20 Forgotten Medieval Foods That People Actually Ate In The Dark Ages

By Sophia Maddox | March 13, 2024

Dine on Delicious Eel Custard

Step into the vibrant world of medieval cooking, where necessity and indulgence intermingle to create culinary wonders. Immerse yourself in a colorful array of dishes, ranging from daily essentials to festive delicacies. Medieval cuisine not only offers a window into the past but also serves as the birthplace of many cherished recipes that continue to grace our tables today.

Embark on this fascinating journey through time as we uncover the secrets of medieval gastronomy. From hearty feasts to humble fare, each dish tells a tale of resilience and creativity. Join us as we delve into the diverse flavors and cultural heritage of medieval cuisine, celebrating the ingenuity and spirit of those who crafted these culinary delights.

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Eel custard was enjoyed by the nobility and common folk. It was especially popular in areas along the coast where eels were caught shortly before being prepared. The cook would mix eel pieces, butter, eggs, and some herbs. Then, they would put a pastry in the bottom of a pan before pouring the mixture into the pan. They would bake it in the oven until set. It was often served as a side dish at meals. Eel custard could be served as the main course. This dish started a tradition of serving eel custard, which is still enjoyed in Japan and some other cultures today.

Singing Chicken

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Roasting poultry was an intricate process. First, the cook suspended the bird on a spit. Then, they slowly rotated it over an open flame. Alternatively, they cooked it on a hearth. Cooks paid meticulous attention to ensure it cooked uniformly. They frequently applied drippings or other seasonings to enhance the flavor. This also helped to keep the meat moist. The cooking duration varied depending on the bird's size and type.

After roasting the bird to succulent perfection, the chef would let it cool briefly. Then, he would insert a mercury and ground sulfur mixture into the bird's cavity. The heat from the roasted bird warmed the stuffing mixture. Therefore, a chemical reaction would occur. The reaction sounded like a hissing sound, creating the illusion of the bird singing. Despite the singing chicken's entertaining nature, it was strictly intended for display. Overeating it could poison a person. Therefore, the waitstaff usually showed the bird quickly. They then removed it and put other food out for the meal.