A Boke of Gode Cookery Presents

To make mortrose of Fyshe

PERIOD: England, late 15th c. | SOURCE: MS Pepys 1047 | CLASS: Authentic

DESCRIPTION: A dish of finely ground fish in thickened almond milk.

Facsimile of receipt from the original manuscript:

Transcription of original receipt:

To make mortrose of Fyshe

Take hownde fyshe haddock or codlyng seth hit and pyke hit clene fro the bonys take a way the skyn and grynde the lyver ther with blanched almounds And temper thy mylke with the broth of the fresh Fyshe and make a gode mylke of do ther to myad (6.1) of white brede and sugure set hit to the fyre when hit boylys loke hit be stondyng mese serue hit furth strow on Blawnche powdyr.

Modern translation:

To make mortrews of fish.

Take houndfish, haddock or cod. Boil it and pick it clean from the bones. Take away the skin and grind the liver there with blanched almonds. And temper thy milk with the broth of the fresh fish and make a gode milk of. Do there to crumbs (6.1) of white bread and sugar. Set it to the fire. When it boils look it be standing. Mess (portion). Serve it forth. Strew on white powder.

(6.1) Myad - crumbed, crumbled. See definition for Myid brede, Austin, p. 137 and for Myed in Hieatt's Curye on Inglisch, p. 201. It is related to Fr. Mie, crumb. Hodgett (Stere Htt Well) mistranslates myad as "loaf" and makes no mention of the bread being crumbed before use.

Mortrews was a common medieval boiled dish of finely ground food in broth, etc., named for the mortar in which it was prepared. Compare this recipe with one from Forme of Cury:

128 Mortrews of fyssh. Take codlyng, haddock, oþer hake, and lyuours with the rawnes, and seeþ it wel in water. Pyke out þe bones. Grynde smale the fysshe; drawe a lyour of almaundes & brede with the self broth, & do þe fysshe grounden þerto, and seeþ it and do þerto powdour fort, safroun and salt; and make it stondyng. (Hieatt, Curye on Inglisch, p. 127)

Modern recipe:

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