Medieval cuisine

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Shared drinking cups were common even at lavish banquets for all but those who sat at the high table , as was the standard etiquette of breaking bread and carving meat for one's fellow diners. Nobles dined on fresh game seasoned with exotic spices, and displayed refined table manners; rough laborers could make do with coarse barley bread, salt pork and beans and were not expected to display etiquette. In some cases the lavishness of noble tables was outdone by Benedictine monasteries, which served as many as sixteen courses during certain feast days. Towards the onset of the early modern period , in , the Vatican librarian Bartolomeo Platina wrote De honesta voluptate et valetudine "On honourable pleasure and health" and the physician Iodocus Willich edited Apicius in Zurich in A wide range of mollusks including oysters , mussels and scallops were eaten by coastal and river-dwelling populations, and freshwater crayfish were seen as a desirable alternative to meat during fish days. In England , the Low Countries , northern Germany , Poland and Scandinavia , beer was consumed on a daily basis by people of all social classes and age groups. Being invited to a lord's chambers was a great privilege and could be used as a way to reward friends and allies and to awe subordinates.


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