Language of cookery 5: What does Crutoun mean?

I find it so easy to get waylaid by curiosity when translating Forme of Cury, Richard II’s official cookery book. Give me a strange recipe name, and I’ll spend hours trying to work out what it might mean and where it’s from, instead of simply offering a modern English title that captures the essence ofContinue reading “Language of cookery 5: What does Crutoun mean?”

Language of cookery 4: meat ‘purses’

I love discovering the meanings behind the names given to medieval dishes. Call me scholar, call me nerd, I just can’t help myself. Many of the recipe titles in Richard II’s official cookery book, Forme of Cury (c. 1390), have bamboozled antiquarians and academics for centuries, so I get a kick out of working outContinue reading “Language of cookery 4: meat ‘purses’”

Language of Cookery 3: 14th-century English Pappardelle?

Exploring the linguistic influences on medieval English cuisine Medieval English recipe names are frequently odd. And sometimes, as a translator, I’m led down a dodgy etymological path by a name that looks like a mangled concoction of Middle English and Old French or Anglo-Norman, only for it to turn out to be something quite different.Continue reading “Language of Cookery 3: 14th-century English Pappardelle?”

Language of cookery 1: shifting meanings

As I work my way through translating the recipes of Forme of Cury, Richard II’s official cookery book, I sometimes come across words that have shifted in meaning from how they were originally used. In this first of a series of ‘Language of cookery’ notes, I take a look at one of these words: smiten.Continue reading “Language of cookery 1: shifting meanings”