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Pottage

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Pottage

Pottage
An example of pottage.
Type Stew
Place of origin Great Britain
Main ingredients Vegetables, grains, meat or fish
Cookbook:PottageĀ 
Esau and the Mess of Pottage, by Jan Victors (1619-1676)

Pottage is a thick soup or stew made by boiling vegetables, grains, and, if available, meat or fish.

It was a staple food of all people living in Great Britain from neolithic times to the Middle Ages. The word pottage comes from the same Old French root as potage, which is a similar type of dish of more recent origin.

Pottage commonly consisted of various ingredients easily available to serfs and peasants and could be kept over the fire for a period of days, during which time some of it was eaten and more ingredients added. The result was a dish that was constantly changing. Pottage consistently remained a staple of the poor's diet throughout most of 9th to 17th-century Europe. When people of higher economic rank, such as nobles, ate pottage, they would add more expensive ingredients such as meats. The pottage that these people ate was much like modern day soups.

Preparation

Pottage was typically boiled for several hours until the entire mixture took on a homogeneous texture and flavour; this was intended to break down complex starches and to ensure the food was safe for consumption. It was often served, when possible, with bread.

See also

References

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