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caviar-msg - 3/22/17

 

Medieval caviar and fish eggs. Recipes.

 

NOTE: See also the files: fish-msg, eggs-msg, fish-pies-msg, salmon-msg, stockfish-msg, frogs-msg, blood-dishes-msg, organ-meats-msg, Rus-Vik-daybd-art, fd-Russia-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, 2 Mar 2007 21:42:41 -0600

From: Stefan li Rous <StefanliRous at austin.rr.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

To: SCA-Cooks maillist SCA-Cooks <SCA-Cooks at Ansteorra.org>

 

Gunthar mentioned:

<<< And then there was Sir Guy's vigil at Pennsic where I found out about

it that afternoon and the Bellatrix clan shoved a couple hundred dollars

in my hand and told me to prepare something. That was interesting

but I did manage to make a rather nice, if not period, buffet. My favorite

part of that was being told by one of my runners he'd been mauled by

a bunch of dukes who stole his full platter of caviar canapes and pushed

him back towards the prep tent telling him to get more. Since when do

big dumb stickjocks like caviar!? >>>

 

While that particular caviar dish may or may not have been period, it

is my understanding that caviar, or other fish roe, was likely to

have been eaten in period. We think of sturgeon being primarily a

Russian or southwest Asia fish today, but I seem to remember comments

that sturgeon ran in many of the rivers of western Europe during the

Middle Ages.

 

Okay, I just did a search on the Florilegium. A lot more on sturgeon

than on caviar. However, both do show up in this file:

Romanian-ckbk-art (112K)  1/25/04    "A Translation of a 17th Century

Romanian Cookbook" by Lord Petru cel paros Voda.

 

So does anyone have any other mentions or period recipes of caviar?

 

Stefan

--------

THLord Stefan li Rous    Barony of Bryn Gwlad    Kingdom of Ansteorra

     Mark S. Harris          Austin, Texas

 

 

Date: Fri, 2 Mar 2007 22:09:58 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

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

 

> So does anyone have any other mentions or period recipes of caviar?

> Stefan

 

Caviar appears in Platina.  I don't have my copy handy to post details, but

I was considering working with the recipe as a surprise for Baroness

Gwyneth.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Fri, 02 Mar 2007 23:27:00 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

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

 

On Mar 2, 2007, at 10:42 PM, Stefan li Rous wrote:

> So does anyone have any other mentions or period recipes of caviar?

 

There's a rather critical poem from period (I think) which mentions

"cavialle", which I gather to be more like modern botargo, a pressed,

dried roe (generally today it would be mullet or cod, sometimes carp,

but since caviar specifically refers to sturgeon, I assume that's

what they meant then) I _think_ it's Italian, but translated into

English early on, but the gist of it is that whoever eats caviar had

better like sh*t, dirt and flies. You can still get pressed caviar

that is a pretty similar product; the lightly salted stuff you can

get now really only becomes the worldwide default form in the era of

refrigeration and high-speed food transport.

 

I don't remember the details offhand, but do have this secondhand

memory of the reference. Anybody else remember this?

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Sat, 3 Mar 2007 15:44:22 -0800

From: Lilinah <lilinah at earthlink.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

Both caviar and boutarge/botargo (salted dried fish roe) are

mentioned among the food served to the Ottoman sultan who conquered

Constantinopolis in 1453, Mehmed II. However, the Ottomans were not

fond of fish or any other kind of seafood, so it rather disappears

from the careful registers of what was eaten in the Topkapi Serai. It

is only in menus of Mehmed II that meals featuring fish and seafood

appear in the Topkapi within SCA period, so i would assume that he

was eating what Byzantine rulers before him had eaten.

 

Nor was it featured in the "soup kitchens" of the imaret established

by sultans, sultanas, emirs, viziers, etc.

 

It is likely, however, that it was eaten by other people in the

Ottoman Empire outside the palace.

--

Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)

the persona formerly known as Anahita

 

 

Date: Sun, 04 Mar 2007 19:49:36 -0300

From: Suey <lordhunt at gmail.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks]  medieval caviar

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

Stefan li Rous wrote:

> So does anyone have any other mentions or period recipes of caviar?

 

In Spain roe and mullet eggs were used as caviar as per text prior to

16th century. In Al-Andalus they were liked and prepared in many ways

such as boiled, fried or scalded in vinegar or oil without water.

Avenzoar found them more noxious than the fish itself as they were more

humid and colder. Christians did not consider fish eggs to be fish but

eggs and, therefore, consumption was not prohibited on fast days.

 

Susan

 

 

Date: Sun, 4 Mar 2007 21:25:23 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

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

 

A couple of translations from Martino:

 

How to Make Lenten Pottage

 

Take some good caviar, making sure it is not rancid, and remove the outside

part; the crush well in a mortar, and when it has been well crushed, to make

eight servings, take half of the caviar and then crush it in a mortar with

twenty-five almonds that have been well blanched and an ounce of bread

white; thin with a little cool water and pass through a stamine, adding more

water with the almond milk so there will be enough for eight servings.  Then

place over a flame and add a bit of good oil and some herbs, that is to say,

marjoram, mint and parsley that have been finely chopped.  Then bring to a

boil with milk.  Then add the caviar to the milk after first thinning it

with a bit of the milk in the mortar.  Then put all these things in the pot

and give it a stir with a spoon.  Add a bit of saffron and pepper; and once

you have stirred it, remove.  Then take some and serve in bowls, topped with

sweet spices.  Similarly, you can make this with pike roe, but it must be

well crushed and passed through a stamine.  You can also make it with

sturgeon roe.

 

How to Prepare Sturgeon Roe Caviar and Cook It As Well

 

Take some bread slices and toast until slightly browned, and slice the

caviar the same size as the bread slices, but a little thinner, and lay them

on top of the bread;  place the bread slices on the tip of a knife or a fork

suited to this purpose and expose to the air around the flame until the

caviar hardens like a slightly browned crust.  Likewise, you can prepare it

in any other way by first washing in lukewarm water so that it is not so

salty; take some good, small herbs that have been finely chopped, grated

bread white with a bit of finely chopped and gently cooked onion, and a bit

of pepper, to which you add a cup of water; mix all these things together

with the caviar, and shape into one or more fritters, and fry as you  

would with eggs.

 

To make the caviar, take some sturgeon roe, during the season and period

when sturgeon are best, remove from the roe all the nerves inside, and wash

with some good white vinegar or with good white wine.  Place on a table and

allow it to dry; then put it in a pot, adding salt to taste; stir well with

your hands, but carefully so as to crush as little as possible.  And once

this has been done, take a white sack made of rather loose canvas, and toss

in the caviar for a day and a night so that the water it purges will be

strained out.  Once this has been done, put the caviar back in a pot, well

pressed and thick, in other words by pressing it down with your hands.

Three or four small holes at the bottom of the pot will allow moisture to

escape in case the caviar was not properly strained.  Keep the pot well

covered and you can eat the caviar as you wish.

 

(As presented in Ballerini, Luigi, editor, Parzen, Jeremy, translator, The

Art of Cooking:  The First Modern Cookery Book, Composed by the Eminent

Maestro Martino of Como...; University of California Press, 2005.)

 

 

Date: Sun, 4 Mar 2007 23:11:35 -0500

From: "Nick Sasso" <grizly at mindspring.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

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

 

-----Original Message-----

< < < < A couple of translations from Martino:

 

How to Make Lenten Pottage

 

Take some good caviar, making sure it is not rancid, and remove the outside

part; the crush well in a mortar, and when it has been well crushed, to make

eight servings, take half of the caviar and then crush it in a mortar with

twenty-five almonds that have been well blanched and an ounce of bread

white; < < < SNIP > > >

 

How to Prepare Sturgeon Roe Caviar and Cook It As Well

< < < STIP > > >

To make the caviar, take some sturgeon roe, during the season and period

when sturgeon are best, remove from the roe all the nerves inside, and wash

with some good white vinegar or with good white wine.  Place on a table and

allow it to dry; then put it in a pot, adding salt to taste; stir well with

your hands, but carefully so as to crush as little as possible.  And once

this has been done, take a white sack made of rather loose canvas, and toss

in the caviar for a day and a night so that the water it purges will be

strained out.  Once this has been done, put the caviar back in a pot, well

pressed and thick, in other words by pressing it down with your hands.

Three or four small holes at the bottom of the pot will allow moisture to

escape in case the caviar was not properly strained.  Keep the pot well

covered and you can eat the caviar as you wish. > > > > >

 

I started thinking about terminology in our period and our current times, as

well as in between.  How are people thinking about language drift in terms

of caviar as the little eggs themselves versus the entire 'egg sack' of a

fish? I am finding it hard to grasp removing and outside part of hundreds

of little dots of coor to make a dish.  Same with the removal of nerves from

them.

 

Am I the last one to the party in figuring this out?  I checked wikipedia

and found a reference to several Mediterranean nations drying and curing the

roe pouch of various fish, then sliced and used like sardines.  Are we

possibly looking at two or more different products being translated into

English as "caviar" or "roe".  Just checking because I've deleted the

previous messages in this thread.  I automatically think little fishy egg

granuales . . . while the original could refer to the little tiny  

eggs, the egg pouch or the entire thing together.

 

niccolo difrancesco

(I know the egg pouch has a 'real' name)

 

 

Date: Mon, 05 Mar 2007 07:09:03 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

To: grizly at mindspring.com, Cooks within the SCA

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

On Mar 4, 2007, at 11:11 PM, Nick Sasso wrote:

 

> I automatically think little fishy egg

> granuales . . . while the original could refer to the little tiny

> eggs, the egg pouch or the entire thing together.

 

Think of the drift as similar to "ham" meaning pink or reddish, salty/

smoked pigmeat, while once it could be any animal that has thighs,

fresh or cured.

 

The "original" for caviar is simply a sturgeon, in both Russian and

Turkish, AFAIK, and as with things like shad, the "hard roe" of the

female became more popular than the fish itself, to the point where

the popular image of the part becomes the image of the whole. Like

scallops in the US, where we tend to see them in the shell very

infrequently in markets, and forget that it's not just a lovely white

adductor muscle coming full circle as the veal scalloppine of the

sea? I don't know if there's any market for the soft roe or milt of

the male sturgeon; there is for shad, but I've never heard of it for

sturgeon. Either way, there seems to have been some equivocation

early on.

 

Apparently whole roes of the female sturgeon were marketed as caviar

at some point; they still are today, in the form of pressed caviar,

which isn't as dry and hard as botargo, from what I've seen, but a

similar concept.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Mon, 05 Mar 2007 08:02:46 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] medieval caviar

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

 

There are books on the topic---

Caviar. The Strange History and Uncertain Future of the World's

Most Coveted Delicacy by Inga Saffron. 2002

This one does cover the history of caviar.

This one is available as a used copy for less than $1.00

Also The World of Caviar* *and

The Philosopher Fish: Sturgeon, Caviar, And the Geography of Desire

can be found online at really good prices.

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Fri, 13 Mar 2015 22:50:52 -0300

From: Susan Lord <lordhunt at gmail.com>

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Terry Decker's Translaton of "Lenten Pottage" of

        Caviar

 

I have just cooked this, taken photos and had dinner, well not dinner, a banquet on this pottage!

 

Terry translated it from Martino?s 16th century recipes. It was posted to SCA-Cooks "Medieval Caviar" dated 4 March 2007 and it is the most impressive dish I have published in my Medieval Spanish Chef blog. I totally recommend that you serve it to woo anyone from a very special friend to your boss! It is that delicious! I will be publishing my version of making this plus Decker's translation on May 1 but in the meantime here again is Decker's translation. Bon appetite!

 

HOW TO MAKE LENTEN POTTAGE

2 jars caviar

25 almonds

1 oz White bread

olive oil

marjoram

mint

parsley

saffron

pepper

 

Take some good caviar, making sure it is not rancid, and remove the outside

part; the crush well in a mortar, and when it has been well crushed, to make

eight servings, take half of the caviar and then crush it in a mortar with

twenty-five almonds that have been well blanched and an ounce of bread

white; thin with a little cool water and pass through a stamine, adding more

water with the almond milk so there will be enough for eight servings.  Then

place over a flame and add a bit of good oil and some herbs, that is to say,

marjoram, mint and parsley that have been finely chopped. Then bring to a

boil with milk.  Then add the caviar to the milk after first thinning it

with a bit of the milk in the mortar.  Then put all these things in the pot

and give it a stir with a spoon. Add a bit of saffron and pepper; and once

you have stirred it, remove. Then take some and serve in bowls, topped with

sweet spices.  Similarly, you can make this with pike roe, but it must be

well crushed and passed through a stamine.  You can also make it with

sturgeon roe.

 

 

Date: Fri, 13 Mar 2015 22:19:26 -0500

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

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Terry Decker's Translaton of "Lenten Pottage"

        of     Caviar

 

It's not my translation.  It's from The Art of Cooking:  the First Modern

Cookery Book.  I cited the source at the bottom of the post.

 

Bear

 

<<< I have just cooked this, taken photos and had dinner, well not dinner, a

banquet on this pottage!

Terry translated it from Martino?s 16th century recipes. It was posted to

SCA-Cooks ?Medieval Caviar? dated 4 March 2007 and it is the most impressive

dish I have published in my Medieval Spanish Chef blog. I totally recommend

that you serve it to woo anyone from a very special friend to your boss! It

is that delicious!  I will be publishing my version of making this plus

Decker?s translation on May 1 but in the meantime here again is Decker?s

translation. Bon appetite! >>>

 

 

Date: Sat, 5 Sep 2015 16:00:18 -0400

From: Elise Fleming <alyskatharine at gmail.com>

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Milt or Soft Roe

 

From: Susan Lord <lordhunt at gmail.com>

<<< Is milt, soft roe, male genitalia of fish containing sperm used as

food available today? It was sold fresh in 15 C. and consumed as a

delicacy. This is the first I have heard about it. >>>

 

Milt is not the male genitalia of fish. It is the seminal fluid FROM the

genitalia, not the genitalia itself. The fluid contains the sperm.

 

One source for purchasing seems to be

http://www.weiku.com/Agriculture/buy-Salmon-Milt.html . I don't know if

this would be considered food-edible.

 

Alys K.

 

 

Date: Sat, 5 Sep 2015 16:13:31 -0400

From: Elise Fleming <alyskatharine at gmail.com>

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] More on Milt as Food

 

Greetings! Here's one web site that shows the sacs of milt and mentions

various ways of preparing them:

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2009/12/steamed-fried-cod-milt-kiku-shirako-tachi-recipes.html

 

Another one mentions that it is actually the male genitalia that is

prepared. The genitalia contain the milt, but milt is something separate.

http://www.funfactz.com/food-and-drink-facts/milt-fish-sperm-3413.html

 

I did not look on this web page to see the actual recipes:

http://chestofbooks.com/food/recipes/American-Woman-Cook-Book/Fish-Roe-And-Milt-Salmon-Puffs.html#.VetK95clm5I

 

Another: http://eng.icefish.ru/pages/moloki/

 

Some recipes: http://www.meatsandsausages.com/fish/roe

 

You might try searching for some of the Japanese names for milt in an

earlier post. "Shirako" is one, but is also a company's name for other

products.

 

Alys K.

 

 

Date: Sat, 5 Sep 2015 21:08:54 +0000 (UTC)

From: Donna Green <donnaegreen at yahoo.com>

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Milt or soft roe

 

<<< Is milt, soft roe, male genitalia of fish containing sperm used as food available today? It was sold fresh in 15 C. and consumed as a delicacy >>>

 

I have cured milt, using the same method for making botarga (cured fish eggs). During the herring run here in San Francisco Bay, I just get several whole herring. You can't tell the males from the females until you cut them open to find eggs or milt. Since the curing process is the same, it doesn't really matter.

 

What is the reference you have for the fresh milt being sold in the 15th c?

 

Juana Isabella

West

 

 

Date: Sun, 6 Sep 2015 00:26:16 -0500

From: Sharon Palmer <ranvaig at columbus.rr.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Milt or soft roe

 

Here are Rumpolt recipes for milt.

 

Karpffen 6.  Boiled carp milt (Karpffen Milch)/ and pousen turtelet made

from it.  Take the milt/ set it on (the fire) in the water/ and salt/

let it simmer completely to the place (until completely done)/ cool it

nicely cleaned off.  Take a grated weck bread to it/ and several egg

yolks/ and see/ that you do not over salt it.  Then take butter in a

tart pan/ and fry it cleanly. Then it is good and well tasting.

 

-- Modernly "Fischmilch" is the milt or soft roe.  Male testes and semen.

 

-- "Turtelet" is a type of omelet or fritata.  Pousen could be Pouesen

or pavis, but that doesn't fit. A tart pan has a cover so heat comes

from top and bottom.

 

I speculate that they had pond raised carp that came alive or very fresh

to the kitchen, since recipes for other fish sometimes call for carp blood.

 

Suppen 18. Take the milt from a carp/ simmer it with salt and water/

clean out it cleanly/ and take over it pea broth/ parsley root/ whole

and ground pepper also unclarified butter and salt/ let simmer together/

so it becomes good and well tasting. And when you will dress it/ then

arrange on toasted sliced bread. Thus one cooks and serves soup of carp

milt.

 

Suppen 33. Take herring and cut it from each other/ throw them into hot

Butter and roast rapidly/ strain though with good pea broth/ pepper and

yellow/ put salt and butter into it and let simmer together/ put into it

the milt whole from the herring and let made simmer. Also put into in

green herbs/ which are chopped small/ in this way it is good and well

tasting. And one calls it Herring soup.

 

Ranvaig

 

 

Date: Sun, 6 Sep 2015 13:18:03 +0200

From: Susan Lord <lordhunt at gmail.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Milt or soft roe

 

Many thanks for all your contributions to clarify this for me. I feel much better about my description thanks to your corrections and additions.

 

Someone asked "what is my source?" It is Mar?a Teresa Castro Martinez, La alimentation en las cornicas castellanas bajomedievales. I have page 327 listed. I looked it up to confirm this and provide any background that might have been cut when pinning the word with which I am not familiar. At this point, I found that my file reviewing the book has disappeared from my word files. Secondly, in the entire section on fish, pp 322-327, Castro only talks about fish caught and consumed. She does not go into details concerning harvesting caviar, milt or roe.

 

<the end>



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