Author: Elaine Leong

Living in Seasons: Mulberry Wine, or the Moral Perils of Recipes in Times of Austerity

By He Bian April and May on the US east coast = temperature swings = confusing and sickly weather. This year especially reminds me of the sobering admonition from the ancient Chinese classic of medicine, <The Yellow Emperor’s Inner Canon>: “when there is damage from cold in winter, one suffers…

Tales from the Archives: A November Feast in Medieval Europe

In September 2016, The Recipes Project celebrated its fourth birthday. We now have over 500 posts in our archives and over 120 pages for readers to sift through. That’s a lot of material! (And thank you so much to our contributors for sharing such a wealth of knowledge on recipes.)…

Seasonality @ The Recipes Project

By Elaine Leong Happy May Day everyone! I am very excited to be on-point editor for the 2017 May edition of The Recipes Project. Living in Germany, where there is a ‘saison’ or a ‘- zeit’ for almost everything – Spargel (asparagus), Erdbeerkuchen (strawberry cake), Kurbis (pumpkin), Pflaumen (plums), Balkon…

Recipes for Magic

By Frank Klassen My house was remarkably crowded and had a bit of a holiday feel about it. It was mid-winter and twenty or so students from the University of Saskatchewan had taken up my invitation to try out a procedure and a device described in pre-modern magic manuscripts: molybdomancy…

Tales from the archives: Keeping Time in the Victorian Kitchen

In September 2016, The Recipes Project celebrated its fourth birthday. We now have over 500 posts in our archives and over 120 pages for readers to sift through. That’s a lot of material! (And thank you so much to our contributors for sharing such a wealth of knowledge on recipes.)…

What lies behind the name? Rest-harrow – A medieval herbal enigma

By Theresa Tyers ‘Mystery, magic and medicine: in the beginning they were one and the same’ so begins Howard Haggard’s 1930s book on the rise of scientific medicine.[1] Exploring medieval manuscripts reveals how magical recipes, charms, amulets and ritual healing all formed part of the everyday ‘medicine chest’ of treatments…

Editing The Recipes Project – 5 years on

Editorial: This is the second of a series of reflection posts from Recipe Project contributors and editors. By Elaine Leong I often start my blog posts with ruminations on how quickly time flies – most probably because as a busy academic and working mother – changes in seasons and project…

Tales from the Archives: English Gingerbread Old and New

In September, The Recipes Project celebrated its fourth birthday. We now have over 470 posts in our archives and over 117 pages for readers to sift through. That’s a lot of material! (And thank you so much to our contributors for sharing such a wealth of knowledge on recipes.) But…

Notes from a Newly Discovered English Recipe Book

By Francesca Vanke Sir Robert Paston (1631-1683) of Oxnead Hall in Norfolk was known in his own time for his loyal support of Charles II, his magnificent house and kunstkammer collection, his political activities, and for his chymical and alchemical pursuits. His family died out in the early eighteenth century…

Four Seasons in Shakespeare’s World…

By the Shakespeare’s World team Cross-posted on https://blog.shakespearesworld.org with some slight differences. One year ago the Early Modern Manuscripts Online project at the Folger Shakespeare Library partnered with Zooniverse to officially launch Shakespeare’s World, in association with the Oxford English Dictionary. What better way to commemorate the 400th anniversary of…

A 17th-Century Italian’s Encounter with Uzbek Plov

By Scott Levi The Venetian doctor Niccolao Manucci lived in India for some fifty-five years, nearly his entire adult life. Working in a variety of capacities on behalf of his Mughal hosts, in the middle of the seventeenth century he found himself at the court of emperor Aurangzeb, who in…

Researching Paper in the Archives in 2016

By Elaine Leong My current project, ‘Papering the Household: Paper, Recipes and Technologies in Early Modern England’ explores the intersection of early modern recipes and paper making and paper use. Folger Shakespeare Library, Manuscript v.a. 456, fol. 28r.When I reflect upon my adventures in research paper and recipes, two key…

An Early Modern DIY Guide to Making Paper

By Gabriella Szalay After about half an hour of working it over everything was already so small and delicate that I could scoop, or rather make fine sheets out of it. These sheets allowed themselves to be neatly pressed on to felt, removed from the same and hung up. After…

How to establish trust

By Agnieszka Rec How do you make a recipe look effective? How do you convince a reader that your recipe will work before they’ve even tried it? One solution, as discussed by Sietske Fransen for medical recipes, was to include the names of noblemen and women, validating the recipe by…