AS-classes-msg - 5/28/98
Comments on various Arts and Sciences classes in the SCA.
NOTE: See also the file AS-classes-lst, AS-ideas-msg, AS-events-msg.
This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that
I have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some
messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.
This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium.
These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org
I have done a limited amount of editing. Messages having to do with
seperate topics were sometimes split into different files and sometimes
extraneous information was removed. For instance, the message IDs were
removed to save space and remove clutter.
The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I
make no claims as to the accuracy of the information given by the
Please respect the time and efforts of those who have written these
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credit to the orignator(s).
Mark S. Harris AKA: Lord Stefan li Rous
Date: Mon, 3 Nov 1997 02:41:24 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: A&S Classes
There was a question,
"Of all the A&S classes that you have attended, which have been the most
helpful to you and which did you enjoy the most and why?"
The most helpful ones also tended to be the ones I enjoyed the most. For
instance, Many, many, years ago (could it be about 20 now?) were some
scribal classes for beginners and intermediate scribes taught by (now Master)
Allyn Samildanach of the West Kingdom. We drew, we laid gold, we played with
the forms. It was wonderful fun and taught me a lot about doing SCA scrolls.
About a year ago, I took several classes in panel painting (intermediate to
advanced level) from Mistress Miriel Ty A(mmumble) that I found a great deal
of fun, and quite useful. We drew, we broke eggs, we painted, we laid gold.
I learned a lot about panels and icons.
< there is a recurring theme in my interests >
There was a "History of the SCA" class with slides of people many years ago,
taught by Master William von Schlussel that was fascinating (who are these
people? why did the SCA go this route instead of that? ) And there have
been periodic "history of the Kingdom" classes also.
A few years ago was a class on quality clothes-finishing techniques taught by
Mistress Mela de Prion (who teaches that to her college students) that was
filled with tricks of the trade, and sewing facts that I (a primarily
self-taught seamstress unafraid to ask friends for help) had never known.
Now I mostly teach classes, but when I take them, I most enjoy the hands-on,
practical knowledge of crafts sort of classes.
Date: 22 Apr 1998 11:58:06 -0700
From: "Marisa Herzog" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: SC - Help thinking up a
<snip>I have just under a month, two weekends free and little free
weeknight time. I'd prefer not to do a class on cooking a feast,
since it's already being done, so I'd like to find a good food
Suggestions? Ideas? Thing's you'd like to attend?
Not that I can attend... but considering some of the recent threads- how about
something like and "Intro to Medieval Flavorings/Spices" give people who
haven't had access to saffron, galingale, etc. a chance to eyeball, smell,
taste- give basic overview of powder-forte, powder-duce (sp?) and such- and
list things to get away from, like vanilla.
Date: Wed, 22 Apr 1998 19:46:26 -0500
From: "Chicago Jo" <email@example.com>
Subject: RE: SC - Help thinking up a class
how about a class on feeding a hungry fighter out of a picnic basket with
only period foods. There are a lot of sources out there but to actually
have a class with samples and examples.... I would love it
Date: Wed, 22 Apr 1998 20:12:34 -0700
From: "Anne-Marie Rousseau" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: SC - Help thinking up a class......
Some more ideas:
- --a 50 minute survey on food and eating in the real middle ages. kinda a
basic whirlwind tour of what they ate, and why. I base mine around the
seasonability of foodstuffs and agricultural practices in 15th century
- --a hands on cooking class where they get to make their lunch on the fire.
Using documentably period recipes, of course :)
- --a tastebuds on class on beverages, again, with documentation
- --I took a GREAT class in Calontir, where she had a bunch of ingredients
and their possible substitutions. We got to compare all kinds of vinegar,
why wild rice isnt a good sub for white rice, why you cant really use some
spices in place of others, what the heck does a lignonbery taste like
anyway, etc. The piece de resistance is that she had made three batches of
rice. One used yellow food coloring, one used tumeric and one used saffron.
She also made numerous batches of shortbread, subbing in different kinds of
sugar (turbinado, white, brown, etc) and different flours (rice vs whole
wheat, etc) and different fats (butter vs margerine vs oil). Kitchen
Science! and no more "hmm...well, this SHOULD be fine..." :)
- --pick a period cookbook, and make some treats from it. Spend your time
discussing the history of that particular book while your students get to
nibble bits. Time permitting, you can discuss reconstruction of recipes
from period sources.
== Date: Thu, 23 Apr 1998 06:55:33 EDT
From: WOLFMOMSCA <WOLFMOMSCA@aol.com>
Subject: Re: SC - Help thinking up a class......
One of the classes I'm currently working on myself is "Where Did They Get
Their Groceries?" Take a sampling of original recipes from various lands in
period and explain how the cook obtained the ingredients. A little cooking
info, a little history, some trade route tracking, and a dollop of
agricultural info, and voila, it's a class. I always like to try to broaden
the scope of my classes this way because I feel that the SCA focuses too
narrowly on the "things" of the Middle Ages. We need to learn more about the
rest of the picture, IMHO.
Date: Fri, 24 Apr 1998 09:23:03 +1000
From: Robyn Probert <email@example.com>
Subject: SC - Hello, Edible Flowers and Classes
The most popular food classes I've run have been on Medieval Ingredients and
Redacting Recipies. For the first one I have a list of ingredients and their
modern names and some substitutes, but the real aim is to let people look
at, small and taste real saffron, verjuice, galingale, long pepper, etc and
give people sources for these. Sampling foods made with these things is part
of the fun.
Redacting can be done in theory and/or practice. The theory includes handing
out a glossary of terms and looking at the original recipies, learning to
trasnlate them into modern English. Then a discussion on methods for
recreating the dish - cross referencing to other sources (medieval and
modern), assumed knowledge of ingredients and techniques, the how and why of
all the decisions you make on the way and coming up with a dish which is
hopefully to your taste as well.
The practice is great as an extension. Having done the theory, a fun option
is to divide the class into groups, give them all the same original recipie
and ingredients and encourage them to redact the recipie and produce the
dish. Finished products can be compared and you can get a lively group
discussion on which they like best, which is the best "period"
interpretation and why they made the choices they did. This can also be done
as a demo if short on time/resources or have students who are not competant
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Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 15:04:38 -0400
From: "LHG, JRG" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: SC - Help thinking up a class
I have found that the best way to do a cooking class without actually
cooking is to pick a theme and run with it, information-wise, but to offer
already cooked samples. So Cold foods (period salads, syllabub, flummery,
or pickled foods) are good. I do a class on preserved foods as a sort of
appetiser thing. Goes over very well, and you'd be surprised who shows up
when you teach it late afternoon (all those hungry fighters actually have
to learn about food if they want to eat---I'm evil and I admit it!).
Another good one is "Period Use of Almonds", covering lenten stuff,
endoring with butter-fried almonds, I even attended a class with almond
Period Garnishing is a really neglected SCA art.
I like the idea of "Fine tuning a feast theme" .
How about "The differences in regional cuisines in the year _________."
Show regional foods, imported foods, and common diet staples in 4 or 5
different places such as Scotland, London, Paris, Rome, Norway. Actually, I
like that idea. I think we should ALL attend a class like that! Perhaps you
could pick an early date and a late date to illustrate the effect of
commerce on the cuisine of the areas.
Perhaps a good one would be "Common foods you have in your kitchen to
'medievalise' any meal". This would show quick tricks to make any meal in
to a "feast" with minimal menu rework. Why make hamburgers when you can
make hedgehogs, salad, and bread? Why make oatmeal when you can have
Pottage? Why have cheese whiz when there's Savory Toasted Cheese?
How about "25 great recipes you can make at Pennsic"? Or, a week of Meal
Menus for Pennsic with NO cooler! Sounds like the right class for your
target audience. If geared to minimal equipment and ingredient-sharing
(with spices, cheese, etc.), could be a winner!
How about "Emergency Solutions for the Panicking Cook"?
A Good One: "Starting a Cook's Guild".
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 1998 23:09:39 -0500
From: "Mike C. Baker" <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: SC - Help thinking up a class......
Rebecca Tants wrote:
> I volunteered to cook a fill in cooking class for AEthelmearc
> war practice next month on "whatever subject isn't covered
> by all the OTHER cooking classes people usually teach at
> such things". Seemed like a good idea at the time, but it turns
> out that there are only two other food-related classes:
> Herbs & How to Cook a Feast for Beginners. So now I actually
> have to THINK of a topic.
> We won't have a kitchen (it's at the Pennsic site), so
> if it's a hands on class it would have to be on a campfire or
> without heating.
> Suggestions? Ideas? Thing's you'd like to attend?
"The *Proper* Use of Cheese In the SCA Feast Setting"?
"Adapting Available Commercial Foods to Feast Use?
(e.g., what breads work and don't work, and under what conditions)
"Techniques & Tools For Fire-less Camp Meals"?
(e.g. going beyond bread, sausage, cheese, fresh fruit -- or making
those staples more palatable / better presented)
HTH - Amra, Kitchen Idiot
For "official" purposes: Mike C. Baker
For "fun": Amr ibn Majid al-Bakri al-Amra (SCA)
Kihe Blackeagle (Filk, Scouting, etc.)
Copyright © Mark S. Harris (Lord Stefan li Rous)
All Rights Reserved
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