Although the Middle Ages are also known as the Dark Ages, when each country was threatened by wars and famine, the Medieval cuisine is still a fascinating aspect to take a look at. Let’s take a look at how people used to eat in the Middle Ages.
Middle Ages Daily Meals
Contrasting to the lower classes, the quantity, quality and type of food consumed by royalty and nobility differed considerably. The number of courses and variety of foods consumed by the Upper Class included ingredients which were very expensive for most ordinary people. The nobility had acquired a taste for spicy and also sweet foods and they could afford the expensive spices and sugar required to create these exotic recipes.
Both the Upper and the Lower Classes had three meals a day. Menus for the wealthy were extensive, but only small portions were taken. A change in culture emerged during the Middle Ages when the travel prompted by the Crusades led to a new and unprecedented interest in elegant manners.
The number of daily meals eaten during the day by the Upper Classes were as follows:
- Breakfast – food and drink generally served between 6-7;
- Dinner – food and drink generally served at mid-morning between 12-2;
- Supper – was a substantial meal, with food and drink generally served between 6-7 and accompanied by various forms of entertainment.
Here are some of the main Middle Ages food people used to eat:
- beef pie
- chopped liver
- Roman meatloaf
- quince bread
- Roman macaroni
- pork pie
- sausage with fennel
- pegions stewed
- peeres in confyt.
People of the Middle Ages were highly religious and at certain times the eating of meat was banned. This was not an occasional ban. Certain religious observances banned the eating of meat on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Meat was also banned during the religious seasons of Lent and Advent. Meat was also declined on the eves of many religious holidays.