Robert May’s Braised Brisket

Inspiration: Dr. Marissa Nicosia’s modernization of May’s recipe from The Accomplisht Cook, first printed in 1660 and transcribed from the 1685 edition. She describes preparing the recipe for the Folger Shakespeare Library’s First Chefs: Fame and Foodways from Britain to the Americas on her blog Cooking in the Archives, at

The OCC team substituted pot roast for the brisket, to great success. The addition of root vegetables meant a great deal of chopping, but the result made us all glad for the students’ efforts!


To stew a Rump, or the fat end of a Brisket of Beef in the French Fashion

Take a rump of beef, boil it & scum it clean, in a stewing pan or broad mouthed pipkin, cover it meat with your knife to let out the gravy, then put in some claret-wine, and half a dozen of slic’t onions;
May’s recipe in the OCC test kitchen.
having boiled, an hour after put in some capers, or a handful of broom-buds, and half a dozen of cabbidge-lettice being first parboil’d in fair water, and quartered, two or three spoonfuls of wine vinegar, as much verjuyce, and let it stew till it be tender; then serve it on sippets of French bread, and dish it on those sippets; blow the fat clean off the broth, scum it, and stick it with fryed bread.