Forward Programme

July 5th 2015 – Astwick Deserted Medieval Village

August 2015 – No meeting

September 19th 2015 – Hampton Gay – Deserted Medieval Village, Tudor Manor and Church

October 17th 2015 – Walk around Oxford, look at architecture and historic buildings

November 2015 – Cornbury Park, Earthworks and Barrows (Date TBC)

December 5th 2015 – PRM, Christmas Party (Medieval theme)


Forward Programme

The next few meetings will be held at the following times (exact details of where we’ll be meeting will be emailed to members shortly):

Saturday 24th January – North Leigh Roman Villa meeting at 12 noon

Sunday 15th February – Wallingford Saxon Burh at 12 noon

Sunday 22nd March – Godstow Abbey at 11 AM

Iron Age Recipes

As promised; the recipes from last month’s Party! Happy eating!!

Savoury Bean Fritters

120g butter
70g chopped, roasted, hazelnuts
1 bunch of spinach
1 handful of freshly-grated horseradish (or use a couple of tablespoons from a jar)
500g processed Celtic Beans (see below)
1 egg
Pinch of salt
Strong wholemeal bread flour

Celtic Beans:
Use one third dried black-eyed peas to two thirds dried broad (fava) beans.
Soak the beans overnight then drain and place in a large saucepan.
Cover with plenty of water, bring to the boil and cook for at least 3 hours.
Take off the heat, cover, and allow them to cool in the water.
You now need to remove the hard skins from the beans.
Alternatively you can use tinned beans!

Melt a little butter in a pan and use to gently fry the hazelnuts and sea beet (spinach) until wilted.

Take off the heat and transfer to a bowl.

Mix in the horseradish and beans then add the egg.

Stir to combine then season with salt and add just enough flour to bring the ingredients together as a stiff dough.

Shape the dough into rissoles (sausage shapes about 3cm in diameter and 6cm long), melt the remaining butter in a large pan and fry the shaped rissoles until browned all over.

Lentil and Mushroom Soup

125g pre-soaked lentils
2 cloves of garlic
1 leek
25g of butter
1 bowl of chopped mushrooms
850ml of water
1 tsp of poppy seeds

Crush the garlic cloves and slice the leek.

Fry the leek and garlic in the butter. Add the chopped mushrooms and fry for a few minutes.

Add the water and lentils and simmer for an hour.

Season with salt and add the poppy seeds.

Barley Bread

450g barley flour
450g strong wheat flour
pinch of salt
1 sachet dried yeast
1 tbsp honey

Add the honey and 200ml water to a pan and heat until just warm. Add the yeast and place in a warm spot for 20 minutes to prove.

Mix the remaining ingredients in a bowl, forming a well in the centre and add the yeast mixture.

Combine gradually adding enough water to form a firm dough.

Roll the dough into a ball. Cover with a damp cloth and leave in a warm place for 1 hour 40 minutes, or until well risen.

Place the dough on a floured surface and knead thoroughly. Shape into several pieces. Cover with a cloth and leave to rise for 20 minutes.

Heat a flat, dry pan over a medium heat, flatten the dough balls slightly and score a cross in the top. Place on the pan and cook until fluffy all the way through, turning several times.

Beans and Caraway

1kg cooked and processed Celtic Beans
25g butter
generous bunch of sorrel leaves
shredded generous bunch of chives
chopped 1 ramson bulb (or 2 garlic cloves)
chopped 1 dessert spoon of caraway seeds
crushed sea salt, to taste

Melt the butter in a pan and use to lightly fry the sorrel leaves, chives and ramsons until softened (about 5 minutes).

Add the caraway seeds then fry for 1 minute before stirring-in the prepared bean paste.

Add salt to taste then stir-in 120ml of water.
Continue cooking until the dish has heated through and the liquid has been absorbed then serve.
Bacon and Bean Stew

250g fat bacon, chopped
2 celery sticks
450g chopped parsnip
2 leeks
250g mushrooms
2 tsp mustard seeds
sprig of thyme
500g celtic beans
500ml water
1 tsp salt

Fry the bacon in a large saucepan until it begins to brown and release fat.

Add the chopped leeks, parsnips and celery and fry until softened.

Add the mushrooms, herbs and mustard seeds stirring until the mushrooms have begun to soften.

Add the beans, water and salt.

Bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook slowly for about an hour.

Poppy Seed and Blackberry Cake


360g poppy seeds, ground
6 duck eggs (hen eggs will also do)
250ml honey
130g blackberries (or any other seasonal fruit)

All cakes need flour of some kind and this is no different. If you’re being authentic then grind the poppy seeds into flour using a quern. However, using a coffee grinder works equally well!

Once you have the poppy seed flour, tip it into a bowl. Ground poppy seeds can often be found in Eastern European Deli’s.

Crack the eggs and separate the yolks and white into separate bowls. Beat the yolks until thick then continue beating as you add the honey to the mixture a little at a time.

Next, stir in the blackberries (or whatever fruit you’re using) and the poppy seed flour.

Finally, beat the egg whites until they form into stiff peaks and gently fold the whites into the fruit and poppy seed mixture using a metal spoon.

Gently pour the resulting batter into a lightly greased and floured ovenproof dish or cake tin.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 170°C (Gas 3) for about 50 minutes (or until the cake has set).

Allow the cake to cool in its dish or tin, tip out, slice and serve with cream and a sprig of mint.

The Stone Age: This Month’s Meeting

This month we will be exploring our first archaeological period; the Stone Age.

We’ve got a really exciting guest speaker who’ll let us all know loads about the Stone Age.

He will also give a flint knapping display.

This really is a meeting you don’t want to miss!

Online fun:



Forward Programme

The planning for the first six branch meetings is moving forward very nicely. Here’s how the programme is looking at the moment, don’t forget to check-in regularly for updates!

October 11th 2014
The Stone Age – Our inaugural meeting will be held at the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford. We’ve got a really exciting special guest who’s looking forward to talking about the Stone Age and will be offering a flint knapping display.

November 2014
The Bronze Age – A field trip to the Rollright Stones. The branch will be having a look at this wonderful late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age ritual complex.

December 2014
The Iron Age – The Branch’s Christmas Party. We’re going to have some fun and also an Iron Age Feast at the Pitt Rivers Museum.

January 2015
The Roman Era – A field trip to North Leigh Roman Villa, a beautiful spot with some wonderful mosaics.

February 2015
The Anglo-Saxon Era – A field trip to Wallingford, the largest Burh in Saxon England. The group will be looking at the surviving ramparts and the Norman castle.

March 2015
The Medieval Period – A field trip to Godstow Abbey. A well preserved Nunnery that was converted to a mansion and severely damaged during the Civil War.