Thursday, May 26, 2016

Medieval Barley Bread Challenge

My older son's class at Burgundy Farm Country Day School has been studying the medieval time period and their study is culminating with a Medieval Festival tomorrow.  Parents were asked to sign up to help provide food, and I took on the challenge of baking barley bread.  I'd never baked with barley before, although I bake plenty of wheat-based bread.  Nor had I ever cooked in the medieval time period.  But, I am a historical interpreter of other time periods, so I was excited to try.  And, I've been watching a lot of Ruth Goodman's television shows, so the timing was perfect!

Working with barley flour was very interesting, and I had a fair number of fails.  But, I did learn a lot.  In the end, I will be serving an upper class person's barley bread, which used ale, yeast, and more white flour than barley and wheat flours (ignore the air bubble in the photo, please!); I also made a middle class person's barley bread, using the ale and yeast, but more wheat flour than white flour; finally, I found a recipe for what would be a lower class person's barley bread, using no ale or yeast or wheat flours at all.  This unleavened bread turned out to be more of a pita or tortilla.  Fascinating.

And, I learned that barley bread tastes fantastic, too!

No comments:

Post a Comment