Monday, December 15, 2014

Ruantallan Investiture/Tir Mara Championships Dayboard, recap

Well it seems my website is down so an update there is pretty much not going to happen until I get that sorted out.

For now, I'll toss in a bit of a recap here.

Getting to do dayboard for this event was a bit of a journey in itself, originally I had to turn down cooking feast which made me very sad... booo no cooking! But Garth, who was doing dayboard had to leave, booo no Garth but yay, cooking! Figured I can sorta juggle that and other responsibilities with the help of my husband... who I could not do this without. But what to cook? I talked to the cook for the event to get an idea of how to match the dayboard and found out that she was planning to work from Pleyn Delit... ah ha, this gave me something to work with! Well... sorta... that book is a compilation of stuff but figured okay, the cook is aiming for likely 14th-15th century, I can work with that. This made my focus narrow in on 15th century (mostly) with emphasis on English (for the new Baron and Baroness and the over theme the event seemed to have) and Dutch, because well... Dutch cook :)

Now came the tricky guesswork, I did not want to double on dishes (so tossed in as much Dutch as I saw fit).
The original menu was to have Hichones (hedgehogs), Leche Lumbard, Stuffed Apples, Stuffed Eggs, Gouda biscuits (crackers), Apple Cake, Wafers (on a decorated iron), Venison in Broth, Quince Jelly, Puree of Peas, Fennel tarts, Beef Pies, Gingerbread, Fried Flans, Peers in Confit, Sawge Yfarcet (stuffed sage)... butter (dairy and almond), bread, water with sryups, cheeses and fruit.

What happened was that I found out was that Leche Lumbard and a Pea Soup were being served at feast... Thankfully, I had did not have the leche assembled so used the pork to make sausage and I simply ate the cost of the peas, onions that would be in the soup and the dried fruit that would have gone in the leche (it isn't like I don't use that stuff typically anyway). It could have been served but I feel people shouldn't be eating too many duplicate dishes.

On top of this, we also found out that we were going to be moving soon so I was also juggling house shopping in a very limited time frame given and only having limited people able to help... this meant dropping dishes and/or changing them somewhat. ... We dropped the syrups, the apple cake, did not stuff the eggs (which is fun, I love deep frying the stuff eggs, and they look so neat) and kinda simplified it, but not too much!

The month of the event, the menu for dayboard was rearranged:

  • Hicherones (Hedgehog styled pork sausage)
  • lightly Smoked Sausage (A French recipe snuck in here from "Le Menagier")
  • Gouda Biscuits (self explanatory, much like cheese crackers)
  • Stuffed Apples (deep fried apples stuffed with pork)
  • Wafers served with Quynade (Quinade is a combination of quince paste and almond butter/cream/cheese)
  • Venison in broth (Venison stew/soup)
  • Beef Pies (beefy pies with raisins cooked up as chewits)
  • Fried Flans (fried cheese pies)
  • Pears in Confit (pears cooked with mulberries in a spiced wine syrup)
  • Fennel Tarts (apple pies with fennel seed)
  • Sawge Yfarcet (stuffed sage)
  • Rice Pottage (sweetened rice cooked in milk with saffron)
  • Gingerbread (breadcrumbs boiled in honey and then spiced and set in the shape of acorns and flowers)
  • Roffioelen (herb and cheese dumplings)
  • Roots in Pottage (garden roots being carrots and parsnips boiled and served with sweet spices)
  • Bread
  • Butter
  • Cheese (Brie, Fresh Goat and fresh soft cheese from yoghurt I made that week)
  • Hard Boiled Eggs (some I fashioned in the shape of acorns)
  • Grapes
  • Oranges (sliced)
  • Pomegranate Seeds (to eat and as a garnish)
  • Damson paste (damsons cooked to a paste that can be boxed up and sliced, I did mine up in bottles ahead of time)



The Dutch recipes came from here: http://www.coquinaria.nl/kooktekst/index.htm
with the Roffioelen from a post 15th century cookbook (1510 actually): http://users.telenet.be/willy.vancammeren/NBC/
The English recipes came from: "Two 15th century cookbooks", Rylands MS 7,/Forme of Cury, Arundel 334/Ancient Cookery, MS Harley 5401 and I did refer to "Le Menagier de Paris" for sausage ideas as I wanted to save on egg.

Also, with all of the recipes I used, many of the items were made in a rather small form, the object (or theme even) that I utilized was to make many of everything but to have it all rather sample-like in form. Well, mostly everything.

Recipes:(at least what I can dig up from my notes atm)

Urchins [Hedgehogs]. Take the stomach of a large hog, and five or six pig stomachs. Fill them full of pork forcemeat [minced, seasoned pork mixture] and sew them tightly closed. Parboil them and remove them from the boiling water. Make small spikes of good paste (flour paste or dough] and fry them. Take these fried spikes and stick them in the stomach casing of the forcemeat so they make a dense covering, made to resemble an urchin [hedgehog] without legs. Put them on a spit and roast them, and color them with saffron, and serve them forth. 

**For these, I used hog casings instead of bladders, first off I wanted them small and secondly not all stomachs are available for purchase at butcher shops, they are not even permitted to sell us bladders in this country. typically only one type of cow stomach is available. 


To stuff apples. (Dutch) Take unblemished apples and cut a thin slice off the top near the stalk, and the stalk also.Then take a little iron flesh hook, sharp enough and small, to scoop out the apple without breaking the skin. Then stuff [the apple] with the afore said stuffing, take the slice with the stalk and close the apple as it was before. Fix [the slice] with a small wooden pin. Fry the apple in hot fat, and sprinkle with sugar as is right.
--Who wants to make stuffing, takes pork, lean and fat, well cooked, and hard boiled eggs, chopped together. Put it in a mortar and crush well and add good spices (?), pepper, saffron, enough spices, salt to taste. And it is also good to make white sausages and pancakes, to stuff eggs, pastries, fritters, to stuff pig's trotters, to stuff hens and young chickens, to stuff eggs, crayfish and apples.

**I picked hundreds of little crabapples for these. First I did a test batch trying the different varieties of apples I had and chose the ones that worked best with the stuffing (pork, egg and spice based). Coring and stuffing tons a little crabapples is not for the weak lol


Dough to make pipes (Dutch)
Take cheese from Gouda and eggs. Grind together with white flour. Lay it on dry flour and make small biscuits of it.

**since I wasn't making pipes, I just made these up as little crackers... btw, even though I made them fresh, they do keep well and are better dusted with a little salt. 


Sawge yfarcet. Take pork and seeþ it wel, and grinde it smal, and medle it wiþ ayren & brede ygrated. Do þerto powdour fort and safroun wiþ pynes & salt. Take & close litull balles in foiles of sawge; wete it with a batour of ayren & fry it, & serue it forth.
--Stuffed Sage. Take pork and parboil it well [to remove some of the gamey taste], and grind it finely [with a mortar and pestle], and mix it with egg and grated fresh bread. Add powder fort and saffron with pine nuts and salt. Make little balls of the meat mixture and close them up in leaves of sage. Wet them with an egg batter and fry them and serve them forth.


**These are fab. and very much worth making. The ones I served did not have pine nuts (pine nut allergy and it was easy to exclude) but are still very good without them. Sadly I had a gluten free batch made up and packaged separately but with only one pot to fry them in and with the oil accidentally glutened, I did them all up with the flour based batter. If you want to make them gluten free, they do work just as well with rice starch but they will not hold together as nicely... if anyone ate one that just seemed to fall apart, it was likely meant to be gluten free. 
**note, I have come across many period recipes that used rice or rice starches instead of wheat, this made it a very plausible option that I explore now and then.



Fried flans (Dutch)

Made of dough [and] stuffed with soft cheese ground with yolks of eggs. Stuff them and boil them in fat. Then take enough sugar and roll the pastry through it. These are fried flans.

**super easy, I have made these often! 


To create a pie beef (dutch)
Take 3 pounds of beef, more than two pounds of fat, 2 pounds raisins and for every pound [meat] one lead herbs / spices, one lead mace, two lead ginger, cloves and tight a lead as much pepper

**I made these up like small chewets, which is not an implausible option and it really seems to work well in small form. 



To make a fennel tart (dutch)

Take flat, thin and wide bread. Cut the apples very thin and mix with cinnamon, sugar, a little mace and a little clove. Put them over the bread, whole spread with butter. Sprinkle with fennel seeds and then cover it with a thin cover. Bake it, and eat it very warm.

**These did not get out very warm but I tried them room temperature and they were still pretty good. As you can see, they really are apple pies but made with fennel seed, being that I made them up small, I opted to crush the fennel a bit first. 


Peerus in confyt. (English)
--Take perus & pare hem clene. take gode rede wyne & mulberyes. other saundres & seeth the peres ther inne. & whan they buth y sode take hem up. make a syryp of wyne greke other vernage with blaunche poudour. other whyte sugur & poudour of ginger. & do the peres ther inne. seeth hit a litul and messe hit forth.
--Take peeres and pare hem clene. take gode rede wyne & mulberes oþer saundres and seeþ þe peeres þerin & whan þei buth ysode, take hem up, make a syryp of wyne greke. oþer vernage with blaunche powdour oþer white sugur and powdour gyngur & do the peres þerin. seeþ it a lytel & messe it forth

These are two different, yet identical recipes (I would have to go back to track which is from which book which is why I list listed sources up top)
**One thing I did not use was the saunders, I have used them before and feel the only real good they would add would be for looks and they still ended up looking wonderful... what would have been better is if I still had preserved mulberries but it's something we presently can't get shipped in and I no longer have access to a mulberry tree.
One awesome note on these: I used all ripe, but very undergrown pears, they were all local but could not be sold for anything but seconds so also got a great price for them. This also made them very perfect for the dayboard I had planned. 



Cxv - Quynade. Take Quynces, and pare hem clene, caste hem on a potte, and caste ther-to water of Rosys; do it ouer the fyre, and hele (Note: Cover) it faste, and let it boyle a gode whyle tyl they ben neysshe; and 3if they wol not ben neysshe, bray hem in a Morter smal, draw hem thorw a straynoure; take gode Mylke of Almandys, and caste in a potte and boyle it; take whyte Wyne and Vynegre, an caste ther-to the Mylke, and let it stonde a whyle; take than a clene canvas, and caste the mylke vppe-on, and with a platere stryke it of the clothe, and caste it on the potte; gedyr vppe the quynces, and caste to the creme, and do it ouer the fyre, and lat boyle; take a porcyon of pouder of Clowys, of Gyngere, of Graynys of Perys, of Euery a porcyon; take Sugre y-now, with Salt, and a party of Safroun, and alle menge to-gederys; and when thou dressyst forth, plante it with foyle of Syluer.

 --Make almond cream:
Almond milk, ass white wine and vinegar (to turn it) and let it stand a while.
Spread this on a clean canvas to let it drain then scrape it up and put in a pot with the quince paste.
Cook until it boils
add: cloves, ginger, grains, [sugar, already added], salt and saffron.
Dress and plant with silver.

**Ah good intentions... I had little time to mess about with setting it so opted not to use the silver foil, which I did bring with me to the kitchen *sigh*
It actually surprised me how well it tasted, I was prepared to serve the quince and almond cream separately but the combination was a winner.... 
With this we served wafers


The Original Recipe for
Wafers (Dutch) basically translated to: Take grated white bread. That Temper with raw eggs and add some sugar and the fat of fresh cream.

**I could not get this to play nice on my iron, the problem being is that my iron is very fine and even very fine bread crumb will not pick up the decoration from my iron (it's a Krumkake iron) so I switched out the crumbs for flour (2 cups), 4 eggs, 2 cups sugar, cup of butter... lots of fat makes this work better and milk or cream (I used what I had) to make it thin enough... experiment! Then I took about a spoonfull of the batter and spread it a little on the iron and when the steam seemed to settle a bit, I flipped it and cooked more until the steam again settled (play with the timings or just get a feel for it is as best as I can suggest, the wafers should be a bit golden to work) and then while it is still hot, wrap it around a wooden dowel if you like... they should set really quickly. These keep well if kept in an airtight container after they cooled a bit. 


For the Venison soup:
-Roo in sene. Take flesh of a roo and pyke hit clene and parboyle hit, and then take hit up and drye hit wyth a clothe, and hewe hit on gobettes, and put it in a pot; and do thereto wyne and let it sethe, and take sage, parsel, ysope, and hewe hit smal, and put thereto pouder of pepur, and of clowes, and of canel, and colour it with blode, and let hit boyle, and serve hit forthe.
-Venyson in Broth. Take Rybbys of Venysoun, and wasshe hem clene in fayre water, an strayne the same water thorw a straynoure in-to a potte, an caste ther-to Venysoun, also Percely, Sawge, powder Pepyr, Clowys, Maces, Vynegre, and a lytyl Red wyne caste there-to; an thanne latte it boyle tyl it be y-now, and serue forth.
-Venyson in broth. Take rybbes of venyson, and wassh hem faire in Water, And streyn the Water thorgh a Streynour into a faire potte, and cast the Venyson thereto, parcely, Sauge, powder of peper, cloue3, Maces, Vinegre, salt, And late hem boile til thei be ynow, and serue it forth.
--Dutch version (said for roast game): Deer and hind, cut in pieces (?), well larded while still raw. Cook it in a lot of wine and a little water, [with] chopped bacon [and] sufficient saffron, ginger and cinnamon.

**I did not have a ton of Venison so I worked from the basic above recipes with the addition of the Dutch version with bacon and said spices. To note: I have come across later period venison pies with bacon and it's a good combination. 


Rice Pottage:
For some reason I don't seem to write these down anymore and can't remember which I chose to follow... but it was Rice cooked in milk with saffron and sweetened with a bit of sugar. 


Roffioelen of green leaf vegetables (Dutch)
One shall take green leaf vegetables and parsley, of each the same amount. One shall chop them together very fine; then one shall blanch them or simmer them a very little. When it is cooked so one shall grind them small [in a mortar]. Then one shall take wheat flour and mix them [all the ingredients] together just like thin dough. Then one shall take English cheese* ground or crumbled very small and mix it with the dough; from this one shall make long, narrow, thin lumps and boil them thoroughly in a pan with water. When they are thoroughly boiled so one shall take them out with a fish slice. Then one shall lay them to drain. When they are drained so one shall take clean dishes and lay them therein. To wit, in each dish two or three or four. After that one shall take butter and melt it in the dishes and one shall take some [more] of that cheese and scatter it over. Then take Lombard powder; strew that also on top. You shall know that in Lombardy one customarily serves this in the evening and at noon in the place of vegetables at the beginning [of the meal] before one serves anything else.

**This ended up reminding me of Malfatti which are basically little dumplings with greens and cheese. 


Pottage of Roots: This came from Rapes in Pottage recipes that explain they can also be used for paternakys and sterwytes (I still conclude that as parsnips and skirrets, but did it up as parsnips and carrots many of which were grown in my garden this past summer and consisted of a lot of white and pale yellow varieties). This is boiled and dressed with saffron and sweet spices.

**A reason I opted for cook veggies instead of raw was in some effort to bring things back to medieval thinking. Would I serve raw roots to people to dip in things (modern thinking) or would I cook them first? Typically, roots would not have been eaten raw from what contemporary literature I could find, presumably this would have a lot to do with the edibility of the roots without cooking where the cores would be so woody they were often mention as needing to be removed (excluding the turnips though those seem commonly cooked as well). There are health reasons as well, but I was not getting overly complicated with this menu. 



"Gyngerbrede.--Take a quart of hony, & sethe it, & skeme it clene; take Safroun, pouder Pepir, & throw ther-on; take grayted Bred, & make it so chargeaunt that it wol be y-lechyd; then take pouder Canelle, & straw ther-on y-now; then make yt square, lyke as thou wolt leche yt; take when thou lechyst hyt, an caste Box leves a-bouyn, y-stykyd ther-on, on clowys. And if thou wolt haue it Red, coloure it with Saunderys y-now."
To make gingerbrede.  Take goode honye & clarefie it on the fere, & take fayre paynemayn or wastrel brede & grate it, & caste it into the boylenge honey, & stere it well togyder faste with a sklyse that it tren not to the vessell.  & thanne take it down and put therein ginger, longe pepere & saundres, & tempere it up with thin handes; & than put hem to a flatt boyste & strawe theron suger, & pick therin clowes rounde aboute by the egge and in the mydes, yf it plece you, &c.

**easy to make bit of festiveness for the dayboard :) I made both variants and rolled them out and cut them as tiny acorns.
There are more recipes, this is just what I could find from my horrible note taking :P 

A friend of mine, Cindi (Lady Cat of Lennox) took pictures of the dayboard... **NOTE** Not all the food was actually out at that point! and I did have white table cloths but thinking they may have been used elsewhere... which is cool :P
https://www.flickr.com/photos/cindihachey/15925858002/

Thank you everyone who helped, mainly my youngest daughter, my husband (Shannon/Wolfgang), Bob/Snarfi and Garth... also Maud./Laura for getting the dishes in order!












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