Medieval cuisine

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Common and often basic ingredients in many modern European cuisines like potatoes , kidney beans , cacao , vanilla , tomatoes , chili peppers and maize were not available to Europeans until after , after European contact with the Americas, and even then it often took considerable time, sometimes several centuries, for the new foodstuffs to be accepted by society at large. As a consequence of these excesses, obesity was common among upper classes. Compared to meat, fish was much more expensive for inland populations, especially in Central Europe, and therefore not an option for most. However, the honey -based drink became less common as a table beverage towards the end of the period and was eventually relegated to medicinal use. The first cookbooks began to appear towards the end of the 13th century. The centrality of bread in religious rituals such as the Eucharist meant that it enjoyed an especially high prestige among foodstuffs. If this regimen were not respected it was believed that heavy foods would sink to the bottom of the stomach, thus blocking the digestion duct, so that food would digest very slowly and cause putrefaction of the body and draw bad humours into the stomach.


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