Medieval Week

Forest Nymph

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When I'm annoyed with my life it helps me tremendously to engage in something creative. For me that something creative often involves a literary or historical angle, along with music, food, or dress.

I've decided a healthier way to stop obsessing over some things in my life is to try some Medieval cooking. I'm fascinated by the Medieval period because it's a time when Europeans lived with the land in a way normally credited to people of other cultures, and because Medieval people were much cleaner and more interesting than they're sometimes painted in Hollywood productions. Plus, they were mostly vegetarian.

I'm looking to get some dark rye bread this week instead of my usual sourdough, make some pottages instead of curries or veggie burgers, and maybe something else fun.

I'm probably going to start with making vegetable pottage, getting a nice local loaf of bread and eating it with Earth Balance in place of butter, some local apples...but I'm looking for other "peasant" Medieval recipes that you may be aware of that are either vegan or could be easily be made vegan with subs.

Thanks!
 
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Linz2016

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Depends on which area of Europe you're interested in, or if regional accuracy is a major issue.

In England, as well as pottage and rye bread; Cabbage, beans and possibly lentils peas, berries, apples, eggs. If they could afford it, they'd have had a cow, so they'd have had butter/buttermilk, cheese and the curds and whey of Little Miss Muffet fame. No spices - they were for the rich.

This link might prove useful - if you haven't already come across it;


I haven't read this link, personally, but it came up on a Google search;

If looking at Europe as a whole, this might be useful to you;

 

Forest Nymph

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Depends on which area of Europe you're interested in, or if regional accuracy is a major issue.

In England, as well as pottage and rye bread; Cabbage, beans and possibly lentils peas, berries, apples, eggs. If they could afford it, they'd have had a cow, so they'd have had butter/buttermilk, cheese and the curds and whey of Little Miss Muffet fame. No spices - they were for the rich.

This link might prove useful - if you haven't already come across it;


I haven't read this link, personally, but it came up on a Google search;

If looking at Europe as a whole, this might be useful to you;

Ah yes curds and whey, I did know about that one and the eggs, I actually LOVED cottage cheese when I was vegetarian. I grew up with it, it was something my grandparents could actually make me eat. My grandfather ate it with black pepper which I thought was super gross.

Lentils and peas sound good, and I know that there were no curries or fancy Asian spices, but there were herbs and flowers, like lavender, rosemary and thyme.

Thanks for your input. What fascinates me about the Medieval peasant diet is that it isn't wildly different from the way present day poorer people eat in India. Except for the cabbage. Cottage cheese is kind of a British "paneer" type of cheese, and the lentils and peas, and bias towards grains and being all or mostly vegetarian. Yeah spices and herbs are different, but the basic structure of the diet suggests to me something that is healthy and sustainable. Like being mostly plant based with a conservative amount of dairy or eggs seems very rational in a time (or a socioeconomic place) where veganism isn't possible.

I think rhubarb was popular as well. I'll check out your links. Thanks!
 
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