14th century meads

Last night Rurik and I were chatting about meads which has led me to want to share a good source for one of the few complete recipes from the middle ages. You can find it here by searching in the translation for meade. The recipe makes for a very sweet mead- it seems to fit the niche of a soda, but with some alcohol content. I'm in the middle of an experiment to find the ideal yeast for it. An ale yeast seems the simplest way to go. I used a yeast from Koln, since they make a famous beer from it, and it's near Wurtzburg where the manuscript was penned. So they probably had a yeast much like it at the time. It doesn't seem to be ideally suited to the higher gravity of the recipe though, so the residual sweetness would probably appeal more to a teenager than an old fart like me.
There's a recipe in Menagier de Paris from the end of the 14th century which I've been meaning to try. Curry on Inglish has a couple as well.
I'll post my version of the Guter Spise recipe and what I figure out from the other sources.

A 13th century redaction by Master Terafan and another version of what looks like the same recipe.


Popular Posts