Piece of bread used as a plate, whether a cut slice or a specifically-baked flat loaf. Commonplace in grander households from the 12th to the 18th Century.
It is not the case that medieval feasts were always served on 'trenchers' of bread, the term simply means a surface on which food is served and has occasionally been applied to tables and plates as well as breads. Hartley 1954 suggests that trencherbreads were cooked on hot 'bakestones' until risen, then turned over to complete and split to form two plates. Wooley 1672 gives a receipt for a fake-porcelain "White Trencher Plate which may be eaten" using white flour paste with egg.
Original Receipt in Wooley 1672;
219. To make white Trencher-Plates which may be eaten. Take two Eggs beaten very well, Yolks and Whites, two spoonfuls of Sack, one spoonful of Rosewater, and so much flower as will make it into a stiff Paste, then roule it thin, and then lay it upon the outsides of Plates well-buttered, cut them fit to the Plates, and bake them upon them, then take them forth, and when they are cold, take a pound of double refin'd Sugar beaten and searced, with a little Ambergreece, the White of an Egg and Rosewater, beat these well together, and Ice your Plates all over with it, and set them into the Oven again till they be dry.
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