An Early Meal – a Viking Age Cookbook & Culinary Odyssey

An Early Meal – a Viking Age Cookbook & Culinary Odyssey

“An Early Meal – a Viking Age Cookbook & Culinary Odyssey” is more than just a Viking Age cookbook. It is a combination of a textbook on Viking Age culinary practices and mouthwatering recipes based on archaeological finds and experimental archaeology.

The book is a result of a 15 year long collaboration between research and experiments of Daniel Serra, culinary archaeologist – experimental archaeologist and doctoral student – and the culinary skills and palate of Hanna Tunberg – foodie, sommelier and archaeologist.

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A cookbook and culinary factbook

A cookbook and culinary factbook based on what we know today about the Viking Age food culture. Both the recipes and the factbook part are based on finds, literary sources, other contemporary sources and experimental archaeology.

In the first part of the book the authors present the food of the Viking Age. They describe what one may have eaten during the Viking Age, how the food was prepared and the practices that surrounded eating the food. This chapter is based on the yet to be finished doctoral thesis by Daniel Serra, archaeological finds from the period across Scandinavia and a range of various other sources.

The second part is a cookbook presented as a journey through Viking Age Scandinavia with 42 different recipes divided into seven geographical areas. The recipes are based upon archaeological finds and experimental archaeology bound together by the combined archaeological and culinary expertise of Daniel Serra and Hanna Tunberg. Almost all dishes can be cooked just as easily in the kitchen as out in a re-enactors camp.

In addition to the background material and the actual cookbook, there are some very interesting appendixes. Not only do we include an Encyclopedic part, which act as a quick reference guide to both food and cooking equipment, there will also be a list of plant finds and a reference for translation of plants, fish birds and other ingredients between English, Latin, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian and German.


Language: English

192 pages, 44 recipes, 67 images, 80 illustrations

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Links to retailers of An Early Meal
Birka Vikingastaden Birka, Sweden

Ekehagen Forntidsby Åsarp, Sweden

Göteborgsstadsmuseum Göteborg, Sweden

Jamtli Östersund, Sweden

Loftr Vikingmuseum Lofoten, Norway

Midgard Historiske senter Borre, Norway

Nationalmuseum Copenhagen, Denmark

Rosala Viking Center Rosala, Finland

Sagnlandet Lejre Lejre, Denmark

Statens Historiska Museum Stockholm, Sweden

The Viking Museum Stockholm,Sweden

Trelleborgen Trelleborg, Sweden

Vetlanda Museum Vetlanda Museum, Sverige

Vikingabyn Storholmen Norrtälje, Sweden
Vikingagården Gunnes Gård Upplands Väsby, Sweden
Vikingatider Löddeköpinge, Sweden
Vikingeskibsmuseet Roskilde, Denmark

Shops and retailers:
Battlemerchant German online shop for the reenactor
Grimfrost Online, Sells world wide
Handelsgillet Norden Online, Sells world wide

Historiska kompaniet Linköping, Sweden

Medeltidsmode Online shop, Sweden

Potboiler Press Online shop, USA

Ravn design Bergen, Norway

Reviews and other coverage of “An Early Meal” and its authors.

In media:

Vetenskapsradion Swedish Radio – the Science magazine summer special (In Swedish)

BBC History – Sweden In nr 6, 2013 in the Swedish edition (In Swedish)

Medieval Histories Online magazine on medieval history

The Exarc Journal By the the writer of the culinary history blog The Silk Road Gourmet

Ancient History Encylcopedia Interview for an online magazine

In blogs:

Vrangtante Brun Norwegian foodblog (in English) by a wellresearched culinary reenactor

Anglosaxon10thcenturyeating Blog from a serious reenactors perspective From a site that gathers and writes articles on everything medieval

Table Scraps Historic food blog

Clean Cheater Blog from someone who is new into Viking reenactment


The Authors:

Historical food in all its forms has been a part of Daniel Serra’s life since 1994. As a young archaeology student, he sampled the flavours of ancient Rome by recreating dishes from the Roman cookbook by Apicius. He has since studied, reconstructed, lectured, cooked and tasted his way from Iron Age to Renaissance food, and is now considered an authority on Viking Age and Medieval food by museums and re-enactors in Scandinavia…..more


Hanna Tunberg is a food lover, or as she puts it, “Slave under the pleasures of the palate and the yearning of the taste buds for new experiences”. Not only has she got a master’s de­gree in Medieval Archaeology but she is also a graduate of the Sommelier School in Malmö (WSET), and is one of the few authorized judges of beer and whisky in Sweden….more

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An Early Meal – a Viking Age Cookbook & Culinary Odyssey