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Hearty English Lunch Menu

Hard Eggs

Farced Eggs

Pickled Cowcumbers

Hartichokes in Brine


Rapes in Potage ( Beef Broth with Vegetables)

Costermonger Soup (Vegetarian version of beef broth)

Rastons (with and without meat)

Sweet Mustard




Ginger cookies


Lemon Juice

Farced Eggs

Sodde Eggs: Seethe your Egges almost harde, then peele them and cut them in quarters, then take a little Butter in a frying panne and melt it a little browne, then put to it in to the panne, a little Vinegar, Mustarde, Pepper and Salte, and then put it into a platter upon your Egges.
[J. Partridge, "The Widowes treasure," London 1585 - Leeds University,
Preston collection P/K1 1585.]

Eggs farced [la Varenne #1 p294]
Take sorrell, alone if you will, or with other herbs, wash and swing them,
then mince them very small, and put between two dishes with fresh butter,
or passe them in the panne; after they are passed, soak and season them;
after your farce is sod, take some hard eggs, cut them into halfs, a
crosse, or in length, and take out the yolks, and mince them with your
farce, and after all is well mixed, stew them over the fire, and put to it
a little nutmeg, and serve garnished with the whites of your eggs which you
may make brown in the pan with brown butter.

(Note: The combination of butter, vinegar or acidic sorrel juice and / or mustard and the egg yolks essentially makes mayonnaise in situ.)
Redaction (Lady Mairghread and most of the world!):
Hardboil eggs and halve.
Remove yolks and mince with mayonnaise and some mustard til just moist. Season with salt and pepper.
Stuff egg whites and garnish with green herbs.

Pickled Cowcumbers or Hartichokes

This recipe is no trouble at all and will do for either artichokes or cowcumbers (cucumbers).

To Keep Hartichokes All the Yeare
First take a gallon of faire water & another of the strongest verjuice & a good handful of salt and put them on the fire & boil them and scum them clean, take half an handful of fennel& half a handful of hyssop cleane and washed &put into the brine and boil it altogether, & when it is throwly boiled to a good sharp brine, then throw in the artichokes and scald them & pluck them out again & then let the artichohes and brine be thhrowe cold again before you put them up, then put the bottoms downward and the herbs on top, & let the brine always cover them. Even so I use the Cowcumbers.

Elinor Fettiplace’s Receipt Book, Elizabethean Country House Cooking, Hilary Spurling

Rapes in Potage

[or Carrots or Parsnips]

Curye on Inglysch p. 99 (Forme of Cury no. 7)
Take rapus and make hem clene, and waissh hem clene; quarter hem; perboile hem, take hem vp. Cast hem in a gode broth and see+ hem; mynce oynouns and cast + erto safroun and salt, and messe it forth with powdour douce. In the self wise make of pastunakes and skyrwittes.

Note: rapes are turnips; pasternakes are either parsnips or carrots; skirrets are, according to the OED, "a species of water parsnip, formerly much cultivated in Europe for its esculent tubers." We have never found them available in the market.
1 lb turnips, carrots, and parsnips
2 C Rich Beef Broth or vegetarian broth
1/2 lb onions
6 threads saffron
3/4 t salt
Wash, peel, and quarter turnips (or cut into eighths if they are large), cover with boiling water and parboil for 15 minutes. If you are using carrots or parsnips, clean them and cut them up into large bite-sized pieces and parboil 10 minutes. Mince onions. Drain turnips, carrots, or parsnips, and put them with onions and broth in a pot and bring to a boil. Crush saffron into about 1 t of the broth and add seasonings to potage. Cook another 15-20 minutes, until turnips or carrots are soft to a fork and some of the liquid is boiled down.
From Cariadoc’s Miscellany: Soups

Costermonger Soup

Coster comes from Costard, a type of cooking apple, monger means trader or seller a greengrocer, seller of fruit and vegetables. Shakespeare has many references to costards.

This is simply our vegetarian version of the Rapes in Potage


Take fair Flour, & the white of Eggs, & the yolk, a little; then take Warm Barm, & put all these together, & beat them together with thine hand till it is short & thick enough, & cast Sugar enough thereto, & then let rest a while; then cast in a fair place in the oven, & let bake enough; & then with a knife cut it round above in manner of a crown, & keep the crust that thou cut; & then pick all the crumbs within together, and pick them small with thine knife, & save the sides & all the crust whole without; & then cast therein clarified Butter, & Mix the crumbs & the butter together, & cover it again with the crust, that thou cuttest away; then put it in the oven again a little time; & then take it out, & serve it forth.

From “Take a Thousand Eggs or More”, Copyright 1990, 1997, Cindy Renfrow

Using Ms. Renfrow’s idea of simply making a bread dough and restuffing with breadcrumbs and something more substantial such as meat and/or cheese, a minced beef and a cheddar cheese and onion version have been prepared for this lunch.

Sweet Mustard

The Closet of the Eminently Learned Sir Kenelme Digby, Kt Opened. 1669, provides two recipes for making mustard.

To make Mustard
The best way of making Mustard is this: Take of the best Mustard-seed (which is black) for example, a quart. Dry it gently in an Oven, and beat it to a subtle powder, and searse it. Then mingle well strong Wine-vinegar with it, so much that it be pretty liquid, for it will dry with keeping. Put to this a little Pepper beaten small (white is the best) at discretion, as about a good pugil, and put a good spoonful of Sugar to it (which is not to make it taste sweet, but rather quick, and to help the fermentation) lay a good Onion in the bottom, quartered if you will, and a race of Ginger scraped and bruised; and stir it often with an Horseradish root cleansed, which let always lie in the pot till it have lost its virtue, then take a new one. This will keep long, and grow better for a while. It is not good till after a month, that it hath fermented a while.
Some think it will be the quicker, if the seed be ground with fair water, instead of Vinegar, putting store of Onions in it.

My lady Holmeby makes her quick fine Mustard thus: Choose true Mustard-seed; dry it in an Oven after the bread is out. Beat and searse it to a most subtle powder. Mingle Sherry-sack with it (stirring it a long time very well, so much as to have it of a fit consistence for Mustard. Then put a good quantity of fine Sugar to it, as five or six spoonfuls, or more, to a pint of Mustard. Stir and incorporate all well together. This will keep good a long time. Some do like to put to it a little (but a little) of very sharp Wine-vinegar.

We used honey for the sweetener – a more early period practice.
Honey Mustard (Lady Mairghread)
Roast mustard seeds and grind coarsely.
Use one part balsamic vinegar (add after honey)
Two parts honey
½ part mustard flour and ½ part ground mustard
1/8 part horseradish
season with tumeric, salt, pepper, ginger
Age at least three weeks for euceric acid from mustard to mellow.

Ginger Cookies

The Tudor Kitchen Cookery Book give the following recipe for "Gyngerbrede".
Their source is T. Austin: Two Fifteenth Century Cookery Books, 1888.

Take a quart of honey and sethe it and skime it clene; take Safroun, pouder Pepir and throw theron; take gratyd Brede and make it so chargeant that it wol be y-lechyd; then take pouder canelle and straw ther-on y-now; then make it square, lyke as thou wolt leche yt; take when tho lechyst hyt, an caste Box leves a -bowyn, y-stykyd ther-on, on clowys. An if thou wold have it Red, colour it with Saunderys y-now.

Although there are redactions using breadcrumbs instead of flour, the flour-based version from Lady Nivah was used:
Bake at 350 degrees
Blend in large bowl:
2 ½ cups flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1 tsp. cloves
2 12/ tsp. soda
½ tsp. salt
Heat in heavy sauce pan until almost boiling:
1 cup sugar
¾ cup butter or shortening
1/3 to ½ cup molasses
Add to dry ingredients blending well. Roll to approximately ¼ “thickness on lightly floured surface. May need to add a few drops hot water if dough becomes too dry to handle.

Amish molasses was used which has is less processed and although not the honey of the 15th century recipe, a much more authentic sweetner than commercial molasses or brown sugar.


To Make Fine Cakes
Take a quantity of fine wheate Flower, and put it in an earthen pot. Stop it close and set it in an Oven, and bake it as long as you would a Pasty of Venison, and when it is baked it will be full of clods. Then searce your flower through a fine sercer. Then take clouted Creame of sweet butter, but Creame is best: then take sugar, clove, Mace, saffron and yolks of eggs, so much as wil seeme to season to season your flower. Then put these things into the Creame, temper all together. Then put thereto your flower. So make your cakes. The paste will be very short: therefore make them very little. Lay paper under them.
John Patridge, The Widowes Treasure, 1585

Shield Cookies (another redaction from Lady Nivah)

Bake at 350 degrees
Beat until pale yellow:
1 cup butter or margarine
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
4 cups flour
½ tsp. soda
½ tsp. salt
Pinch nutmeg

Blend well then refrigerate until chilled. Roll out on floured surface. The thinner you roll it the crisper the cookie. Does freeze well!

Lemon Juice

#1 Lemonade
Adapted from _The French Cook_ by Francois Pierre de La Varenne [Anr ed.] For Charls Adams, 1654. 12?. University Microfilms International.
(1653 English translation of the 1651 text). Page 288-9

How to make lemonade
It is made several ways, according to the diversity of the ingredients.
For to make it with jasmine, you must take of it about two handful, infuse it in two or three quarts of water, and there leave it for the space of eight or ten hours; then to one quart of water you shal put fix ounces of sugar; those of orange flowers, of muscade roses & of gilli flowers are made after the fame way. For to make that of lemon, take some lemons, cut them and take out the juice, put it in water as above said, pare another lemon, cut it into slices, put it among this juice,
and some sugar proportionally.
That of orange is made the same way.

1 cup lemon juice
1 cup sugar
2 cups water
additional flowers (lemon slices used here) as desired

Boil the water and sugar together, allow to cool slightly and add the lemon juice. Serve cold. The very late recipe (1651) for lemonade includes the addition of flowers, including jasmine, orange blossoms, muscade roses or gilly-flowers. The flowers should be added as an infusion and removed before drinking. Remember that the flowers will carry wild yeast and will ferment your lemonade if it is not kept under constant refrigeration.

From Stefan’s Florilegium


Our Perry is pear nectar cut with apple juice and is of course non-alcoholic!

Perry: "A fermented drink made like cider but with pear instead of apple juice. It has been made since ancient
times in western France: Normandy, Britanny, and Maine.”

Davies, Stuart. "'Vinetum Britannicum': Cider and Perry in the Seventeenth Century". Liquid Nourishment. Series: Food and Society, edited by C. Anne Wilson.[papers from the 5th Leeds Symposium, 1990]
Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1993. pages 79-105.

From Stefan’s Florilegium