Friday, 6 February 2015

Wolf Hall Tudor food - More helpings please

As we reach the midway point of the BBC's six part Tudor drama "Wolf Hall" what fare has been served up so far?

Well, not so much luxurious food because Thomas More's dining gatherings are a little parsimonious, whether it be Lent or not. (There are so many Thomases it can get a bit confusing. My nephew is called Thomas too and it is his birthday on this day of posting!) 

All the same I have been busy creating additions to the MedievalMorsels Wolf Hall Tudor miniature food range,

More is a very religious man and in Episode 2 he serves cooked greens with hard boiled eggs   just four half eggs to be sahred by all the company! And plenty of "maslin" bread, made from a mixture of rye and wheat wholemeal flours. Plenty, yes plenty of bread. In fact there was a preponderance of differently shaped loaves amongst other rather uninspiring foodstuffs, considering he held the role of Chancellor of the Exchequer.

MedievalMorsels Wolf Hall miniature Tudor food, 12th scale greens and boiled eggs

The makings of a Wolf Hall supper courtesy of Chancellor Thomas More

Henry the Fool's view of the supper proceedings, cheese and cabbage garnished with eggs
Oh and he did serves plates with large cheese wedges too.

Tudor dollhouse food, 12th scale miniature Cheddar cheese wheels and wedges 

MedievalMorsels'  dollhouse miniature cheese - 12th scale wedges of Parmesan
In that same dining scene, More's resident "fool" Henry hoots like an excited owl from a minstrel's gallery above the gathered diners. More remarks that he hopes the poor Henry is not suffering the ill effects of too rich a diet. A dining guest and fellow Privy Counsellor remarks unguardedly "No anxiety on that score!" 

To be fair I did spot a bowl of yellow lentil pottage and a plate of cubed white fish too - probably herring and not a more exotic fish! Even when More is himself a dining guest in Episode 1, his host only dare serve him white herring  the so-called "wheat of the sea" and a meat-free staple food for rich and poor alike.
MedievalMorsels'  period dollshouse one inch miniature food, white herring

Dark Ages, Medieval,Tudor miniature food at 12th scale: pickled, brined herring
By Episode 3 of the BBC adaptation of Hilary Mantel's Man Booker prize winning novels Henry VIII and the court, including his mistress Anne Boleyn, have arrived at Calais - a last English outpost in France. Here Henry hopes to get King Francois of France onside in his petition to the Pope. Some food colour at last - a fleeting close-up of a platter of sliced and whole apricots, peaches, apples and plums for Thomas Cromwell to inspect. The rest of the banquet - of sweet courses - was too far distant to positively identify any further dishes. I have made a start on some on those apricots. I have read somewhere that Henry VIII was the first person (excepting the Romans of course) to cutlivate them in his garden.

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