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England, 15. Jhd.

Frumenty was one the most popular foods of the Middle Ages, used as an accompaniment to roast meat, venison being particularly favored. However, this particular recipe was intended for Lent and was meant to be served with boiled porpoise! Frumenty recipes appear throughout surviving period cookbooks & manuscripts, proving that its preparation was wide-spread and common. Apparently, any cook worth his or her salt could prepare this dish.

16. Frumente yn lentyn.

Take clene pykyd whete. Bray hit yn a morter, and fanne it clene, & seth hit tyl hit be brokyn. Than grynd blanchid almondys yn a morter; draw therof a mylke. Do hit togedyr & boyle hit tyl hit be resonabull thykke: than loke thy whete be tendyr. Colour hit up with safferyn. Lech thy purpas when hit ys sodyn, than ley hit on disches by hitsylfe, and serve hit forth with frumente.

Frumenty in Lent.

Take clean picked wheat. Pound it in a morter, and remove the hull, & boil it until it cracks. Then grind blanched almonds in a morter; make an almond milk. Add the wheat to the almond milk & boil until reasonably thick; make sure the wheat is tender. Color it with saffron. Cut your porpoise after it's boiled, then set it in dishes with nothing else, and serve it with frumenty.

Hieatt, Constance B. An Ordinance of Pottage. An Edition of the Fifteenth Century Culinary Recipes in Yale University's MS Beinecke 163. London: Prospect Books Ltd, 1988; A Boke of Gode Cookery


England, 15. Jhd.

To make frumente.

Tak clene whete & braye yt wel in a morter tyl the holes gon of; sethe it til it breste in water. Nym it up & lat it cole. Tak good broth & sweet mylk of kyn or of almand & tempere it therwith. Nym yelkys of eyren rawe & saffroun & cast therto; salt it; lat it naught boyle after the eyren ben cast therinne. Messe if forth with venesoun or with fat motoun fresch.

Curye on Inglysch, 15. Jhd., Bill Gambers/Ken Withers


England, 14. Jhd.

At the recent Robin Hood Tourney, several of you were so good as to complement the dessert served, and to ask that I publish the recipe. The dessert was a furmente of wheat served with fresh fruit and sweetened cream. Most period cookbooks make reference to a furmente as either a sweetened or savory porridge of wheat or other grain. There are recipes for furmentes with pork, with beef, with various vegetables, and even with fish or porpoise, but I have too often seen savory furmentes served at table and sent back to the kitchen uneaten - modern palates are simply not ready for something that looks like oatmeal with a little fish stew mixed in. However, sweet furmente is almost always well received.
The original recipe printed here is from A Noble Boke off Cookry. It was first printed in 1467, but contains many earlier recipes — some of them identical to those published in The Form of Cury which was compiled about 1390 by the cooks of Richard II's household.


To mak furmente tak whet and pik it clene and put it in a mortair and bray it till it hull then wenowe it and weſshe it and put it unto the pot and boile it till it breſt then ſett it down and play it up with cow mylk till yt be enoughe alay it with youlks of eggs and kep it that it byrn not, colour it with saffron do ther to ſugar and ſalt it and ſerve it.

A Noble Boke off Cookry, 1467; Elaina de Sinistre, The Stewpot Period Culinary Guild (SCA)