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A Medieval Christmas Feast with Recipes in Jerusalem

As Christmas nears, let's go back in time to 1300 AD Jerusalem and imagine the tasty dishes they had during this sacred holiday season. Back then, Christmas was a big deal with days filled with plenty of eating and merrymaking. The food was pretty straightforward, but it represented a mix of European, Middle Eastern, and North African tastes and elements.

Our feast kicks off with a simple parsley and barley soup. Barley was a staple for medieval cooks, and this soup gets its gentle flavors from slowly cooked onions, carrots, parsnips and is seasoned lightly with cumin and coriander. For the main dish, roasted whole lamb is a classic choice. It’s spiced up with rosemary, mint and sweetened slightly with pomegranate juice. This lamb would be cooked over an open flame, giving it that smoky savory taste.

Bread is key for scooping up all those tasty juices. Authentic bread from medieval times was baked fresh every day using coarsely milled wholewheat or rye flour. It was cooked in a wood-fired oven. This kind of baking gave you a bread that was crusty on the outside but soft inside. Olive oil and wine were usually on hand to round out the meal. For something sweet, dried fruits like figs, dates, and raisins were common. They might stew them into a sticky sauce to go with sugary almond cakes—typical sweets of the period.

Here are some Medieval Christmas Feast with Recipes if you fancy trying your hand at a 14th-century Christmas dinner:

Parsley and Barley Soup


1⁄2 cup pearled barley

1 onion, diced

2 carrots, peeled and sliced

1 parsnip, diced

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp coriander

5 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1⁄4 cup chopped parsley


Add barley, onion, carrots, parsnip and spices to broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes until barley is tender.

Once cooked, blend half the soup to thicken consistency.

Reheat and stir in parsley just before serving.

Roasted Leg of Lamb


5 lb leg of lamb

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp pomegranate juice

1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary

1 tsp mint

Salt and pepper to taste


Heat your oven or wood-fired cooker (to get the true smokey flavor) to 350°F. Dry the lamb and rub some oil on it.

Mix together the pomegranate juice, rosemary, mint, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Spread this mix all over the lamb.

Cook at 350°F for 1 to 1.5 hours or until it's cooked how you like it.

Wait for 10 minutes after taking the lamb out before you cut and serve it.

Dive into old-fashioned Christmas flavors with these easy recipes! We're thankful for simple meals that unite us during the festive time.

As we bid adieu, let me extend my heartfelt thanks for embarking on this illuminating journey back in history with me. Your presence and support bring the past to life through my content. Don't forget to tap that like button and gallop along into the universe of my YouTube channel at for never-ending adventure at the intersection of History and Historical Fiction. Be sure and visit my community often - there's always something fascinating to hear, see and explore. You will find quite a few intriguing artifacts at The Watcher in the Fall Community ( I'm all ears and super curious about your thoughts. Drop a line or two, and let's turn this channel into a space where we dive into the depths of history through the power of imagination, together. I'm your trusty guide, Ron Townsen, navigating the halls of historical fiction. If you've had a blast and fancy buying me a virtual drink of coffee, head over to Ronald Townsen Presents | Patreon. It's like a cosmic tip jar for storytellers like me. As we gallop onwards through the universe of historical fiction, remember: our imaginations are the spur, and the past is not gone - it's just the beginning. Thank you for being a stellar part of this storytelling caravan. Stay curious, be awesome, and let your imagination continue to ride through the ages!


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