(English) Olive Oil: From medieval England to modern times
The Forme of Cury, a vellum scroll now kept in the British Library, is one of the oldest known manuscripts about cookery written in English, Cury being the Middle English word for cookery. It is thought to have been written in the latter half of the fourteenth century by the master cooks of Richard II, covering both everyday meals and the food of banquets. It was approved by Maisters and phisik and of philosphie of the court: Masters of medecine and philosophy, pointing to the link these maintained with the culinary arts.
Importantly for us, it is the first text to mention olive oil in relation to British food. Over 600 years later we can continue to incorporate Extra Virgin Olive Oil into our diet. As well as for the usual salad dressings, try a drizzling a little Extra Virgin over a variety of dishes to see how they are transformed into the sublime. Soups, vegetables, rice and pasta dishes, grilled meats… the possibilities are endless.
So go ahead, dare to experiment – just like the Royal master cooks were doing back in the 1390’s!