Week 5 - Drie Leach

It seems summer has finally arrived. Horray! To celebrate, Lori and Madeline have come up with the perfect warm weather dish .... no baking required. All you need is a pot and a spoon and a little gentle heat. 

This week’s recipe comes from Sir Hugh Platt’s Delights for Ladies, to Adorn Their Person, Tables, Closets and Distillatories: with Beuties Banquets, Perfumes and Waters first published in 1602. Don’t be put off by this dish's unappetizing name. Leach is actually an early form of gingerbread. It’s not a cake or a biscuit, but a dense, moist ... ummm ..... confection? Think fudge crossed with cookie dough. 

Based on a scan of the ingredients, we’re not entirely sure how this stuff will taste. But delicious or inedible, we’ll be sure to let you know. Give it a try yourself. As always, we’d love to see/hear about your results. 

To make gingerbread: 
Take three stale Manchets and grate them, drie them, and sift them through a fine sieve, then adde unto them one ounce of ginger being beaten, and as much Cinamon, one ounce of liquorice and aniseedes being beaten together and searced, halfe a pound of sugar, then boile all these together in a posnet, with a quart of claret wine till them come to a stiff paste with often stirring of it; and when it is stiffe, mold it on a table and so drive it thin, and print it in your moldes; dust your moldes with Cinamon, Ginger, and liquorice, being mixed together in fine powder. This is your gingerbread used at the Court, and in all gentlemens houses at festival times. It is otherwise called drie Leach.

FYI, a manchet (or manchette) is a white bread roll small enough to be held in the hand. Say, the size of a hamburger bun or a large dinner roll. 

Good luck!

Jane SeversComment