & positioned against the oval to be the long neck and head. The top part of the oval loaf was cut lengthwise to make wings. The body was filled with strawberries in a sugar sauce and the wings were placed on top so that it appeared that the swan had its wings open. A beak was made from a quartered-lemon peel and held in place on the "head" with large cloves. The entire bird was decorated with "feathers" made by piping on white icing in decorative patterns & swirls.
    • Chocolates and Sugar Paste - various romantic shapes, such as cherubs, hearts, flowers, etc., were made out of chocolate and sugar paste and were used liberally to decorate the tables.

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How to Cook Medieval & Renaissance Wedding Feasts
© James L. Matterer

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