A Boke of Gode Cookery Presents
Medieval Recipe Translations

Mortreus de Chare

PERIOD: England, 15th century | SOURCE: Harleian MS 4016 | CLASS: Authentic

DESCRIPTION: Pork mortrews, a dish of ground meat thickened with eggs and bread crumbs


Mortreus de Chare. ¶ Take porke, and seth it ynow; and take it vppe, and bawde hit, and hewe it and grinde it, and in a morter; And cast therto grated brede, and then drawe the same broth thorgh a streynour, And temper hit with ale, and do al into a potte, and lete boile, and aley hit with yolkes of egges, And then lete it boile no more, And caste thereto powder of ginger, Salt, And put hit in disshes in maner of Mortrewes, And cast thereto powder of ginger, & serue it forth.

- Austin, Thomas. Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery-Books. Harleian MS. 279 & Harl. MS. 4016, with extracts from Ashmole MS. 1429, Laud MS. 553, & Douce MS 55. London: for The Early English Text Society by N. Trübner & Co., 1888.


Take pork, and boil it enough; and take it up, and thinly slice it, and hew it and grind it, and in a morter; And cast there-to grated bread, and then draw the same broth through a strainer, And temper it with ale, and do all in a pot, and let boil, and mix it with yolks of eggs, And then let it boil no more, And cast there-to powder of ginger, Salt, And put it in dishes in manner of Mortrews, And cast there-to powder of ginger, & serve it forth.


  • Pork - this should be meat from a roast, or chops, etc., which has been boiled until done, and then very finely minced ar ground by passing through a meat grinder or a food processor.
  • Unseasoned bread crumbs
  • Broth - use our recipe for Gode Broth (made without bread crumbs) or use any broth you'd prefer. The recipe calls for the use of the strained broth the pork was boiled in, but this may prove to be not as flavorful as broth made separately.
  • Ale - slightly flat.
  • Egg yolks
  • Ginger
  • Salt

Combine the pork, bread crumbs, broth & ale in a pot - the mixture should be thick to very thick. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium. Beat in egg yolks - use enough to thicken the mixture to a stiff pudding-like or paté-like consistency; season with ginger and salt. Place in serving dishes. Sprinkle on a little ginger. Serve it forth!


A Boke of Gode CookeryMedieval Recipe Translations

Mortreus de Chare © 2000 James L. Matterer

Medieval Recipe Translations

Please visit The Gode Cookery Bookshop | This site hosted by Visual Presence