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Author Notes: From baked apples, to morning bowl of oatmeal, this lovely lady can do it all. Poudre Douce is the refined lady of medieval spice blends. But don't let her flowers and lace fool you, reminiscent of her rough and tumble brother spice, Poudre Forte, Poudre Douce has a delightful peppery kick that has caught more than one poor soul unaware. Both recipes I brought back from my annual time travel vacation to 1371 AD.
Every summer, a group of us move into a local park and put on an educational display of what life was like in Medieval England (they let me cook, it's fantastic). A fellow 14th Century adventure taught me these two recipes, and like any good medieval cook, I've played with the ingredients until I have found just the perfect ratio. In the Middle Ages, every cook had their own secret blend of strong and sweet powders, often changing with the season.
Poudre Forte and Poudre Douce (strong powder and sweet powder) are staple seasonings in medieval europe. Poudre Forte is excellent for meat and savoury dishes, use it anywhere you would pepper. Poudre Douce for sweet desserts; replacing cinnamon in any sweet dish. But don't feel restricted to the usual sweet and spicy boundaries. Next time you bake apples, sprinkle some Poudre Forte on top for an amazing taste sensation. —trampledbygeese
Makes 1/4 cup (ish)
- 1 tablespoon Pepper corns
- 2 tablespoons Ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon Ground ginger
- 3 tablespoons Sugar
- 1 pinch (optional) other ground spice like allspice, nutmeg, cloves
- Grind the pepper, mix together with all other ingredients.
- Store at room temperature in airtight container. Best if used within one year, but keeps virtually indefinitely.
- Use in recipes as you would cinnamon or keep on the table and use as a sweet replacement for pepper. Especially delicious when cooked with oats and/or apples.
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