Each day there was a time when something light was put out. Usually some salami, cheese and something sweet. The sweets were well received. We were unable to accomplish one as figs were completely unfindable so we doubled up on the Elizabethan Gingerbread, which delighted many.
Elizabethan Gingerbread (Delightes of Ladies by Sir Hugh Platt)
This recipes from all accounts has stumped many. When it is good it is very very good, when it is bad it is horrid! I have never had any trouble with the following recipe even when upscaling it.
4 cups Honey
450 gm breadcrumbs
1 Tbsp Ginger
1 tsp White pepper
Boil the honey, skim if necessary (modern honey from the store usually does not need skimming)
In a bowl mix the breadcrumbs ( the super dry crumbled ones not torn pieces of bread) with the spices. Make sure that they are fully incorporated an there are no spice lumps.
Pour the honey into the breadcrumbs and mix until the breadcrumbs soak up all the honey.
To form it place it in a buttered form or pour onto waxed paper or parchment paper and spread it with buttered hands.
You can decorate the gingerbread with saunders (red sandalwood) or colored powdered sugar.
Waffres ( from two fifteenth century cookery books)
3 cups flour
1/3 c sugar
1 Tbsp Ginger
1 1/2 cups Cheese
1/2 tsp salt
Preheat your waffle iron
Beat together all ingredients
Pour batter into the waffle iron as directed by the manufacturer
cook until done
Elizabethan Biscuit Bread (Elinor Fettiplace)
These too were a big hit.
450 gm Flour
450 gm Sugar
8 egg yolks *
14 gm Coriander seeds (whole)
28 gm Anise Seeds (whole)
Preheat over to 170c
Mix all ingredients into a smooth batter *
Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper and drop batter into cookies
Bake 8-10 minutes until the edges are golden brown
* Add yolks if you want lighter cookies
These can be done on a buttered griddle similar to pancakes as well as be poured into a shallow sheet cake type pan and then cut. If you do them in a sheet, cut them and the place them on the sheet again and toast for another 10 min like biscotti.
Peascods in Lent (The Good Housewifes Jewel)
This did not get made as i could not find figs!
900 gm Figs (dry)
100 gm Dates
100 gm Raisins, sultanas or currants
1 cup Water
1 cup Red wine
Mix wine and water in a large bowl
Add figs, dates and raisins.
In the morning bring the mixture to a boil for 5-10 min
When the mixture has cooled puree it
Prepare paste (you will need at least a double paste)
Roll out the paste in 2 portions of equal size and thickness
Place one paste on a parchment lined cookie sheet
Spread the mixture on top of the past
Top with the second paste and seal
Bake in the oven 20 - 30 minutes until golden brown
Cut and serve warm or cold
These can be made into small portions as well.
The original instructions were to cut the paste into circles, fill them and then fry them. These are tasty but not practical to serve a large crowd this way. Also when fried they need to be served hot.