Cooking onboard the Mary Rose
The Galley (the ship’s kitchen)
There were two large, brick built ovens in the galley, each with a huge copper cauldron on the top. Meat and fish were boiled in these. The cauldrons had a lead lip around them. We now know that lead is actually poisonous, so that wasn’t a good idea!
This is what we think the galley looked like when it was in use.
The walls and floors of the ovens are made of brick. They sit on the gravel ballast that was put in the hold of the ship to help keep her stable. The sides and back of the ovens were supported by strong wooden walls.
The galley didn’t have a chimney. Instead, the smoke was trapped in a box-like area above the ovens, where it could be used to flavour fish and meat.
Here are some of the tools used in cooking.
The ladle was used to scoop the food out of the cauldrons. It would have had a really long handle, allowing the cook to get to the bottom of the cauldron. (Ours has broken off!)
This little cooking pot was probably used for cooking meals for the senior officers. It had three legs so it could be heated by standing it in the glowing embers of the fire.
The mortar is a heavy bronze bowl used with a metal stick called a pestle for grinding herbs and spices to add flavour to the officer’s food.