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spreads-msg - 12/15/10


Period spreads for bread. Recipes.


NOTE: See also the files: bread-msg, compost-msg, mustard-msg, Mustard-art, sauces-msg, Honey-Butter-art, marmalades-msg, butter-msg, garlic-msg, cheese-goo-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: Mon, 25 Jun 2001 09:27:11 -0400

From: Elaine Koogler <ekoogler at chesapeake.net>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Italian fish in oil spreads


> Stefan li Rous wrote:

> > Does anyone have some period recipes for these Italian, fish in oil,

> > spreads? Are these just mushed up fish in oil spread on bread? This

> > sounds like it could be a wonderful alternative to the honey-butter

> > and bread stuff.

> Note that Giano said "included" fish in oil, not "were made from", etc.

> I suspect what we're talking about is something like tapenade, which

> does usually include both tuna either in brine or in oil, and anchovies

> either salted and/or in oil, in addition to garlic (lots), pitted black

> olives (essential), capers, fresh herbs, and perhaps a squeeze of orange

> juice.

> Now all we have to do is document such a product as a spread ;  ) .

> Adamantius


Actually, there is an olive spread (sans the fish) in "A Taste of Ancient Rome",

cited as Cato 119.  It was called "Epityrum" :


"Make green, black, or varicolored epityrum in this way. Pit the green, black, or varicolored olives. Season them thus: Chop them, and add oil, vinegar, coriander, cumin, fennel, rue, and mint. Put them in a small jar, with oil on top and they are ready to use."


Other information in "A Taste of Rome" about this included:

"Greeks and Romans ate this with cheese, whence the derivation of its name (epityrum = over cheese). Varro (De lingua latina 7, 86) described it as a Greek recipe, and Columella (12,49,9) suggested that the olives be seasoned with salt, lentiscus, rue and fennel.





Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 09:01:46 -0700

From: Susan Fox-Davis <selene at earthlink.net>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] tapenade, moreta, pesto


> > Moreta is a combination of cheese and garlic and herbs [?]

> > pounded together into a paste which is then used as a dip.

> I think, rather, that the combination of cheese, garlic and herbs is a

> moretum, of which there are more than one type.

> > Unfortunately I lost my apicius list files when the last computer

> > fried, but you could probably do a websearch and find the recipe.

> > margali




Here's a translation of Virgil's poem MORETUM wherein Symilus the rustic

husbandman prepares this dish of garlic, parsley, rue, coriander, salt and

cheese, pounded in a mortar and sprinkled with olive oil and vinegar,

which he forms into a ball, packs it up with bread for his lunch and goes

back to work.


Re Moreta, Weyrwoman of Pern:  a were-woman, a man who turns into a woman

when the wolfbane blooms and the autumn moon is bright?  Kinky.





Date: Thu, 31 Jan 2002 10:30:37 -0600

From: Chip <jallen at multipro.com>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pate


> So, do all pates have liver in them?


I had wondered this myself & I found the answer to be: no.  Pate (or

if it won't display for you -- pate with a ^ over the a) is French for

"paste". Liver, mushroom, olive, whatever.


When I recently tinkered with Livyre Puddings I was explaining to

people that since I wasn't stuffing it into sausage casings, it was

being served as a pate.  And since I subbed chicken livers for pork,

it had ceased to be a period dish & had become a based-on-a-period

dish, or perioid.


> If not, what is the differance between a "pate" and a "spread"?

> THLord Stefan li Rous


Quality, I'd say.  The delectable goop I wound up with during testing,

I'd be proud to call a pate.  The underseasoned, bitter mush I turned

out at feast barely qualified as a spread.  I was so disappointed.


To sum up:

Pate de foie gras: pate.

Armour Potted Meat Food Product: spread.


So as not be a spontieser:


Livyre Puddings

chicken liver, bread crumbs, butter, currants, nutmeg, black pepper,



[Good Hous-wives Treasurie, 1588]

"How to make Livering Puddinges.  Take the Liver of a Hogge, and give

it three or fower warmes over the fier.  Then either grate or choppe

it verye small, and take a little grated bread and two egges well

beaten, whites and all, and Currans, Nutmegges, Pepper, and Salte, and

Hogges suet." (From "The Good Hous-Wives Treasurie", on p.40 of TTQT)


My adaptation:

Boil a plastic tub-ful of rinsed chicken livers (roughly a pound) in

salted water until cooked.  Drain and puree in a food processor.  Add

butter until smooth (about a stick), add currants until sweet enough

(about a handful), add bread crumbs to give it some body, add nutmeg,

ground pepper, & salt.  Don't be afraid of the seasonings.  It takes

quite a bit for the flavor to come through.  Most say to chill until

serving, but I prefer it served immediately (warm).  If you chill it,

it becomes very dense and a bit crumbly.  When reheated, the texture

becomes weirdly fluffy.


A recipe of this & a box of not-too salty crackers or crusty bread --

add the beverage of your choice & some good friends.  Quality time.


It has been put forth on this very list (by Adamantius, I believe) that

given the ingredients, tone & the label "pudding", this was meant to

be stuffed in sausage casing & boiled.  You just don't put raw suet in

a finished product.  I agree.


I have read adaptations which subbed chicken for pork for

convenience's sake, left out the raw egg for safety's sake (though

I've never known anyone who got sick from raw egg -- maybe those days

are over) & subbed butter for suet -- and I have drawn upon them.


Test batches turned out loverly.  I forgot to salt the boiling water on

feast day.  Disaster.  No more will I scoff at the idea that boiling in

salted water takes out the bitterness.  I wonder if it works on






Date: Thu, 31 Jan 2002 10:42:55 -0600

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

From: Gorgeous Muiredach <muiredach at bmee.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pate


>To sum up:

>Pate de foie gras: pate.


Except that pate de foie gras isn't necessarily a paste...  The recipe I'm

using leaves the foie gras whole, not processed at all.


Gorgeous Muiredach

Rokkehealden Shire

Middle Kingdom


Nicolas Steenhout



From: "Robin Carroll-Mann" <rcmann4 at earthlink.net>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Date: Mon, 4 Mar 2002 20:10:03 -0500

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] honey butter


On 4 Mar 2002, at 16:41, Laura C. Minnick wrote:

> This discussion may well be merely academic, of course. I think we've

> talked about it before, and noticed the incredible *lack* of any

> evidence that there was butter on the tables in period...


I've recently come across one reference. I've been going through books of

courtesy, in preparation for a schola class on table manners. In the "Urbanus

magnus" (c. 1180), the following lines discuss dinners on fast days:


"If fishes are wanting, let butter, milk, cheese, eggs,

Be given to the guests who are willing to eat them.

Let old cheese be cut thin,

And let fresh cheese be cut thick for those that eat it.

Do not press the cheese & the butter on to your bread with the thumb.

In (the case of) which eating, if the things are soft, let them be smeared

With a knife, or with a crust of bread; let them be held with a cloth

So that when the crust is taken away, they may be placed in the hollow bread;

Let him eat them [cheese etc.] with bread when he eats them, and not swallow

them (by themselves)

Unless he sits master of his own feast in the house."


(This is an English translation of the Latin original, taken from "The Babees

Book", ed. by Frederick J. Furnivall.)


I would gather from the above that butter was sometimes served at meals and

was spread on bread.


Brighid ni Chiarain *** mka Robin Carroll-Mann

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

rcmann4 at earthlink.net



Date: Thu, 16 May 2002 09:12:51 -0400

From: johnna holloway <johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Quince Paste


Brears suggests that butters, pastes and creams

were eaten with brown bread as Pepys apparently did

or scooped up onto wafers. I rather thought some of the

spoonfoods were just eaten by the spoonful as one

eats peanut butter out of the container now. How would

small cakes or shortbreads taste with a layer of quince paste

spread on them? They also made presentations of these pastes,

so you could package it up and present it as a gift to someone



Johnna Holloway   Johnnae llyn Lewis


Marian wrote:

Do you have any suggestions of what can be done with your

> quince paste other than putting it on bread with some butter?

> We still have half of a (small) zip loc baggy from Pennsic 29.> -M



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

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

Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 13:29:02 -0600

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Almond Butter


These look like an interesting condiment for the bread.




To make Almond butter

Take almondes and blach them, and beate them in a morter verye small, and in

the beating put in a little water, and when they be beaten, poure in water

into two pots, and put in halfe into one and half into another, and put in

suger, and stirre them still, and let them boyle a good while, then straine

it through a strainer with rose water, and so dish it up.


Thomas Dawson, The Good Huswifes Jewell, 1596



To make Almond butter after the best and newest fashion.

Take a pound of Almondes or more, and blanch them in colde water or in warme

as you may have leyfure, after the blanching let hem lye one houre in cold

water, then stamp them in faire cold water as fine as you can, then put your

Almondes in a cloth, and gather your cloth round up in your handes, and

presse out the juice as much as you can, if you thinke they be not small

enough, beate them again, and so get out milke so long as you can, then set

it over the fire, and when it is ready to seeth, put in a good quantitie of

salte and Rosewater that will turne it, after that si in, let it have one

boyling, and then take it from the fire, and cast it abroad upon a linnen

cloth, and underneath the cloth scrape of the Whay so long as it will runne,

then put the butter together into the middest of the cloth, binding the

cloth together, and let it hang so long as it will drop, then take peeces of

Suger so much as you thinke will make it sweete, and put thereto a little

rosewater, so much as will melte the Suger, and so much fine pouder of

Saffron as you thinke will colour it, then let both your suger and Saffron

steep together in the little quantitye of Rosewater, and with that season up

your butter when you wil make it.


Thomas Dawson, The Good Huswifes Jewell, 1596



Date: Tue, 29 Jul 2003 09:48:56 -0400 (EDT)

From: jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

To: sca-east at indra.com

Subject: [EK] sauces/spreads from war camp


A couple people asked me for the recipes for this stuff, so here they are.


Dilled cream cheese: 9 lbs cream cheese, 5 medium bunches dill. Chop dill

coarsely. Whirl cream cheese in food processor in batches until whipped,

add dill; process to combine. Refrigerate overnight. (Idea from Brangwayna





-- Pani Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika



Date: Fri, 07 Oct 2005 00:33:01 -0400

From: "Lonnie D. Harvel" <ldh at ece.gatech.edu>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cheese Goo Project

To: Barbara Benson <voxeight at gmail.com>,  Cooks within the SCA

        <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>


Greetings Serena!


Below I provide the recipe for the Cheese Goo at Danelaw, which you most

likely remember! :)


However, there are problems with this. First, it is taken from the

Savelli book. I have defended it as a starting point, and a place to

find references, but it is not, in itself, a reference. In this recipe,

I changed the ingredients to better reflect what I believe to have been

available in the Danelaw period and location. The biggest problem I have

at this point is that I have found no documentation of a cold cheese

spread being used in this period. The period reference she uses is from

a medicinal text, and it is a bit of a jump from there to the recipe she

provides. (/Leechdoms /is the source)//


From /An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary/ by Bosworth and Toller (1898) there

comes the concept of spreads to be eaten with bread:

/*syfling,* e; /f. Food to be eaten with bread/ :-- Syflyncge

/pulmentario/ (pulmentarium /quilibet cibus extra pattern,/ Migne), Hpt.

Gl. 494, 57. Ð~r feóll ádúne wearm hláf mid his syflinge. Homl. Th. ii.

136, 18. Sind ða twá gesetnyssa, dæt is sealmsang and witegung, swylce

hi syflinge w&aelig-acute;ron tó ðám fíf berenum hlífum, ðæl is tó itám

fíf &aelig-acute;lícum bócum, i. 188, 19. v. sufel, /and two preceding

word/ s.


/There is also a reference to "Cyse and drygne hláf -  cheese and dry

bread, L. M. 2, 26; Lchdm. ii. 278, 21" but there is no inference here

that it refers to a spread.


Still working on that one. It does taste good, however. :)


Cheese Spread



White wine vingegar        T      1

pepper        t      0.5

salt   t      0.5

parsley       t      1

marjoram      t      1

cream cheese        oz     8

cottage cheese      oz     8


Mix it all together. Add seasonings to taste. Don't blend it until all

of the chunks are gone. Chunks are good!


I will let you know if I find more convincing documentation.





Date: Tue, 11 Sep 2007 13:53:59 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Manchet

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


Michael Gunter wrote:

> Were I to make it again I'd add a little more

> salt, but as I explained at the demo there aren't any references in period

> manuals about spreading butter or anything on bread. I have seen

> references about bread being sprinkled with a little salt. This bread

> bore that out. A pinch of salt would have really brought out the  

> flavor.

> Gunthar


But they ate butter upon bread--


from A feast full of sad cheere vvhere griefes are all on heape: where

sollace is full deere, and sorrowes are good cheape.

Churchyard, Thomas, 1520?-1604. published 1592.


Page 11


No Butter cleaues nor sticks vpon my bread,

No Honny-combes will breede in my bare hyue:

My gold but glasse, my siluer worse then lead,

My luck as bad as any man alyue;



A thousand notable things, of sundry sortes Wherof some are wonderfull,

some straunge, some pleasant, diuers necessary, a great sort profitable

and many very precious. ...

Lupton, Thomas. [1579]


Page 130   She abhorred then bread & butter, and other such natural  




The first and second volumes of Chronicles ... first collected and

published by Raphaell Holinshed, William Harrison, and others: now

newlie augmented and continued (with manifold matters of singular note

and worthie memorie) to the yeare 1586. by Iohn Hooker ali?as Vowell

Gent and others. With conuenient tables at the end of these volumes.  



Page 93   When no butter could sticke on their bread, in in that part of

the citie



I have a collection of these quotes. You should have asked.





Date: Tue, 11 Sep 2007 14:15:00 -0400

From: Gretchen Beck <grm at andrew.cmu.edu>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Manchet

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


--On Tuesday, September 11, 2007 1:53 PM -0400 Johnna Holloway

<johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu> wrote:

> I have a collection of these quotes. You should have asked.


Coolness! Here's a neat one from "Three Middle-English versions of the

Rule of St. Benet and two contemporary rituals for the ordination of  


(found on the Corpus of Middle English website)


?a ?at serue o ?e kichin sal miste bi-fore ?e mikil mete bred, butter, ?at

tay may serue wid-vten gruching and wid-vten noy


(They that serve in the kitchen shall eat before the main meal [I think

that's what mikil mete translates to anyhow] bread and butter, that they

may serve without grouching [grumbling] and without suffering).


toodles, margaret



Date: Mon, 22 Feb 2010 14:58:02 -0800

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Table Fat, was Pie dough


Aelina wrote:

<<< I had an animated discussion with an octogenarian regarding the

difference between "table fat" vs "lard" in a recipe. We were trying to

find a modern ingredient for table fat. Anyone else heard of "table fat?" >>>


Back in the old days (like a few decades ago :) Jews who kept Kosher

would often used chicken fat at the table when they couldnt use

butter. The fat was gently rendered, often with a little minced

onion, then strained and cooled.


I made some once for a meaty meal with bread, as an experiment, and

it was pretty good... better with a little salt added.


Someone sometimes called Urtatim



Date: Mon, 22 Feb 2010 01:18:22 -0500

From: Gretchen Beck <grm at andrew.cmu.edu>

To: yaini0625 at yahoo.com, Cooks within the SCA

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie dough


--On Monday, February 22, 2010 6:09 AM +0000 yaini0625 at yahoo.com wrote:

<<< I had an animated discussion with an octogenarian regarding the

difference between "table fat" vs "lard" in a recipe. We were trying to

find a modern ingredient for table fat. Anyone else heard of "table fat?"

Aelina >>>


A quick google books searc suggest that "table fat" is any fat that is

served at the table -- butter, cream, roast drippings. I supposed the

contrast would be that you would not serve lard by itself as a topping.


toodles, margaret



Date: Mon, 22 Feb 2010 15:11:00 -0800 (PST)

From: wheezul at canby.com

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Table Fat, was Pie dough


'Schmalz' is commonly served on the table as a bread spread in German

cuisine. Perhaps this is what is meant by table fat.  I can remember

eating this as a child in the small village we lived in the Eifel by a

town that is charmingly called Dudeldorf.







Date: Mon, 22 Feb 2010 18:33:04 -0500

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Table Fat, was Pie dough


Or it could be rarely beef fat too.


"The fine lumps of sweet beef fat or suet which adhere to the roast are  

used in roasting to give flavor, but most of the fat melts away and is  

not served at the table. Beef suet is occasionally used in cooking,  

but rendered beef fat is rarely used as a table fat in this country,  

although in Europe it is often eaten on bread in the place of butter.  

Beef suet has a rather pronounced flavor and a comparatively high  

melting point. These are probably the reasons why it is not more  

commonly used as a table fat."


The complete housekeeper by Emily Holt 1917 edition with wartime  

hints. orig pub: 1903.





Date: Mon, 22 Feb 2010 19:18:45 -0500

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

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Table Fat, was Pie dough


On Feb 22, 2010, at 6:33 PM, Johnna Holloway wrote:

<<< Or it could be rarely beef fat too.


The fine lumps of sweet beef fat or suet which adhere to the roast are used in roasting to give flavor, but most of the fat melts away and is not served at the table. Beef suet is occasionally used in cooking, but rendered beef fat is rarely used as a table fat in this country, although in Europe it is often eaten on bread in the place of butter. Beef suet has a rather pronounced flavor and a comparatively high melting point. These are probably the reasons why it is not more commonly used as a table fat.


The complete housekeeper by Emily Holt 1917 edition with wartime hints. orig pub: 1903. >>>


And then there is graisse normande, which is a mixture of rendered animal fats, redolent of all, and overpowering of none. As its name suggests, it's from Normandy. As I recall, chiefly beef, pork, and sometimes goose or duck fats, rendered together with herbs and vegetable aromatics. Mainly used for things like frying and for stirring into soups and stews for added richness, but it's probably at least as good on bread as some of the other schmears.





Date: Tue, 23 Feb 2010 20:26:26 +0100

From: "Susanne Mayer" <susanne.mayer5 at chello.at>

To: <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Table Fat


Schmalz is just a generic term for fat, as the Schmalz you will find on a

german farmhous table is rendered pig fat.


So Schmalz is probably only chicken fat in Jewish households.


Then there is Butterschmalz, which is heated and cooled butter, freed from

the milk protein and most of the water, like the Indian Ghee


And Griebenschmalz is also made of pigs fat  where I am from, so be careful

to find out where from the recipe etc is before you use schmalz.





Date: Tue, 23 Feb 2010 18:26:39 -0600

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

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Table Fat


Schmalz is a German word for melted fat, grease, drippings. lard, etc.  It

covers any animal fat being used in this manner and in some dialects, butter

and the like.  Kosher is immaterial.


Yiddish is a High German language of Ashkenazi Jewish origin, a German

dialect, that is based on religion rather than region.  Since kosher is

material in Yiddish, schmaltz or schmalz, is more narrowly defined as

rendered chicken or goose fat.




<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