A Bill of Fare

A Chyne of Beefe roasted

A cup of Sacke

A cup of small Beere

A Foole and A Tale of a Foole

A fresh Salmon

A Leicester-shire Frolick; Or, The valiant Cook-Maid

A messe of Mustard

A Pigge

A Posset

A Pudding-pye

A Spitch-cocke, or roasted Eele turn'd to a Bull



Powderd Beefe and Cabbage

Puddings and Sawsadges

Sixe six penny Mutton-pyes to make up the Feast

Strong Beere

Twelve Woodcockes in a Dish

Venison and Wine


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......"Being full of variety and witty mirth"
"Now Gentlemen Readers, or all of what degree so ever, that doe read this, I pray you all to take notice that you are my Guests, for the entertainment and Dyet you are like to have, I pray take it in good part."

Quotations from Taylor's Feast, 1638

Need a good laughe? Hungry for a jape or two? Then step into the Kitchen of Mirth where the table is set with humorous tales of cooks, kitchens, food, dining & eating, from both period & secondary sources. Here you will read of the miserly old Tanner and his pudding-pie, learn how to make your master a foole, see how 200 cooks prepare cheese for a wedding, and follow the adventure of poor old fat Gent and his unlucky Posset. Some of these tales may be a bit bawdy but all are wonderful examples of the humor of their time and are proof that throughout the ages, mirth is king at the dinner table.

  • A Bill of Fare - "A Bill of Fare, invented by the choisest Pallats of our time, both for Worth and Wit, wherein are appointed such Rare and Admirable Dishes, as are not to bee had every where..."
  • A Chyne of Beefe roasted - "A Faire Chyne of Beefe was once given to Mr. John Fletcher, (the poet) he pray'd his Hostesse, (being an old woman neere the Bank-side, where he lodged) to salt it well seven or eight daies..."
  • A cup of Sacke - "Now it is but folly to offer a little Sacke to my Readers, for it is not a little or small Sack that can hold them; yet for all that they may hold or contayne a little Sacke..."
  • A cup of small Beere - "A Gentleman that dwelt tenne miles from London, sent his Footman in all haste to the Citty, to tell a Merchant welcome newes of a rich Unkle of his lately dead, that had left him somewhat to make him merry for his Death, with an out-side mourning in Blacke, and an in-side laughing with Sacke..."
  • A Foole and A Tale of a Foole - "To furnish a Feast compleatly, there must be Tarts, Custards, Flawnes, Flap-jackets, and by al meanes a Foole or two..."
  • A fresh Salmon - "The good, old, and truely right Honourable Charles Earle of Nottingham, Lord High Admirall of England, whose renowned memory shall nver bee forgotten untill his bounteous Houskeeping bee generally imitated..."
  • A Leicester-shire Frolick; Or, The valiant Cook-Maid - "Being a merry composed jest of Five Taylors that had been at work till their Wages came to 5 pounds, likewise a merry conceited Cook-maid that lived in the house, went to her Master and desired him to lend her a horse, and she would venture her skill to take the 5-pound from these five Taylors, without either Sword or Pistol, in a jesting way..."
  • A messe of Mustard - "Three Gentlemen of the ancient race of Redsbanks, (now called Highland-men, because they inhabite in the Mountaynous parts of the North of Scotland) these three having occasion to come into England..."
  • A Pigge - "A Collier, neere Croyden, having loaden his Cart with Coales for London, a woman that dwelt neare him that was Nurse to a Marchants child of the City, desired the Collier to remember her humble service to her Maister and Mistresse..."
  • A Posset - "The Kings-Head Taverne in Fleet-street, at Chancery-lane end, hath a long time bin a contenting well-custom'd House..."
  • A Pudding-pye - "An old rich Tanner, with a beggerly minde, did use Hartfourd Market constantly every Weeke..."
  • A Spitch-cocke, or roasted Eele turn'd to a Bull - "There was a great Dispute held amongst good fellows once, of what thing in the world would live longest after exquisite and extreame Torments: the Judgement was generall, that it was an Eele..."
  • Cheese - "One brag'd and boasted that when he was married, that he had at least two hundred Cookes to dresse his Wedding Dinner..."
  • Musicke - "Three of foure Gentlemen being merry with drinke and discourse in a Taverne, a Musitian proffer'd them Musicke, which was deny'd, within a little time after another ask'd the same question, Gentlemen, will you have any Musicke..."
  • Powderd Beefe and Cabbage - "A Water-man (now living) named Gilford, dwelt on the Bank-side, and comming home to his Dinner, which was Beefe and Cabbage..."
  • Puddings and Sawsadges - "The Pudding and the Sawsadges will bee cold Gentlemen, if you doe not fall to, and then they will not be worth a sir-reverance; and methinks it is an easie peece of Logick, to prove a Pudding to bee a perpetuall motion, for it is alwayes moving..."
  • Strong Beere - "Two soldiers of old acquaintance, having beene long asunder, chanced to meete, and after salutations they agree'd to enter an Ale-house..."
  • Twelve Woodcockes in a Dish - "About sixe or seaven new molded Gallants, (whose outsides were silke and slashes, and their insides jeeres and flashes) were invited to a worthy cittizens House to dinner, where amongst a great deale of other good cheare, there was brought to the Board a Jury of Woodcockes in one Dish..."
  • Venison and Wine - "A Gentleman dwelt two miles from a Market-towne, where (at a Taverne) hee caused some bottles of Wine to be fill'd to carry home, because he had invited some friends to his house to eate a Venison Pasty with him the next day..."

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