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p-cooks-msg – 12/20/08

 

Comments and information on specific period cooks.

 

NOTE: See also the files: p-kitchens-msg, kit-job-titls-msg, p-tableware-msg, p-menus-msg, utensils-msg, pottery-msg, Kentwell-Hall-art, cook-ovr-fire-msg.

 

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NOTICE -

 

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

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Date: Fri, 15 Jan 1999 14:37:36 -0500

From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy at asan.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Who Were Those Guys?

 

THLRenata at aol.com wrote:

> Does anyone have any biographical data on Sabina Welserin, John Murrell,

> Thomas Dawson, Sir Hugh Plat and the countless less others I'm forgetting?

 

See Eric Quayle's "Old Cook Books: An Illustrated History" © 1978 Eric

Quayle, Pub. E.P. Dutton, NewYork

ISBN: 0-87690-283-2 for a chapter on Hugh Plat. There may be other

useful information for you in this book.

 

As for Le Menagier, I was under the impression we really had little

proof one way or t'other as to who he was, let alone any biographical

details. There's been some speculation, based on some tantalizing

textual references, that he was of the emergent middle class, well-to-do

but not really noble, possibly a clerk of some kind.

 

Adamantius

Østgardr, East

 

 

Date: Fri, 15 Jan 1999 12:44:51 -0800

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Who Were Those Guys?

 

At 12:58 PM -0500 1/15/99, THLRenata at aol.com wrote:

>I'm thinking about an article for my baronial newsletter about the cooks of

>our period (or close) whose cookbooks we still use.

>

>I have info on Tallevent (sorry about the spelling -- I'm at work and the

>books are at home), the Goodman of Paris and Chiquart (sp), and Eleanor

>Fettiplace.

>

>Does anyone have any biographical data on Sabina Welserin, John Murrell,

>Thomas Dawson, Sir Hugh Plat and the countless less others I'm forgetting?

 

Digby was moderately famous, and you should be able to find biographical

information on him fairly easily. I believe his library was the start for

the current library at either Oxford or Cambridge.

 

David/Cariadoc

http://www.best.com/~ddfr/

 

 

Date: Fri, 15 Jan 1999 14:49:33 -0700 (MST)

From: Mary Morman <memorman at oldcolo.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Who Were Those Guys?

 

There is a lot of biographical info on Digby in the new Prospect Press

edition of his "closet openeed".

 

Elaina

 

 

Date: Thu, 28 Jan 1999 07:11:06 -0500

From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy at asan.com>

Subject: Re: SC - When Were Those Guys?

 

James Gilly / Alasdair mac Iain wrote:

> I'd appreciate it if someone could quickly give me approximate dates for

> the following:

>

>      Chiquart

events described occurred ~1405, written ~1425, IIRC

 

>      Taillevent

1379 C.E.

 

>      Apicius

More than one person by that name, probably late 1st, early second

century C.E.

 

>      Platina

1475 C.E.

 

>      Sabina Welserin

Insufficient caffeine. Press any key to continue. (16th century???)

 

>      Elinor Fettiplace

~1580 - 1605 C.E.

 

>      Le Managier

~1390 C.E.

 

>      Sir Kenelm Digbie

published posthumously, 1669 C.E., presumably written _pre_ posthumously...

 

>      *Das Buoch von Guter Speise*  (and is there an author's name

>          to go with that?)

Anonymous, AFAIK. 1st half 14th century C.E., ~1325.

 

Adamantius

Østgardr, East

 

 

Date: Thu, 28 Jan 1999 07:11:43 -0600

From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD at Health.State.OK.US>

Subject: RE: SC - When Were Those Guys?

 

> >      Sabina Welserin

> Insufficient caffeine. Press any key to continue. (16th century???)

>

        1553, according to the cover of Valoise Armstrong's translation.

Sabina was a member of one of "commercial nobility" of Augsburg, the

Fuggers, the Welsers and the Hochstetters.  The three families were

international mercantile bankers and venture capitalists.

 

        Bear

 

 

Date: Wed, 3 Feb 1999 14:41:33 -0800

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Did medieval cooks read Apicus?

 

At 11:39 AM -0500 1/22/99, Philip & Susan Troy wrote:

>I think it's pretty likely that most cooks knew, to some extent by

>heart, the dishes taught them by whoever taught them the craft, and not

>much else in the area of cookbooks. There may even have been the

>rationale that one wouldn't need cookbooks if one had cooks to figure

>out all that stuff.

>

>Adamantius

 

Master Chiquart, who was the chief cook of the Duke of Savoy in the early

15th c., says explicitly that he has never read a cookbook--and given how

different in style his book is from all others, I believe it. However, many

of his dishes are the same that you see elsewhere--he just takes five times

as many words to describe them.

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Thu, 4 Feb 1999 21:39:28 EST

From: LrdRas at aol.com

Subject: SC - Medieval writing styles

 

memorman at oldcolo.com writes:

<<  I was reading CHiquart last night looking

for a quote and realized what a verbose and downright pompous fellow he

was!  I can well believe from his writing that he never read a book at

all!

 

Elaina >>

 

A quick glance at a few of my books dating from the Victorian era back,

clearly shows that verbose and pompous writing was , in fact, the sign of a

good writer. IMO, Chiquart clearly shows hinself to be a man of learning in

his writings as opposed to those who set down works like Ancient cookery and

FoC on parchement. It is not until; we get into this century that simplistic

writing styles break any ground and in recent years writers have become so

simplistic and inane that there are few, if any, works worth reading at all.

 

Ras

 

 

Date: Sat, 6 Feb 1999 08:33:10 SAST-2

From: "Christina VAN TETS" <ivantets at botzoo.uct.ac.za>

Subject: SC - Henry Peacham

 

Ras, I think perhaps you misunderstood the use of the Henry Peacham

extracts.  Although they were published in the 1620s and 30s, he

wrote them originally for his charges (he was a tutor). Now if I

had written something for an individual, I think I'd wait a decent

interval before publishing it for all and sundry, purely as

politeness.  Judging by the rest of his writing, I think he'd

probably feel much the same way.  In addition, he was writing when

fairly old (oh, 37?) about what the continent was like in his youth.

Since his youth he had worked as tutor, and so his charges would have

known the continent too and this stuff would have been unnecessary.

To my mind, then, he was writing of things fairly close to our cut

off date, and could presumably be used (if no earlier, better

description exists) of an Englishman's impressions of French habits

in late period.  Sure it doesn't give you mediaeval, but the the SCA

isn't just 'mediaeval'.

 

Cairistiona

 

 

Date: Sun, 14 Feb 1999 09:45:24 -0500

From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy at asan.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Nobles and cooking?

 

david friedman wrote:

> Which raises an interesting question--was cooking seen as something that

> noblewomen wouldn't dirty their hand with in period? Or was it assumed that

> since part of their job was running a household, they ought to know how it

> was done from the ground up?

 

I think this is the eternal problem with all forms of upper

management...can Bill Gates actually program (it's debatable whether any

of his employees can), or can the CEO of General Motors actually build a

car?

 

Certainly there are examples of middle-to-high ranking women who at

least had to supervise others in their service. Both le Menagier's wife

and the women mentioned in the Domestroi appear to be supervising cooks

at times, and then you have people like Elinor Fettiplace (the wife of a

country knight), who was familiar enough with cookery to record a book

of receipts for her progeny, even if she didn't actually do most of the

cooking, although her familiarity with the finer points suggests she may

have been an integral part of kitchen activities.

 

As to whether Eleanor of Aquitaine had a mean recipe for cuskynoles,

there's no evidence I'm aware of to suggest this is or isn't the case,

but I believe the involvement of very-high-ranking ladies in projects

requiring needlework, for example, even when they didn't do it alone,

suggests to me it's possible such a lady might have been familiar enough

with cookery to discuss an intelligent menu with the steward. This isn't

hard evidence, of course. It actually seems fairly likely to me that

someone like Maud/Mathilde, wife of William the Conqueror, who went from

being the wife of a bastard Duke to being Queen of England, probably

didn't forget how to make a hot posset for William in the interim after

a hard day of oppressing Saxons.

 

> So far as al-Islam is concerned, I think it is clear that high ranking men

> did take an interest in cooking, whether or not they did it themselves. At

> least, there are surviving recipes attributed to Ibrahim ibn al Mahdi, who

> was a close relative of several caliphs and himself an unsuccessful

> claimant to the caliphate at one point. And I believe one of the cookbooks

> in the 10th c. collection is attributed to one of the Barmakids, the family

> that served as viziers for al-Rashid until he turned on them.

 

Yes, there seems to be a class of gentleman gourmets in al-Islam. I

wonder if their legacy of cookery texts might be the result of their

literacy...not that women couldn't have written or dictated, but I'm put

in mind of the Chinese food poetry and recipes written down by men (not

always high-ranking in a political or social sense, but realtively

well-known to us). Many of them were artists of various types (Su Tung

Po, Li Po, Ni Tsan, to name a few) who either developed a taste for fine

foods in the patronage of the wealthy, in contrast to the cooking in

various cookshops, high and low, or developed some skill in cookery

because they couldn't afford to have someone else do it for them.

Fortunes change rapidly, but a good recipe for stuffed carp is eternal.

The Chinese gourmet artists seem to be rather similar to some Roman

poets like Martial and Juvenal.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Sat, 20 Feb 1999 19:56:28 -0800

From: varmstro at zipcon.net (Valoise Armstrong)

Subject: Re: SC - SC German Herbs, Spices, and Ingredients (long)

 

Adamantius wrote

>I was thinking that there's a big change between Ein Buoch Von Guter

>Spise (early 14th century) and Sabina Welserin's kochbuch (mid 16th),

 

Yes, exactly. There is a definite change to what we would perceive today as

German, even though there a many dishes that appear to be carried over from

an earlier time.

 

>Now, one might be able to argue

>(and this is something I haven't researched sufficiently) that the

>former source is more like court cookery, while the latter is more

>wealthy but bourgoise, along the lines of Le Menagier. My point is only

>that the differences I see might be the result of comparing apples and

>oranges. Can anyone address that one?

 

When I first looked at Sabina Welserin I thought it would be a clear case

of bourgoisie vs. court cooking. But then I started researching the Welsers

and found that this was not an average merchant family. by any means. In

the first half of the 16th they financed a colony in the Carribean and

obtained the rights to colonize Venezuela as a reward for bankrolling some

of the Hapsburgs activities. As a matter of fact, Phillipine Welser married

a Hapsburg who became the Archduke of Tyrol.

 

There is also the problem of the recipe for a sauce thickened with a roux

that appears in Sabina's book. Not a distinctly German idea, but definitely

a modern and not medieval method.

 

Nice puzzle to unravel.

 

Valoise

 

 

Date: Thu, 15 Apr 1999 12:03:32 -0400

From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy at asan.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Cook's Knight Out?

 

Vicki Eldredge wrote:

> There was a cook/chef that was knighted for his culinary talents? Remember

> that discussion? Who was that? When did it happen?

 

Sieur Guillaume Tirel, dit Taillevent, 14th century...

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Thu, 30 Dec 1999 01:14:34 +0100

From: Thomas Gloning <Thomas.Gloning at germanistik.uni-giessen.de>

Subject: SC - Marx Rumpolt, was: Information access / Hungarian cuisine

 

As far as I know, the name of Marx Rumpolt is "Marx Rumpolt" :-}

 

The form "Marxen" was used as a dative and accusative case form (given

names were inflected at times).

 

"Marx" is a common given name around 1600, another wellknown Marx is

Marx Welser from Augsburg who wrote a chronicle of Augsburg and who

first edited the book of falconry of Frederick II. (Reliqua librorum

Friderici II. imperatoris ..., Augsburg 1596).

 

Other (German) people called our author "Marx Rumpolt" (and not Rumpolt

Marx), e.g. the people of the imperial chancery of Rudolf II. in the

privilegium against the reprint of Rumpolt's cookbook. Rumpolt himself

signed the preface: "Marx Rumpolt/ Churf. Meintzischer Mundtkoch".

 

Concerning Rumpolt's biography, there is a further, though minor detail

in his preface: his ancestors lived in the little Walachei:

 

"Denn weil ich ein geborner Vnger/ vnd aber der grausam Wütricht vnnd

Erbfeindt Christliches Namens/ der Türck/ nach dem er meine Voreltern

von Landt vnd Leuten vertrieben/ das vnsere/ so in klein Walachey

gelegen/ biß auff den heutigen Tag jnnen hat/ auch vns nach Leib vnd

Leben trachtet/ Als hab ich mich von Jugendt auff vnter frembden müssen

erhalten/ darauff geflissen vnd bedacht seyn/ wie ich heut oder morgen

meinen vnterhalt vnnd außkommen haben möchte. Hab derwegen von einem

Land in dz ander/ meiner notturfft/ vnd der Herren/ so ich gedienet/

Geschäffte halben/ verreisen müssen/ also/ daß ich einer Sprach nach

notturfft nicht hab obligen können".

 

Rumpolt says here that he is a native Hungarian, that his ancestors were

expelled by the turkish invasion from the little Walachei and that the

possession of his family was lost this way, therefore he had to look for

work and money in several different countries.

 

All this is meant as an _excuse_ for the fact that he could not learn

languages. Rumpolt says that he describes dishes "so viel ich mit

eygener Handt gemachet" ('that I prepared with my own hands').

 

It seems to me (please correct me if I am wrong) that a background for

Rumpolt's excuse might be different ways of producing a cookbook:

(a) compiling a cookbook from other sources (thereby using knowledge of

foreign languages);

(b) producing a cookbook by describing the dishes that one has prepared

oneself (using one's experience as an international chef).

 

Thomas

 

 

Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 03:03:34 +0200

From: Thomas Gloning <gloning at Mailer.Uni-Marburg.DE>

Subject: SC - Symeon Seth (11thC) on foodstuffs. What else?

 

Recently, Phlip mentioned that someone was preparing a translation of

Symeon Seth based on a French version (Brunet 1939). Symeon Seth was an

important 11th century byzantine writer on dietetics and foodstuffs.

 

Yesterday, I got an interesting, if somewhat obscure booklet by

"Gymnasialrektor Dr. Georg Helmreich", entitled "Handschriftliche

Studien zu Symeon Seth" ('Manuscript investigations about Symeon Seth';

Ansbach 1913). In the first place, Helmreich criticizes the edition of

Langkavel (1868) in various respects; he says that the older editions

are still valuable, especially the Bogdanus edition Paris 1658.

 

According to Helmreich, Symeon Seth was widely read in the Middle Ages;

his text is extant in many manuscripts now in Paris, Milano, Modena,

Venice, Oxford, Vienna, Moscau, the Athos and Munich (p.32f.).

 

Here is what I have found on Symeon Seth and his book on foodstuffs so

far:

 

- -- Brunet, M.: SimÈon Seth, mÈdÈcin de l'EmpÈreur Michel Doucas.

Bordeaux: Delmas 1939.

- -- Helmreich, G.: Handschriftliche Studien zu Symeon Seth. Programm des

K. humanistischen Gymnasiums in Ansbach f¸r das Schuljahr 1912/13.

Ansbach 1913.

- -- Krumbacher, K.: Geschichte der byzantinischen Litteratur von

Justinian bis zum Ende des ostr–mischen Reiches (527-1453). Zweite

Auflage, bearbeitet unter Mitwirkung von A. Ehrhard und H. Gelzer. Zwei

Teilb”nde. M¸nchen 1897.

- -- Meyer, E.H.F.: Geschichte der Botanik. Vier B”nde. K–nigsberg

1854-57.

- -- Sarton, G.: Introduction to the history of science. Five volumes.

Baltimore 1927-1947. Reprint 1954-67.

- -- Symeon Seth: Syntagma per literarum ordinem de cibariorum facultate

(...) Lilio Gregorio Gyraldo interprete. Griechisch und lateinisch hg.

von G. Gyraldus. Paris 1538.

- -- Symeon Seth: Simeonis Sethi Magistri Antiocheni volumen de

Alimentorum facultatibus: nunc vero per Dominicum Monthesaurum correctum

[et] pene reformatum. Basel 1561.

- -- Symeon Seth: De alimentorum facultatibus juxta ordinem literarum

digestum (...) emendatum et Latina versione donatum a M. Bogdano. Paris

1658.

- -- Symeon Seth: De alimentorum facultatibus. Ed. B. Langkavel. Leipzig

1868. [Dazu die sehr kritische Abhandlung von Helmreich, Ansbach 1913.]

 

What else is there on Symeon Seth and his book on food?

 

Thomas

 

 

Date: Fri, 01 Sep 2000 02:19:25 +0200

From: TG <gloning at Mailer.Uni-Marburg.DE>

Subject: Re: SC - Renaissance (and other) Cooks

 

<< I'm still looking for around for books that can give me some

biographical information on various cooking people in the Renaissance.

I've been thinking hard and the only person I can come up with would be

the wife in Le Menagier du Paris. >>

 

I am not sure if she is supposed to cook herself; the beginning of

section II iv of the Menagier suggests, that rather she is supposed to

supervise, to order, to arrange and to plan, what a certain "maistre

Jehan" is to fulfill ("De la deuxiesme Distinction la quart article qui

vous doit aprendre que vous, comme souverain maistre de vostre hostel,

sachiez commander et diviser a maistre Jehan disners et souppers et

deviser mes et assiectes"; ed. Brereton/Ferrier p. 170).

 

<< 1. In my own collection I only have excerpts from Le Menagier.  What

book(s) do I want to request from Inter Library Loan that either give

full text of Le Menagier or give text and commentary? >>

 

There are two standard editions (both usable):

- -- Brereton, G.E./ Ferrier, J.M.: Le Menagier de Paris. Oxford 1981.    

- -- Pichon, J. (Èd.): Le MÈnagier de Paris. TraitÈ de morale et

d'Èconomie domestique, composÈ vers 1393 par un Bourgeois parisien. Deux

volumes. Paris 1846. Reprint Genf o.J.

 

<< 2.  Can anyone name any other cooks I may wish to consider doing

biographical research on? >>

 

- -- Maistre Chiquart

(see Scully's edition in Vallesia, and his Engl. transl.; see also the

appendix in Scully's 'Early French cookery': the fictional 'A day in the

Life of mater Chiquart Amiczo, Chef of the Duke of Savoy (1416 A.D.', p.

333ff.)

 

- -- Taillevent (14th century)

(much biographical data in the Pichon/Vicaire edition: Pichon, J./

Vicaire, G. (Hg.): Le viandier de Guillaume Tirel dit Taillevent

(1326-1395). Paris 1892. Nachdruck der Ausgabe von 1892, erweitert um

das 1953 erstmals ver–ffentlichte Manuskript von Sion. Luzarches

(Morcrette) o.J.; see also Scully's new edition.)

 

- -- Maestro Martino ("the guy that Platina got his recipes from")

(see books and articles of Milham, Benporat, Bertoluzza, Scully: Cuoco

Nap.)

 

- -- Maister Hanns, des von Wirtemberg Koch (his cookbook 1460)

(see the Ehlert edition)

 

- -- Scappi, his Opera 1570

(see the reprint of his 'Opera', 1981, for a short note and some

references, e.g. A. Willan, I maestri cucinieri da Taillevent a

Escoffier, Milano 1977, 32-45))

 

There are many less famous cooks, who wrote no cookbooks (e.g. Peter aus

Gernsheim, cook for the Bishop of Speyer, ca. 1470) or whose cookbooks

are not yet edited (e.g. Ulrich Schwartz, inn keeper at Augsburg around

1510)

 

Thomas

 

 

Date: Fri, 1 Sep 2000 16:59:29 -0700

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: SC - Written recipes (was: interesting URL - food shopping!)

 

At 6:24 PM -0400 8/30/00, Jenne Heise quoted someone:

>  > I don't know how true it is that professional cooks outside of towns

>>  were guild members, but certainly cooks worked with other cooks and

>>  learned from them, and there's at least the theoretical possibility that

>>  a specific technique could be passed from one generation of cooks to

>>  another, just as parents pass recipes to children. Of course, there's no

>>  guarantee quantities have never been forgotten, changed or tweaked over

>>  the generations, either, especially when different numbers of people

>>  were being served each time.

 

and then said:

 

>And of course we get into the question of whether this applies to written

>recipes-- if you had learned the recipe from someone else in your guild

>training, why would you be looking it up in a written copy?

 

Chiquart was chief cook to the duke of Savoy and dictated a cookbook

dated 1420; he says he has never read a cookbook and given how

different his is from all the others, I believe him. He says he is

writing his at the insistance of the duke. So a top professioal cook

did not think of cookbooks as one of the necessary tools of his

trade. I am not sure who used the manuscripts we have.

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Sat, 2 Sep 2000 14:14:51 -0400 (EDT)

From: Jenne Heise <jenne at tulgey.browser.net>

Subject: Re: SC - Written recipes (was: interesting URL - food shopping!)

 

> Chiquart was chief cook to the duke of Savoy and dictated a cookbook

> dated 1420; he says he has never read a cookbook and given how

> different his is from all the others, I believe him. He says he is

> writing his at the insistance of the duke. So a top professioal cook

> did not think of cookbooks as one of the necessary tools of his

> trade. I am not sure who used the manuscripts we have.

 

A number of commentators, including Maria Dembinska and someone (?!) who

wrote about the library of Mathias Corvinas have suggested that Italian

cookbooks, including Platina, were used by cooks working for royalty in

Hungary and Poland. (Dembinska comments on the unusually high almond use

for the kitchen of St. Queen Jadwiga of Wawel, attributing it to a liking

for Italian foods and an imported chef. -- I immediately envisioned

Polish kitchen workers saying, "MORE Almond milk?! Doesn't he ever cook

anything without almond milk?! I make any more almond milk this week and

I'll turn INTO an almond...")

 

Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, mka Jennifer Heise

 

 

Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2000 21:51:18 -0700

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Renaissance Cooks

 

At 6:15 PM -0400 8/31/00, Marian.Deborah.Rosenberg at washcoll.edu

(Marian Deborah Rosenber wrote:

>   I'm still looking for around for books that can give me some biographical

>information on various cooking people in the Renaissance.  I've been thinking

>hard and the only person I can come up with would be the wife in Le

>Menagier du Paris.

 

There is an old book by Eileen Power called _Medieval People_ which

consists of six chapters on what life would have been like for six

different medieval people--one of whom is the Menagier's wife.

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Thu, 21 Dec 2000 13:26:52 -0500

From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy at asan.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Taillevent bio

 

Vincent Cuenca wrote:

> Offhand, does anyone know if Guillaume Tirel was nobly born or a commoner?

> His knighthood for service to the House of Valois would seem less unusual if

> her were nobly born.  I've found a few instances of cooking knights (Sir

> Kenelm Digby being one, and a Gonzalvo Gil listed in a c1300 roll of members

> in the Order of Santiago as "cozinero mayor del rey" or head cook to the

> king).  Were these cases of additional honors being bestowed on those

> already entitled, or the elevation of commoners due to their skills?

>

> Vicente

> (knighthood for cooking... hmmm...)

 

I once had a lovely discussion with a member of the Order of Chivalry

here in the East, in which he opined that the Order of the Laurel was

not an appropriately period form of recognition for a master craftsman.

(This was a while ago, before the leafy thing occurred.) Finally he

said, "Okay, you're a cook who tries to behave like a period cook. What,

based on your experience and historical precedent, is the highest honor

a Crown would bestow on a cook for that service?" I said, "Well,

Taillevent was made a knight and given an estate..." Somehow the

subject changed after that.

 

As far as I can recall, Taillevent was a commoner, and while I have a

vague memory of it having been said he was the son of a shopkeeper, all

I can find is that his name appears listed on a roll dated 1326 as a

kitchen boy in the household of Jean d'Evereaux, and the Larousse

specifically calls his subsequent knighting ceremony as his

"ennoblement", by which we can conclude (if accurate) that prior to that

date, he wasn't noble.

 

Digby appears to have been a knight in a non-culinary right; cookery,

brewing, mazing, etc., seem to have been sidelines. I seem to recall

reading that he had been both a diplomat and a spy for various English

Crowns. I know there's a fairly detailed (if short) bio of Digby in Eric

Quayle's "Old Cook Books".  

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Wed, 24 Jan 2001 17:42:00 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: SC - Myths -- Taillevent

 

Thorvald here:

 

Speaking of myths that may need repeated debunking, a month ago

there were some posts to this list suggesting that Taillevent was

knighted.  I did not see any debunking post to follow.

 

So I guess I should post one.

 

I also address some other apparent myths concerning Taillevent.

 

I would be delighted if it were otherwise, but I do not believe

that Taillevent was knighted.

 

I invite correction.

 

1)  He almost certainly began life as a commoner. Entering a

    kitchen as a kitchen boy at perhaps age 12 would have been

    almost unthinkable for someone of gentle or noble birth.

    Pichon and Vicaire give no information about his parentage.

 

2)  Pichon and Vicaire (1892 but still cited by Scully and Luce  

    who would presumably know better than I if there were more

    recent information of significance) do not refer to a knighting,

    nor do they anywhere give him the title of knight.  In signing

    documents Taillevent did not give himself any gentle or knightly

    or noble title.

 

3)  He was appointed "Sergeant at Arms" to the king for some short

    number of years in his middle life.  It was a post with either

    actual duties, or perhaps by that era with purely nominal

    duties (he was, after all, in his mid fifties).  In either

    case it was clearly a reward for long and faithful service.

 

4)  It is clear that for the last two decades of his life he was

    no longer a sergeant at arms, though he was appointed to various

    high offices related to the king's kitchen.  Another person

    is referred to in a quote in Pichon and Vicaire as 'formerly

    sergeant at arms' which clearly indicates that it was an

    honourable office but not a permanent degree.

 

5)  While he was a sergeant at arms he was entitled to wear armour

    and carry weapons.  He had his tomb facade carved at that time

    depicting himself in armour flanked by his first and second

    wives.  I _speculate_ that he chose to have his tomb facade

    done at this time, decades before his death, because he knew

    that he would not again have the right to be so depicted.

 

6)  He is shown in armour, with a dagger and a sword and a mace

    (symbol of the office of sergeant at arms) at his belt, and

    with rowel spurs on his heels.  There is no chain of fealty

    depicted, though the absence does not prove that he wasn't a

    knight.

 

7)  The shield he carries displays a device.  I assume that this

    indicates that he was entitled to bear heraldic arms at this

    date, or earlier, though there is no direct evidence that he

    was granted this right.  If so, this would could imply that he

    had probably been elevated to the gentry.

 

8)  On the tomb facade his first wife (but not his second) is

    referred to as 'demoiselle', which suggests that she might

    herself have been of the gentry.  She also appears to be

    better dressed and coiffed than his second wife, which may

    or may not signify a social difference.

 

9)  I _speculate_ that Taillevent was raised to the gentry when

    he was appointed sergeant at arms to the king.  My reasoning

    is that the king would have wished that all of his sergeants

    at arms be of at least gentle rank, especially if they had

    the duty of close attendance on the king, or had any powers

    of arrest.

 

10) The OED, in talking of the sergeants at arms to the English

    king, says that at one stage they had to be of knightly rank

    (they were at that stage combined bodyguard to the king and

    royal police officers).  Perhaps someone has interpreted this

    to signify that all sergeants at arms of any country and any

    date must have been knights, which clearly is not the case.

 

11) The older (1938) Larousse Gastronomique in English translation

    does not, contrary to some comments, refer to Taillevent as

    having been knighted and/or ennobled.  Perhaps the recent

    edition, which I do not have, does.  Can anyone quote from

    the recent edition?

 

12) There has been mention that SimÈon Luce refers to Taillevent

    being knighted or ennobled, but I can find no indication that

    he does.

 

13) There has been mention that Taillevent was given a property

    (by implication by the king, by implication yielding revenue,

    and by implication to accompany an elevation in rank), but I

    can find no indication in Pichon and Vicaire that he was given

    any such a property.

 

14) There has been mention of Taillevent being a 'squire', with

    the implication that this was either related to the military

    squire, or was the equivalent of 'Esquire' signifying gentle

    rank.

 

    Pichon and Vicaire make it clear that 'squire of the kitchen'

    (Taillevent was in his mid sixties when he is first mentioned

    as having this title) was a title for a cupbearer (presumably

    with other duties), apparently outranking the cooks, certainly

    an honour but unrelated to matters military and no indication

    of gentle rank.  Taillevent was earlier 'squire of the mansion'

    and later cook to the Dauphin when he was about 40.

 

    It is nothing more than a fancy title for a senior servant.  

    Another example of title inflation.

 

Again, I invite correction.

- --

Thorvald Grimsson / James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net> (PGP user)

 

 

Date: Thu, 25 Jan 2001 09:37:53 -0600

From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD at Health.State.OK.US>

Subject: RE: SC - Myths -- Taillevent

 

One of the problems in dealing with households is determining the actual

rank of various members of the household, since able and trusted men were

often accorded positions of authority out of keeping with the circumstances

of their birth.  In the case of a Royal household, most of the senior

servants were of gentle birth and their staffs were divided between gentles

and yeomen.  The major exception is the marshallage, which was normally

comprised of brawling commoners overseen by a knight or knights and

gentle or yeoman footmen.

 

For the specialists, cooks, bakers, brewers, smiths, masons, etc., the heads

of these departments were normally masters of their particular mysteries and

reported to a steward who reported to the Wardrobe (chief of inventory and

accounting).  Squire of the kitchen would probably equate to "steward of the

kitchen," whose duty it was to help set the daily menus and oversee the

expenditures of the kitchen.  The position was normally held by a nobleman

as was the "steward of the house," whose duty it was to oversee the smooth

function of all household divisions and ensure the safety of the household.

The steward of the house was often a knight with combat command experience.

 

Considering that Guillaume Tirel served the House of Valois in the 14th

Century, first under Phillipe, then under Charles V and Charles VI, during

the end of the Hundred Years War, his use of arms, and his appointments as

"Sergeant at Arms" (essentially a Captain of the Guard) and "squire of the

house" may not have been ceremonial.  France was very unsettled, when

Charles V became regent for his father John II in 1356 and the Dauphin's

palace was actually invaded by traitors and the Marshals of Champagne and

Brittany were murdered in his presence (1358).  Much of these problems

continued until after the Treaty of Bruges in 1375.  Since Tirel's major

service was with Charles V and his positions were granted primarily during

that time, it suggests that Tirel was highly skilled, loyal and trusted

servant.  The positions suggest that he was ennobled for his services and

that he served in knightly capacities in perilous times.

 

When Charles VI came to the throne in 1380, he was 12 years old and would

suffer bouts of insanity for his remaining 42 years, allowing his 4 uncles a

great deal of control.  Charles and his uncles would probably use household

positions to reward their favorites and Tirel's positions would become those

of a sinecure to a loyal household retainer.

 

BTW, a "cupbearer" was an individual who was granted a cup as part of his

fee to carry in the service of his master.  In the English Royal household,

cupbearers were often Dukes, major clerics or major landholders.

 

You could probably tell a great deal more from the household accounts, but

the available records are mostly from the 15th Century or later, when title

inflation and grandiose ceremony were becoming more common.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 25 Jan 2001 19:35:47 -0600

From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD at Health.State.OK.US>

Subject: RE: SC - Myths -- Taillevent

 

If we were talking German, I think we would be talking about a knight

(Ritter or "rider").  "Ecuyer" roughly translates as "rider".  However, this

is French and the word appears to derive from the Old French "escuier" or

esquire.  The term is likely being used to describe petite nobility, actual

rank being determined by the custom of time and place.

 

Bear

 

> My 1961 edition (English Translation) says that he was under Charles VI

> "premier ecuyer de cuisine et maistre des garisons de cuisine de France"

> It translates that as "head cook and master of the garrisons of France".

> While I do not read French the translation does not seem to scan.

>

> Daniel Raoul

 

 

Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 00:36:40 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: Re: SC - Myths -- Taillevent

 

At 16:49 -0500 2001-01-25, Daniel Phelps wrote:

> My 1961 edition (English Translation) says that he was under Charles VI

> "premier ecuyer de cuisine et maistre des garisons de cuisine de France"  It

> translates that as "head cook and master of the garrisons of France".  While

> I do not read French the translation does not seem to scan.

 

The French is not even an accurate copy of the quotation in Pichon

and Vicaire, which ends "... de cuisine du roy".

 

The French would translate as "first squire of the kitchen, and

master of the kitchen stores of the king [of France]".

 

You are right that the alleged English translation doesn't match.

- --

All my best,

Thorvald Grimsson / James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net> (PGP user)

 

 

Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 08:56:07 -0600

From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD at Health.State.OK.US>

Subject: RE: SC - Myths -- Taillevent

 

But the OED is "English," and does not necessarily apply to the French.

There is some evidence that the French were far more rank concious than the

English and would be less likely to have yeoman squires. The use of ecuyer

as opposed to escuier actually suggests gentry.  The gentry ride, while the

peasants walk in the dust of the road.

 

One also needs to keep in mind the organizational context of the squire.

For a common knight, a yeoman squire makes a certain sense, while a Royal

household would be more likely to have gentlemen as squires.

 

The 1380 date is interesting because it is at the beginning of a period

where a number of knighthoods were refused because the title of knight did

not have enough income to support the equipage requirements.  In fact,

without a war to support them a number of knights who had not gathered lands

and wealth during the last phase of the Hundred Years War became brigands or

condottieri opening the historical transition between bastard fuedalism and

the professional military of the nation-state.

 

Bear

 

> At 19:35 -0600 2001-01-25, Decker, Terry D. wrote:

> > If we were talking German, I think we would be talking

> about a knight

> > (Ritter or "rider"). "Ecuyer" roughly translates as

> "rider".  However, this

> > is French and the word appears to derive from the Old

> French "escuier" or

> > esquire.  The term is likely being used to describe petite

> nobility, actual

> > rank being determined by the custom of time and place.

>

> The OED has a citation from 1380 for the use of 'squire' to also

> mean a servant or attendant or follower, without implication any

> longer of being of the gentry.

>

> Thorvald

 

 

Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 13:44:24 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: RE: SC - Myths -- Taillevent

 

At 08:56 -0600 2001-01-26, Decker, Terry D. wrote:

> But the OED is "English," and does not necessarily apply to the French.

 

Quite true.  I noted it to show that by 1380 in England the

word 'squire' had acquired a non-gentry usage.  I don't have

etymological French dictionaries at home, so I can't give you

right now a date for the similar usage in France.

 

By the way, having had occasion to lean heavily on both the OED

and the various French dictionaries, it is my experience that

the OED is quite often more useful about Old French words and

usage than all of the French dictionaries put together.

 

> There is some evidence that the French were far more rank concious than the

> English and would be less likely to have yeoman squires.  The use of ecuyer

> as opposed to escuier actually suggests gentry.  The gentry ride, while the

> peasants walk in the dust of the road.

 

The word 'Ècuyer' is the modern spelling of 'escuier'. They are

not two different words.  In the period quotations in Pichon and

Vicaire we find 'escuyer' and 'escuier' used interchangeably.

 

By the way, the original root of the word is "shield bearer"

(cf. escutcheon), and is not related to horses or riding.

 

Being a member of the gentry is not a temporary condition. Once

you are in, you stay in.  Taillevent was first mentioned as an

"Ècuyer" in 1355.  In 1359, 1361, 1368, 1373, and 1377 he isn't.  

He is an "Ècuyer" again 1381 and 1388.  In 1392 he isn't.  This

is not consistent with an interpretation of "Ècuyer" as a member

of the gentry.

 

These mentions generally occur in lists of kitchen staff, which

is where you might expect to find occupational titles and not

indications of social standing.

 

By the way, 'yeoman' used as a social ranking in England, just

below gentry, has no equivalent in France.

- --

Thorvald Grimsson / James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

 

 

Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 18:38:36 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: RE: SC - Myths -- Taillevent

 

At 13:44 -0700 2001-01-26, James Prescott wrote:

> At 08:56 -0600 2001-01-26, Decker, Terry D. wrote:

> > But the OED is "English," and does not necessarily apply to the French.

>

> Quite true.  I noted it to show that by 1380 in England the

> word 'squire' had acquired a non-gentry usage.  I don't have

> etymological French dictionaries at home, so I can't give you

> right now a date for the similar usage in France.

 

Toddled off to the university library to look through their big

French dictionaries and their Old French dictionaries.

 

In summary, the usage of 'Ècuyer' meaning a senior servant,

without military or gentry implications, has citations as

early as 1174-76, though my favourite dictionary gives an

earliest citation of 1340.

 

Interestingly, one of the dictionaries puts the usage of

'Ècuyer' in the sense of trainee knight as _later_ than its

use in the sense of senior servant.  Not what I would have

guessed.

 

The usage of 'Ècuyer' in the sense of horseman, which it

acquired through confusion with similar sounding equestrian

words, is modern.

 

One of the dictionaries interprets "Ècuyer de cuisine" (which

I have been translating literally as "squire of the kitchen")

as "maistre cuisinier", meaning "master cook".

- --

Thorvald Grimsson / James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net> (PGP user)

 

 

From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD at Health.State.OK.US>

To: "'sca-cooks at ansteorra.org'" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] Pennsic Iron Chef Results

Date: Tue, 28 Aug 2001 16:35:47 -0500

 

> Sure, many knights and most mercenaries and actors travelled a lot and

> operated independently.  Did cooks?

>

> Inga/Linda

 

Probably.  Journeymen cooks and bakers tended to go where there was work and

to broaden their skills.  From some of the household accounts, it is obvious

that cooks and bakers were often independent contractors, receiving wages

and bonuses as well as room and board.  While some, such as Taillevent,

apprenticed into a household and served the house for a lifetime, I suspect

this may have been less common than the hiring of guild trained cooks and

bakers, especially in the Later Middle Ages.

 

There are also cooks and bakers who worked the streets and fairs about whom

we know very little.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 18 Dec 2003 22:09:57 -0500

From: Johnna Holloway <johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Le Menagier's chicken in orange sauce

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

 

Kirrily Robert wrote:

> Bah. I just submitted my column, and the editor's asked me for a few

> hundred more words on Le Menagier - the man, the manuscript, whatever.

> Which, of course, I don't have.  

>

> Katherine

 

There's mixed opinions about it but you might want to see

Living and Dining in Medieval Paris: Medieval Paris:

The Household of a Fourteenth Century Knight

By Nicole Crossley-Holland This study is based largely around a manuscript

written in the 1390s the Ménagier de Paris for the instruction of his young wife on how to run her kitchen. In it, Nicole Crossley-Holland combines the scholarly

with the practical in introducing us to the sophisticated world of the

Parisian upper class. She offers us menus and advice on food preparation and household skills and goes on to identify the author of this manuscript, something which had remained a mystery until now. She examines typical Parisian houses, the origins of the produce, the diet of the household and provides translations of many of the primary sources.

University of Wales Press 2000.  244 pp, 24 b/w illus  Paper ISBN:

0-7083-1647-6.  Stock # DB004. $35.00

http://www.foodbooks.com/medieval.htm

 

Several other authors use Le Menagier as source for recipes, including

the Scully's in Early French Cookery and Redon's The Medieval Kitchen.

 

Johnnae llyn Lewis

 

 

Date: Thu, 13 Jan 2005 19:34:17 -0500

From: Elaine Koogler <ekoogler1 at comcast.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Fw: [EKCooksGuild] ATTN Jedwiga has PMS

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

 

Micheal wrote:

>>  Gods of cooking

>    Interesting phrase for an interprative art form. Does one carry a

> rolling pin sceptor, a frying pan shield, and roaster armor.  A

> sausage wreath crown, with  lackies running behind reminding one

> "there`s a pie in the oven."

>   Da

 

Actually, a description of a Master Cook's "accoutrements" was somewhat

described as follows:

 

The Cook orders, regulates and is obeyed in his Kitchen; he should have

a chair between the buffet and the fireplace to sit on and rest if

necessary; the chair should be so placed that he can see and survey

everything that is being done in the Kitchen; he should have in his hand

a large wooden spoon which has a double function:  one, to test pottages

and brouets, and the other, to chase the children out of the Kitchen to

make them work, striking them if necessary.

 

Memoires, Olivier de la Marche,

Maitre d'Hotel, Capitaine des Gardes to Charles the Bold,

Duke of Burgundy, mid-Fifteenth Century

 

Kiri

 

 

Date: Wed, 19 Jan 2005 08:11:29 -0500

From: "Denise Wolff" <scadian at hotmail.com>

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] Re: Sca-cooks Digest, Vol 20, Issue 80

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

<<Hasn't anyone ever heard that old saying... "Never trust a skinny Cook"?>>

 

The cook must be cleanly both in body and garments. She must have a quick eye,

a curious nose, a perfect taste, and a ready ear; and she must not be

butter-ingered, sweet-toothed, nor faint-hearted. For the first will let

everything fall; the second will consume what it should increase; and the

last will lose time with too much niceness.

 

Gervase Markham, The English Huswife, 1683.

 

Andrea MacIntyre

 

 

Date: Mon, 01 May 2006 08:32:59 -0400

From: Johnna Holloway <johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] What NOT to serve at feast...

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

 

Markham's career is written about here--

  http://www.bartleby.com/214/1701.html

http://www.bartleby.com/214/1705.html

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Tue, 10 Jun 2008 12:05:13 -0400 (GMT-04:00)

From: Christiane <christianetrue at earthlink.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Sca-cooks Digest, Vol 26, Issue 38

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

<<< From time to time, listees ask about Hungarian recipes. Besides those

in Marx Rumpolt, here's another, this time from Italy.

 

Cristoforo Messisbugo, aka Cristoforo da Messisburgo, authored

several cookbooks in the 16th century. One was Banchetti, or

'Banquets', dated 1549. I would assume from his family name that

either he or his family was not originally Italian. >>>

 

I've found some references online to him as being from Flanders. Trying to find something more authoritative than that, though.

 

There is some interesting insight here on how the cuisine of Alto Adige (South Tyrol) still retains the influences of the Germanic and Central European cuisines that influenced Messibugo and the compiler of the Anomino Veneziano:

 

http://www.emmeti.it/Cucina/Trentino_Alto_Adige/Storia/Trentino_Alto_Adige.ART.84.en.html

 

Gianotta

 

 

Date: Tue, 10 Jun 2008 19:14:20 -0400

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Messisbugo

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

 

According to the entry in Alice Arndt's Culinary Biographies, there is

scant evidence as to where he was actually born. Some sources insist on Ferrara; other mention Flanders. What is known is that he must have been in Ferrara and at work there by 1524. Professor Ken Albala did the entry in the volume.

 

Johnnae

 

Christiane wrote:

<<< Cristoforo Messisbugo, aka Cristoforo da Messisburgo, authored

several cookbooks in the 16th century. One was Banchetti, or

'Banquets', dated 1549. I would assume from his family name that

either he or his family was not originally Italian. >>>

 

I've found some references online to him as being from Flanders. Trying to find something more authoritative than that, though. snipped

 

Gianotta

 

 

Date: Wed, 11 Jun 2008 23:35:38 -0400

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Messisbugo

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

 

Works associated with the author are:

 

Banchetti compositioni di vivande et apparecchio generale /

Ferrara : G. de Buglhat et A.Hucher Compagni, 1549.

 

Then in 1552 title changes to Libro novo nel qval s'insegna a' far

d'ogni sorte di uiu?da secondo la diuersit? de i tempi

 

Libro novo nel qval s'insegna a' far d'ogni sorte di uiu?da secondo la

diuersit? de i tempi ... Et il modo d'ordinar banchetti, apparecchiar

tauole, fornir palazzi, & ornar camere ... */ *Composta per M.

Cristofaro di Messisbugo, & hora di nouo corretta, & ristampata ...  In

Venetia : [Ad instantia di Giouanni dalla Chiesa Pauese, 1556

 

Then editions in 1557, 1559, 1576, 1578, 1581, 1585, 1589, 1600, 1610,

1617, etc.

 

This from Lord Westbury's Handlist of Italian Cookery Books.

 

The Forni edition which is still available is:

 

7 * Christofaro di Messisbugo,*

Libro novo nel qual s'insegna a' far d'ogni sorte di vivanda

(Venetia, 1557). (TG) Presentazione alla ristampa di G. Mantovano./

In-16, pp. 244, tela /

 

<https://www.fornieditore.com/flex/FixedPages/EN/ShowOpera.php/L/EN/IDMateria/FF/IDArgomento/-1/SKU/1049%206>Euros

27,00

 

Ken Albala in Food in Early Modern Europe covers Messisbugo nicely in

his chapter on Italy.

 

Johnnae

 

Emilio Szabo wrote:

Georges Vicaire, in his "Bibliographie gastronomique" (online at

http://gallica.bnf.fr), mentions only the "Banchetti" and says, that

this book

was published from 1552 onwards under a different title ("Libro novo

...").

I have not seen the 1549 edition, I have only a xerocopy of a Arnoldo

Forni Editore

reprint of the 1557 edition of "Libro novo ...".

Lilinah wrote:

Ah! A sort of standard 16th century history, published under one

title, republished with a change of title, and published a few more

times, with or without changes of content.

 

Thanks for the information, Emilio. I know relatively little about

Messisbugo, but what little i found looked interesting. Your

description of his work makes him sound quite valuable.

 

I haven't found much of his work in English, and my Italian is limited

to a combination of high school Latin, restaurant menu Spanish, a good

deal more French, and an Italian dictionary.

 

 

Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 12:14:12 -0500

From: "Kingstaste" <kingstaste at comcast.net>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Cooking for Power

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

 

I've been collecting Cook's biographical blurbs from various sources for a

while, I have a few that are specific to cooking for Kings and other

powerful people.

 

Christianna

 

Guillaume Tirel, 'TAILLEVENT' (d c 1395) is the only mediaeval cook

about whose life anything is known. In 1326 he was a kitchen boy in

one of the French royal households. Twenty-five years later, records

show him to have been, successively, in the service of Philip VI and

the Dauphin, who, in 1364, became Charles V. Still serving the same

master, Taillevent was described in 1373 as 'premier queu du roi' -

chief cook. He was still alive in 1392, when his name figures on a

list of royal chefs who had received new knives. He was also granted

arms: on his tombstone, he is portrayed wearing armour and carrying a

shield decorated with three marmites.

 

Guillaume Tirel, known as Taillevent (1310-1395)

Wrote first professional cookery book in France. It was commissioned by

Charles V.  The full title in English is: "Hereafter follows the Viandier

describing the preparation of all manner of foods, as cooked by Taillevent,

the cook of our noble king, and also the dressing and preparation of boiled

meat, roasts, sea and freshwater fish, sauces, spices, and other suitable

and necessary things as described hereafter."

 

Le Viandier, the cookery book that bears Taillevent's name, survives

in one manuscript that dates from before 1392, says Barbara Ketcham

Wheaton in Savouring the Past; so it's possible that he actually did

have something to do with it. Mrs. Wheaton points out that two texts

from very early in the century (certainly predating Taillevent's

birth), contain the 'core' of the recipes in Le Viandier, but

adds, 'it would be inappropriate to reproach the historical

Taillevent with plagiaarism... Most cooks were illiterate, holding

their knowledge in their heads, hands and palates. When the rare

literate cook wrote down - or the illiterate cook dictated - what he

knew, he drew on traditional knowledge.'

 

Fran?ois Pierre de la Varenne (1618 ? Dijon 1678), Burgundian by birth, was

the author of Le cuisinier fran?ois (1651), the founding text of modern

French cuisine.

 

It is said that La Varenne's first training was in the kitchens of Marie de

Medici. At the time his books were published, La Varenne had ten years'

experience as chef de cuisine to Nicolas Chalon du Bl?, Marquis of Uxelles

(marquis d'Uxelles in French), to whom he dedicated his publications and

whom he immortalized in duxelles, finely-minced mushrooms seasoned with

herbs and shallots, which is still a favourite flavouring for fish and

vegetables. The Marquis of Uxelles was the royal governor of

Chalon-sur-Sa?ne, thought by some to be the birthplace of La Varenne.

 

Marcel Dunan(d) ? The gifted and imaginative Chef de Cuisine at the

Tuileries.  Also a man whose culinary talents often brought him into

conflict with his employer, Napoleon.  

 

Henri Charpentier (1880-?) - Henri Charpentier was a French chef who became

John D. Rockefeller's chef in the U.S. He undoubtedly popularized the

flaming dessert 'crepes Suzette' in America.  Some sources, probably

erroneously, attribute the actual creation of the dish to him either at the

Cafe de Paris in Monte Carlo or at La Maison Francaise in Rockefeller

Center.

 

 

Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 12:51:35 -0500

From: "Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius" <adamantius1 at verizon.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Chefs in History u0p to 1500 A.C.

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

 

On Nov 25, 2008, at 12:36 PM, Ginny Beatty wrote:

<<< Great Cooks and Their Recipes - From Taillevent to Escoffier >>>

 

I'm pretty sure that's the one. I don't own a copy, and seem to recall  

it was semi-out-of-print when I read part of it, back in the late  

80's. Yeah, Anne Willan, it was.

 

Other possibilities include Wheaton's "The Delectable Past", which is  

about mostly French food but contains a lot of information about  

chefs, and Eric Quayle's "Old Cook Books" (which is, as the title  

suggests, about cookbooks and their authors).

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 15:38:16 -0300

From: Suey <lordhunt at gmail.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Chefs in History up to 1500 A.C.

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

Adamantius wrote:

<<< I recall someone, probably back in the 70's and I recall an  

Englishwoman, writing a book called "Great Chefs And Their Recipes",  

touching on people like Taillevent, probably Chiquart, etc., almost  

certainly La Varenne. The book as divided into historical periods, but  

some of it had to do with the time period you mention... At the moment  

I'm not able to find any mention of this book on, say, the Amazon or  

Bookfinder sites... >>>

 

The book is Great Gooks and Their Recipes: From Taillevento to Escoffier  

by Anne Willan, available at Amzaon:

http://www.amazon.com/Great-Cooks-Their-Recipes-Taillevent/dp/1862054371

 

Suey

 

 

Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 13:53:19 -0800

From: David Walddon <david at vastrepast.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cooking for Power

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

 

Here is an excellent link to the introduction of the University of  

California Press translation of the Martino Manuscript.

http://www.ucpress.edu/books/pages/9423/9423.intro.php

 

It gives you the low down on Martino.

 

David

________________________________________________________

David Walddon

david at vastrepast.com

www.vastrepast.com

web.mac.com/dwalddon

 

 

Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 20:25:24 -0600

From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at att.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cooking for Power

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

 

<<< Also Bernardo Scappi who, as I understand it, cooked

for several Cardinals, then reached the pinacle of his career cooking for a

couple of Popes?

 

Kiri >>>

 

It's Bartolomeo Scappi (1500?-1577).

 

After becoming a noted cook (1536) in the employ of Cardinal Lorenzo

Campeggio, he worked for a succession of Cardinals, then entered the employ

of Pope Pius IV (Giovanni Angelo Medici, 1559-1565) at the Vatican and

continued his service with Pope Pius V (1566-1572).

 

The Opera was published in 1570.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 21:48:59 -0500

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Chefs in History u0p to 1500 A.C.

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

 

There are reference books on the subject of chefs and cooks.

Culinary Biographies is one of course.

http://www.culinarybiographies.com/

 

This was the project of the late Alice Arndt.

Determining the name can often be accomplished if one can go through

the household accounts which list position and amount paid for the work

done.

 

And of course once one has a name, historical cooks like other people,

can be researched in the accounts and histories of the era.

 

Johnnae

 

Suey wrote:

<<<   snipped   The question  - have there been books related to chefs of

major houses and families in Europe or the Middle East? I think not.

What do we know about them? snipped >>>

 

 

Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 21:54:29 -0500

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Chefs in History u0p to 1500 A.C.

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

 

There are at least two different versions of Willan's book.

It was revised with better photography and graphics when it was re-released

and she added yet another cook to the mix.

 

It's come out in a less expensive reduced format paperback edition that

was being remaindered for less than $5 a copy.

 

Wheaton's volume is Savoring the Past. The Delectable Past is probably

the Esther B. Aresty book.

 

Johnnae

 

Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius wrote:

I'm pretty sure that's the one. I don't own a copy, and seem to recall

it was semi-out-of-print when I read part of it, back in the late

80's. Yeah, Anne Willan, it was.

Other possibilities include Wheaton's "The Delectable Past", which is

about mostly French food but contains a lot of information about

chefs, and Eric Quayle's "Old Cook Books" (which is, as the title

suggests, about cookbooks and their authors).

 

Adamantius

 

<the end>



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