The Book

Scully, Terence. The vivendier: a critical edition with English translation. Devon: Prospect Books, 1997. Pp. vi, 129.  ISBN: ISBN 0-907-32581-5.

Scully, Terence. The vivendier: a critical edition with English translation. Devon: Prospect Books, 1997. Pp. vi, 129. ISBN: ISBN 0-907-32581-5.

 

What is the book?

In March of 2014 a dear friend of mine gave me a translation of a fifteenth century french cookbook. This book is “The Vivendier” and the translation was done by Terence Scully. I decided after reviewing the book that I wanted to go through the book dish by dish and recreate them to the best of my ability. I may fail at some and succeed at others. I may question my own choices after tasting the dishes. It is all part of the process. I hope to come out at the end of this with a greater understanding of the way the author meant the dishes to taste and to look.

Why this book?

Unlike the majority of the other manuscripts from France before the 1600’s  the Kassel manuscript which contains “The Vivendier” was not a book about how people in Paris cooked. The manuscript is actually three volumes bound into one codex.  The study that has been done of the dialect used in the manuscript shows that it was written in shows linguistic characteristics of the north east of France.  I decided that I rather enjoy the idea that this was written not for the Parisian crowd but for the folk of Artois, Picardy and Hainaut.

 

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