Carnival-Fst-art - 3/19/99
An Italian Carnival Feast held by the Barony of Delftwood, AEthelmearc. Also known as Syracuse NY. The site was the East Syracuse American Legion Hall and the headcook was THL Caitlen Ruadh.
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Mark S. Harris AKA: THLord Stefan li Rous
Stefan at florilegium.org
Date: Sun, 14 Feb 1999 06:47:08 PST
From: "Rebecca E Tants" <retants at hotmail.com>
Subject: SC - An Italian Carnival Feast
Well, my feet still ache, but last night I served sideboard and feast to
100 for the Feast of the Seven Deadly Sins, with a theme of Mardi
Gras/Carnival/Fat Tuesday. Following is the menu/recipes (and I have it
in a much prettier microsoft word document if anyone wants that) but
wanted to make a couple of comments first.
While the chicken was completely cooked, it was on that near end of
completely cooked that freaks some people out. The site that we hold
this event at only has 2 ovens and this menu contains a few too many
things that have to be in them, so a couple things that should have been
hot went out luke warm. The overall feedback was all positive and I had
people begging to take home some of the extra Pear Pie from dessert.
Oh, and we added hard boiled eggs to the sideboard, which went like
I cooked this whole thing for $5 a head, although we got 50 loaves of
bread for $12 which helped a lot!
I'm open to any questions, comments, opinions, etc.
THL Caitlen Ruadh
A Carnival Feast in the Italian Tradition
Recipes from "De honesta voluptate et valetudine" (On right pleasure and
good health) by Bartolomeo Sacchi, called Platina
Feast of the Seven Deadly Sins
February 13, 1999
Lady Caitlin Ruadh
Meat Roll from Tame Animals Pastillus ex Cicuribus 6.9
Garlic Sauce with Walnuts or Almonds Alliatum ex Iuglande aut Amygdala 8.18
For Roman Cabbage In Brassicam Romanensem 7.69
On Vermicelli In Vermiculos 7.52
Dish Made from Rosy Apple Cibarium ex Malo Roseo 7.39
Roast Chicken Pullus Assus 6.17
Meat Balls Esicium ex Carne 7.50
Armored Turnips Rapum Armatum 8.62
On Rice De Riso 7.7
Pear Pie Pirum in Torta 8.30
Spiced Nuts 3
Fresh Broad Bean Soup Ius in Faba Recenti 7.62
Beef Barley Soup 7
As long as the Catholic Church has celebrated Lent, there has always
been a holiday on the day before it. With the strict rules of what you
could eat during Lent and the severe limitations on meats and meat
products, it was necessary to get rid of anything that couldn't be
preserved through the holiday and enjoy a last taste of those foods
which would be severely limited or excluded throughout the next several
weeks. Thus was born the holiday that most of us know now as Mardi Gras
(French), but was also known as Carnival (Italian) or Fat Tuesday
Lent begins in February, so we also have seasonal food limitations to
contend with. Even in Italy, the average high temperature today only
reaches into the lower 50's, and there is some evidence to say that the
averages were lower in the late renaissance. Thus you will note the
lack of vegetables or fruits beyond those that are easily preserved.
Platina (1421-1481) was a librarian at the Vatican later in his life,
but spent many of his early years as a philosopher and humanist. It is
believed that this work was written in either 1464 or 1468 (depending on
which historian you believe) and is based heavily on the work of the
chef (Martino) to a Cardinal he spent the early summer of 1463 with in
Tuscany. Martino went on to publish a cookbook from which more then 75%
of the recipes in Platina's work are. Platina, however, added a great
deal of knowledge of humoral theory and medical application to the
recipes, as well as adding chapters on how to live, sleep, exercise,
when to have sex, what order to eat foods in and other related subjects.
He was born Bartolomeo Sacchi, but there is a wide variety of other
names he was known by. The name Platina appears to be related to the
town of his childhood, Piadena, of which Platina is the Latin form.
"PLATINA: On Right Pleasure and Good Health. A Critical Edition and
Translation of De Honesta Voluptate et Valetudine" by Mary Ella Milham,
Medieval & Renaissance Texts and Studies, Temp, Arizona 1998 ISBN
All recipes in this document redacted by Lady Caitlen Ruadh, mka Becki
Tants. For the feast, we are using THL Catalina Alvarez' redaction of
Armored Turnips, although I believe it is very similar. All recipes
are from Platina and are noted as book.chapter.
THL Catalina Alvarez, my assistant cook
Lady Jennet the Gentle, Serving Steward and Sanity Keeper
Claude DuVivier, provider of bread at really remarkable prices
The adventurous crew who came and test-ate the feast, providing
And all the wonderful people who helped in the kitchen (far too numerous
to name but certainly never forgotten!)
Meat Roll from Tame Animals:
I call tame animals all which are nourished at home, like calf, capon,
hen, and the like. From these, you make a roll thus: take as much lean
meat as you want and cut it up fine with small knives. Mix veal fat
into this meat well with spices. When it has been wrapped in thin
crusts, bake in an oven. When they are almost cooked, put on the roll
two egg yolks separated from the white and beaten with a paddle with a
little verjuice and very rich juice. Some add saffron for the looks.
This roll can even be made in a well- greased pan without a crust. For
special pleasure, cook in a roll capon, pullet or whatever you want,
whole or cut up in pieces. There is also much nourishment in this; it
is slowly digested, has little indigestible residue, aids the heart,
liver and kidney, is fattening, and stimulates the libido.
1 lb. 80% lean ground beef
1 C flour
1/3 C shortening
2 egg yolks
1 T red wine vinegar
2 T water
2 T beef broth
Make a dough of the flour, shortening and enough water to hold it
together. Roll out into a sheet and set aside.
Mix beef and spices together until combined thoroughly. Form into a
roll. Wrap dough around beef and bake at 325 until a meat thermometer
reaches 160 degrees when inserted into the beef. (~30-45 minutes)
Mix egg yolks, vinegar, water and broth together with a fork and brush
on top of roll. Let cook for a couple more minutes, remove and serve
with Garlic Sauce.
Garlic Sauce with Walnuts or Almonds
Add to semicrushed almonds or nuts as much as you want of clean garlic
and grind best at the same time, as is sufficient, sprinkling
continually with a bit of water so it does not produce oil. Put into
the ground ingredients bread crumbs softened in meat or fish stock, and
grind again. If it seems too hard, it can easily be softened in the
same juice. It will keep very easily to the time we mentioned for
mustard. My friend Callimachus is very greedy for this dish, even
though it is of little nourishment, delays a long time in the stomach,
dulls the vision and warms the liver.
1/2 C crushed almonds
3 cloves garlic
Soften bread crumbs in stock. Grind almonds, garlic, and crumbs in a
food processor with enough stock to make a nice sauce.
For Roman Cabbage
Toss cabbage which you have torn with your friends boiling water. When
it is semicooked and its own water thrown away, transfer into another
pan and wrap with well-pounded lard. Also put in as much rich broth as
necessary. Let boil a little, for it does not require much cooking.
This food is harmful to stomach and head, as I said about cabbage. This
is why my friend Tacitus, although he is Roman, rejected the stalk as a
1 lb. cabbage
4 T butter
Boil cabbage in water until almost cooked. Throw out this water. Cook
for a couple more minutes in vegetable broth and butter until done,
about 3-5 minutes.
Beat flour in the same way as above. (Well sifted flour with egg white
and rose water and plain water.) When it is beaten, separate into bits
with you fingers. You will call these bits vermiculi (worms), then
place in the sun. When they are well dried, they will last two or more
years. When they have been cooked for an hour in rich broth and put in
a dish, season with ground cheese and spices, but if there is a fast day
cook with almond juice and goat's milk. Because milk does not require
much cooking, first make it boil a little in water, then add the milk.
When they have cooked remember to sprinkle with sugar. The cooking of
all pastas made from flour is the same. They may be somewhat colored
with saffron, unless they have been cooked in milk.
1 lb. kluski noodles
1/4 C cheddar cheese, shredded or ground
1/4 C mozzarella cheese, shredded or ground
1/4 C parmesan cheese, shredded or ground
1/2 C milk
Cook noodles for time directed in either water or broth. (Feast done in
water.) Layer into greased pan noodles, some of each cheese and some of
each spice until pan is full.
Pour milk over the top. Bake in 350 oven for 15-30 minutes to melt
cheese and brown top. (Almost any cheese tastes good. Use whatever is
Dish made from Rosy Apples
Cook rosy apples, which are so called because of their color, I think,
with meat stock. When they have been nearly cooked, put in a little
parsley and chopped mint in the same pot. The juice can easily be
thickened with bread crumbs, as we said for trout. When it has been put
in dishes, sprinkle spices on it.
1 lb. red apples, something with a strong flavor (Red Delicious)
Stock (vegetable used for the feast)
Mint (to taste)
Bring stock to a boil, add apples and cook for a minute or two. (Not
too long - they will lose all their flavor if cooked to a soft texture
in the stock..) Add Parsley and Mint to taste at the last minute, cook
for a moment longer, then put into bowls and serve. You can sprinkle on
cinnamon, sugar, nutmeg or cloves to taste if you like.
Roast a chicken which is well plucked, gutted and washed, and when the
roast is place in a dish before it cools, put lemon juice or verjuice on
it with rose water, sugar and cinnamon, and serve to your guests. This
is not displeasing to Bucinus because he craves sour and sweet at the
same time to repress bile, by which he is disturbed, and to fatten his
Roasting Chicken, 6-7 lbs.
1/2 Lemon, juiced
1 T Rose Water (if available)
2 T sugar
1 t cinnamon
Mix and pour over chicken just before serving.
For ten guests, boil a pound of pork belly or veal belly well. When it
is cooked and cut up, add half a pound of aged cheese and a little fat,
and mix with fragrant herbs, well cut up, pepper, ginger, and cloves.
Some even add breast of capon, well pounded. When these have all been
worked with meal and reduced to a thin sheet, roll into balls the size
of a chestnut. When rolled, cook in rich juice and color with saffron.
They require little cooking. When they are transferred to serving
dishes, sprinkle with ground cheese and rather sweet spices. It is also
possible for this food to be made from breast of pheasant, partridge, or
1 lb. ground pork
1/2 lb. cheeses, ground (parmesan, asagio, romano)
2 T butter
2 T well chopped Parsley
1 T well chopped Mint
1 T well chopped Marjoram
2 C Beef Stock
6-8 threads Saffron
Mix pork, cheese, butter, herbs and spices by hand until well combined.
Roll into meatballs the size of a golf ball. Bake in a 325 oven until
cooked through (~20 minutes). Remove and cook briefly on the stove in
beef stock, baking pan scrapings and saffron mixture. Remove meatballs
to the serving dish and reduce stock mixture by half. Pour over meat
balls and sprinkle with a but more cheese and a bit of ginger and
Those who have a taste "with ramparts" want rape to be called "armored"
which is rolled in cheese like a cuirass and breastplate, as if it in no
way seemed to be safe to be going down into the depths without arms.
What profit it is that what was invented for safety turned totally to
the ruin of rape since the gluttonous, as if they were the strongest
athletes in the cookshops, prefer to devour an armed enemy rather than
an unarmed one?
Cut up rape in pieces, either boiled or cooked under ashes. Also do the
same for not quite fresh and rich cheese, but these pieces should be
thinner then those of the rape. Make a first layer of cheese in a pan
oiled with butter or fat, the second of rape and so on, continuously
pouring on spice and some butter. This mixture is quickly cooked and
must also be quickly eaten, but since it is dangerous, let it be served
to the very greedy Domitianus.
1 lb. turnips
1/2 lb. cheddar cheese, thinly sliced
1/2 stick butter, melted
Peel and slice turnips. Boil them twice, throwing out the water in
between and adding fresh, until they are soft (like potatoes for
mashing). Drain. Brush butter onto the bottom of the pan, then begin
layering cheese, turnips, brush with butter, sprinkle with spices,
repeat until the turnips are gone. Try to have a bit of cheese left for
the top layer. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 350 to melt and slightly brown
the cheese. Turn out onto a plate and serve.
Rice, which I think was called oriza in the ancient spelling, is of warm
and dry force, and for this reason it is very nourishing, especially if
it has been seasoned with ground almonds, milk and sugar as will be
described later. When it is cooked in pure water, it constricts the
belly. Its frequent use, however, harms those accustomed to suffer with
pain in the bowel.
1 C Basmati Rice
2 C water
touch of salt
Rinse rice thoroughly. Bring water, salt and rice to a boil in a
covered pan. Remove from heat and let sit, covered, until all of the
water is absorbed (about 20 minutes).
Mix and cook under ashes and coals almost all those things we described
for gourds with rape and pears or quinces, well cooked and ground up.
Glaucus will devour this because he is tortured by dysuria and compains
that passion is deadened in him.
(Gourd Pie: Grind well-washed gourds as you are accustomed to do for
cheese, then boil a little either in rich juice or in milk. When they
have been half cooked and passed through a sieve into a bowl, mix,
adding as much cheese as I described before, half a pound of sowbelly or
very fat udder, boiled and pounded with a knife, or, in place of these,
if it pleases you, add the same amount of butter or fat, half a pound of
sugar, a little ginger some cinnamon, six eggs, a cup of milk, and a
little saffron. Cook this in on oiled earthenware pot with an
undercrust, under or over a slow fire. Some add pieces of pastry leaves
which they call crepes in places of an upper crust. When it is cooked
and transfer into a dish, sprinkle with sugar and rose water. Let
Cassius not eat this because he suffers from collic and stone. It is
likewise difficult to digest and nourishes badly.)
2 can pears in light syrup
2 lb. ricotta cheese
2 stick butter
1 piece fresh ginger, about the size of the first two joints of your
12 egg yolks
1 1/3 C sugar
3 pie crust
Drain the pears. Cut one can of the pears into small chunks and spread
in the pie crusts. Put remaining pears and the ginger into a food
processor and process. Leave the processor on while adding the butter
in chunks. Stop processor and add the ricotta cheese. Turn back on and
leave processor running while you separate and add each egg yolk, one by
one. Leave running while adding the sugar 1/3 cup at a time. When
mixture is smooth, pour over the pear pieces in the pie crusts. Bake at
325 for 45-50 minutes, until set. If you wish, you can mix rose water
and sugar, spread over the top, and caramelize slightly before serving.
This pie tastes best served chilled!
Throughout the book, Platina mentions serving spiced nuts to calm and
close the stomach. Since he mentions this in relation to several
different nuts and in many different places, I have not included a
1 cup mixed nuts (walnuts, almonds, and pine nuts)
1/2 C sugar
1 T clove
2 T cinnamon
1 T ginger
1 T nutmeg
1 egg white (made using egg white powder that contains no egg)
Mix sugar and spices in a bowl. Dip nuts into the egg white, then into
the sugar mixture and turn to coat thoroughly. Put nuts on a baking
pan, separate them as much as possible. Bake at 250 for about 1 hour.
Store in an air-tight container.
Fresh Broad Bean Soup
Peel broad beans in hot water as you are accustomed to do for almonds,
and put in a pan on the hearth with rich broth and salted meat. When
you think it is almost cooked, put in parsley and cut up mint. Other
pulse ought also to be cooked this way but with the skins so that they
are not peeled like the bean.
2 lb. beans (variable, fava being fairly close but not an exact match)
vegetable stock to cover
parsley, well chopped
mint, well chopped
If you use dried beans, soak overnight. Cook beans in vegetable stock
until cooked through. Just before serving, add pepper, a handful of
parsley and mint to taste. (This is the vegetarian version - for a non
vegetarian, I would use a meat stock and proscuitto or bacon.)
Beef Barley Soup
On a section on Groats he says "From groats, rice and pearl barley he
(Celsus) says the best broths and gruels are made".
1 lb. Stew Beef
1-2 Onions, chopped fine
2 T butter
1/2 lb. Barley
Sauté onions and beef in butter. Add lots of stock. Cook as long as
possible. 45 minutes before serving, add the Barley and cook until
soft. Add more stock