ill-fd-feast-art - 1/19/98
A feast concentrating on illusion foods done in Hartshorndale (1993?).
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Mark S. Harris AKA: THLord Stefan li Rous
Stefan at florilegium.org
From: kathe1 at juno.com (Kathleen M Everitt)
Date: Thu, 19 Jun 1997 23:04:51 EDT
Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes-Feast of Illusion
On Tue, 17 Jun 1997 08:47:54 -0500 (CDT) L Herr-Gelatt and J R Gelatt
<liontamr at postoffice.ptd.net> writes:
>I'd like to hear more about Mistress Sincgiefu's (sorry if I mangled
>that) Feast of Illusion. That sounds lovely.
I hope Mistress Sincgiefu answers this and gives you more details, but
just in case she's busy I'll tell you what I remember. My younger son was
10 days old when I attended the feast she did in Hartshorn-dale, so sleep
deprevation blurred the evening! :-)
Some of the high points that I remember (I hope I'm remembering them
correctly!): They had acorns, hollowed out then filled with salt and
pepper, and put holes in the tops for salt and pepper shakers. I think
the chicken skins were stuffed with a pork mixture and cooked to resemble
chickens. The chicken meat was then put into hollowed out bread loaves.
They blew eggs from the shells then filled the shells with custard. There
were "oysters with pearls" but I can't remember what they were made from.
Anyway, nothing was what it looked like. Luckily, we had a squire with
us, so he tasted everything and let us know what it was really. If he
could figure it out. He at least let us know if there were any allergens
(onions or garlic) in it for several of us who couldn't eat those. There
were several dishes he never did figure out.
Great event! That feast is probably the highlight of any that I have
attended in over 19 years in the SCA! Not only was the food period and
delicious, it was so entertaining! We had a great time speculating on the
dishes as they came out and marvelling at the work that went into the
feast. And I understand that it was a lot of work.
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 1997 10:07:30 -0400
From: renfrow at skylands.net (Cindy Renfrow)
Subject: Re: SC - Re: Illusion food
Hartshorndale (PA, 1993?) Feast of Illusions in 2 Courses, with a separate
menu (and hall) for the children:
Pre-feast nosh of mulled cider and fresh fruit.
Placed on the tables before service:
- -Butter concealed in hollowed-out lemons with cloves on lids for 'handles'.
- -Salt hidden in acorns. I gathered large acorns several months ahead of
time, hollowed them out, sterilized them, and bored holes in the tops with
a Dremel MotorTool. I then filled the acorns with salt and glued the caps
on with white glue. They were stored in an airtight container until
needed. (BTW, there was no pepper on the table.)
- -Cider & assorted other drinks.
- -Freshly baked bread, baked on site. I used one-fourth of the yeast called
for & allowed the bread to rise in a cool place overnite. I also added the
egg yolks leftover from the creme bastarde to enrich the bread.
- -A Peacock - the body was made of bread dough, & covered with chicken
liver pate and sliced almonds. The head was gilded & stuck with
fancy-headed pins. The tail was fashioned of lettuce, red beets, eggs,
cheeses, parsley, radishes, anchovies, etc., and garnished with a few real
peacock feathers. (Cerruti, p. 102, Platina, p. 15, Good Hous-wives
Treasury [quoted in To the Queen's Taste, p. 40])
- -"Oysters" - mushrooms fried with lard and garlic, served in oyster shells
with candy 'pearls' - We may have had to substitute onions for mushrooms
due to availability, I don't remember. Also, the candy melted - If I had it
to do over, I'd use carved blanched almonds. (Epulario, p. 29; crab
variation, A Proper New Booke of Cokerye, p. 17; crayfish variation,
Chiquart, p. 46 #68.)
- -Beef "Olives" - thin strips of beef rubbed with 2 different spice
mixtures, rolled, wrapped in bacon, pressed overnight & broiled.
(Epulario, p. 10; Sabina Welserin [unpubl. translation] # 196; similar to
'a lowsid bef' in A Noble Boke of Cookry, p. 95.)
- -Served on same platter with Black Olives with garlic (Cerruti, p.112-3),
also green olives without pimientos (Menagier).
- -Candied Walnuts stuffed back into their shells & glued shut with flour &
water paste. These leaked & were a tasty mess. (Menagier; Cerruti, p. 76.)
Served with figs & almonds.
- -Farced Chickens filled with raw ground beef & pork sausage mixture.
(Menagier, p. 276; Tallevent #65.) Farced chickens take about 20 minutes
each to separate the meat from the bones. Work on a cold surface & put the
flesh in a chilled bowl. Slip your hand in the rear end of the chicken,
between the skin & the meat & loosen the membrane. Use a short-bladed
paring knife to remove the meat. Alternately, slit the skin up the back,
peel back the skin & remove the flesh that way - Use toothpicks to
re-fasten the skin together, & remove the toothpicks before service. (A
straw [see also Swiss Family Robinson trying this trick on a kangaroo!]
probably won't work on commercially available birds because the head and
neck have been removed & the hole at the bottom is too big.) Stuff the
bird between the skin & bones with the meat mixture, & shape the meat to
look like a whole chicken. Roast till done.
- -Served with Creme Bastarde-filled eggs on a bed of greens. The blown egg
shells were sterilized & filled with Creme Bastarde. The holes were
stopped with flour & water paste. (Take 1000 Eggs, p. 196) If I were to do
this again, I'd use flavored almond cream instead of Creme Bastarde.
- -A Non-edible boar made of papier mache, gilded, (Gilded Boar's Head -
Chiquart, Du Fait de Cuisine) garnished with radish roses & surrounded by
tea candles stuck in hollowed out apples. The boar was hollow & contained
a Haslet (Trayne Roste) of fruits. (Take 1000 Eggs, p. 218.) Served with
great fanfare & 'cut open' with a sword. Servers grabbed handfuls of
'entrails' & ran around to the guests.
- -Roast Pork - The sliced up boar, of course - (Traite de Cuisine, p. T1) with
- -Herb Sauce (Menagier, p. 26-7, 'saucpiquet for coney')
- -Golden Rice cooked in meat broth - served underneath the roast pork
(Cerruti, p. 84; Menagier, p. 277.)
- -Chardwardon garnished with blanched almonds(Take 1000 Eggs, p. 157)
- -Yrchon (hedgehogs) -small rye breads filled with chicken, almonds, raisins
& spices, stuck with slivered almonds. (Sabina Welserin, #114 has similar
- -Gyngerbrede 'grapes' garnished with grape vines - (Take 1000 Eggs, v2, p. 288)
For afterwards, a sideboard with mulled cider & assorted sweets.
Raisins, sliced apples, assorted fruits, Gyngerbrede 'grapes', cheese &
crackers, small sausages (hot dogs), cookies, milk & juice.
There may have been a few more last minute items, but if so, I don't remember.
renfrow at skylands.net