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gingerbread-msg - 10/7/10

 

Medieval gingerbread. Recipes. Not like modern gingerbread cake.

 

NOTE: See also the files: ginger-msg, desserts-msg, gilded-food-msg, pastries-msg, candy-msg, cookies-msg, honey-msg, sugar-msg, sotelties-msg, Cndied-Ginger-art.

 

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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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From: Margritte <margritt at mindspring.com>

Date: Thu, 19 Jun 1997 15:31:21 -0500

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes/gingerbread

 

>Lady Margritte may grace us with the exact recipe.  She makes a

>WONDERFUL period gingerbread :o)

 

        The dark gingerbread (see below) is the one I made for fra nic's

feast. I also entered 2 types of gingerbread in the most recent Kingdom A&S

competition. The documentation appears below. As nic said, the dark

gingerbread is wonderful (if I do say so myself  :-). The fine gingerbread

was a disappointment. I made it several times before I came up with

something edible. I tried both wax paper and foil, and it stuck to both of

them, to the point that I couldn't pull it off. What should I have used

instead? The redaction says "kitchen parchment". What is it?

 

- -Margritte

 

The History of Gingerbread

 

        Modern gingerbread uses flour as a thickener, but in the Middle

Ages, either bread crumbs or ground almonds would have been used.

Gingerbread made with bread crumbs was considered "coarse" gingerbread. The

crumbs were usually mixed with honey and spices, with either sandalwood or

red wine to make the mixture red.

        Gingerbread was one of the most popular confections of the Middle

Ages. It was often sold at fairs, molded into gingerbread men. Likewise, it

was also served at nobles' high tables, carefully sculpted and gilded with

real gold.

 

 

White Gingerbread (Fine Gingerbread)

 

Dining With William Shakespeare gives the following recipe and redaction:

 

To Make White Gingerbread: Take halfe a pound of marchpaine past, a quarter

of a pound of white Ginger beaten and cerst, halfe a pound of the powder of

refined sugar, beate this to a very fine paste with dragagant steept in

rose-water, then roule it in round cakes and print it with your moulds: dry

them in an oven when the breade is drawne foorth, upon white papers, & when

they be very dry, box them, and keepe them all the year. (From John

Murrell, A Delightfull daily exercise for Ladies and Gentlewomen).

 

Redaction:

1/2 pound almond paste

2 tbsp rose water

1 tsp gum arabic

1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

1 tbsp ground ginger

 

        Rub the almond paste throught the medium holes of a grater into a

mixing bowl. Put the rose water into a saucer, add the gum arabic, and stir

until the gum disolves. Sift the sugar with the ginger, stir in the

dissolved gum arabic, and mix until well blended. Add this to the almond

paste and work it in quickly but thoroughly.

        Divide the paste into twenty-four pieces. Roll each piece into a

ball, flatten it to 1/4 inch thick, and print a design on the top with one

of the small ceramic or wood molds used for printing individual servings of

butter, or make criss-cross patterns with a fork.

        Cover a cookie sheet with a piece of rice paper or kitchen

parchment and place the cakes on it. Bake at 200=B0 for twenty minutes, then

turn off the heat and let the cakes cool in the oven for fifteen minutes.

Remove the cakes from the paper and finish cooling on a wire grill. Store

in single layers in an airtight container.

 

        When I made this recipe, I used small linoleum blocks to print

designs in the tops of the cookies. The biggest problem was the gingerbread

sticking to any surface it was cooked on.

        This same book also mentions an ordinary or "coarse" gingerbread,

made from grated bread crumbs with spices, and held together by wine or

clarified honey, although it does not give a recipe.

 

 

Dark Gingerbread (Coarse Gingerbread)

 

The Tudor Kitchen Cookery Book give the following recipe for "Gyngerbrede".

Their source is T. Austin: Two Fifteenth Century Cookery Books, 1888.

 

Take a quart of honey and sethe it and skime it clene; take Safroun, pouder

Pepir and throw theron; take gratyd Brede and make it so chargeant that it

wol be y-lechyd; then take pouder canelle and straw ther-on y-now; then

make it square, lyke as thou wolt leche yt; take when tho lechyst hyt, an

caste Box leves a -bowyn, y-stykyd ther-on, on clowys. An if thou wold have

it Red, colour it with Saunderys y-now.

 

Redaction from the above book:

 

1 lb. Clear honey

1 lb. Fresh white bread crumbs

2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground black pepper

fresh box leaves and whole cloves to decorate

 

1. Warm the honey until quite runny (modern honey does not give off a scum

so needs no cleaning). Pour into a large bowl and mix in the breadcrumbs

and spices. It should be very stiff, if not add a few more breadcrumbs. If

you wish to follow the Tudor example and colour the mixture red, then add a

few drops of red food colouring or powder to the honey before mixing.

2. Line a shallow rectangular cake tin (or gingerbread tin) with non-stick

paper or foil and press the mixture into it. If it is a little difficult to

do this, then press down with your fingers dipped occasionally in cold

water.

3. Ensure the top is quite level, allow to firm up in the fridge for an

hour or two then turn out onto another sheet of paper and cut into small

squares.

4. Stick two small box leaves into each square with a whole clove in the

centre.

5. For a better effect, divide the mixture in two and colour one half red,

then make two lots of squares and arrange them alternately on a large

plate, chequerboard style.

 

        The above is the recipe I used as a basis for my gingerbread with a

few modi-fications. First of all, I added the spices to the honey before I

added the breadcrumbs, so that the spices would be well-distributed. I used

food color to redden it just slightly. To flatten the mixture, I rolled it

with a rolling pin between two pieces of wax paper.

        I also found out something very important about this recipe-- The

first time I rolled out the mixture, it never set properly because it was

too moist. Several days later, I gave up and plopped the whole mess back

into the sauce pan, re-heated it, and added more breadcrumbs. It worked

like a charm.

 

Another similar recipe comes from Curye on Inglyessch, p. 154 (Goud Kokery

no. 18), as quoted on Cariadoc's web page:

(http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/cariadoc/miscellany.html)

 

To make gingerbrede. Take goode honey & clarifie it on the fere, & take

fayre paynemayn or wastel brede & grate it, & caste it into the boylenge

hony, & stere it well togyder faste with a sklyse that it bren not to the

vessell. & thanne take it doun and put therin ginger, longe pepper &

saundres, & tempere it vp with thin handes; & than put hem to a flatt

boyste & strawe theron suger, & pick therin clowes rounde aboute by the

egge and in the mydes, yf it plece you, &c.

 

One final recipe for coarse gingerbread comes from Gervase Markham's "The

English Hous-wife" (1615), as quoted in To The Queen's Taste:

 

Take a quart of Honey clarified, and seeth it till it be brown, and if it

be thick, put it to a dish of water: then take fine crumbs of white bread

grated, and put to it, and stirre it well, and when it is almost cold, put

to it the powder of Ginger, Cloves, Cinnamon, and a little Licoras and

Anniseeds: then knead it, and put it into a mould and print it. Some use to

put to it also a little Pepper, but that is according unto taste and

pleasure.

 

 

Bibliography

 

The Tudor Kitchen Cookery Book, Recipes adapted for modern use by Roz Denny,

 

Dining With William Shakespeare, by Madge Lorwin; Atheneum, New York, 1976.

 

To The Queen's Taste: Elizabethan Feasts and Recipes Adapted for Modern

Cooking, by Lorna J. Sass; the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

 

A History of Food, by Maguelonne Toussaint-Samat, translated from the

=46rench by Anthea Bell, a Blackwell Reference book.

 

The Complete Book of Gingerbread, by Valerie Barrett; Chartwell Books, Inc.

 

Gingerbread: Ninety-Nine Delicious Recipes from Sweet to Savory, by Linda

Merinoff, a Fireside book published by Simon and Schuster, Inc. New York,

London, Toronto, Sydney, and Tokyo.

 

 

From: Mark Schuldenfrei <schuldy at abel.MATH.HARVARD.EDU>

Date: Thu, 19 Jun 1997 15:46:33 -0400 (EDT)

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes/gingerbread

 

                   I tried both wax paper and foil, and it stuck to both of

them, to the point that I couldn't pull it off. What should I have used

instead? The redaction says "kitchen parchment". What is it?

 

Margritte, parchment is a type of "paper" that is relatively burn proof, and

is frequently used in baking.  (For example, baked fish or chicken in

parchment, with herbs, are WONDEROUS).

 

The solution (I expect: and have used) is to grease the paper heavily.

  

       Modern gingerbread uses flour as a thickener, but in the Middle

Ages, either bread crumbs or ground almonds would have been used.

 

Hmmm. Just to nitpick for a second, I would not say that modern gingerbread

uses flour as a thickener... it is used as an ingredient, including the

steps where it forms gluten, and makes a rising dough.

 

       Gingerbread was one of the most popular confections of the Middle

Ages. It was often sold at fairs, molded into gingerbread men. Likewise, it

was also served at nobles' high tables, carefully sculpted and gilded with

real gold.

 

Not doubting you in the slightest, but source, please?  I'd like to know

more.

  

I've found that coarse gingerbread (in the medieval fashion) is a "pick it

up and work it with your hands" kind of material.  Dust them with

confectioners sugar.

 

This is probably a good time to remind people that modern confectioners

sugar is adulterated with non-period ingredients, generally.

 

        Tibor

 

 

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

Date: Thu, 19 Jun 1997 17:42:57 -0400

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes/gingerbread

 

Mark Schuldenfrei wrote:

> This is probably a good time to remind people that modern confectioners

> sugar is adulterated with non-period ingredients, generally.

>

>         Tibor

 

To wit, cornstarch. Seems as if the modern dusting with confectioners'

sugar as a sort of lubricant would have been done with an oiled marble

stone and wet hands, in period. Partly this would have been because it

was very difficult to make fine powdered sugar by hand. I speak with the

authority of one who made about two pounds of marzipan in a big stone

mortar at a demo a few weeks ago, using whole blanched almonds and a

block of sugar.

 

Adamantius

 

 

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Date: Thu, 19 Jun 1997 20:11:44 -0700 (PDT)

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes/gingerbread

 

At 3:31 PM -0500 6/19/97, Margritte wrote:

>but in the Middle

>Ages, either bread crumbs or ground almonds would have been used.

 

The almond recipe given below is either 16th of 17th century (anyone know

the exact date of Murrell), not medieval. Does anyone know of any medieval

recipes using almonds instead of breadcrumbs? There is another gingerbread

in the medieval sources, but it is not anything like the recipe given

below--basically cooked honey plus spices, apparently used as a confection

or as an ingredient in other things.

 

So it looks, absent further evidence, as though the "coarse" and "fine"

gingerbread, if that is what they were called, were not medieval

contemporaries but a Medieval dish and a Renaissance dish, with the

medieval dish surviving (as per the Markham recipe) into the Renaissance..

 

>White Gingerbread (Fine Gingerbread)

>Dining With William Shakespeare gives the following recipe and redaction:

>To Make White Gingerbread: Take halfe a pound of marchpaine past, a quarter

>of a pound of white Ginger beaten and cerst, halfe a pound of the powder of

>refined sugar, beate this to a very fine paste with dragagant steept in

>rose-water, then roule it in round cakes and print it with your moulds: dry

>them in an oven when the breade is drawne foorth, upon white papers, & when

>they be very dry, box them, and keepe them all the year. (From John

>Murrell, A Delightfull daily exercise for Ladies and Gentlewomen).

>Redaction:

>1/2 pound almond paste

>2 tbsp rose water

>1 tsp gum arabic

>1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

>1 tbsp ground ginger

 

Note that the original has quantities--and the "redaction" ignores them.

Based on the almond paste, this is supposed to be one full recipe. But it

has converted a quarter of a pound of ginger into a tablespoon(!!!) and a

cup (half a pound) of sugar into half a cup.

 

With regard to the dark gingerbread, which has been one of my standards for

many years, since it is easy to make, popular, and keeps, I normally bring

the honey to a boil, as per the original ("sethe it"), then stir in the

bread crumbs and the spices, and when it is cool enough to handle knead it

to a smooth texture by hand.

 

David/Cariadoc

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

 

 

From: alysk at ix.netcom.com (Elise Fleming )

Date: Fri, 20 Jun 1997 07:55:05 -0500 (CDT)

Subject: SC - White Gingerbread, Gums Tragacanth & Arabic

 

It was written:

>White Gingerbread (Fine Gingerbread)

 

>Dining With William Shakespeare gives the following recipe and

>redaction:

 

>To Make White Gingerbread: Take halfe a pound of marchpaine past, a

>quarter of a pound of white Ginger beaten and cerst, halfe a pound of

>the powder of refined sugar, beate this to a very fine paste with

>dragagant steept in rose-water (much snippage)

^^^^^^^^^

 

>Redaction:

>1/2 pound almond paste

>2 tbsp rose water

>1 tsp gum arabic  (much snippage)

     ^^^^^^^^^^

Gum tragacanth (dragagant, dragon) and gum arabic are NOT the same

thing and don't necessarily _do_ the same thing in a recipe.  

Tragacanth is a binder and strengthener, especially used in sugar

paste. Replacing tragacanth with arabic might lead to some of the

problems experienced. Also, note that while this recipe is called

"gingerbread" it is almond based, not bread based.  It's a delicious

recipe, but not the same thing as gingerbread as one would expect

gingerbread to be.

 

>Cover a cookie sheet with a piece of rice paper or kitchen

>parchment and place the cakes on it.

 

Interesting difference.  You can eat the rice paper but you can't eat

the kitchen parchment.

 

I don't recall having sticking problems when I did the recipe but there

were several probable differences.  I don't use commercial almond paste

(too sweet) and made my own.  Also the tragacath versus arabic

difference. I did bake them on parchment paper and "printed" them.

 

Alys Katharine

 

 

From: Margritte <margritt at mindspring.com>

Date: Fri, 20 Jun 1997 20:42:57 -0500

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes/gingerbread

 

>     Gingerbread was one of the most popular confections of the Middle

> Ages. It was often sold at fairs, molded into gingerbread men. Likewise, it

> was also served at nobles' high tables, carefully sculpted and gilded with

> real gold.

>Not doubting you in the slightest, but source, please?  I'd like to know

>more.

 

That information is actually distilled from several sources, but most of

the books I used are already back at the library (see bibliography at the

end of my previous post). I was able to dig up some of my xeroxes, though.

 

From _The Complete Book of Gingerbread_, by Valerie Barrett, pp 16-17:

        "The medieval version of gingerbread would be unrecognizable today.

Bread crumbs tossed with honey and spices were dried out or baked into

hard, crumbly, flat cakes. Some of the cakes were pressed into molds to

form beautiful and elaborate pictures. Gingerbread men, called gingerbread

husbands, became popular in northern Britain. Considered a gift fit for a

king, or an appropriate ending to a great banquet, huge slabs of

gingerbread were gilded with real gold and studded decoratively with

gold-dipped cloves. Dark gingerbreads got their reddish-brown color from

sandalwood or red wine, while white gingerbread was actually

ginger-flavored marzipan."

 

The other books made similar comments, but I don't have them in front of me

right now.

 

- -Margritte

 

 

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Date: Fri, 20 Jun 1997 23:40:59 -0700 (PDT)

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes/gingerbread

 

At 8:42 PM -0500 6/20/97, Margritte wrote:

>That information is actually distilled from several sources, but most of

>the books I used are already back at the library (see bibliography at the

>end of my previous post). I was able to dig up some of my xeroxes, though.

>>From _The Complete Book of Gingerbread_, by Valerie Barrett, pp 16-17:

>      "The medieval version of gingerbread would be unrecognizable today.

>Bread crumbs tossed with honey and spices were dried out or baked into

>hard, crumbly, flat cakes.

 

That passage doesn't give me much confidence in the secondary source. I

can't prove that what she describes wasn't made, but the standard recipe in

the English 14th and 15th c. sources doesn't fit either of her

descriptions--it wasn't "dried out," it wasn't "tossed with," and it wasn't

baked.

 

>"while white gingerbread was actually

>ginger-flavored marzipan."

 

Has anyone found any medieval recipes that fit this description--as opposed

to 16th or 17th century ones?

 

Do you remember if she says what her sources were?

 

David/Cariadoc

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

 

 

From: gfrose at cotton.vislab.olemiss.edu (Terry Nutter)

Date: Sat, 21 Jun 1997 14:33:39 -0500

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Themes/gingerbread

 

Hi, Katerine here.  Cariadoc responds to Magritte:

 

>>>From _The Complete Book of Gingerbread_, by Valerie Barrett, pp 16-17:

>>     "The medieval version of gingerbread would be unrecognizable today.

>>Bread crumbs tossed with honey and spices were dried out or baked into

>>hard, crumbly, flat cakes.

>That passage doesn't give me much confidence in the secondary source. I

>can't prove that what she describes wasn't made, but the standard recipe in

>the English 14th and 15th c. sources doesn't fit either of her

>descriptions--it wasn't "dried out," it wasn't "tossed with," and it wasn't

>baked.

>>"while white gingerbread was actually

>>ginger-flavored marzipan."

>Has anyone found any medieval recipes that fit this description--as opposed

>to 16th or 17th century ones?

 

I agree with Cariadoc's comment on bread-crumb gingerbreads, and I have not

seen a 13th to 15th C recipe for almond-based.  However, there *are* two

kinds of gingerbread in the 14th-15th C corpus.  One is the stuff Cariadoc

describes. The other, while it is not almond based, is pretty clearly a

candy in our terms rather than a cake-like stuff.  I'm in the process of

moving, and all my sources are packed.  I should be able to give details

in a month or so.

 

Cheers,

- -- Katerine/Terry

 

 

Date: Fri, 05 Sep 1997 12:27:00 -0400

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

Subject: Re: SC - SC-Gingerbread Advice Needed

 

GARNER at admin.hnc.edu wrote:

> My favorite non-period-so-far-as-I-know gingerbread recipe, "Uncle Mel's

> Triple Gingerbread," involves grated fresh ginger, powdered ginger, and

> minced candied ginger.  Does anyone know how far back in time candied

> ginger goes?

 

Fourteenth century or earlier. I think there's a recipe in Chiquart's

"Fait du Cuisine", of which I have no copy, otherwise I would try to

post it.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Wed, 10 Sep 97 09:51:23 CST

From: "Melissa Martines" <melissa.martines at mail.corpfamily.com>

Subject: SC - Gingerbread

 

   Aoife,

   About your gingerbread question.

  

   I made a gingerbread cake, cut into a heraldic rose, for a friend's

   SCA wedding.

  

   I got the recipes from "A Fifteenth Century Cookery Book" which quoted

   it from Halerian.

  

   To keep it from being too hard (like the granola bar texture you

   mentioned) I made my own saffron bread (also a 15th century recipe)

   and only let it sit one day (so it was still relatively soft).  I used

   a pound of honey, one large loaf of bread, and about a teaspoon of

   each of the spices (pepper, ginger, cinnamon and saffron).

  

   I got a great, brownie-like consistency  and the spices were hot

   enough to be pleasing, but not uncomfortable.

  

   Hope that helps some.

   Morgan

 

 

Date: Wed, 10 Sep 1997 13:28:31 -0500

From: L Herr-Gelatt and J R Gelatt <liontamr at ptd.net>

Subject: SC - Aoife's Gingerbread recipe results

 

Well, I think I have the whole Gingerbread thing worked out. It's

quite tasty. I noticed the grittiness Raz mentioned, but I think this is the

way it's supposed to be. I chose to serve it in a pool of cream, for

texture/flavor contrast, and I have to brag a little. It's marvelous. I

chose to use commercial Italian style bread, as being heavier and

"wheatier", and having more mouth-feel than other types. If it was going to

be gritty, I wanted it to be gritty on purpose. Italian bread makes dense ,

fine crumbs that hold their nuttiness. It worked well with the honey and

spices, too.

 

Here's my redaction, along with the original. Feel free to use it and print

it other places. Please Note it was originally posted to sca-cooks by the

author. A copy of those reprints is appreciated. Please give me credit by

name for the recipe redaction, along with my information: L. Herr-Gelatt, RR

1 Box 500F, Honesdale PA 18431 USA, liontamr at ptd.net . This recipe is

copyright September 10, 1997 at 2:20 pm by L. Herr-Gelatt.

 

Sorry for legal folderol. I feel strongly about protecting rights on the net!

Hope you enjoy the recipe. My 3-year old ate it up!

 

 

Aoife/L/ Herr-Gelatt

 

Gingerbrede (Curye on Inglysch)

 

Take goode honye & clarifie it on (th) fere, & take fayre panemayn or wastrel brede & grate it, & cast it into (th)e boylenge hony, & stere it well togyder faste with a sklyse (th)at it bren not to (th)e vessel. & (th)anne take it doun and put (th)erin ginger, long pepere &saunders, &tempere it up with (th)in handes; & than put hem to a flatt boyste & straw (th)eron suger, & pick (th)erin clowes rounde aboute by (th)e e(d)gge and in (th)e mydes, yf it plece you.

 

 

According to Mistress Sincgiefu, another similar ms reccomends serving decorated with boxwood leaves and another suggests putting it in boxwood boxes. I'm rather partial to decorating it with something green. Not having saunders to color the mixture red, I chose some cinnamon, which darkened the mixture a little and helped add that "bite" I wes after in redacting the recipe, and is a usual "modern" addition.

 

Aoife's Gingerbread (It bites back!)

 

1-- 1 lb 4 oz loaf of italian-style sliced bread, several days old.

1 1/3 cups honey

2 tsp. powdered ginger

1 1/2 tsp. powdered cinnamon

1/8-1/4 tsp ground white pepper

Sugar

Whole Cloves (optional)

Boxwood leaves or other edible leaves, or  marzipan leaves (optional)

 

Dry bread directly on oven racks on lowest setting until very dry but still pale. Grind the slices into very fine crumbs in a food processor. Set aside in a large bowl.

 

In a large heavy-bottomed pot, heat honey and spices (except cloves)  on high to boiling point. Reduce heat and allow to boil until a soft-ball stage has been reached. Remove from heat immediately.***Use caution! This honey mixture boils over rapidly and can cause sever burns. Please watch the pot carefully, and keep children out of the room.***

 

Pour honey over breadcrumbs and toss well. Allow to cool slightly, and use your hands to combine the honey and crumbs thoroughly.

 

Pack the mixture  into 2  8x3-1/2x2-1/2  loaf pans lined with parchment, waxed paper or plastic wrap. Press down hard on the surface to compact. Sprinkle with sugar. Stud with cloves if desired. Let sit several hours, or ideally, over night, so that the flavors of the spices will mingle and the mixture will set-up.

 

To Serve:

Unmold and remove wrap from gingerbread. Serve whole,  decorated with boxwood or marzipan leaves or other edible leaves, if desired (sliced oranges would look pretty, too). Serve on  a very dark plates for color contrast.  

 

Although the original does not suggest to do so,  this is particularly good when served in a pool of unsweetened  cream. The smooth richness of the cream and the spicy grittiness of the gingerbread compliment each other very well.

 

 

Date: Wed, 11 Nov 1998 13:56:47 -0800

From: Beverly Viel <cookbevsez at forumboard.com>

Subject: SC - Mediaeval gingerbread and a little cream....dessert

 

To make fine Gingerbread.

 

Take three stale Manchets, grate them, dry them, and beat them; then sift them

thorow a fine sieve; then put to them one ounce

of Ginger beaten and searced fine, as much Cinnamon, half an ounce of Aniseeds,

and half an ounce of Liquorice, half a

pound of sugar; boyll all these together with a quart of Claret Wine till it

come to a stiffe paste; then mould it on a Table with

a little Flower, and roul it very thin, and print it in moulds; dust your

moulds with some of your powdered spices.

 

[This recipe came from”

http://www.wwp.brown.edu/vol03num02/fromtb032.html]

 

 

Date: Thu, 12 Nov 1998 10:31:11 -0800

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

Subject: Re: SC - Mediaeval gingerbread and a little cream....dessert

 

It's from The Cooks Guide: or, Rare Receipts for Cookery, 1664

by Hannah Wolley.  Doesn't quite make the cut for SCA time period, but a

nice little collection from a VERY interesting web site, the Women Writers Project of Brown University.

 

Selene

selene at earthlink.net

 

 

Date: Mon, 14 Dec 1998 21:26:43 -0600

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

Subject: SC - Panforte - OOP but perioid

 

Attending Wiesenfeuer Yule Revel in Oklahoma City this past weekend, I

produced a couple of items for the potluck feast.  The first was a four

pound braided loaf with raisins stuffed in the braids.  The second was

panforte.

 

On the basis of limited documentation which may be apocryphal, panforte

seems to be traceable to a tithe paid by the tenants of the Monastery of

Montecellesi in Siena to the monastery which called for a number of

panpepati e meilati or pepper and honey breads.  The tithe was paid February

7, 1205.

 

This recipe, while not provable Medieval, is similar to period gingerbreads.

The result is very rich and should be served in small pieces.

 

Bear

 

Panforte

 

2 cups blanched, toasted almonds, coarsely chopped or slivered

1 cup raisins, Zante raisins (currants), or golden raisins

1 cup chopped dates

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 cup flour

 

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup honey

3 tablespoons butter

 

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl, set aside.

Grease a 9 to 11 inch springform or tart pan with a removable bottom.  Line

it with baker's parchment and grease the parchment.

Combine the sugar, honey and butter in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil

over medium heat.  When the syrup is between the soft and firm ball stages

(about 245 degrees F), thoroughly mix the syrup into the dry ingredients to

make a stiff batter.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.  Spread and smooth it.

Bake in a pre-heated 300 degree F oven for about 40 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let cool about 15 minutes.  Separate the walls from

the base.

Allow the panforte to cool on the base.

Remove from base.  Peel off parchment and serve.

 

 

Date: Thu, 28 Jan 1999 11:13:54 -0800

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Nerve Bisquits???

 

At 10:17 PM -0600 1/27/99, Lady Di wrote:

>I believe the

>site that actually referred to 'Nerve biscuits' is in another site which

>gives the history of gingerbread, but it could be this one.  Did you try

>searching for 'pepparkaker'?

 

That search found me " The History of Gingerbread  By Tarla," which does

not seem to be a very reliable source of information. For example, it says:

 

"The term may be imprecise because in Medieval England gingerbread meant

simply "preserved ginger" and was a corruption of the Old French gingebras,

derived from the Latin name of the spice, Zingebar. It was only in the

fifteenth century that the term came to be applied to a kind of cake made

with treacle and flavored with ginger."

 

This is wrong several times over. Gingerbrede, in the form of a mixture of

breadcrumbs, honey, ginger and other spices, appears in the 14th c.

cookbooks. Neither that nor the 15th c. version is a "cake"--the texture is

more like fudge. The sweetening was honey, not treacle. Treacle doesn't get

used in England for culinary (as opposed to medicinal) purposes until

substantially later (see C. Anne Wilson's discussion in her book).

 

David Friedman

Professor of Law

Santa Clara University

 

 

Date: Sun, 14 Mar 1999 08:54:00 EST

From: Seton1355 at aol.com

Subject: SC - my medieval dinner party - long

 

Last night I had some mundane friends over and served them a medieval feast.

They really enjoyed it and were interested in the background of the recipes.

The evening went off well so I thought I'd post the recipes I used.

Phillipa

 

<snip of ***Winter Squash or Pumpkin Soup*** recipe>

 

<snip of ***Chicken Ambrogino With Dried Fruit*** recipe>

 

<snip of ***Green Poree for Days of Abstainence*** recipe>

 

***Gingerbread***

1c honey

1c breadcrumbs

1t ginger

1/4t pepper (I used the pinch method)

1/4t saunders (sandlewood)  I omitted this because I was in a hurry and didn't

have any

1T sugar

30-40 whole cloves or 5t sugar and a pinch of powdered cloves

 

Bring honey to a boil, simmer two or three minutes,

stir in breadcrumbs with a spatula until uniformly mixed.

Remove from heat, stir in ginger, pepper and saunders.

When it is cool enough to handle, knead it to get spices thoroughly mixed.

Put it in a box (square plastic container with a lid)

squish it flat and thin (it REALLY says squish),

sprinkle with sugar and put cloves ornamentally around the edge.

Leave it to let clove flavor sink in;

do not eat the cloves.

**An alternative way of doing it (this is the way I did it) is to roll into

small balls, roll in sugar mixed with a pinch of cloves.

 

[Cariadoc's transcript of the original recipe is as follows:

 

To make ginerbrede.  Tanke goode honey & clarifie it on the fere & take

fayre paynemayn or wastel brede & grate it & caste it into the boylenge hony

& stere it weel togyder faste with a sklyse that it bren not to the vessell.

& panne take it doun and put therein ginger, longe pepper & saundres, &

tempere it up with thin hands & than put hem to a flatt boyste & strawe

thereon suger & pick therein clowes rounde aboute by the egge and in the

mydes, yf it plece you, & c.]

 

When I made it, the mixture seemed a little runny, so we added some extra

breadcrumbs.

 

I have made this recipe several times, always with good success.  For some

reason, the mixture didn't want to "hold up" so I ended up adding a total of

another whole cup of bread crumbs to the mixture.

 

Anyway, this was  my menu...oh yes, I also made fried potatoes, no recipe.

Everyone liked everything, includeing my picky son!

IS,

Phillipa

 

 

ate: Sun, 05 Dec 1999 17:21:00 -0800

From: Valoise <varmstro at zipcon.net>

Subject: Re: SC - structural gingerbread

 

Margali asked:

> Anybody have a good gingerbread recipe for the type of flat gingerbread

> that you make houses and sotleties out of? I want to do a gingerbread

> castle or treasure chest for our christmas party at work this year...

 

I'm sure there are plenty of recipes and directions for modern

gingerbread houses out there. Does anyone know of any period

references for them? I've never found a recipe for them, but I do have

a picture from _Kunstgeschichte des Backwerks_.  It's a woodcut of a

Lebkuchenhaus, late 15th C.. I can't tell if it's supposed to

something that was actually made to be eaten or an allegorical

picture. Looks like round and oval Lebkuchen attached to the surface

of a house. Can't tell what the structure of the house is made of.

 

Valoise

 

 

Date: Wed, 8 Dec 1999 11:21:04 -0500 (EST)

From: Michael Macchione <Michael.Macchione at widener.edu>

Subject: Re: SC - structural gingerbread

 

On Wed, 8 Dec 1999 cclark at vicon.net wrote:

> Just stick to the honey version and you'll be much closer to period than

> most of the recipes that have turned up on this thread. I think I'll try

> this one sometime soon, though I'm going to add a little more ginger and

> replace some of the cloves with grains of paradise.

 

I have made the "period" version of gingerbread on multiple occasions.

(warmed honey and spices poured over and mixed with bread crumbs) I have

found that the type of bread you use and how dry it is greatly changes

the end product.  I once made it with loaves of French bread that were

dry.... I mean Sahara Desert Dry...  used two-three times the amount of

honey mixture that was called for... and still had it come out sandy.

(by the way this sandy stuff mixed with butter made a great crumb crust

for a ginger/spice flavored cheescake.)

 

By using loaves of normal sliced white bread, that were basically dried

for a while in the oven, the end product is almost a fudge consistency

which can be used to make structures out of..... I know this because I

have.   At an event a few years back, I made a castle out of this stuff,

wrapping it around coffee cans for the towers (and putting different

desserts in each tower)  It worked out well...

 

here are some pics of it....

 

http://www2.widener.edu/~mxm0034/castle1.jpg

http://www2.widener.edu/~mxm0034/castle2.jpg

http://www2.widener.edu/~mxm0034/castle3.jpg

 

Kael

 

 

Date: Wed, 08 Dec 1999 11:29:31 -0500

From: Angie Malone <alm4 at cornell.edu>

Subject: SC - gingerbread

 

>By using loaves of normal sliced white bread, that were basically dried

>for a while in the oven, the end product is almost a fudge consistency

>which can be used to make structures out of..... I know this because I

>have.   At an event a few years back, I made a castle out of this stuff,

>wrapping it around coffee cans for the towers (and putting different

>desserts in each tower)  It worked out well...

 

I just did our fall event, and I made this gingerbread also.  I waited til

the last minute to dry the bread, we ended up laying all the slices of

bread out in the kitchen and they dried overnight, like maybe 12 hours and

it made a wonderful gingerbread, although I would make sure I did the

bread crumbs in a food processor or blender and that there weren't any lumps

in the bread crumbs, they really need to be finely ground.

 

       Angeline

Lady Angeline di Aquila

Seneschal--Dominion of Myrkfaelinn, Kingdom of Aethelmearc

 

 

Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2000 01:03:35 -0800

From: "James F. Johnson" <seumas at mind.net>

Subject: Re: SC - Oogy gingerbread problem

 

Lurking Girl wrote:

> Tonight, I upped the voltage to 2 cups breadcrumbs.  STILL too oogy!  I

> want to be able to roll them into balls for a dessert board this weekend.

> I have ceased to believe that the amount of breadcrumbs is the problem.

> What step am I missing?  (A brief attempt at kneading led to glops of

> honey crud all over me, the counter, and an investigating feline.)

 

Being the bad and ill disciplined cook that I am, I didn't bother so

much with measuring. I heated the honey and added breadcrumbs until they

absorbed all the honey and I couldn't stir without risk of breaking the

spoon or my wrist. Gut feel was around a 2:1 ration of crumbs to honey,

maybe more crumb. I did grind the crumbs finely, and not until the bread

had dried thoroughly (I helped it along by cutting the bread thin and

placing it in the oven on the lowest setting with the door ajar - dried

but not toasted.) The gingerbread came out like firm marzipan and took

some effort to cut. Pliable, but not gooey. Some of the leftover bread I

gently baked in the oven and it is more firm and bready. Given the sugar

content, this stuff should keep fairly well for a short time, and

actually dehydrate a bit while it sits.

 

Seumas

 

 

Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2000 17:00:37 -0700

From: "Karen O" <kareno at lewistown.net>

Subject: Re: SC - Oogy gingerbread problem

 

>James F. Johnson wrote:

>> Being the bad and ill disciplined cook that I am, I didn't bother so much

>> with measuring. I heated the honey and added breadcrumbs until they

>> absorbed all the honey and I couldn't stir without risk of breaking the

>> spoon or my wrist.

 

and Vika responded:

>Ohhhhh. Rain-BOW.  I guess I do need more breadcrumbs then.  The stuff

>I've always ended up with still had honey nature--definitely not all

>absorbed.

 

   and Caointiarn chimes in:

 

   DRY breadcrumbs is probably the best answer,  and while a 1:1 ratio has

worked for me, I also had extra standing by, (just in case I needed more)

the idea is to stir   *rapidly* the crumbs into the boiling honey  -- like

cream of wheat --until the mixture is too hard to stir/ is sticking to the

side of the pot.  and since you are trying to roll it into balls, you're

obviously letting it cool enough to handle.  If it's still too sticky,  try

kneading very fine breadcrumbs (bread dust?) into the mixture/ coating your

hands with it.

 

 

Date: Wed, 2 Feb 2000 23:22:08 -0500

From: "Robin Carroll-Mann" <harper at idt.net>

Subject: OOP: sourdough gingerbread ( was Re:private-Re: SC - Happy Groundhog Day!)

 

> Sourdough gingerbread? This sounds interesting..........:-)

 

It was tasty, though I'm not sure that I could really detect the sourdough

under all the spice and sweetness.  The recipe was out of "World

Sourdoughs from Antiquity" by Ed Wood, who is one of the leading

authorities on sourdough baking.  [I got my copy from Poison Pen

Press at Pennsic.]  The gingerbread uses active sourdough starter as

an ingredient, but gets most of its leavening from baking soda.

 

And to forstall the inevitable request, here is the recipe:

 

2 cups proofed sourdough starter (ie., fed, and left out for about 6-8

hours, or until bubbly

2 TBS melted butter

1 cup molasses

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground ginger

1 egg, beaten

2 TBS sugar

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 cup white bread flour

 

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Butter and flour a 10-inch square pan (not

owning such a thing, I used a 9-inch round).

 

Place measured starter in large mixing bowl.  Add butter, molasses,

spices, egg, sugar and salt.  Mix well.  Add baking soda to the mixture

and stir.  Add flour and mix until smooth.  

 

Pour into baking pan and bake 55-60 minutes, until gingerbread pulls

away from sides and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out

clean.

 

Cook in pan for 10 minutes, then turn onto a rack to finish cooling.

 

Misc. notes: I used all-purpose flour.  I only had 1/2 cup molasses in

the house.  Since it was nearly midnight, and I didn't want to drive to the

supermarket, I substituted 1/2 cup honey for the rest, and omitted the

sugar. The end product tasted like a hybrid between traditional modern

gingerbread and a Jewish honey cake.  I think, in my tiredness, I

inadvertantly increased the baking soda to 1 tsp., which may explain

the texture, which was a trifle chewier than I expected.  Next time, I'll try

the recipe as written, just to see how it's different.

 

Oh, and the best source of sourdough info on the web (recipies, FAQs,

and where to get a starter) is at:

http://www.nyx.net/~dgreenw/sourdoughfaqs.html

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Settmour Swamp, East (NJ)

 

 

Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2000 08:36:34 -0400

From: margali <margali at 99main.com>

Subject: Re: SC - molds for gingerbread

 

http://www.houseonthehill.net/

margali

 

 

Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 16:25:25 +0200From: "Cindy M. Renfrow" <cindy at thousandeggs.com>Subject: Re: SC - Begging A Favor>I have served gingerbread at demos, and most kids like it.  I did cut back a>little on the pepper and ginger as it otherwise seems to be little highly>seasoned for some people.  My recipe follows:>>19.  To make gingerbrede.  Take goode honey & clarefie it on the fere, & take>fayre paynemayn or wastel brede & grate it, & caste it into the boylenge honey,>& stere it well togyder faste with a sklyse that it bren not to the vessell. &>thanne take it doun and put therein ginger, longe pepere & saundres, & tempere>it up with thin haldes; & than put hem to a flatt gboyste & straw thereon sugar,>& pick therein clowes rounde aboute by the egge and in the mydes, yf it plece>you, &c.>>19.  To make gingerbrede.  Take good honey and clarify it on the fire, and take>good white bread or good bread and grate it, and put it into the boiling honey>and stir it together fast with a spatula so that it will not burn not to the>vessel. And then take it down and add ginger, long pepper and sanders, and mix>it with  thin handles ; and then put it in a flat box and sprinkle it with>sugar. And pick cloves round about by the egg and in the middle, if it please>you.  (Sloan, 468 from Curye on Inglysch)Hello!  Yes, gingerbread is an excellent dish for kids.  (Two suggestedcorrections to the above translation, if I may -- "with thin haldes", withthine hands; and "by the egge", by the edge.)Here is another gyngerbrede recipe from Harleian MS. 279 - Leche Vyaundez:iiij.  Gyngerbrede.  Take a quart of hony, & sethe it, skeme it clene; takeSafroun, pouder Pepir, & [th]row [th]er-on; take gratyd Brede, make it sochargeaunt [th]at it wol be y-lechyd; [th]en take pouder Canelle, & straw[th]er-on y-now; [th]en make yt square, lyke as [th]ou wolt leche yt; takewhen [th]ou lechyst hyt, an caste Box leves a-bouyn, y-stykyd [th]er-on, onclowys.  And [3]if [th]ou wolt haue it Red, coloure it with Saunderysy-now.4.  Gingerbread.  Take a quart of honey, & seethe it, skim it clean; takeSaffron, powdered Pepper, & throw thereon; take grated Bread, make it sostiff that it will be cut; then take powdered Cinnamon, & strew thereonenough; then make it square, like as thou would cut it; take when thou cutit, and caste Box leaves  above, stuck thereon, and cloves.  And if thouwill have it Red, color it with Sandalwood enough.Here's another good crowd-pleaser that can be made ahead of time. The honeysauce can be served with crackers:"Pokerounce is reminiscent of warm mead on toast, and is quite delicious insmall quantities.  The honey mixture may be made in advance and preservedeither by canning or refrigeration.Harleian MS. 279 - Leche Vyaundez<snip. See candy-msg> Cindy Renfrow/SincgiefuAuthor and Publisher of "Take a Thousand Eggs or More" and "A Sip Through Time"http://www.thousandeggs.comcindy at thousandeggs.com

 

 

Date: Tue, 31 Jul 2001 12:02:25 +1200

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

From: Robert Garnett <carnelian at inet.net.nz>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Gyngerbrede (finally!).

 

>A note on coloring: Period recipes stress

>that gyngerbred should be colored red with the

>addition of red sandalwood.

 

I have used red sandal wood to color several of my gyngerbred  products. I

found that it gives the gyngerbred a really beautiful soft red color. I

would recommend everyone have a go at using red sandal wood as it is really

fun to see the results.

 

Duncan Kerr.

Herald and master of the hounds.

Barony of Southron Gaard.

 

 

From: Druighad at aol.com

Date: Tue, 31 Jul 2001 14:03:12 EDT

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Gyngerbrede.

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

ruthf at uidaho.edu writes:

<< Random side note: the Elizabethen recipe I have describes

kneading the dough and then pressing it into a mold to shape it.

Unless Elizabethen cooks had cast-iron hands, I'm guessing their

version ended up being much more malleable when it cooled, sort of

a play-doh type texture.  It would be possible, with fine enough

crumbs and the right proportions, I think. >>

 

From having worked as both a baker and pastry chef, let me tell y'all that we

have no nerves left in our hands. It's very possible that the Elizabethens

also kneaded when the mixture was very hot, but used ice water baths (to

dunk hands in) to keep their hands very cold, and not burn. It's a technique

that anyone who does pulled or blown sugar uses religiously.

 

Finnebhir, the nerveless. too many burns and callouses.

 

 

Date: Tue, 16 Dec 2003 18:22:39 -0600

From: "Elise Fleming" <alysk at ix.netcom.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] More White Gingerbread

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

 

Greetings.  I've been behind in reading digests.  You found the recipe you

were looking for, but there are earlier versions of white gingerbread that

are much different.

 

John Murrell, 1617, _A Daily Exercise for Ladies and Gentlewomen_, has this

version.  "Take halfe a pound of March-pane-Past made with Almonds,

Rose-water and Sugar, and a spoonefull of Aqua vita, season it very hot

with Ginger, mould it up stiffe, rowle it thin, and print it with your

moulds."

 

In 1621 Murrell gave this version in _A Delightful Daily Exercise for

Ladies and Gentlewomen_.  "Take halfe a pound of marchpaine past, a quarter

of a pound of white Ginger beaten and cerst, halfe a pound of the powder of

refined sugar, beate this to a very fine paste with dragagant steept in

rose-water, then roule it in round cakes and print it with your moulds: dry

them in an oven when the bread is drawn foorth, upon white papers, &

when they be very dry, box them, and keepe them all the yeare."

 

Peter Brears gives an even earlier version from 1587 along with a modern

adaptation.  It's in _Banquetting Stuffe_, p. 101-103.  The original from

A.W., _A Book of Cookrye_, reads: "Take Gumma Dragagantis halfe an ounce,

and steep it in rosewater two daies, then put thereto a pound of Sugar

beaten & finely serced, and beate them well together so that it may be

wrought like paste, then role it thin into two Cakes, then take a fewe

Jordain almonds and blaunch them in colde water, then dry them with a faire

Cloth, and stampe them in a morter very finelye, adding thereto a little

rosewater, beat finely also the whitest Sugar you can get and searce it.

Then take Ginger, pare it and beat it very small and serce it, then put in

sugar to the almonds & beat them togither very well, then take it out and

work it at your pleasure, then lay it even upon one of your cakes, and

cover it with another and when you put it in the molde, strewe fine

ginger both above and beneath."

 

Alys Katharine

 

 

Date: Sat, 13 Dec 2008 23:27:02 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Gingerbread

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

 

On Sat, Dec 13, 2008 at 9:54 PM, <chawkswrth at aol.com> wrote:

<<< Good Evening! I am in the process of making my very first gingerbread and

I find I need to ask, as the loaf of Old Bread lies spread out on the counter,

drying.

 

Just how finely ground should the breadcrumbs be? What I usually do is put

them though a fine mesh strainer. Obviously, the bread has to be really dry,

and the crumb is VERY fine, indeed.

 

Also-has anyone ever put freshly grated ginger in it, or does it have to

dried and finely ground, as well? (I have a thumb-sized lump of fresh ginger

in the fridge, and a nutmeg grater that I also use for lemon zest)

 

With breadcrumbs under my nails....

 

Helen >>>

 

Wow, I never worry about getting it that fine.  I usually toast the bread

and let it dry out a bit, then put it in a food processor and grind it up.  

I have made it with dried ginger (usually) and with fresh ginger root

steeped in the hot honey.  The dried ginger is usually stronger.  Either

works fine.  Here's the thing, this is a fairly adaptable recipe.  It is

honey and breadcrumbs and spices.  It can be brown bread, white bread, mixed

loaves, semi-dry, really dry, wildflower honey, clover honey, whatever you

have on hand.  It doesn't "have" to be anything one way or the other.  The

period recipe specifies that the honey be clarified, get the wax and bee

parts out of it.  It calls for waste bread, so obviously it was going to

change from time to time when being made in the average medieval household.

I have even had it made with rye crumbs, and that was darned tasty.  

 

Christianna

 

 

Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008 00:24:31 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Gingerbread

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

 

On Dec 13, 2008, at 11:27 PM, Kingstaste wrote:

<<< parts out of it.  It calls for waste bread, so obviously it was going to

change from time to time when being made in the average medieval household.

I have even had it made with rye crumbs, and that was darned tasty. >>>

 

Isn't that "wastel bread"? I thought it was...

 

If so, it's a fine, cakelike white bread eaten by the wealthy. I'm  

wondering if perhaps "wastel" and "gateau" share a common French root...

 

Adamantius, Bad Cop

 

 

Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008 23:43:01 -0800 (GMT-08:00)

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Gingerbread

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

Adamantius wrote:

<<< Isn't that "wastel bread"? I thought it was...

 

If so, it's a fine, cakelike white bread eaten by the wealthy. I'm  

wondering if perhaps "wastel" and "gateau" share a common French

root... >>>

 

I lack an French dictionary that gives etymologies, however it seems highly likely.

 

Gateau has a circumflex over the first "a" indicating it was originally followed by an "s". Additionally quite a few modern French words that end in "eau" ended with "el" in Medieval times, such as modern "chateau" from Medieval "chastel". So now we can say that it may well have been "gastel". And since French doesn't use a "w", a "g" sometimes replaces a "w" in words that came from another language.

 

So while "wastel" may not (or may) have originally French, it's likely that "wastel" and "gateau" are related.

--

Urtatim (that's ur-tah-TEEM)

 

 

Date: Mon, 15 Dec 2008 06:59:04 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Gingerbread

To: lilinah at earthlink.net, Cooks within the SCA

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

On Dec 15, 2008, at 2:43 AM, lilinah at earthlink.net wrote:

<<< Gateau has a circumflex over the first "a" indicating it was  

originally followed by an "s". Additionally quite a few modern  

French words that end in "eau" ended with "el" in Medieval times,

such as modern "chateau" from Medieval "chastel". So now we can say  

that it may well have been "gastel". And since French doesn't use a  

"w", a "g" sometimes replaces a "w" in words that came from another  

language.

 

So while "wastel" may not (or may) have originally French, it's  

likely that "wastel" and "gateau" are related. >>>

 

The dropping of the "s", as in etude/study, hotel/hostel, hopital/

hospital, etc., is fairly common in word pairs appearing in both  

French and English, and the G-W transposition is pretty common, as  

well, as in Guillaume/William, gaufrette, etc.

 

Most dictionaries appear to suggest that the French gateau derives  

from the Frankish and, in turn, Germanic, wastil, which appears to  

derive from proto-Indo-European terms meaning nourishment or food.

 

Yeah, okay ;-)

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Mon, 15 Dec 2008 07:15:54 -0500

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Gingerbread

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

 

OED lists wastel as:

*wastel* wo/enticons/ogon.gif.st'l. Obs. exc. Hist. Forms:  wastell, (

vastell), wastelle, (wastle, wastyl(le, wastil), Sc. wastell, - wastel;

 

also, by confusion with /wassail/,  wassell.

 

[a. OFr. /wastel/,

north-eastern var. of /guastel/, /gastel/ (mod.Fr. /g?teau/). In

Anglo-L. records the word often occurs latinized as /guastellum/,

/wastellum/: see examples under simnel and treat.

 

Defined then as "Bread made of the finest flour; a cake or loaf of this

bread" which goes back to the 12th century.

 

2. Her. = torteau

 

1. and torteau means [a. Fr. /tourteau/ `a large round cake or flat

bannock of bread', a mass of oilcake, a wooden disk used as a crusher,

and in heraldry as below; in OFr. /tortel/ (12th c. in Hatz.-Darm.),

 

   * *1486* /Bk. St. Albans, Coat-arm./ b iv b, Tortlettis be calde in

     armys wastell.

   * *1562* Leigh /Armorie/ 151 b, He beareth or, x torteauxes... These

     haue been called of olde blazoures, wastelles, and are cakes of

     breade.

 

*2. * A flat cake, a pancake. Obs.

 

(Cf. quot. 1562 in 1.) *1625* Purchas /Pilgrims/ II. ix. xix.

/enticons/sect.gif3. 1652 Torteaux and Bignets, and many other sorts of

food... They make pottage, and Torteaux and Galletus.

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 20:38:40 -0500 (CDT)

From: jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Recipe for period gingerbrede

 

<<< I've done both, there's really not that much difference when using it to

thicken things, except in quantities, which we don't have. >>>

 

--------------

That's why we have food processors!!!!!  don't yell at me - I know - it's

not a period tool but I just had to throw it in.

 

But-it's a reasonable questions - they could have taken day old (not yet

dry) bread and broken it or rubbed it into "crumbs".

 

Shoshanna

 

This may be a silly question, but why is it usually assumed that the

grated bread in the period sources equates to dried breadcrumbs?  Did

one or more of the sources specify dried bread?

------

 

Ever tried to grate a fresh loaf?

 

 

Date: Wed, 09 Sep 2009 22:05:49 -0400

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] gyngerbrede

 

On Sep 9, 2009, at 9:25 PM, Marcha wrote:

<<< Curious question number 1,395:  "Was gyngerbrede made all over  

Europe during our period?".

 

Bertha >>>

 

There are breads and cakes that contain ginger from all over Europe.

What defines a gingerbread after all? A cake or bread with ginger,  

right?

And again using medievalcookery.com, here's a few examples:

 

They develop of course into the spice cakes in Germany, as in Das  

Kuchbuch der Sabina Welserin.

 

151 To bake good Lebkuchen. Take first a pound of sugar, a quart of  

clear honey, not quite a third quart of flour, take two and a half  

ounces of cinnamon, one and a half ounces of cloves, two ounces of  

cardamom. Cut the other spices as small as possible, the cinnamon  

sticks are ground as coarsely as possible. Also put ginger therein and  

put the sugar into the honey, let it cook together, put the flour in a  

trough, pour the cardamom into it first, afterwards the ginger and the  

other spices.

 

In Denmark it's called for in Koge Bog.

 

LXXIII - A mash of ginger bread. Grate gingerbread finely on a grater.  

Take a pot with good sweet mead and add thereto this grated  

gingerbread. Make sure it's not lumpy. Put it to the fire and let  

cook. Add to it aniseed, whole [karbe], pepper, ginger, a little  

saffron and then taste that it is right. Then serve forth. If you want  

you can also well sprinkle it with sugar.

 

From Germany it's called for as an ingredient in the Konigsberg  

manuscript.

As found in the Florilegium.

 

If you want to make a sauce of gingerbread

Cut it up small as /Pfefferbrot/ and boil it with wine. Pass it  

through a cloth like a pepper sauce and add cinnamon and ginger in  

sufficiency. Boil it in a pan, pour it into the sauce bowl, and  

sprinkle sugar on it.

 

BTW, here's another English recipe from 1591 A Book of Cookrye

 

To make white Ginger Bread

 

Take Gumma Dragagantis half an once, and steep it in rosewater two  

daies, then put therto a pound of Sugar beaten & finely serced, and  

beate them well together, so that it may be wrought like paste, then  

role it then into two Cakes, then take a fewe Jordain almonds &  

blaunch them in colde water, then dry them with a faire Cloth, and  

stampe them in a morter very finelye, adding therto a little  

rosewater, beat finely also the whitest Sugar you can get and searce  

it. Then take Ginger, pare it and beat it very small and serce it,  

then put in sugar to the almonds & beat them togither very well, then  

take it out and work it at your pleasure, then lay it even upon one of  

your cakes, and cover it with an other and when you put it in the  

molde, strewe fine ginger both above and beneath, if you have not  

great store of Sugar, then take Rice and beat it small and serce it,  

and put it into the Morter and beat them altogither.

 

and as regards did they use fresh or stale bread here's this recipe  

that calls for stale manchets.

 

This is an excerpt from Delights for Ladies by Hugh Plat.

(England, 1609)

 

22 - To make Ginger-bread. Take three stale Manchets, and grate them:  

dry them, and sift them thorow a fine sieve: then adde unto them one  

ounce of Ginger being beaten, and as much Cinamon, one ounce of  

Liquorice and Anniseeds beeing beaten together, and searced, halfe a  

pound of sugar; then boil all these together in a posnet, with a quart  

of claret wine, till they come to a stiff paste with often stirring of  

it; and when it is stiffe, mould it on a table, and so drive it thin,  

and put it in your moulds: dust your moulds with Cinamon, Ginger, and  

Liquorice, being mixed together in fine powder. This is your Ginger-

bread used at the Court, and in all Gentlemens houses at festival  

times. It is otherwise called dry Leach.

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Wed, 09 Sep 2009 19:19:56 -0700

From: edoard at medievalcookery.com

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Grating bread - experimental archaeology

 

So the question was asked if had I ever tried to grate fresh bread, and

I realized that the answer was no, and that it was unacceptable.

 

I know that they had graters that were similar enough to modern ones -

there's a beautiful example of one in Vincenzo Campi's "Kitchen" (see

URL) where it's apparently being used to grate bread.

 

http://www.wga.hu/frames-e.html?/html/c/campi/vincenzo/2kitchen.html

 

The question then is just how effective is this on fresh bread?

 

So I stopped on the way home and picked up a pack of sandwich rolls.

When I bake bread, I use a fairly simple recipe (flour, water, yeast,

fat, salt, sugar) and get a reasonably firm bread.  The rolls I bought

aren't quite as firm, being somewhere between my bread and Wonder in

terms of smushyness.  Fine, if I can grate them when they're fresh then

I figure something less doughy will work equally well or better.

 

I got out the cheese grater and used the side for turning hard cheese

into fine crumbs, and after a rather tedious few minutes I had a bowl

full of very fine bread crumbs.  There were some larger bits in there

that came about mostly near the end of the process, when the piece of

roll I was holding was too thin to grate properly and would tend to

roll up, but they were easily picked out.  I believe at least one of the

gingerbread recipes says to sift the crumbs after grating.

 

The final product was indistinguishable from what I get by putting fresh

bread in a food processor.  The grating process is simply more physical

work and wastes a bit of bread.

 

So I'm inclined to believe that in period they used reasonably fresh

bread for the following reasons:

 

1. It is possible to grate fresh bread.

 

2. None of the recipes I have seen instruct the cook to use stale or

dry bread or to dry the bread before use.  I have seen recipes for foods

other than gingerbread that do specify old or dry bread, so I'd expect

them to say so in the gingerbread recipes if it was meant to be so.

 

3. Using dried bread crumbs gives the gingerbread an unpleasant (to

me), gritty texture, which requires an additional (and somewhat

ineffective) step of letting the gingerbread rest to soften the crumbs -

with this additional step also notably absent in the period recipes I've

seen.

 

Your mileage may vary,

 

- Doc

 

 

Date: Wed, 09 Sep 2009 19:23:45 -0700

From: edoard at medievalcookery.com

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] gyngerbrede

 

And of course, if one sticks one's neck out ...

 

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

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

<<< and as regards did they use fresh or stale bread here's this recipe  

that calls for stale manchets.

 

This is an excerpt from Delights for Ladies by Hugh Plat.

(England, 1609)

 

22 - To make Ginger-bread. Take three stale Manchets, and grate them:  

dry them, and sift them thorow a fine sieve: then adde unto them one >>>

 

I stand corrected.  There is at least one period recipe that

specifically calls for stale bread.  I still hold by the thesis that it

was possible and probable that fresh bread was the norm.

 

- Doc

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 22:11:37 -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] Grating bread - experimental archaeology

 

It is next to impossible to cut or grate truly fresh (from the oven) bread.

It takes about a day to lose enough moisture content to toughen the bread

enough to cut or grate.  The sandwich rolls, while packaged to maintain

freshness, are usually a couple of days old by the time you buy them  Breads

are often shipped frozen to extend storage time, which also alters the

moisture content.

 

The experiment you should try is baking four loaves of bread made of flour,

water, yeast and salt.  Start with a loaf that has just cooled from the

oven to test, then run your test each day for the next three days.  Wheat

bread without modern packaging or refrigeration goes stale in about four

days.

 

Some points you haven't considered is how often did a noble house bake and

how was bread kept and distributed?  A household with a lot of people might

bake daily, while a smaller household might bake every two or three days.

Bread was baked and stored, although I doubt it was often fresh from the

oven as the pantry almost certainly used a first in, first out system.

Since the baker often arrived a couple days before the rest of the household

and stocked the pantry so the bread supply could keep ahead of the eating, I

would expect most bread was a day or two old.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 15:17:06 -0700

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] (no subject)

 

<<< I believe the receipe that we used came from

one of the Florilegium articles on period gingerbread that is

in one of the files concerning cooking with children.  It used

red food coloring and bay leaves for decoration, which

would be a nice Yuletide effect. >>>

 

The "red food coloring" in the original (14th and 15th c. versions)

is saunders--ground sandalwood root. I suspect that's less red than

what you are thinking of.

 

The "bay leaves" are a misreading of, or substitute for, "box leaves"

in the 15th c. original. I have my doubts about the box leaves, since

I've encountered them nowhere else in the corpus and the 14th c.

original has you putting the gingerbread in a box ("boyse" which

seems from the OED to mean box, and so could easily have become "box"

in a different copy).

--

David/Cariadoc

www.daviddfriedman.com

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 22:58:58 -0700

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] gyngerbrede

 

<<< There are breads and cakes that contain ginger from all over Europe.

What defines a gingerbread after all? A cake or bread with ginger, right?

And again using medievalcookery.com, here's a few examples: >>>

 

None of those is gyngerbrede, in the sense of something similar to

the gyngerbrede in _Curye on Englysche_ (the honey and breadcrumbs

one--there's a different one as well). For one thing, it isn't a cake

or bread--it has about the texture of fudge.

 

I presume the question was whether something similar is made

elsewhere in Europe. I don't know the answer.

 

[examples of unrelated things that could also be called "gingerbread" snipped.]

--

David/Cariadoc

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 12:50:56 -0700

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Recipe for period gingerbrede

 

Period Gingerbrede, derived from Ruth Frey's redaction out of The

Two Fifteenth Century Cookbooks

 

I actually put in a lot more spice than Ruth did, due to a

miscalculation of how much honey I had on hand...

 

Ingredients

 

2 C honey (I mixed dark and light - remember it is much denser than

water; be sure you have enough before putting in spices)

2 t cinnamon

1 t ginger

.5 t ground long pepper or black pepper

.25 t ground cloves

3-5 threads saffron

4 C dry bread crumbs

 

Topping

 

mixed cinnamon and sugar

some bay leaves

 

Method

 

1. Bring spices and honey to a boil in a good-sized pot.

 

2. Turn off heat and stir in crumbs a cup at a time.

 

3. Spread mix on large rectangle of waxed paper. Top with a similar

piece, and roll to approximately .25 inch thickness.

 

4. Remove top piece of paper, sprinkle with cinnamon/sugar mix, and

scroe with sharp knife into 1 inch squares.

 

5. When cool enough to handle, cut or break squares apart and

completely cool on a cookie rack. You may want to turn pieces to dry

on both sides.

 

6. Line a covered, tight cookie can with waxed paper, and place

gingerbred therein, sprinkling each layer as you fill with more

cinnamon/sugar, and placing 1 or 2 bay leaves on top. Put more waxed

paper and continue to layer.

 

7. Let cookies stand at least a week in a moderately cool room, so

that the crumbs can absorb moisture from the honey.

 

The cookies will vary in texture depending on how hard a boil you

bring the honey to. Boiling more than a few seconds may result in

tooth-breakers, or bricks that smell very good.

 

You can also make the stuff into small balls and roll in sugar, or

use cookie cutters dipped into sugar before cutting out.? This is a

nice thing to do with small children - an adult handles heating the

honey, and then the kids can take turns stirring in the crumbs,

rolling, cutting, etc.

 

Devra the Baker

========================

 

1. The fifteenth century gingerbrede is clearly a corrupt version of

the 14th century recipe. The earlier recipe is blissfully saffron

free. Also, unlike the fifteenth century one, it contains ginger.

 

2. More seriously ...  . The fact that the box which the gingerbrede

is put into in the 14th century recipe has been replaced by box

leaves (not bay leaves, incidentally) in the 15th century does

suggest the possibility of scribal error.

 

3. My copy of _Two Fifteenth Century Cookery Books_ is hiding, but I

found it online. The recipe this is based on is on page 35. Neither

the rolling out thin nor the letting it stand for a week is there.

It's being formed square and then sliced ["then make yt square, lyke

as thou wolt leche yt; take when thou

lechyst hyt"]. Nor is there any suggestion of cutting it into one

inch squares--just forming the whole thing up square before cutting.

Nor is there any ginger in the original recipe (but there is in the

14th c. one I use). And the recipe ends by suggesting the use of

saunders to color it red as an option.

 

I suspect the redactor (Ruth Frey, not you) is starting out with the

idea that they are supposed to be cookies and modifying the original

accordingly. The text only says to make it stiff enough so that you

can cut it.

 

Or in other words, I don't think what this produces would have much

similarity to what the original recipe it is working from would

produce, quite aside from my preference for the 14th c. over the 15th

c. version of the recipe. Boiling for well over a few seconds using

the 14th c. recipe, which isn't that different from the 15th c. aside

from the spicing, produces a product with a texture like fudge, not

toothbreakers or bricks.

--

David Friedman

www.daviddfriedman.com

daviddfriedman.blogspot.com/

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 12:59:19 -0700

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Recipe for period gingerbrede

 

<<< I am liking this.  how fine should the breadcrumbs be? >>>

 

My recipe is quite different from the one Devra

posted, partly because I am using the 14th c.

version from (Curye) which, unlike the 15th c.

version in _Two Fifteenth Century_ contains

ginger (!), and partly because I don't think the

redaction that Devra used is very close to the

original it is based on. I use ordinary

commercial bread crumbs. My recipe (from the

Miscellany):

 

Gingerbrede

Curye on Inglysch p. 154 (Goud Kokery no. 18) (GOOD)

 

To make gingerbrede. Take goode honey & clarifie

it on ?e fere, & take fayre paynemayn or wastel

brede & grate it, & caste it into ?e boylenge

hony, & stere it well togyder faste with a sklyse

?at it bren not to ?e vessell. & ?anne take it

doun and put ?erin ginger, longe pepper &

saundres, & tempere it vp with ?in handes; & than

put hem to a flatt boyste & strawe ?eron suger, &

pick ?erin clowes rounde aboute by ?e egge and in

?e mydes, yf it plece you, &c.

 

1 c honey     1/4 t long pepper   30-40 whole cloves (~ 1 t)

1 1/4 c breadcrumbs 1/4 t saunders      (or 5 t sugar, pinch powdered cloves)

1 t ginger   1 T sugar

 

Bring honey to a boil, simmer two or three

minute, stir in breadcrumbs with a spatula until

uniformly mixed. Remove from heat, stir in

ginger, pepper, and saunders. (If you can't get

long pepper, substitute ordinary black pepper.)

When it is cool enough to handle, knead it to get

spices thoroughly mixed. Put it in a box, cookie

tin, or the like, squish it flat and thin,

sprinkle with sugar and put cloves ornamentally

around the edge. Leave it to let the clove flavor

sink in; do not eat the cloves.

 

An alternative way of doing it is to roll into

small balls, roll in sugar mixed with a pinch of

cloves, then flatten them a little to avoid

confusion with hais. This is suitable if you are

making them today and eating them tomorrow.

 

The 15th c. recipe (replacing thorns with th--the

"jif" in the last line actually has an initial

letter sort of like a z whose name I have

forgotten):

 

Gyngerbrede. - Take a quart of hony, & sethe it, & skeme it clene ;

take Safroun, pouder Pepir, & throw ] ther-on ; take gratyd Brede, & make it so

hargeaunt  that it wol be y-lechyd; then take pouder Canelle, & straw ther-on

y-now; then make yt  square, lyke as thou wolt lecbe yt; take when thou

lechyst hyt, an caste Box leves a-bouyn, y-stykyd ther-on, on clowys. And

jif thou wolt baue it Red, coloure it with Saunderys y-now.

--

David/Cariadoc

www.daviddfriedman.com

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 13:28:39 -0700

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Recipe for period gingerbrede

 

<<< Thank you for posting these recipes! >>>

 

I should probably add that _Curye_ contains another recipe labeled

"gingerbrede" for something noticeably different both from the two

recipes I'm discussing and from modern gingerbread.

--

David/Cariadoc

www.daviddfriedman.com

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Sep 2009 14:45:15 -0700

From: K C Francis <katiracook at hotmail.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Recipe for period gingerbrede - another one

 

For a cook-off competition in the West for the Wooden Spoon, a recipe was provided without title.  There were five entries and they ranged from my 'gingerbread' to a honey dripping 'candy'.  Here is my version:

 

http://www.westcooks.org/writings/k-gingerbread.html

 

I was shocked that there could be so many 'takes' on a simple recipe, but it WAS many years ago.  I learned that one does not store leftovers with the cloves still on top as the flavor transfer was overpowering.  My recipe won and now that I have access to honey from our community garden, it is time to bring it out again for the holidays.

 

Katira

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Sep 2009 09:08:39 -0400

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] gyngerbrede

 

But in checking various reference sources this am, it appears

that my saying previously "There are breads and cakes that contain ginger from all over Europe. What defines a gingerbread after all? A cake or bread with ginger, right?"

 

is in line with such sources as follows:

<<< gingerbread

 

? noun  [mass noun]

1. cake made with treacle or syrup and flavoured with ginger.

2. [often as modifier] elaborate or ornate decoration, especially on  

the eaves or porch of a building.

 

take the gilt off the gingerbread   (Brit.) make something no longer  

attractive or desirable.

 

- ORIGIN Middle English (originally denoting preserved ginger), from  

Old French gingembrat, from medieval Latin gingibratum, from  

gingiber (see ginger). The change in the ending in the 15th cent.  

was due to association with bread.

 

How to cite this entry: "gingerbread noun"  The Oxford Dictionary of  

English (revised edition).

 

gingerbread   Cake or biscuits flavoured with ginger and treacle,  

often baked in the shape of an animal or person, and glazed.

 

How to cite this entry: "gingerbread"  A Dictionary of Food and  

Nutrition.

 

gingerbread   The cakelike consistency of gingerbread bears little  

resemblance to bread, so it comes as no surpirise that gingerbread  

has no etymological connection with bread. It was originally, in the  

thirteenth century, gingebras, a word borrowed from Old French which  

meant ?preserved ginger?. But by the mid-fourteenth century,  

through the process known as folk etymology (the substitution of a  

more familiar for a less familiar form), -bread had begun to replace  

-bras, and it was only a matter of time before sense followed form.  

One of the earliest known recipes for it, in the early fifteenth-

century cookery book Good Cookery, directs that it be made with  

breadcrumbs boiled in honey with ginger and other spices. This is  

the lineal ancestor of the modern soft cakelike gingerbread in which  

treacle has replaced honey. It is made either in a raised cake shape  

or in flat biscuits, which are commonly baked in fanciful shapes,  

such as people (gingerbread men) or animals. In former times these  

would be decorated with gold leaf?whence the expression ?take the  

gilt off the gingerbread? (not recorded before the late nineteenth  

century).

 

How to cite this entry: "gingerbread"  An A-Z of Food and Drink.  

Ed. John Ayto. Oxford university Press, 2002. >>>

 

In other languages it's translated by Oxford Reference Online as:

<<< gingerbread n   panpepato;  11. gingerbread    pan m de jengibre;  

12. gingerbread  noun Pfefferkuchen, der

 

From OED

 

a. In early examples app.: Preserved ginger.

 

b. From the 15th c. onwards: A kind of plain cake, compounded with  

treacle, and highly flavoured with ginger. Formerly made into shapes  

of men, animals, letters of the alphabet, etc., which were often  

gilded.

1299 Durham MS. Burs. Roll, In ij Gurdis de Gingebrar, xxvjs. viijd.

1302-3 Durham MS. Burs. Roll, In vij pixidibus de Gingebras.

1352-3 Durham MS. Burs. Roll, Et in duabus copulis de Pynyonade et  

de Gyngebrede.

C. 1386 Chaucer Sir Thopas 142 They sette hym Roial spicerye And  

Gyngebreed.

C. 1430 Two Cookery-bks. i. 35 Gyngerbrede. Take a quart of  

hony..Safroun, pouder Pepir..gratyd Brede [etc.; ginger is not  

mentioned].

1555 Machyn Diary 99 Dyssys of spyssys and frut, as marmelad, gynbred.

1573-80 Baret Alv. C. 10 A kinde of cake or paste made to comfort  

the stomacke: ginger bread, mustaceum.

1613 Beaum. & Fl; Coxcomb iv. vii, Fetch two or three grating loaves  

out of the kitching, to make gingerbread of. >>>

 

Johnnae

 

===============

On Sep 10, 2009, at 1:58 AM, David Friedman wrote:

<<< There are breads and cakes that contain ginger from all over Europe.

What defines a gingerbread after all? A cake or bread with ginger,  

right?

And again using medievalcookery.com, here's a few examples:

 

None of those is gyngerbrede, in the sense of something similar to  

the gyngerbrede in _Curye on Englysche_ (the honey and breadcrumbs  

one--there's a different one as well). For one thing, it isn't a  

cake or bread--it has about the texture of fudge.

 

I presume the question was whether something similar is made  

elsewhere in Europe. I don't know the answer.

 

[examples of unrelated things that could also be called  

"gingerbread" snipped.]

--

David/Cariadoc

www.daviddfriedman.com

 

 

Date: Sat, 12 Sep 2009 08:28:05 -0400

From: bronwynmgn at aol.com

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] (no subject)

 

<<The "red food coloring" in the original (14th and 15th c. versions) is saunders--ground sandalwood root. I suspect that's less red than what you are thinking of.>>

 

Yes, I've used saunders in gingerbrede, and it mostly turns it a sort of brick red, more or less noticeable depending on how dark your honey was to begin with. If the honey you're working with is pretty dark to begin with, it doesn't really make much difference. Definitely not a "Christmas red" sort of color.

 

Brangwayna Morgan

 

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