Barley Frumenty

Frumenty is kind of a wheat pottage made from boiled wheat with the addition of eggs, broth or milk.

Traditionally frumenty is made with wheat, but we didn’t have any and I like barley better so I made it with pearl barley instead which of course changed things a bit. But I find it quite plausible that people would have made it like this as well. I based my version on the one you find on I also left out the safran on the bases that it wouldn’t have been added in my poor man’s version and it’s really just colouring. I also had to reheat the porridge to thicken it, which the original recipe doesn’t do.

dsc_0708It turned out to be more than just eatable – the barley flavour came though nicely and I had left the grains a dente as I normally do with perle barley. On the plate it sat up nicely. My boyfriend did say that he would rather have had potato but that he isn’t much for porridge in the first place. The portion was quite large – we ate little less than half the portion – it is properly for four people.

I had brought big bottle of beer for dinner because it seemed like the fitting thing to have with some medieval food and a steak. It is a cluster brew from Aarhus and I have to say it was really good. It’s called “Klosterbryg” from Aarhus Bryghus. If you see it somewhere you should give it a taste.

Barley Frumenty

A barley pottage made with eggs and milk as a side dish with meat. Based on a number of 1300’s and 1400’s recipes.

  • Prep Time: 5m
  • Cook Time: 25m
  • Total Time: 30m


  • 200 milliliters pearl barley
  • 4 milliliters water
  • 125 milliliters milk
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. Boil the water and add the barley once it is boiling in a pot. Add a lid and let it boil until al dente - that's about 15-20 min.
  2. While it cooks you separate the egg and add the yokes to the milk along with the salt. Mix it together.
  3. Add the egg-mix into the barley and give it a bit of a boil until it thickens.

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