|Ladies in their finest|
The evening started with a talk by the Friends of Thynghowe about the Thyng site which is believed to exist in Sherwood Forest. Thyng sites are known throughout Northern Europe and are places where local people gathered together to make community decisions and to conduct legal proceedings. Conroi De Vey will be leading Regia Anglorum in the Viking Spring Thing on 18th-19th May 2013 in Sherwood Forest, and this talk was excellent preparation for that.
After that, we cracked on with the important part of the evening: food! Food was a communal affair, with most families cooking at least one dish.
|One of the many loaves of bread!|
Although for once all the food was cooked with thoroughly modern technology, the actual meal was conducted with period technology. No forks in this period: the key utensils are the spoon and knife. I'm proud to say that the spoon photographed here was whittled by me during a show in 2012. The knife shown here (made by Toki) is a typical eating knife for the period: ideal for spearing a vegetable or cutting through a piece of meat, it is considerably sharper than your average modern eating knife and can equally well be used to carve the aforementioned spoon. Other points to note are that in our period plates have yet to come into existence, so bowls are the order of the day.
|Pork and vegetables|
Important as bread may have been in the diet, this was a banquet, and so we enjoyed a large number of additional dishes. On the left you can see the pork, apple sauce, carrots and parsnips. Carrots would have been purple or white in our period, but sadly such carrots are extremely difficult to get hold of.
|Chicken and salmon patties|
The other photo you can see here is of the chicken and salmon patties made by Miriel de Rouen. Although to us salmon is a very expensive dish, in our period it was readily available. In contrast, chicken is comparatively expensive because chickens were more useful as egg-layers than dinner. This may be why chicken was viewed as being very good for you. I was too busy eating to get photographs of the rest of the "mains", but they included fried beans, mushroom soup, and a cheesy turnip and leek bake.
For dessert, we had short-bread type biscuits, a cheese-cake style dish, leche lumbard and raspberry bread pudding, all shown in the photograph.
The evening concluded with some old-fashioned entertainment. Mead was consumed and toasts were made. Riddles were told, ferrets were killed, and small people turned out to be surprisingly good at wrestling. 
Roll-on next year for a rematch!
 No ferrets were harmed in the making of this blogpost.