Dining With The Sterkarms
One part of the Sterkarm books that people often tell me they enjoyed and remember, is the meal the 21st century executive, Windsor, is forced to endure at the Sterkarm Tower.
So I bring to you The Sterkarm Dinner Party. In the privacy and safety of your own home, you too can threaten your friends with Sterkarm cuisine.
Follow the links for:
In truth, the Sterkarms would not have served their meals in courses like this. That only came into fashion hundreds of years later.
The Sterkarms would have followed the medieval custom of putting everything on the table at once - fish, meat, savoury, sweet, it made no difference. Everyone would have served themselves, or been served, with whatever they wanted.
At a great feast there might have been several 'removes' - that is, the first array of dishes would have been removed, and replaced with another array of equally mixed dishes.
(Perhaps Isobel Sterkarm serves her 21st Century guests their meal as 'starter, main, pudding' because Andrea has told her that is the way the 'Elves' do it.)
Between courses, the guests would have been provided with water and a towel, so they could wash and dry their hands. This was because people used their hands to eat with quite a lot. Forks were still unknown in Britain. People ate with a knife and a spoon. Almost everyone carried their own knife with them, at their belt. Some carried a spoon too, though Isobel Sterkarm would probably have provided both knife and spoon, to show how well-equipped her household was.
For the same reason, she provides her guests with plates - thugh when alone, the Sterkarms probably still ate from trenchers, or large, thick slices of stale bread.
It should be noted that, despite the Sterkarms' rough and ready ways, Isobel would be very insulted if any of her guests threw bones or unwanted food on her floor