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Sweet Frumenty

This recipe is in categories Normans / Medieval, Main courses,
About this recipe:
Difficulty: not rated

This is a very old dish, appearing in many variations over the centuries. It is a very popular dish in Norman and Medieval times. It makes a lovely side dish, especially with strongly flavoured meats. It was a symbolic dish in winter, a sign that spring would come. It later came to be served as a festival dish on Twelfth Night (5th of January).

This is the original recipe;

"To make frumente. Tak clene whete & braye yt wel in a morter tyl the holes gon of; seethe it til it breste in water. Nym it up & lat it cole. Tak good broth & swete mylk of kyn or of almand & tempere it therwith. Nym yelkes of eyren rawe & saffroun & cast therto; salt it: lat it naught boyle after the etren ben cast therinne. Messe it forth." (Curye on Inglysch CI.IV.i.)
kyn: cow
eyren: eggs

mylk of alamand: almond milk, used during Lent

To see images of the cooking process see our Sweet Frumenty Pictures.

With thanks to Cathy Flower-Bond (Tudor Tales) and the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum for their help with making this podcast.


Making and cooking it
  1. Add the cracked wheat, ale and spices to a pot
  2. Set a pot above the fire for a few hours to cook
  3. Stir occasionally and add water so the pot doesn't boil dry
  4. When the wheat is soft, you can add the currants and stir in an egg if you wish, for extra richness
  5. Remove from the heat
  6. Spoon into a bowl
  7. Stir in a little cream
  8. Serve hot