Today, turkey and stuffing are central fare on the holiday table. But turkeys weren’t even known in England until the 1520s, when they were introduced by explorers returning from the Americas. Turkey was immediately popular in England; within a hundred years, turkeys had become a common Christmas food. The story with stuffing is less clear…. Continue Reading »
Posts Tagged: Before ‘Farm to Table’
In Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, Petruchio grabs a leg of roast mutton and throws it to the ground. Doing so, he exclaims, “it engenders choler, planteth anger,/ And better ‘twere that both of us did fast.” As food anthropologist Leigh Chavez-Bush writes of this statement in Atlas Obscura, this line was not a… Continue Reading »
In Shakespeare’s plays, we find scenes that take place in taverns and alehouses – but no coffee shops – and characters who drink ale and wine – but not what we now think of as the quintessential English beverage: tea. While Falstaff spends much of Henry IV, Part 1 calling for another cup of sack… Continue Reading »
Italian regions share a culinary history that is rooted in the ingredients, tastes, and techniques that came out of early-modern innovations, explorations, and cultural movements.
One of Hannah Woolley’s books has sat hidden in plain sight at the Folger since 1990—included in the Folger online catalog, but missing from an international database that scholars often use to search for early English books. It is the only known copy in the world.
Learn more about black-eyed peas’ place in the early modern world and enjoy this akara recipe inspired by Hercules, a chef enslaved by George Washington.
British beef cooked in a French style: Marissa Nicosia shares an early modern recipe for brisket from “The Accomplisht Cook,” by 17th-century English chef Robert May.
The perfect post for a winter’s day: Marissa Nicosia shares an early modern recipe for hot chocolate, associated with 17th-century author, botanist, and pirate William Hughes.
Interested in adding variety to your Thanksgiving dinner? Try this modernized 17th-century recipe for savory biscuits based on a manuscript in the Folger collection.
As October comes to an end, we celebrate food, drink, and culture in the German cities of Shakespeare’s day, including the creation of beer and wine and the harvest festivals each fall, marked by our modern-day tradition of Oktoberfest.