With Halloween behind us (I meant to make a post concerning that, but will have to get back to it), we now look forward to Martinmas on the 11th of November, marking the traditional time to finish up the harvest and to kill the Martinmas beef. At the end of the year the farm hands would usually be invited to participate in a feast given by their employer and would then begin to hunt for winter work.
This festival was also celebrated with eating of Goose and for the poorer classes ducks or hens would be substituted.
I've included a medieval goose recipe at the bottom of this post along with a link to the modern adaption of the recipe. However it is good to note that the eating of Goose on the holiday doesn't seem to be as popular in England as it was on the mainland.
It was also celebrated with a procession of lights and bonfires with a man dressed as Saint Martin leading the way. This custom was particularly popular in Germany and the Netherlands.
Recipe for Goose in original Middle-English
Take sawge, persel, ysope and saueray, quinces and peeres, garlek and grapes, and fylle the gees therwith; and sowe the hole that no grece come out, and roost hem wel, and kepe the grece that fallith therof. Take galyntyne and grece and do in a possynet. Whan the gees buth rosted ynowh, take hem of & smyte hem on pecys, and take that that is withinne and do it in a possynet and put therinne wyne, if it be to thyk; do therto powdour of galyngale, powdour douce, and salt and boyle the sawse, and dresse the gees in disshes & lay the sewe onoward.
Felets in galentyne.
Take the ribbys of a breste of porke; fle of the skyn. Do the flesche on a broche. Roste hit tyl hit be almost ynowghe; take hit of. Chop hit in pecys. Do hit yn a potte with onyons cut grete, wyth clowys hole, macyz, quibibys; do togedyr & a quantyte of swete broth. Draw a lyour of paryngys of crustys of white bredde with good wyne and a lytyll blod, & alaye hit a lytyll, & do therto poudyr of pepyr, a lytyll, & a good quantyte of poudyr of canell, & sette it on the fyre & styrr it. & when it is boyled inowgh, loke hit be nott chargaunt. Sesyn hit up with poudyr of gynger, veneger & salt.