Joane Yate Her Booke, 1682

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[Library Title: Whitney cookery collection, ca. 1400 - 1895 (Vol. 3)]

Manuscript Location
New York Public Library, Schwarzman Building - Manuscripts & Archives Division
Holding Library Call No.
MssCol 3318
Manuscript Cookbooks Survey Database ID#
Place of Origin
Date of Composition
This book is inscribed on the first leaf: Joane Yate Her Booke. It contains 147 numbered recipes in a single handsome though often difficult hand, presumably that of Joane Yate; these recipes are included in an index in the front. It also contains, at the end, five recipes in a different hand that are not entered in the index.

The book mostly concerns savory pies, puddings, sauces (for roast pig, roast duck, roast chicken or partridge, boiled chicken, shoulder of mutton, woodcock, and veal), meat dishes (including two recipes for shoulder of mutton in blood, a favorite dish of the time), fish dishes, and pickled meats, fish, and vegetables. Unusual for a cookbook of this period, there are only a few recipes for sweets: a cake, cracknels, and a handful of creams, including the then-popular "snow cream." The author calls for sack in many recipes, both savory and sweet, and she cuts her cracknels with a "sack glass," an uncommon reference.

This manuscript is particularly interesting for the five bills of fare that are written at the end of the notebook: for the winter season (in two courses); for Christmas (three courses); for the spring (three courses); for the summertime (two courses), and for a fish dinner in Lent (two courses). In the two-course menus, the second course includes both savory dishes and sweet dishes (likely eaten separately, with a change of plates), while in the three-course course menus, the second course is entirely savory and the third entirely sweet. Thus the second, and final, course of the summertime bill of fare comprises "a dish of young rabbits, a dish of chicken, a dish of partridges, a dish of scotch collops, [?] pigeon pie, a dish of cheesecakes, a dish of tarts, a dish of sack cream, a trifle, [and] a dish of snow in the middle of ye table." The third course of a bill of fare "for ye spring" consists of "a tart of nerritos [?], a dish of snow, a dish of teeth [?], a lay [cut-laid] tart, a dish of jelly, a dish of sack cream, a dish of almond cream, a charger of sweetmeats, [and] a dish of fruit."