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
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