25 September 2014
Well, if it’s fish Friday, the menu consisted of… fish! Fish, glorious fish. Thirty or more courses of fish, including oysters, ling, green fish, salt white herring, salt salmon, salmon, great pike, smaller pike, crayfish, roach, great carp, smaller carp, roasting eel, stock fish, chub, tench, chevin, perch, bream, salt eel, loach, flounder, smelt, gurnard, shrimp, whiting, plaice, trout, lamprey, lobster, crab, knobbard, turbot, fresh cod, haddock, barbel!
Here’s a sample menu from a Star Chamber dinner on a so-called fish, or “fasting” day, from Friday, April 30, 1591.
Dinner on a Friday: fish, fish, fish, and more fish: oysters, ling, salt salmon, green fish, great pikes, smaller pikes, great carps, smaller carps, breams, tenches, great roasting eels, knobbards, perch, trout, flounder, barbels, chevins, chubs, soles, creyfish, plaice, pearls (a variant of brill), gurnards, prawns, lobsters, crabs, mackerel, whitings, fresh salmon and a chine of salmon. As well as herbs, cream, pounded butter, apples for tarts, eggs, oranges and lemons, barberries, rose water, quinces, and other fruit.
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