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AB-Saturnalia-msg - 4/26/11


The Barony of al-Barran's Midwinter event feast on December 18, 2010. Cooked by

Mistress Cailte Caitchairn, O.L.


NOTE: See also the files: fd-Romans-msg, Roman-Recipes-art, fd-Italy-msg, cl-Romans-msg, garum-msg, books-food-msg, fst-disasters-msg, Outl-hist-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 separate 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 individual authors.


Please respect the time and efforts of those who have written these messages. The copyright status of these messages is unclear at this time. If information is published from these messages, please give credit to the originator(s).


Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org



Date: Wed, 22 Dec 2010 11:33:40 -0600

From: "Kathleen A Roberts" <karobert at unm.edu>

To: SCA-Cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: [Sca-cooks] al-Barran Midwinter recap and pix


That which does not kill us makes us stronger.... I should

be Arnold Schwartzenneger right about now.


We were hit with new state regulations that amounted to

opening a restaurant for one day.  The building (per

usual) was not in good shape.  The inspector had the

fairgrounds remove all the cutting tables as health

hazards (pockmarked plastic tops - I had to agree on

that). We could only use the industrial dishwasher to get

the big chunks off, and we had to then wash dishes with

the three sink method because the sanitizer cycle on the

dishwasher wouldn't get hot enough.  The walk-in barely

got up to acceptable temp.   The freezer did all too well.

We had a stove that held 4 half-hotel pans, 6 burners and

a flat top that was quite honestly, scary.  The convection

ovens were temperamental and the floor drain backed up six

times.   We cooked to feed 300.


I had a helluva kitchen crew, the "Vatos" we called

ourselves, because of the hair nets.  Oh, yes... we had to

wear hairnets and plastic gloves for the cooking as well.

And use bleach strips for the chlorine dish rinse.  Tyron

and I worked through Friday night til Saturday morning to

make sure all the beef got cooked.  He shooed me off to

sleep for about 4 hours and continued alone.  Everyone

down to the dishwashing crew (the true heroes of the day)

worked hard and played nice.


We did it.   I had to dumb down some recipes, ingredients

and the prep for some recipes but I think we did pretty



The first course was appetizer-esque.  Salad dressed with

olive oil and pomegranate wine vinegar, sprinkled with

pomegranate seeds; beets with mustard sauce; marinated

cucumbers and fennel; hard boiled eggs with pine nut sauce;

herbed cheese spread; celery sticks; olive spread; pickled

red onions.  The head table's salad plate was sprinkled

with edible gold dust.


The second course was pork with figs and honey; chicken

with herbs; beef with salt and honey; beef with mushroom

sauce; carrots and turnips in wine sauce and string beans

and chick peas with cumin.  We had all kinds of wonderful


LOAVES OF MUSHROOM BREAD.  Fish sauce was offered on

request and six tables requested it.


Desserts featured the four corners of the Roman Empire and

Rome itself.  We had ricotta with honey and pomegranates,

dates stuffed with almonds and gilded; poppy seed tarts

with pistachios, anise cakes, sesame cakes, dried

figs/dates/apricots, candied ginger, stewed apples and

berries, baklava and the Colliseum filled with fruits of

all kinds.


Desserts were processed to the head table from Germania,

Britain, Byzantium, North Africa and Rome in that order,

finishing with the Colliseum escorted by dancing girls and



I did not have time to make it, but my friend Elle Astaria

and I talked about how it could be done and she took it

from there.


Needless to say it was a big hit in the

dessert processional and took three guys to carry it.  t

is made of graham crackers and royal icing.  Here are the

pics someone took (hope this works).








People loved the food, the new decorations, and had a

grand time from what I was told.  Was it worth all the

stress worrying if the health inspector was going to pop

up and close us down because someone's hairnet slipped?  I

think so.   But I also think we should never use this

venue again.  It is an accident waiting to happen.


This is my swan song.  No more huge feasts for me.  Go out

with a good rep and while you are still having fun.  Of

course, this doesn't mean that a feast for 80 is out of

the question. ;)





Date: Wed, 22 Dec 2010 12:48:30 -0600

From: "Kathleen A Roberts" <karobert at unm.edu>

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] al-Barran Midwinter recap and pix


James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net> wrote:

> It sounds as though you and the crew deserve medals!


LOL!  yeah, considering the fact we could not pre-cook

anything but desserts, and bought 280 lbs of meat Thurs

and Fri....





Date: Wed, 22 Dec 2010 14:44:29 -0800

From: Patricia Dunham <chimene at ravensgard.org>

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] al-Barran Midwinter recap and pix


So, I answer myself!  A-googling did I go, and here's the event URL, see about half-way down for the menu:  




[Also, see the event announcement and menu at the end of this file - Stefan]





Date: Wed, 22 Dec 2010 16:49:59 -0600

From: "Kathleen A Roberts" <karobert at unm.edu>

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] al-Barran Midwinter recap and pix


On Wed, 22 Dec 2010 14:44:29 -0800

 Patricia Dunham <chimene at ravensgard.org> wrote:

<<< So, I answer myself!  A-googling did I go, and here's

the event URL, see about half-way down for the menu:  


http://www.al-barran.org/Midwinter/midwinter.html >>>


It changed a bit after the health inspector reared his

ugly head.   The 'dormice' became the meatballs (albeit

commercial) that they really were, only shaped fancy.


Sigh, I was SO excited about that one.








For how many years shall this festival abide!

Never shall age destroy so holy a day.


While the hills of Latinium endure
 and father Tiber, while Rome stands 
and the capitol thou hast restored to the world, 
it shall continue!

   -Publium Papinius Statius



Slaine inghean Ui Sheanain, Baroness of al-Barran, 
invites all far and wide to join her in the celebration of Saturnalia.


The poet Catullus describes Saturnalia as the best of days,
 a time of celebration, visits to friends and gift giving.


Join us in our feasting and reveling, be you Roman, Byzantine,
Gaul, Briton, German, or any other person of good cheer.


Come all, from the four corners and far reaches of the Empire,
 to join in our festivities!


There will be gaming in the tavern, and for the scholarly,
 a graffiti translation competition.


There will be Middle Eastern
 dancing in the evening and music and revelry throughout the day.


There will be some childrens activities, including a mouse hunt.

Craftsmen and merchants will be showing and selling their wares 
in our traditional Midwinter Bazaar. There will be a feast in th
e Roman style, three bountiful and delicious courses of generous 
and (dare we hope?) epic proportions!


Fees :

Non Member Surcharge: $5.00


Site and feast: $25.00

Site only: $15.00


7 to 17 years of age:

Site and feast: $15.00 

Site only $10.00


Children 6 and under free



December 18, 2010 
Site opens at 9:00 a.m. and closes at 10:00 p.m.

December 19, 2010 
Practice starts at 11:00 a.m.



First Course:

Boiled eggs in pine nut sauce, 
shrimp in sweet and sour sauce, 
fresh herbed cheese, dormice in sapa, 
olive spread, 
lettuces in simple dressing, 
beets in mustard seed dressing, 
cucumbers and fennel, 
pickled onion, 
and an assortment of breads, 
flatbreads and crackers


Second Course:

Pork with figs and honey,
 roasted beef with salt, 
served with two sauces, 
chicken and peacock stewed with herbs, 
lentils with cardamom, 
greens with currants and pine nuts, 
carrots and turnips in wine sauce.


Third course:

Cheese with honey and pomegranate seeds,
 stuffed dates and apricots, 
poppyseed cakes, 
fresh fruits, 
and assorted desserts from the four corners 
of the Roman Empire (including baklava).


(Some items may be dependent on market value and 

If you have any food or dietary concerns, 
please contact the Feast Steward, Mistress Cailte.  
Ingredients will be posted onsite, but can be emailed prior on request.


Site: Midwinter Festivities: Leon Harms Youth Hall, 300 San
 Pedro Dr. NE Albq, NM 87108


<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org