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This page last modified October 16, 2005

Cooking from Anthimus

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recipe interpretations by Heather Rose Jones, copyright 2005

Anthimus instructs us to cook millet in water until the grains start to burst open, and then to add goat's milk to finish the cooking. I haven't tried the recipe with goat's milk yet.

Experiment #1

In a saucepan, combine:

Bring to a boil and simmer over a very low heat until the grains start to split. (Ca. 15 minutes.) Around this time, almost all the original water will have been absorbed. Add:

Continue simmering over a very low heat. Stir regularly. The milk was all absorbed after about 30 minutes at which time the grain was cooked.


The milk makes it very rich tasting. It works very well as a vehicle for any of the meat dishes, especially the lamb (#5) or the braised beef (#3). The grains are soft and just slightly chewy. (Note: if they're still crunchy, they're undercooked.) It's a pale yellow and looks sort of like rice with scrambled eggs.

Experiment #2

As in #1, but soak the millet in water for half an hour first and then rinse. The amounts for this experiment were:

Collegium Version

This was both the simplest and the hardest recipe I did for the collegium dinner. My mantra as we worked on it was, "This is a dish that has yet to be perfected." It ended up slightly scorched and too soupy, both due to the difficulties of large-batch preparation. I didn't have any of the same problems when making a one-person batch in early experiments. For this reason, I will not give the amounts used in the 50-person batch because I don't advise doing batches that large. See experiment #1 above.

Here's the deal. The millet tends to clump together as it starts cooking. This happens first and most right down at the bottom of the pan where the heat is. In a small pan, the heat will radiate throughout the pan fairly evenly, but in a large pan the cooking and clumping happens only in the bottom couple of inches while the top only gets a little warm. Constant stirring and scraping is necessary to keep it from scorching. Once it starts scorching, the only real way to save it is to pour the good stuff off into another pan. It is next to physically impossible to stir the millet sufficiently in a large batch when it is close to being done.

You have been warned.


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