Elizabethan Food - Cooking Utensils
A large amount of Elizabethan cooking was conducted over an open flame. Useful cooking utensils for this method of cooking Elizabethan food were pots, pans, kettles, skillets and cauldrons. To prepare the food a range of knives, ladles, meat forks and scissors were used. Instead of a baking tin, Elizabethan cooks used a baking tray made of hardened pastry, which was unnervingly called a ‘coffin’. The mortar and pestle were essential cooking utensils for cooks who used nuts spices in their recipes. Each cook kept a book of their own recipes.
Elizabethan Convenience Food?
Did people in the Elizabethan era have convenience food? Yes. Biscuits were invented by the Crusaders. The 'Ploughman's Lunch' of bread and cheese was a staple diet of Lower Class workers. Communal ovens were available in villages for baking. And pastries and pies were sold as was ready cooked roasted meat. A day out at the London Theatre, or a fair, would bring in a good trade in convenience foods.
Water was not clean in the Middle Ages and people therefore drank wine and ale. The rich drank both and the poor just drank ale. Honey was used to make a sweet alcoholic drink called mead which was drunk by all classes. Wine was generally imported although some fruit wines were produced in England. A form of cider referred to as 'Apple-wine' was also produced. Ales were brewed with malt and water, while beer contained hops that held a bitter flavor. Other flavors were added to ales and beers such as bayberries, orris, or long pepper. Consumption of weak, low-alcohol drinks at this time has been estimated at around one gallon per person per day.
Interesting Facts and Information about Elizabethan Food
Additional interesting facts and information about Elizabethan Food may be accesses by clicking the links at the top of the page. For a selection of Old Elizabethan Recipes please click the following link.