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Make comfits, jumbles, wafers and other spectacular confections from sixteenth and seventeenth century recipes

Learn to use carved wooden confectioner's moulds. Ivan made these sugar table ornaments from eighteenth century boxwood moulds.

Preserved Quinces

Learn to make preserves, clear cakes, quidannies, cotoniacks, candied fruits and flowers using original equipment.

These 'apricock jumbles' or 'knots' were a favourite eighteenteent century confection. Learn to re-create them on this course.

Make gum-paste baskets using original moulds

Make 'Artificial Fruit' from pippin and apricot paste

Sugar and Confectionery Course Outline


10 am - Welcome and introduction to the course by Ivan Day. Wafer making with wafering irons over a chaffing dish of charcoal.

10.45 -13.00 - Sugar plate - Tudor and Stuart sugar paste work. Artificial walnuts. Gingerbread and other moulded sweetmeats.

13.00 - 14.00 - Lunch

14.00 - 15.30 - Making and garnishing a Tudor marchpane. Marchpane paste, drying and icing the marchpane in the cool oven.

15.30 - 15.45 - Tea

15.45 - 17.00 - Food gilding techniques.

17.00 - 20.00 - Free

20.00 - Historic Dinner at Wreay Farm


10.00 - 10.45 - Hippocras and cordial waters, Hippocras Gyle, Ratafia, Usquebaugh and Rosa Solis.

10.45 - 13.00 - Comfits - comfit making in the balancing pan over a chafing dish of charcoal.

13.00 - 14.00 - Lunch

14.00 - 17.00 (Tea at 15.30) - Artificial fruits and fruit pastes. Pippin knots and jumbals, or printed cotoniacks when quinces are in season.

Make some of the most spectacular forgotten confections of the early modern period like these 'Cinnamon Letters according to Art' (c.1617) and the 'ragged cinnamon comfits' (c.1600), which share the dish with them. Click the letters and comfits to download much more information about early confectionery and confectioners.
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