More Shakespeare! 11 Recipes Sure to Surprise Your Friends

By: Sydney Vollmer, ARB Intern

Are you a college student looking for something to serve at your party this weekend? Are you a young professional looking to impress? Are you married and have no idea what to make for that couple you hate but you’re obligated to invite to your house every now and then? Keep reading.

For you, and only you, I have found a book of Shakespearean recipes in our collection of ephemera from UC’s 1916 celebration. I’m almost positive none of your guests have ever tried any of these before!

A few parting words:

  • Always try recipes once before making for others
  • Feel free to let the people at ARB be the guinea pigs you make sample your first attempts!

Good luck! Make sure to take pictures of your creations and share your experience with us on Facebook.

Recipe Book Cover

“Grandam’s Plums”
King John, 2—1

1 cup seeded raisins.
1 cup XXXX sugar.1
½ cup fine dried bread crumbs.
½ level teaspoon salt.
2 tablespoonfuls lemon or orange juice.

Put all through chopper, add fruit juice, salt and sugar (sifted), form into balls and roll in granulated sugar.

Romeo and Juliet, 4—4

1 cup seeded dates.
½ cup peanut butter.
¼ cup quince preserve.2
¼ cup XXXX sugar.
1 level teaspoon salt.

Put dates through chopper, add peanut butter, quinces and salt. Mix well, form in balls, roll in granulated sugar.

“Chamberlain’s Wassail”
Macbeth, 1—7

1 gallon sweet cider.
1 ½ pounds brown sugar.
6 2-inch pieces stick cinnamon.
1 tablespoon whole allspice.
2 pieces whole mace.3
½ teaspoon salt.
Few grains cayenne.
1 quart peeled chopped apples.
1 quart whole raisins.

Boil together 15 minutes.  Serve hot in mugs.

Recipe Book Pages 6 and 7

“Banbury Tarts”

1 cup seeded raisins.
1 lemon.
1 cup sugar.
1 egg.
1 Boston cracker.4

Sufficient for 9 tarts.  Roll pie crust thin, cut into 4 in. squares spread with filling, fold into triangles.

Romeo and Juliet, 1—5

10 ounces almond paste.
5 ounces confectioners’ sugar.
White of 1 egg.

Work together almond paste and sugar on slab or board. Add white of egg, unbeaten, and work until mixture is perfectly smooth. Roll out to one-fourth inch in thickness. Cut and bake twenty minutes in a slow oven.

“Honey Drops”
Tempest, 4—1

2 cups brown sugar.
2 cups honey.
6 egg yolks.
4 cups flour.
1 ½ teaspoons soda.
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon.
½ teaspoon ground cloves.
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg.
½ teaspoon allspice.
1 cup raisins cut fine.
½ ounce citron cut in small pieces.5
½ candied orange peel cut in small pieces.
½ pound blanched almonds coarsely chopped.6
Whites of 2 eggs

Mix honey, sugar and egg yolks and beat. Sift together the dry ingredients. Combine all ingredients but the whites of the eggs, add them last, beaten stiff. Drop on buttered pan. Bake in moderate oven. Remove at once from the tin.

Recipe Book pages 4 and 5

“Gallants Bread”
I Henry VI, 3—2

2 cups flour.
¾ cup butter.
½ cup brown sugar.

Wash butter7 and knead with flour and sugar until mixture is smooth and holds together. Roll to one-third inch in thickness, cut, sprinkle with caraway comfits8, and bake in a slow oven fifteen to twenty minutes.

“Costard’s Ginger Bread”
Love’s Labors Lost, 5—1

A pound and a half of flour takes up one pound of treacle9, almost as much sugar, an ounce of beat ginger, two ounces caraway, four ounces citron and candied lemon peel, the yolks of four eggs; cut your sweet meats10, mix all and bake in large plates.

“Gremio’s Cake”
Taming of the Shrew, 1—1

Take six pounds of currants, five pounds of flour, an ounce of cloves and mace, a little cinnamon, half an ounce of nutmegs, half a pound of pounded and blanched almonds, half a pound of sugar, three-quarters of a pound of sliced citron, lemon, and orange peel, half a pint of sack, a little honey water, a quart of ale-yeast, a quart of cream, a pound and half of butter melted and poured into the middle thereof; then strew a little flour thereon, and let it lie to rise; then work it well together, and lay it before the fire to rise; work it up till it is very smooth; put it in a hoop11, with a paper floured at the bottom.

Recipe Book pages 2 and 3

Recipe Book Page 1“No Man’s Pie”
Henry VIII, 1—1

Cut into pieces the shoulder or loin of boiled mutton, remove fat and skin, season highly with pepper, salt, and a minced onion. Make stock of the trimmings of the mutton, add it to the pie, a tablespoonful of ketchup, one of hot vinegar, cover with a good pastry, and bake.

“Blessed Pudding”
Othello, 2—1

Six tablespoonfuls flour, a teaspoonful of salt, mix with a little cold milk. Three eggs well beaten, mix with flour, boil one pint of milk and pour it on the eggs and flour, stirring constantly. Have a square tin pan greased, pour in the pudding, and set it upon a gridiron a few minutes, then place it under beef that is roasting, and send it to table cut in small square pieces.


  1. Very fine powdered sugar
  2. Small yellow pear-like fruit
  3. Found within nutmeg. Can be purchased ground or in whole blades. This recipe calls for blades.
  4. A round, tick, unsalted cracker
  5. A citrus fruit which looks similar to a lumpy lemon
  6. The process of submerging something in boiling water, taking it out for a period of time, and again submerging it, but in cold water
  7. Knead butter until all liquid comes out, run under a faucet while kneading. Continue until all liquid is clear.
  8. Dried caraway that is sugar/candy coated
  9. Molasses
  10. An old time term for candy
  11. A baking tin