This recipe reflects medieval trade and tastes, but is very much usable today. You may recognize its grandaughter recipe in Quatres Epices. Both blends can be used for savory dishes (braised or roasted meat) or sweet ones (ginger bread, apple pie and so on). Galingale, long pepper & grains of paradise, 3 unusual spices used here, give tingly and complex flavors. They are findable and worth seeking out, at bricks-and-mortar or online specialists. I have liked and cooked with this blend for years, and bottle it for gifts. Original had 1 tablespoon clove, which I omit as I don't like it, but you can restore that spice. Adapted from Livre fort excellence de cuysine, 1555. —Nancy
1 cup (110g)
(about 30g) ground cinnamon
(about 30g) ground ginger
(about 15g) ground nutmeg &/or mace
(about 15g) ground black peppercorns (round pepper)
(about 7g) ground long pepper (featured in attached drawing)
(about 7g) ground grains of paradise
(about 7g) ground galingale (a relative of ginger)
In This Recipe
Get whole spices if you can, roast (optional) and grind them in a coffee grinder or blender. Measure and mix.
If whole spices are not available, use ground ones from a store freshly opened and/or where turnover is high. Measure & mix.
Put in air-proof container, and keep in a dark, cool cupboard for up to a year.
If you want less or more, pick another measure (e.g., teaspoons instead of tablespoons) but maintain the ratios used here.