Castle Architecture

Castle Kitchens

Medieval kitchens were placed outside the Great Hall to fire safety. Spits roasting meat and large, iron cauldrons bubbling with soups and stews were all part of the kitchen's daily routine. Lambs, cattle, pigs, and fowl were tethered or penned nearby, some castles kept a pond stocked with fish, and cooking herbs would be grown in nearby gardens. Castle kitchens could be large enough to roast up to three whole oxen at a time!

Water would be supplied by a well, but castles during the later Middle Ages began to pipe water right into the kithcen area. Utensils and whatever dishes the lord might possess would be washed in large stone sinks.

Breakfast in the Middle Ages was usually a simple meal of bread and water. Dinner would be served between 10 a.m. and noon and feature several courses. Dinner, especially for celebratory feasts, would demand large quantities of food be prepared. At the marriage of Henry III's daughter, sixty cattle were slaughtered and prepared as the main course for the meal.