Historical rabbit holes, for those who are inclined.
These slender booklets from Historical Management Associates are the work of an organization dedicated to historical re-enactment in the UK. They are written with a stickler’s attention to historical precision and a conviction that nothing is too arcane to investigate. Some of the books are simple transcriptions of period manuscripts; others represent significant original research, as in Cattle Farming and Grazing Management, which is 52 pages long but cites 36 sources, many of them published in the 17th century.
From the introduction:
“This volume forms part of a series on Medieval Recipes and Menues from the late 14th and 15th centuries. Prior to this period very little in the way of useable medieval recipes survive.
“These recipes are drawn from manuscripts entitled Dyverse Bake Metis [diverse baked meats] containing 41 recipes and date around 1430-1440. Two very similar manuscripts exist in the British Library and the Bodleian Library. The recipe sequence has been rearranged to place roughly similar recipes together but the roman numeral numbering on the original has been retained.
“For each recipe the original text is given first then a modern translation updating primarily spelling and terms. A list of ingredients is given, omitting, water, salt and pastry followed by a series of steps in the production of the dish. The inclusion of a recipe in this book does not mean that it is either safe or legal to reproduce.”
A staple-bound pamphlet. 36 pages.