A Boke of Gode Cookery Presents
Medieval Recipe Translations

French iowtes

PERIOD: England, 14th century | SOURCE: Forme of Cury | CLASS: Authentic

DESCRIPTION: Peas porridge with onions


75. French iowtes. Take and seeþ white pesoun and take oute þe perry; & perboile erbis & hewe hem grete, & cast hem in a pot with the perry. Pulle oynouns & seeþ hem hole wel in water, & do hem to þe perry with oile & salt; colour it with safroun & messe it, and cast þeron powdour douce.

- Hieatt, Constance B. and Sharon Butler. Curye on Inglish: English Culinary Manuscripts of the Fourteenth-Century (Including the Forme of Cury). New York: for The Early English Text Society by the Oxford University Press, 1985.


French pot-herbs. Take and boil white peas and take out the purée; & parboil herbs & hew them great, & cast them in a pot with the purée. Pluck onions & boil them whole well in water, & do them to the purée with oil & salt; color it with saffron & serve it, and cast there-on powder douce.


  • Peas - white peas, are of course, different than what most people will be able to find; use whatever fresh pea is available to you. The original recipe does not say whether peas-in-pod or shelled peas are used, but from the way the directions are worded, it seems that shelled peas are probably what is being called for here.
  • Fresh herbs: parsley, thyme, mint, sage, basil, etc. - any fresh period herbs of your choice.
  • Onions - these need to be very small, and peeled but left whole.
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Saffron
  • Powder Douce - this was a Medieval blend of sweet spices, almost always containing sugar & cinnamon and never pepper, and with such other spices as nutmeg, clove, cardamom, etc. Essentially, what you need to do here is make a slightly sweet-tasting blend of sugar & cinnamon, with whatever other appropriate spices you'd like to include (but no pepper), to be sprinkled on the vegetables just before serving.

Boil the peas until very tender; remove from water and drain, then turn the cooked peas into a purée by either mashing or by using a blender or food processor. Place the peas in a large pot on very low heat. In a separate pot parboil the fresh herbs (keeping in mind that this means to partially cook by boiling). Remove the herbs from the water & press dry. Lightly mince the herbs and then add them to the purée. Boil the whole onions until tender, then add to the purée, along with a little olive oil, saffron, and salt to taste. Increase the heat to medium and allow the porridge to cook together for several minutes, stirring often to prevent sticking. Place in a serving bowl and generously sprinkle powder douce on top. Serve.


A Boke of Gode CookeryMedieval Recipe Translations

French iowtes © 2000 James L. Matterer

Medieval Recipe Translations

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