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Recipe by Felice Debbage

A dish of poultry smothered in a sweet, spicy white wine sauce with dates and pine nuts. The original recipe calls for chicken, however I used seitan instead of the meat so that the final dish would be an excellent alternate vegan dish for a vegetarian at a meat-heavy feast. Seitan is a chewy product made from wheat gluten, with a texture that mimics that of chicken quite nicely. While it was developed in Asia well before the medieval period begins, it was not used in England in the middle ages.


2 cups Reisling white wine
4 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. olive oil
1/4 cup chopped dates
1/4 cup pine nuts
1 package of chicken-style seitan
red sandalwood, to color appropriate shade of red


Set the wine to boil and dissolve the sugar in it. Then add the spices to the wine base, and then color it with red sandalwood until it becomes reddish. Meanwhile, brown dates and pine nuts in olive oil, and then add them to the wine base. Allow to boil gently until reduced a little into a sauce-like consistency. Drain the water from the package of seitan and pull it apart with your fingers into bite-sized pieces. Add the seitan to the wine base, and heat until the seitan is hot.

Mawmenee. XX. Take a pottel of wyne greke. and ii. pounde of sugur take and clarifye the sugur with a qantite of wyne an drawe it thurgh a straynour in to a pot of erthe take flour of Canell. and medle with sum of the wyne an cast to gydre. take pynes with Dates and frye hem a litell in grece oþer in oyle and cast hem to gydre. take clowes an flour of canel hool and cast þerto. take powdour gyngur. canel. clower, colour it with saundres a lytel yf hit be nede cast salt þerto. and lat it seeþ; warly with a slowe fyre and not to thyk, take brawn of Capouns yteysed. oþer of Fesauntes teysed small and cast þerto.

Published: 2009-02-02