To Roast a Tongue

To be eaten hot. This recipe also comes from the Reading MS.

‘Boyle your tongue till the skin will come off then stick it with cloves and time put it upon the spit runn the spit through the roote and tye the top and let it roast a quarter of an hour for sauce boyle water and cinnamon 3 or 4 spoonfulls of water is enough then add a little claret sweeten to your taste and thicken it with the juyce of an egg.’


  • 1 ox tongue, boiled and skinned
  • 3 oz. (90 g.) softened butter
  • 20 cloves
  • ½ pint (3 dl.) good stock
  • 2 glasses red wine
  • 2 teaspoons powdered cinnamon
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 egg yolks, well beaten


Boil and skin the tongue and then stick it with 20 cloves and immediately lay it on a rack in a baking tin and put in an oven preheated to 350° F., gas mark 4, for 20 minutes. Alternatively, put on a spit but be careful not to break: the thin end will have to be tied on. In either case, spread a little softened butter over it.

Remove from the oven or spit and serve at once with a sauce made from the stock and red wine, seasoned with salt and pepper and the powdered cinnamon. Bring to the boil, cool a little, and then rapidly stir in the well-beaten yolks of 2 eggs. Do not let the sauce boil again or it will curdle. Pour it all over the tongue before serving.