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Medieval Cookery - A Dictionary of Middle-English Cooking Terms

The index below covers a range of Middle-English terms used in medieval English cooking texts. Included are some of the more unusual spelling variants for modern words, English words still in use but considered archaic or old fashioned, and words common to England that may be unknown elsewhere (e.g. the names of English river fish).

Currently listed are terms used in Forme of Cury and Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery Books .


galentyn (also: galentyn, galentyne, galyntyn, galyntyne, galytyne) : A sauce for meats, usually made with the juice of the meat thickened with bread crumbs.

galingale (also: garyngale) : Lesser Galingale (Alpinia officinarum), a member of the ginger family.

gelofre (also: gelosre, gilofr, gilofre, gylofre) : Gillyflower. An old-world plant with scented flowers, sometimes used as a substitute for cloves.

gelye : Jelly

gleyres of ayrenn : Egg whites.

golet : Gullet.

greke wyne : A sweet wine imported from Italy.

grewel : A porridge of oatmeal or barley, usually cooked in broth.

greynes de parys : Grains of Paradise (Aframomum melegueta), also known as Guinea pepper or Melegueta pepper. A small, hard seed with a flavor between ginger and pepper.

gurnard (also: gurnarde, gornard) : Gurnard. Any of a number of species of fish that crawl over the ocean floor using highly developed pectoral fins.

gysers (also: gysowrys) : Gizzards.