ntensive use of spices was characteristic of medieval gastronomy: according to Bruno Laurioux, three quarters of the recipes had spices in them. The European elite ate a lot of spices, first for dietary reasons (spices were supposed to make digestion easier and the medical books were full of prescriptions combining such spice, reputed hot, to such other product, considered cold, for the balance) and also for the sake of social distinction (spices were prestigious, expensive and rare, coming from a somewhat magical Orient).


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