Monday, June 30, 2008

Hachis d’œufs sans malice

Eggs minced without mischievousness [non-deviled?].

Cut hard-boiled eggs in two; keep one good half of each and chop the other whites with the yolks, & moisten mixture with good cream, season with salt and pepper to taste; serve mixture in an egg half on a piece of bread [toast] topped with a sauce made of chopped parsley, scallions, mushrooms [optional], fresh, sweet butter [of Vamvre or Vanvres] and lemon juice.
* * * * *

Hachis d’œufs sans malice.

Vous avez des œufs durs desquels vous ôtez la moitié des blancs, & hachez l’autre moitié avec les jaunes; vous y mettez persil, ciboules, champignons passés & hachés dedans, & le mouillez de bonne crème, assaisonnez de bon gout; sur la fin vous y mettez un pain de beurre de Vamvre, manié, pour lier le tout, jus de citron, & servez.

Le Cuisinier Gascon. A Amsterdam. 1740, p 45.

"Bourbon, Louis-Auguste de Bourbon, Prince de Dombes. Le Cuisinier Gascon.
“Amsterdam”, s.n. 1740. 12mo. [iix], 208p. Woodcut headpieces & woodcut title vignette signed N.Contemporary mottled calf (crown & base neatly restored), spine & red morocco label gilt. *PRINCELY RECIPES. FIRST EDITION: THE FIRST PUBLISHED COLLECTION OF RECIPES WRITTEN BY A ROYAL CHEF. The Prince des Dombes was “an amateur cook who often ‘officiated’ at Louis XV’s ‘Petit Soupers’” (Simon). The Count de Charolais and Marie Leczinska also labored in his kitchen: King Stanislas made his own baba au rhum! The prince imaginatively named his dishes — Yeux de veau farcis au gratin, Poulet à l’allure nouvelle en Chauve souris en culotte, Bignets bacchiques, Hachis d’œuf sans malice…. He wryly dedicated the book to himself." citation

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

My Reenactor Heart Went Pitty-Pat

My reenactor heart went pitty-pat when a friend sent a link to Michel Nichol's latest reproduction in faïence brun, a moule ä pâté, pictured here. Ask Michel for his price list, and if there is a piece you would like to have him make for you, just ask.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Cherries Preserved as Olives

CHERRIES. The recipes call for Kentish, Flemish, Cornelian, Morello, and Black cherries. Some of Bradley’s most interesting comments about cherries are to be found in his General Treatise of Husbandry and Gardening. At that time (c.1721) about ten sorts were available in the nurseries about London. Furthermore, red and white cornelian cherries were ‘often gathered green, and put in Salt and Water, to imitate pickled Olives’. (See volume II, 1726, pp. 14, 121.) (Richard Bradley, 1736) citation

CHERRY OLIVES
Wash cherries, leaving on the stems. Place in pint jars with 1 teaspoon salt on top. Pour over equal parts of cider vinegar and cold water. Seal immediately. Nothing is heated. Let stand several months before opening. These are a delicious and attractive garnish for meat. This recipe calls for red sour cherries, but it was also suggested that bing cherries may be used. (Mrs. Leo McCoy, Welton, Iowa)

Friday, June 13, 2008

June for the Confectioner

This Month affords good store of Raspberries, Cherries and Currans: Compotes, Conserves and Pastes are frequently made of the first of these Fruits; and ‘tis now a proper time to begin to Preserve them dry and liquid.

Cherries, as soon as any ripe ones can be procur’d, are likewise put into Compotes, half Sugar and Conserves: They may be iced over with Powder-sugar, and as this Fruit comes to a fuller growth, or when better sorts of them may be gather’d, they are preserv’d in Ears, in Bunches and after other manners: Cakes or Pastes are then prepar’d with Cherries, as also Marmelade, and at last they are preserv’d liquid, in order to be kept for a considerable time: A Jelly may be also made of them, and the Juice extracted from those that are boil’d for Pastes and of others out of which the Stones were taken, to be preserv’d, may be us’d to very good purpose, in that Jelly, and for the Liquor call’d Ratafiaz, as well as the Syrup of those that are dried.

As for Currans; Pastes, Conserves and Compotes, are first made of them, besides those that are iced; others are preserv’d in Bunches and liquid; and afterwards Marmelade is made of them, with Jellies of several sorts. Moreover, Syrups and Liquors are prepar’d with all these forts of Fruit.

This is also a proper time for the Preserving of Orange-flowers dry, and for the making of Conserves, Pastes and Marmelade of them; which may be serviceable during the rest of the Year; because now there is the greatest plenty of these Flowers.

Conserves and Syrup of Roses are likewise made; so that this is one of the Months, in which the most Pains is to be taken, and that affords the greatest Variety of Fruits and Flowers at once.

The court & country cook, faithfully translated out of French into English by J. K. A. J. Churchill, London, 1702, p. 11-12.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Herbes mélanges - An Herb Mixture

On or about 24 June pick the unsprayed herbs and pluck the leaves from the stems. Pluck the outer petals of the pot marigolds. A soft pastry brush is useful in dealing with the flower petals.

Dry the herbs in the sun or indoors fairly near a gentle fan. Measure, mix, and store in a tightly closed ontainer in a cool, dark, dry place.

Use for soups, salad dressings, roasts and marinades. Parts of this mixture will be found later in Herbes de Provence, using lavender instead of marigold.

1 cup parsley
1/4 cup sage
1/4 cup winter savory
1/4 cup wild thyme
1 1/4 cups marjoram
1/4 cup hyssop
1/2 cup pot marigold petals Calendula officinalis
2 Tablespoons basil (optional)

Savoring the Past, the French Kitchen Table from 1300 to 1789, Barbara Ketcham Wheaton. Touchstone, New York, NY, 1983, p. 248.
* * * * *

Herbes mélanges
Prenes persil effueille deulx poignees mariolaine effueillee deux poignees et demye saulge demye poignee ysope autant sariette autant sarpollet. Une poignee soulcye une poignee. Et quant cest pour faire farce aulcuns y mettent soulcye et peu de Baselicque. Elle seruent a tous potaiges et les fault faire seicher enuiron la sainct Jehan baptiste.


Liure fort excellent du cuysine (1555), ff. 28r◦-v◦.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Spain and the World Table - A Review

A compilation of the Worlds of Flavor conference on Spanish cuisine in 2006, Spain and the World Table, is a delight to the senses and a feast for the eyes. A beautifully presented book, written by Martha Rose Shulman, for the Culinary Institute of America, Spain and the World Table gathers images, stories and recipes from all over Spain, highlighting the best of current Spanish cuisine. But my favorite recipe, Lentil Stew with cèpes, pumpkin and quail, could equally have come from the pages of my 18thC cooking manuals.

Spain and the World Table available from amazon.com ISBN: 978-0-7566-3387-5
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