WWP The Project Newsletter Archive Volume 3,Number 2 From the Textbase

From the Textbase

The Cooks Guide: or, Rare Receipts for Cookery, 1664

Hannah Wolley

About the author

Hannah Wolley was probably born in 1622, and worked from about 1639 to 1646 as a servant, where she learned the arts of preparing medicines, preserving food, and other domestic skills. The Cooks Guide is her second book, and addresses itself "To all Ladyes and Gentlewomen in General, who love the Art of Preserving and Cookery." In addition to the recipes given here, it gives instructions for making and preserving a huge variety of foods, including cheeses, pies, game, sauces, and preserved fruits. The recipes presented here are excerpted from The Cooks Guide, and are printed without emendation, except that long s has been regularized. Wolley married twice, and probably died near 1675; her exact dates are uncertain. Her other books include The Ladies Directory (1661), The Queen-Like Closet(1670), The Ladies Delight (1672), and A Supplement to the Queen-Like Closet (1674).

Source: Elaine Hobby, Virtue of Necessity: English Women's Writing 1649-88 (University of Michigan Press, 1989).

Title Page


and set forth particularly for Ladies and Gentlewomen; being very beneficial for all those that desire the true way of dressing of all sorts of Flesh, Fowles, and Fish; the best Directions for all manner of Kickshaws, and the most Ho-good-Sawces: Whereby Noble Persons and others in their Hospitalities may be gratified in their Gusto's. Never before Printed.



Printed for Peter Dring at the Sun in the Poultry, next door to the Rose-Tavern, 1664

To stretch Sheeps guts.

After they are clean scoured, lay them in water nine daies, shifting them once a day, and they will be very easie to fill; and when they are filled they will return to their wonted bigness.

To boile Chickens or Pigeons with gooseberries or grapes.

Boile them with mutton broth, and white wine, with a blade of mace, and a little salt, fill their bellies with sweet hearbs; when they are enough, thicken the broth with a piece of manchet and the yolks of two or three hard eggs strained with some of the broth, then put some of the same broth into a boiled meat dish with verjuice, butter and sugar; then put in your Grapes or Gooseberries scalded tender, and pour it over the breast of your Chickens.

To make Fritters.

Take the curd of a sack posset, the yolks of six eggs, the whites of two eggs, and a little fine flower, put in a little nutmeg and some ale, and a little salt, mingle them well together, then slice in some apples very thin, and so fry them in lard boiling hot; if your batter be too thin, it will drink suet; if it be in good temper it will swim.

To make the best Almond Pudding.

Take half a pound of sweet almonds blanched and beaten with rose-water very well, then boile a quart of cream with large mace and nutmegg; when it hath boiled a while put in the almonds, and boile both together till it will come from the bottom of the skillet, then pour it out and sweeten it with rose-water and sugar; when it is almost cold break in twelve egges, and leave out half the whites, then colour them according to your fancy, and if you put in any currans, let them be first plumped, put in marrow something gross or beef suet finely shred, then fill your skins and boile them a little, then take them out again, and boile them again when they have cooled a little.

To keep Venison nine or ten months good and sweet.

Take a haunch of Venison and bore holes in it, then stop in seasoning into it as you do parsley into beef in the inside of it; if it be red Deer, take pepper, nutmegg, cloves, mace and salt; if it be fallow deer, then only pepper and salt; when is is thus seasoned dip it in white wine vineger, and put it in an earthen pot with the salt side down, and having first sprinkled good store of spice into the pot; if it be fallow deer three pounds of butter will serve, but if red deer then four pounds; when you put it into the oven lay an earthen dish over it, and paste it close up that no air can get out nor in, so let it stand six or seven hours in a very hot oven; when it is baked take off the cover and put in a trencher and a stone upon it to keep the meat down in the liquor; fill up the pot with melted butter and so keep it, serve it to the table in slices with mustard and sugar.

To sowce a Pig.

After it is scalded, chine it as you do a Hog, then take the sides and dry them in a cloth, then bone it and lay it in water one day and one night, then take sweet herbs and chop them very small, and slice a nutmeg, with a race of ginger, mingle the spice and herbs well together with a little salt, then strew the fleshy sides with them, and sprinkle some white wine vineger on them, then bind them up in collars, and tye them hard with pack thred, or rather tape; then boile these collars in water and white wine vineger, and a good deal of salt; do not boile the head and the claws so much as the collars; when it is well boiled strain the liquor and boile in it whole mace, and put in a sliced lemmon; when you take it off the fire, when it is cold, put in your pigg, and let it lye one week, then serve it in with mustard and sugar.

To make a Hedge-hogg pudding.

Take a twopenny loafe with fair water, and a little milke, the yolkes of five egges, and three whites, one grated nutmegge and a little salt, some sugar and a little rose-water, then butter a wooden dish and put it in, tye it up close in a cloth that no water get in, put it into boiling water; and when it is boiled slip it out into a dish, and prick it full of blanched almonds cut in long slender pieces, and raisons of the sun cut in a like manner; pour on it rose-water, butter and sugar.

To make fine Gingerbread.

Take three stale Manchets, grate them, dry them, and beat them; then sift them thorow a fine sieve; then put to them one ounce of Ginger beaten and searced fine, as much Cinnamon, half an ounce of Aniseeds, and half an ounce of Liquorice, half a pound of sugar; boyll all these together with a quart of Claret Wine till it come to a stiffe paste; then mould it on a Table with a little Flower, and roul it very thin, and print it in moulds; dust your moulds with some of your powdered spices.

To preserve Oranges after the Portugal fashion.

Open them at one end and take out all the meat, then boile them in several waters till a straw may go thorow them; then take their weight and half of fine sugar, and to every pound of sugar a pinte of water, boile it and skim it, then put in your Oranges and boile them a little; then set them by till the next day, then boile them a little more; then take them up, and fill them with preserved pippins, and boile them again till you think they are enough; and if you will have them jelly, you must make a new syrop with the water wherein some sliced pippins have been boiled, and some fine sugar, and that will be a stiff jelly.

To make Wafers.

Take a pinte of flower, a little cream, the yolks of two eggs, a little rosewater, with some searced cinnamon and sugar, work them together, and bake them thin upon hot irons.

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