“You can look at the menu, but you just can’t eat…”

As we Americans prepare to dispatch legions of unsuspecting victims to Turkey Valhalla, I’m thankful that people still read this blog—even though work and other writing projects keep me from updating it as often as I’d like.

Since the beginning, I’ve tagged posts with an “applied paleobromatology” label, because I’m wont to wonder: What did the Middle Ages taste like? Although I lack time for another dubious kitchen catastrophe, I’m delighted to share, for your browsing pleasure, this picture-menu of links to food-related “Quid Plura?” leftovers. Just heat ‘n’ serve!

People say you can’t replace a goose with a duck, but that’s just a canard. In days of yore, I botched a “goose-to-duck hoggepotte” recipe from medieval England.

In 2011, I picked and bletted medlars, the “Happy Fun Ball” of obsolete produce.

Long ago, I used the Alison Moyet of rhizomes to invent a new soft drink: galangal ale. Wouldn’t you buy soda with this subdued, dignified label?

The rulers of medieval Baghdad loved sweet food—so in 2010, I made jawārish, the carrot jam of the Abbasid caliphate…

…and tabaahaja, the wince-inducing candied lamb of the Abbasid viziers.

Thanks, as always, for stopping by! Enjoy the holiday, and light a candle for Meleagris of Tryptophan, the patron saint of poultry, digestion, and much-needed rest.

2 thoughts on ““You can look at the menu, but you just can’t eat…”

  1. Saw your bletted medlars earlier, but the scope of your explorations is now revealed! Wowee! You left out whether they were tasty for the most part… But they look interesting, and I love the names, particular the bletted medlars (sounds like something to do with getting rid of the intestinal parasite of sheep) and the galangal ale. The foreign names or interesting too, but I have no modernity and understanding for comparison.


  2. Oh, medlars are tasty—like cinnamon, apples, and cheap wine—but the real joy is coming home to an apartment full of bletting fruit. The aroma is sweet and comforting.


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