Dinner scene from the Luttrell Psalter (c.1320-1340, Lincolnshire, England)
I first began this series on medieval food by questioning what sort of experience one would have if transported back in time to a 13th century dinner table.
The time has now come to take a seat at said table and finish finding out.
The very first point of difference one might encounter relates to the time of day “dinner” was actually served. One might expect that turning up anywhere between 6:00 and 8:00pm as is common for modern dinners (particularly in North America) would also apply to the 13th century.
It’s that time of year again.
Summer is the best season there is. This may be my personal opinion on the matter, but I do believe there’s some degree of universal truth to it as well: the weather is warm, the days are long, people are friendlier and happier, and the clothing is less encumbering.
Cooking scene from the Luttrell Psalter (c.1320-1340, Lincolnshire, England)
In the medieval times, our modern emphasis on easy, speedy meals would’ve been an inconceivably foreign concept to a noble family.
In my previous post on medieval food, I discussed the raw ingredients that comprised medieval cookery.
In turning now to discuss how that cookery was done and what recipes often resulted, a key point made by Margaret Wade Labarge, author of Mistress, Maids and Men: Baronial Life in the Thirteenth Century, is as follows:
The medieval baron liked a complicated and highly seasoned dish. (p.118).
Xena looking stern and steely-eyed after a bath.
It was with season 2 of Xena Warrior Princess, I now recall, that I fell in love with the show.
Thinking back on it, season 2 may well have been the first season I actually saw. My memory of it all is rather cloudy. While watching season 1, I remembered every episode, but for some reason don’t recall having viewed them on TV, at least not from the beginning.
In any case, I do remember that it was also season 2 that made me want to be an adventurer – to roam far and wide meeting people, solving problems, battling evil, and having fun.
No, I’m still not finished my WIP.
But honest to goodness, this last novel in my historical fiction trilogy is truly almost done. I know I’ve written about being close before, but now I’m really close. Like, a two-digit number of pages remaining that starts with 2 (or maybe even one!) close.
When last I wrote about my WIP’s impending end, I discussed various insights that had occurred to me as I continued along this process.
Well, a new level of nearness to the end has engendered an all new set of realizations:
Have you ever looked up the words your phone has added to the autocorrect list it draws from when you’re texting?
I’ve now owned a smartphone for a little over a year. Many people, I realize, have been smartphone users since the first Blackberrys and iPhones hit the market in 2003 and 2007 respectively.
But for me, getting a smartphone last year was a huge step. I was already worried I spent too much time on the computer without carrying one around in my pocket as well.
However, when the opportunity to acquire a smartphone cheaply presented itself, I decided to finally join the twenty-first century and embrace all the convenience the technology has to offer.
Like 17 million other people, I’ve been watching Empire.
And in keeping with the prevailing opinion, I think it’s a great show.
When I told my sister I was watching it, she expressed surprise. Not an unexpected reaction given most of what I watch is either fantasy, sci-fi, historical, or about science and nature.
However, Empire, at its core over the first season, is a succession drama, which I always love and happen to be writing myself in a historical setting. As well, I have a prior history with stories about record companies thanks to the 1985 movie Krush Groove, which my sister and I watched together and both enjoyed.