TO MAKE HONEY DRINK
To two quarts of water take one pound of Honey. When it boileth, skim it clean as long as any scum ariseth; boil it a pretty while; then take it off the fire, and put it in an earthen pot, and let it stand till the next day; then put it into clean bottles, that are throughly dry, rinsing first every bottle with a little of the liquor; Fill them not too full, and put into every bottle four or five Cloves, and four or five slices of Ginger: and stop it very close, and set it in Sand; and within ten or twelve days it will be ready to drink.
Some, when they take their Bees, put the honey-combs into fair-water, and make it so strong of the honey that it will bear an Egg; and then boil it with some Spice, and put it into a barrel: but I think it not so good, as that which is made of pure honey.
THE EARL OF DENBIGH’S METHEGLIN
Take twenty Gallons of Spring-water; boil it a quarter of an hour, and let it stand, until it be all most cold; then beat in so much honey, as will make it so strong as to bear an Egg, so that on the Top, you may see the breadth of a hasel-nut swimming above; The next day boil it up with six small handfuls of Rosemary; a pound and a half of Ginger, being scraped and bruised; then take the whites of twenty Eggs shells and all; beat them very well, and put them in to clarifie it; skim it very clean, then take it off the fire and strain: But put the Rosemary and Ginger in again: then let it remain till it be all most cold: then Tun it up, and take some New-ale-yest; the whites of two Eggs, a spoonful of flower, and beat them well together, and put them into the barrel; when it hath wrought very well, stop it very close for three weeks or a month: then bottle it, and a week after you may drink it.
TO MAKE MEATH
Take to every Gallon of water, a quart of honey, and set it over a clear fire, and when it is ready to boil, skim it very clear. Then take two handfulls of Sweet-marjoram, as much Rose-mary, and as much Baulm: and two handful of Fennel-roots, as much of Parsley-roots, and as many Esparages-roots: slice them in the middle, and take out the pith, wash and scrape them very clean, and put them with your herbs into your Liquor. Then take two Ounces of Ginger, one Ounce of Nutmegs, half an Ounce of Mace: bruise them and put them in: and let it boil till it be so strong that it will bear an Egg: then let it cool: and being cold, put in 3 or 4 spoon fulls of New-ale yest: and so skim it well, and put it into a Runlet, and it will work like Ale: and having done working, stop it up close, as you do New-beer: and lay salt upon it.
TO MAKE METHEGLIN
Take four Gallons of running water, and boil it a quarter of an hour, and put it in an earthen vessel, and let it stand all night. The next day take only the water, and leave the settling at the bottom: so put the honey in a thin bag, and work it in the water, till all the honey is dissolved. Take to four Gallons of water, one Gallon of Honey: Then put in an Egg, if it be strong enough of the honey, the Egg will part of it appear on the top of the liquor: if it do not, put more honey to it, till it do. Then take out the Egg, and let the Liquor stand till next morning.
Then take two Ounces of Ginger, and slice it and pare it: Some Rose-mary washed and stripped from the stalk: dry it very well. The next day put the Rose-mary and Ginger into the drink, and so set it on the fire: when it is all most ready to boil, take the whites of three Eggs well beaten with the shells, and put all into the Liquor: and stir it about, and skim it well till it be clear. Be sure you skim not off the Rose-mary and Ginger: then take it off the fire, and let it run through a hair sieve: and when you have strained it, pick out the Rose-mary and Ginger out of the strainer, and put it into the drink, and throw away the Eggshells, and so let it stand all night.
The next day Tun it up in a barrel: Be sure the barrel be not too big: then take a little flower and a little bran, and the white of an Egg, and beat them well together, and put them into the barrel on the top of the Metheglin, after it is tunned up, and so let it stand till it hath done working; then stop it up as close as is possible: and so let it stand six or seven weeks: then draw it out and bottle it. You must tye down the Corks, and set the bottles in sand five or six weeks, and then drink it.
Take twenty Gallons of fair Spring-water. Boil it a quarter of an hour, then let it stand till the next day. Then beat into it so much honey, as will make it so strong as to bear an Egg the breadth of a two pence above the water. The next day boil it up with six small handfulls of Rosemary, a pound and a half of Ginger, (being scraped and bruised) and the whites of twenty Eggs together with their shells beaten together, and well mingled with the Liquor. Clarifie it and skim it very clean, still as the scum riseth, leaving the Ginger and Rosemary in it.
Let it stand till the next day, then Tun it up, and take some New-ale-yest, the whites of two Eggs, a spoonful of flower, beat all these together, and put it on the top of the barrel, when the barrel is full. Let it work, and when it hath done working, stop it up close for three weeks, or a month. Then you may bottle it, and a few days after, you may drink it.
Take three Gallons of water, and boil in it a handful of Rose-mary (or rather the flowers) Cowslips, Sage-flowers, Agrimony, Betony, and Thyme, ana, one handful. When it hath taken the strength of the herbs, strain it through a hair-sieve, and let it cool twenty hours. Then to three Gallons of the clear part of this decoction, put one Gallon of honey, and mingle it very well with your hand, till it bear an Egg the breadth of a groat.
Then boil it and skim it as long as any scum will rise. Afterwards let it cool twenty four hours. Then put to it a small quantity of Ale-barm, and skim the thin-barm that doth rise on it, morning and evening, with a feather, during four days. And so put it up into your vessel, and hang in it a thin linnen bag with two Ounces of good White-ginger bruised therein: And stop it up close for a quarter of a year. Then you may drink it.
Take a quart of honey to a Gallon of water; set the Kettle over the fire, and stir it now and then, that the honey may melt; let it boil an hour; you must boil in it, a Sprig or two of Winter-savory, as much of Sweet-marjoram; put it into tubs ready scalded, till the next day towards evening. Then tun it up into your vessel, let it work for three days; after which hang a bag in the barrel with what quantity of Mace and sliced Nutmeg you please. To make it stronger then this, ’tis but adding more hony, to make it bear an Egg the breadth of a six pence, or something more. You may bottle it out after a month, when you please. This is the way, which is used in Sussex by those who are accounted to make it best.
Take to every Gallon of Fountain-water a good quart of honey. Set the water on the fire, till it be pretty warm; then take it off, and put it in your honey, and stir it till it be dissolved. Then put into every three Gallons, two handfuls of Thyme: two good handfuls of Strawberry-leaves, one handful of Organ; one handful of Fennel-roots, the heart being taken out, and one handful of Parsley-roots the heart taken out: But as for the herbs, it must be according to the constitution of them, for whom the Mead is intended.
Then set the Herbs in it on the fire, to boil for half an hour, still skimming it, as the scum riseth; it must boil but half an hour; then take it off the fire, and presently strain it from the herbs, and let it stand till it be fully cold; then pour it softly off the bottom, and put it in a vessel fit for it, and put a small quantity of barm in it, and mingle it with it, and when it hath wrought up, which will be in three or four days, skim off that barm, and set on fresh: but the second barm must not be mingled with the Meath, but onely poured on the top of it.
Take an Ounce of Nutmeg sliced: one Ounce of Ginger sliced: one Ounce of Cinnamon cut in pieces, and boil them a pretty while in a quart of White-wine or Sack: when this is very cold, strain it, and put the spices in a Canvas-bag to hang in your Meath, and pour in the Wine it was boiled in.
This Meath will be drinkable, when it is a fortnight or three weeks old.
TO MAKE METHEGLIN THAT LOOKS LIKE WHITE-WINE
Take to twelve gallons of water, a handful of each of these Herbs: Parsley, Eglantine, Rosemary, Strawberry-leaves, Wild-thyme, Baulme, Liverwort, Betony, Scabious: when the water begins to boil, cast in the herbs: let them boil a quarter of an hour: then strain out the herbs; and when it is almost cold, then put in as much of the best honey, you can get, as will bear an Egg to the breadth of two pence; that is, till you can see no more of the Egge above the water, then a two pence will cover: Lave it and stir it till you see all the honey be melted; then boil it well half an hour, at the least: skim it well, and put in the whites of six Eggs beaten, to clarifie it:
Then strain it into some woodden vessels; and when it is almost cold, put some Ale-barm into it. And when it worketh well, Tun it into some well seasoned vessel, where neither Ale nor Beer hath been, for marring the colour of it. When it hath done working, if you like it, Take a quantity of Cloves, Nutmegs, Mace, Cinnamon, Ginger, or any of these that you like best, and bruise them, and put them in a boulter bag, and hang it in the vessel. Put not too much of the Spice, because many do not like the taste of much Spice. If you make it at Michaelmas, you may tap it at Christmas: but if you keep it longer, it will be the better. It will look pure, and drink with as much spirit as can be, and very pleasant.
TO MAKE WHITE METHEGLIN
Take Sweet-marjoram, Sweet-bryar-buds, Violet-leaves, Strawberry-leaves, of each one handful, and a good handful of Violet flowers (the dubble ones are the best) broad Thyme, Borrage, Agrimony, of each half a handful, and two or three branches of Rosemary, The seeds of Carvi, Coriander, and Fennel, of each two spoonfuls, and three or four blades of large-mace. Boil all these in eight Gallons of running-water, three quarters of an hour.
Then strain it, and when it is but blood-warm, put in as much of the best honey, as will make the Liquor bear an Egg the breadth of six pence above the water. Then boil it again as long as any scum will rise. Then set it abroad a cooling; and when it is almost cold, put in half a pint of good Ale-barm; and when it hath wrought, till you perceive the barm to fall, then Tun it, and let it work in the barrel, till the barm leaveth rising, filling it up every day with some of the same Liquor. When you stop it up, put in a bag with one Nutmeg sliced, a little whole Cloves and Mace, a stick of Cinnamon broken in pieces, and a grain of good Musk. You may make this a little before Michaelmas, and it will be fit to drink at Lent.
This is Sir Edward Bainton’s Receipt, Which my Lord of Portland (who gave it me) saith, was the best he ever drunk.
TO MAKE A SMALL METHEGLIN
Take four Gallons of water, and set it over the fire. Put into it, when it is warm, eight pounds of honey; as the scum riseth, take it clean off. When it is clear, put into it three Nutmegs quartered; three or four Races of Ginger sliced; Then let it boil a whole hour, Then take it off the fire, and put to it two handfuls of ground Malt; stir it about with a round stick, till it be as cold as wort, when you put yest to it. Then strain it out into a pot or Tub, that hath a spiggot and faucet, and put to it a pint of very good Ale-yest; so let it work for two days; Then cover it close for about four or five days, and so draw it out into bottles. It will be ready to drink within three weeks.
TO MAKE MEATH
Take to six quarts of water, a quart of the best honey, and put it on the fire, and stir it, till the honey is melted: and boil it well as long as any scum riseth: and now and then put in a little cold water, for this will make the scum rise: keep your kettle up as full as you did put it on; when it is boiled enough, about half an hour before you take it off, then take a quantity of Ginger sliced and well scraped first, and a good quantity of Rosemary, and boil both together. Of the Rosemary and Ginger you may put in more or less, for to please your taste:
And when you take it off the fire, strain it into your vessel, either a well seasoned-tub, or a great cream pot, and the next morning when it is cold, pour off softly the top from the settlings into another vessel; and then put some little quantity of the best Ale-barm to it and cover it with a thin cloth over it, if it be in summer, but in the winter it will be longer a ripening, and therefore must be the warmer covered in a close place, and when you go to bottle it, take with a feather all the barm off, and put it into your bottles, and stop it up close. In ten days you may drink it.
If you think six quarts of water be too much, and would have it stronger, then put in a greater quantity of honey.
METHEGLIN OR SWEET DRINK OF MY LADY STUART
Take as much water as will fill your Firkin: of Rosemary, Bays, Sweet-bryar, Broad-thyme, Sweet-majoram, of each a handful; set it over the fire, until the herbs have a little coloured the water; then take it off, and when it is cold, put in as much honey, till it will bear an Egg; Then lave it three days morning and evening. After that boil it again, and skim it very clean, and in the boiling clarifie it with the whites of six Eggs, shells and all, well beaten together. Then take it off, and put it to cool; and when it is cold, put it into your vessel, and put to it three spoonfuls of yest; stop it close, and keep it, till it be old at least three months.
A METHEGLIN FOR THE COLICK AND STONE OF THE SAME LADY
Take one Gallon of Honey to seven Gallons of water; boil it together, and skim it well; then take Pelitory of the Wall, Saxifrage, Betony, Parsley, Groundsel, of each a handful, of the seeds of Parsley, of Nettles, Fennel and Carraway-seeds, Anisseeds and Grumelseeds, of each two Ounces. The roots of Parsley, of Alexander, of Fennel and Mallows of each two Ounces, being small cut; let all boil, till near three Gallons of the Liquor is wasted:
Then take it off the fire, and let it stand till it be cold; then cleanse it from the drugs, and let it be put into a clean vessel well stopped, taking four Nutmegs, one Ounce and half of Ginger, half an Ounce of Cinnamon, twelve Cloves; cut all these small, and hang them in a bag into the vessel, when you stop it up. When it is a fortnight old, you may begin to drink of it; every morning a good draught.
A RECEIPT FOR METHEGLIN OF MY LADY WINDEBANKE
Take four Gallons of water; add to it, these Herbs and Spices following. Pellitory of the Wall, Sage, Thyme, of each a quarter of a handful, as much Clove gilly-flowers, with half as much Borage and Bugloss flowers, a little Hyssop, Five or six Eringo-roots, three or four Parsley-roots: one Fennel-root, the pith taken out, a few Red-nettle-roots, and a little Harts-tongue. Boil these Roots and Herbs half an hour;
Then take out the Roots and Herbs, and put in the Spices grosly beaten in a Canvass-bag, viz. Cloves, Mace, of each half an Ounce, and as much Cinnamon, of Nutmeg an Ounce, with two Ounces of Ginger, and a Gallon of Honey: boil all these together half an hour longer, but do not skim it at all: let it boil in, and set it a cooling after you have taken it off the fire. When it is cold, put six spoonfuls of barm to it, and let it work twelve hours at least; then Tun it, and put a little Limon-peel into it: and then you may bottle it, if you please.
ANOTHER OF THE SAME LADY
To four Gallons of water put one Gallon of honey; warm the water Luke-warm before you put in your honey; when it is dissolved, set it over the fire, and let it boil half an hour with these Spices grosly beaten and put in a Canvass-bag: namely, half an Ounce of Ginger, two Nutmegs, a few Cloves and a little Mace; and in the boiling put in a quart of cold water to raise the scum, which you must take clean off in the boiling. If you love herbs, put in a little bundle of Rosemary, Bays, Sweet-marjoram and Eglantine. Let it stand till it is cold, then put into it half a pint of Ale-barm, and let it work twelve hours; then Tun it, but take out the bundle of herbs first.
TO MAKE METHEGLIN
Take to every Gallon of Honey, three Gallons of water, and put them together and set them over so gentle a fire, as you might endure to break it in the water with your hand. When the Honey is all melted, put in an Egg, and let it fall gently to the bottom; and if your Egg rise up again to the top of the Liquor, then it is strong enough of the Honey. But if it lie at the bottom, you must put in more honey, and stir it, till it doth rise. If your honey be very good, it will bear half a Gallon of water more to a Gallon of Honey.
Then take Sweet-bryar, Bays, Rosemary, Thyme, Marjoram, Savoury, of each a good handfull, which you must tye up all together in a bundle. This Proportion of Herbs will be sufficient for twelve Gallons of Metheglin; and according to the quantity of Metheglin you make, you must add or diminish your Herbs. When you have put these things together, set it over a quick fire, and let it boil as fast as you can for half an hour or better, skiming of it very clean and clarifying it with the whites of two or three Eggs.
Then take it from the fire, and put it into some clean vessel or other, and let it stand till the next morning; Then pour the Clear from the dregs, and Tun it up, putting in a little bag of such Spice as you like, whereof Ginger must be the most. After it hath stood three or four days, you may put in two or three spoon-fulls of good Ale-yest, it will make it the sooner ready to drink. It must work before you stop it up. The older your Honey is, the whiter your Metheglin will be.
MEATH WITH RAISINS
Put forty Gallons of water into your Caldron, and with a stick take the height of the water, making a notch, where the superficies of the water cometh. Then put to the water ten Gallons of Honey, which dissolve with much Laving it; then presently boil it gently, skimming it all the while, till it be free from scum. Then put into it a thin bag of boulter-cloth containing forty pound weight of the best blew Raisins of the Sun, well picked and washed and wiped dry; and let the bag be so large, that the Raisins may lie at ease and loosly in it.
When you perceive that the Raisins are boiled enough to be very soft, that you may strain out all their substance, take out the bag, and strain out all the Liquor by a strong Press. Put it back to the Honey-liquor, and boil all together (having thrown away the husks of the Raisins with the bag) till your Liquor be sunk down to the notch of your stick, which is the sign of due strength.
Then let it cool in a woodden vessel, and let it run through a strainer to sever it from the settlings, and put it into a strong vessel, that hath had Sack or Muscadine in it, not filling it to within three fingers breadth of the top (for otherwise it will break the vessel with working) and leave the bung open whiles it worketh, which will be six weeks very strongly, though it be put into a cold cellar. And after nine moneths, you may begin to drink it.