Thursday, March 7, 2013

Medieval Cooking, pt. 2, Salad & Porridge

I had recipe experiments lined up for the last two days, but they didn't come out well enough to post, so I'm doubling up today.

These are the first two recipes I've made from A Feast of Ice and Fire, the Game of Thrones companion cookbook that I mentioned in my last post.

Salad at Castle Black
For the salad, I chose one of the simplest in the book, the Salad at Castle Black. Some of the recipes are posted on the authors' blog Inn at the Crossroads, but some are exclusive to the cookbook, so I can't share a link for this one. I'll just mention I swapped the turnip greens for arugula because that's what I had, but either would be delicious.

Pease Porridge
The pease porridge recipe is from the 14th century, made from yellow split-peas, pearl onions, herbs, and spices. A translation like the one in the GoT cookbook can be found on One thing I didn't expect, never having used pearl onions before, was how long it takes to peel them before they're cooked. The first layer of flaky skin comes off well, but the second can be stubborn. I threw half of them in the pot with the second layer on, and found it was much easier to peel off that layer after cooking.

The authors were quite correct: this dish is totally about the herbs, the parboiled onions adding sweetness, and the peas being a canvas for the flavors. I went heavy on the sage, and also added marjoram, savory, and thyme. So good.