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Fascinating Talk with Francine Segan Looks at Medieval Foods

Plus, a handout for delicious recipes including Tuscan Medieval Soup and Lavender Jelly

AARP members can watch this talk through Dec. 19, 2023. Video run time is 58 minutes. This is a recording of a live interactive event; references to participation in the chat no longer apply.
Photo Collage: MOA Staff; (Getty Images (6))

In this lively talk on medieval history, food historian Francine Segan looks at why the Middle Ages have long fascinated the imagination, with tales of brave knights, fearless kings and fire-breathing dragons. The feasts of these adventurous times were fanciful events where dinner guests ate concoctions like roast peacock on bread platters, tiny meatballs shaped like little pears, huge savory pies with animal claws poking out and baked dough “fountains” flowing with spiced wine. They were entertained by minstrels between courses. This amusing lecture recreates the splendor of medieval feasts and includes a handout of delicious medieval recipes. 

Access a PDF of the handout Segan references in the video, with four recipes and links for further reading on medieval foods and feasts.


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About Francine Segan

spinner image headshot of food historian Francine Segan

Francine Segan is an expert on Italian cuisine and a noted food historian, as well as an engaging public speaker, author and TV personality. She lectures across the country, bringing her lively presentation to town hall groups, women’s clubs and many prestigious institutions. The host of New York City’s popular weekly TV series Americans Who Love Italy, Segan has been featured on numerous specials for PBS, the Food Network, and the History, Sundance and Discovery Channels.


This talk is part of Segan's Food Historian Lecture Series presented by AARP’s Virtual Community Center, where you can find a variety of free virtual events designed for learning, self-improvement and fun. Check out her other videos from the series and stay tuned for upcoming talks.


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