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pies-msg - 5/25/10

 

General comments on period fruit and meat pies. Baking pies. Pie crusts.

 

NOTE: See also the files: meat-pies-msg, tarts-msg, dough-contain-msg, fruits-msg, apples-msg, fruit-pears-msg, fruit-quinces-msg, pastries-msg, fruit-pies-msg, fish-pies-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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From: "Sue Wensel" <swensel at brandegee.lm.com>

Date: 16 Apr 1997 10:05:07 -0500

Subject: Re: SC - SC: Viking's Pies & Feast Themes

 

> Now that I have some idea of what pies I can make in persona, does anyone

> have a recipe for a pie crust that is period?  All the ones I got handed down

> are definitly modern, and the libraries around here seem not to have much of

> anything from before the 1800's unless it is a broad history text.

 

Simple redaction from Markham (my favorite source -- he's so easy!!) --

Warning -- I tend to work in quantity:

 

5 lbs of white flour

1 teaspoon of salt

1 lb of butter

Water

 

Mix the flour and salt together.  Cut in the butter (this is a recipe for meat

coffins -- use more butter for fruit); this much butter won't create the

little dough balls.  

 

Slowly mix in room temperature water.  I work by touch so I don't have any

idea how much I add; the amount changes with the ambient humidity. The dough

is done when it sticks together, but is not clammy.  It has a nice play-doughy

texture.

 

I prefer to use a pastry knife to cut in the butter and mix the early

additions of water.  Then I take off my rings and get my hands messy.  :-)

 

This recipe will make probably 10 pie shells, depending on how thin you want

them.  For meat pies, a 1/4 inch thick is good.

 

Derdriu

swensel at brandegee.lm.com

 

 

Date: Sun, 21 Sep 1997 00:14:27 -0400 (EDT)

From: Kimib2 at aol.com

Subject: Re: SC - pie beans?

 

<< What are *pie beans*? Are these some kind of special

> synthetic bean-like item made for this purpose?

> Or do you mean just use a pile of uncooked beans? >>

 

I use this method all the time!!! Finally, somthing I know about! You put a

layer of wax paper in your pie shell, cover with uncooked beans or rice. You

can save these for later useage, just don’t cook them to eat! (yuck!)

 

kimib2

 

 

Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 21:46:27 -0500

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

Subject: RE: SC - Researching bread coffyns

 

> 2. Mix flour, water, and a little salt. I don't know why the salt - my

> mum told me. Roll and line dish for bottom, keep some for the top. Beware

> of shrinkage...

> Charles Ragnar

 

The salt helps make the crust tender (as a gentle lady reminded me the last

time I commented on one of my pie shell experiments).   A little salt

provides some rise.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 22:08:44 -0500

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

Subject: RE: SC - Researching bread coffyns

 

> I am researching great pies and all of the recipes that I can find for

> the pies do not state how the crusts were made.  Even worse, I can't

> find anything of the type anywhere.  Does anyone have any suggestions?

> LLEW

 

There is an excellent article on the subject by Lady Aoife in Stefan's

Florilegium, which can be found at:

 

http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/rialto/rialto.html

  [new address - http://www.florilegium.org -Stefan]

 

The medieval coffin was more likely a pastry dough of flour and water with

possibly some salt or lard or both mixed in.  In general, bread doughs would

be too soft, although focaccia dough could easily have been used to make

small filled breads.

 

Markham's The English Hous-wife (1615) gives the following recipe:

 

Of the Mixture of Paste . . . Your course Wheat-crust should be kneaded with

hot water, or Mutton broth, and good store of butter, and the paste made

stiffe and tough, because the Coffin must be deep.

 

The Good Huswifes Handmaid (1588) provides:

 

To make Paste another Way   Take butter and ale, and seeth them together;

then take your flower, and put there into three egs, saffron and salt.

 

These two recipes are not medieval, but Elizabethean, and may not be in any

way similar to the pastry for most medieval pies.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Mon, 12 Oct 1998 07:05:54 -0500

From: vjarmstrong at aristotle.net (Valoise Armstrong)

Subject: Re: SC - Tartys in Applis-NEW recipe-enjoy

 

Tyrca wrote:

>Very interesting, Ras, and it brings up a question that I have had for

>some time, about mincemeat.  I grew up with mincemeat pies for

>Christmas as something with _meat_ in them. My mother usually used

>leftover roast beef or venison, put it through a hand grinder, and

>added the apples and raisins, and canned the filling to use for the

>holidays.  It is my father's favorite.  As I grew older, and went more

>out into the world, I discovered that other people I talked to had

>never heard of meat in mince pies.  They thought I was crazy.

>Did they really use meat in mincemeat pies in period?  Or is my family

>just an abberation?  Any recipes?  Anyone?

 

Fruit in medieval meat pies was a very common occurance.

 

Actually, until the second half of the fifteenth century recipes for meat

pies with fruit seem to be much more common than for fruit pies without

meat. Many meat pies were baked in a heavy flour and water crust that

served mostly as a container for the ingredients and could stand up under

long cooking times. Some writer's have claimed that the innovation of a

lighter and more edible pie crust and suggested that this new pie crust

made the fruit pies (which needed shorter cooking times) much more popular.

 

This is all supposition on the part of the historians so I set out to see

if I could verify it by scanning a number of cookbooks for recipes for

fruit pies that did not include meat. Out of about twenty English, French

and German cookbooks from the 14th to 16th century one percent or fewer

recipes were for fruit pies in the earlier two centuries while twelve

percent of all the 16th century recipes were for fruit only pies.

 

These are imperfect statistics since most of my 16th C. sources were German

- - so it might be a regional fad.

 

Valoise

 

 

Date: Tue, 10 Nov 1998 22:46:57 -0800 (PST)

From: Laura C Minnick <lainie at gladstone.uoregon.edu>

Subject: Re: SC - Bread Soup Bowls

 

On Wed, 11 Nov 1998, Stefan li Rous wrote:

 

> What did period folk do for food on the go? Did they always sit down to

> eat? We can't seem to find proof of sandwiches or breadbowls or flatbreads

> with meats in them (such as Greek Gyros or tortillas).

 

Stefan,

 

        In several of my 'pretty picture books' are pictures of what is

generally labeled (if at all) as a '14thc. ivory carving'- a triptyc with

a scene of the Madonna and Child and worshipping angels below, and above a

tournament with jousting and ladies in the gallery. In one area, there is

two men and a woman looking over a crenellated edge at the scene below,

and one of the men is holding in his hand what I can only describe as a

Hostess Fruit Pie- you know, the half-moon shape, filled, and crimped

along the rounded edge. Given the particular contortions his face is in,

it looks as though he's eating, so I would gather he's nibbling on his

pie. What might be in the pie, I don't know. It could be what we call a

'Dariole', or it could be he went through the drive through of the local

Golden Arches on the way to the tourney and picked up one of those pyes

with the too-hot filling. Whatever- it looks like food too me. I can look

for a reference on the triptyc if you are desperate to see it.

 

'Lainie

 

 

Date: Thu, 12 Nov 1998 02:25:46 -0800 (PST)

From: Laura C Minnick <lainie at gladstone.uoregon.edu>

Subject: Re: SC - Bread Bowl Eqivalents

 

On Wed, 11 Nov 1998, LYN M PARKINSON wrote:

> Since I've got the recipes, I am desparate to see the illustration!  Be

> nice to have visual documentation, if you'd be so kind, 'Lainie.

 

I'll try. I went through my shelf and found that the specific one

(the triptyc) was not there- probably loaned out. But I found a picture

of a nearly identical ivory in an old Time-Life book, specifically _Age of

Faith_ by Anne Fremantle (Time Incorporated, New York, 1965). On pages

108-9 is the picture of this ivory, with the joust a'plaisance, the

gallery,etc. In the upper right corner is the guy with something in his

hand. It still looks like a pie of some sort to me, but it is not as clear

as the other ivory. If I have time in the next couple of days I'll go to

the art library and see if I can locate the triptyc.

 

'Lainie

 

 

Date: Sun, 8 Aug 1999 10:24:15 -0700

From: varmstro at zipcon.net (Valoise Armstrong)

Subject: SC - Hot water pie crust

 

Has anyone (Bear, for instance?) tried the hot water method for making pie

crust mentioned in Sabina Welserin? She's got two kinds of tender crusts,

one that uses eggs and at least a couple of mentions of crust that starts

by dissolving the fat in boiling water. That goes against everything my

mother (best pie baker in the world) taught me.

 

But yesterday I decided to give it a try. I dissolved 3/4 cup of shortening

(next time I'll try lard) in about 1/2 cup of boiling water, stirred it

until it was thoroughly mixed and then added flour. It took about 2 cups of

flour to get the right consistency. I let the dough chill for a few hours.

After warming it up to room temperature, it handled just fine, rolled out

quite easily. The finished product was quite tender.

 

Valoise

 

 

Date: Sun, 08 Aug 1999 14:14:36 -0400

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

Subject: Re: SC - Hot water pie crust

 

Valoise Armstrong wrote:

> Has anyone (Bear, for instance?) tried the hot water method for making pie

> crust mentioned in Sabina Welserin? She's got two kinds of tender crusts,

> one that uses eggs and at least a couple of mentions of crust that starts

> by dissolving the fat in boiling water. That goes against everything my

> mother (best pie baker in the world) taught me.

 

I agree, it's not anywhere near the traditional American wisdom in this

area; _MY_ mother, (best pie maker in the world, with myself a humble

close second, but at least not arrogant about it ;  )   ) also never

used this method AFAIK. There's a bazillion types of pastry out there,

and most Americans learn only a fairly typical short crust. A good hot

water crust comes out something like a cookie texture when done right.

 

> But yesterday I decided to give it a try. I dissoved 3/4 cup of shortening

> (next time I'll try lard) in about 1/2 cup of boiling water, stirred it

> until it was thoroughly mixed and then added flour. It took about 2 cups of

> flour to get the right consistency. I let the dough chill for a few hours.

> After warming it up to room temperature, it handled just fine, rolled out

> quite easily. The finished product was quite tender.

 

With all that shortening, it should be, and also the heat would probably

be a factor (cooked glutein and glutenin don't form strands). I might

suggest you try not being too careful about stirring the fat and water

together, as that will allow the mixture to cool off a bit just when you

need that heat.

 

I'm curious about one thing, though...what I was always taught about

this pastry was to simply make it by mixing the ingredients, stirring

until it forms a ball, then to knead it very briefly as soon as it's

cool enough to handle. What I'd always been taught to do, and have

always done, was to form my "coffin" while the pastry was still warm and

at its most flexible, rather than to chill it, then warm it up again. My

experience has been that room temp is usually too cold to work the stuff

properly (possible, but more difficult). This may have something to do

with proportions, though, maybe your recipe works out to more fat than mine...

 

Cool stuff, though, isn't it?

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Sun, 8 Aug 1999 13:10:15 -0500

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

Subject: RE: SC - Hot water pie crust

 

> Has anyone (Bear, for instance?) tried the hot water method for making pie

> crust mentioned in Sabina Welserin?

 

I've made the fat and hot water dough in recipe 61 a couple of times, using a 1/4 cup of butter to 1/4 cup of water.  I've made it with all purpose flour and

with cake flour, but I used them different ways so there is no real

comparison as to which works best.  The cake flour requires more flour and

does not get as stiff as the all purpose flour.

 

For the latest experiment, I used 2 cups of cake flour sifted with 1

teaspoon of salt and 2 eggs mixed into it.  After which,1/4 cup of butter in

1/4 cup of water brought to a boil then removed from the stove and the

butter allowed to melt was added and stirred in. The resulting dough was

then worked with additional flour until smooth.

 

Unchilled, I found the dough to be a little sticky, needing a well floured

surface for rolling.  After 30 minutes in the refrigerator the dough was

easy to handle and rolled out well on a lightly floured surface.

 

Rolled thin, it is a nice dough for Krapfen.  I used it with Sabina

Welserin's recipe for Shrove Tuesday doughnuts (173).  It fries well.

 

As a tart shell, I pre-baked it and found it to be a little tough and

over-done.  The next time I will not pre-bake.  I found the dough superior

to the egg, flour and water pie shells I have experimented with previously.

 

I too would like to try this with lard, although I will probably make it

with meat broth from lamb shanks first.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Mon, 30 Aug 1999 21:20:25 -0400 (EDT)

From: cclark at vicon.net

Subject: Re: SC - icelandic chicken redaction.

 

'Lainie wrote:

>david friedman wrote:

>> ... In the English corpus, at least, you have specific references to

>> short pastes--doughs with shortening. It looks to me as if the default

>> "paste" is basically a flour./water dough, and the addition of shortening

>> is considered a variation worth noting. ...

>Hmm. By that rationale, perhaps going back to piecrust is the best

>solution? My considerations are: will the kids eat it? And how can I

>make it in camp with a minimum of fuss and mess (important when

>15-year-olds are cooking)...

 

That depends on what you mean by pie crust. Most Americans seem to "know"

that pie crust consists of partially hydrogenated vegetable oil (or

"vegetable shortening") cut into salted flour, which is then moistened with

cold water to make it hold together. If they know that much. What period

English (or other) cooks knew was a bit different.

 

To begin with, period cooks didn't always assume that the dough was to be

eaten. But if it was to be eaten, they would likely improve it by using a

finer grade of flour, and shortening it with melted butter (back then,

butter seems to have been the most popular shortening for baking). The first

reference I have seen to shortening (again butter) that is cut into the

dough is from the 17th century (Digby, perhaps?) and the writer implies that

this is or might be a new innovation. And the butter is cut into the dough

after the rest is mixed, instead of the modern method of adding water after

the shortening is cut in. Looks like a direct adaptation of puff pastry. I

would guess that this 17th-century pastry was an ancestor of our modern

flaky and mealy pie pastries.

 

So if you want to use pie crust, period style, I would suggest either a

plain flour-water dough (perhaps lightly salted, and probably using some

non-wheat flour), or a flour, water, and melted butter dough. Don't use a

whole lot of butter or it gets grease all over your fingers. Not good for

your dexterity. (Though a slug might be more concerned about salt...)

 

Alex Clark/Henry of Maldon

 

 

Date: Wed, 1 Sep 1999 17:37:23 EDT

From: LrdRas at aol.com

Subject: Re: SC - RE:New CA: French Food in the Renaissance

 

Deborah.Schumacher at iac.honeywell.com writes:

<<Another thing i note is that a lot of the pies/tarts when filled, have a

rather thin filling and that the filling may need to be doubled for modern

tastes....<snip>.......were medieval pies less full? Or were the pie

crusts smaller making the filling more substantial?  Do we  know what the

medieval pie size was?   >>

 

I don't think we know. However, various pictures from the middle ages show a

common type of 'pie' which appears to be about 6-7 inches across, about 4

inches high, straight sided, with a small hole in the center.

 

If you are referring to modern amounts in recipes for pies that have been

adapted from period recipes, I would suggest that the author either did not

try the recipe with the amounts stated or used a considerably smaller crust

diameter than stated. If you are referring to a period recipe, then no

amounts are given so you can make as much of the filling as it takes to fill

the pie.

 

Ras

 

 

Date: Thu, 2 Sep 1999 11:08:46 -0500

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

Subject: RE: SC - SC Re: New CA: French Food in the Renaissance

 

> Deborah.Schumacher at iac.honeywell.com writes:

> << are there any surviving pie plates? Where would I look for

>  information on them?  >>

> Period illustrations don't seem to show any dish that could be reasonably

> called a pie plate. The pies were apparently free standing. The key to

> understanding period pies is to realize that the dough container was most

> likely not meant to be eaten.

> Ras

 

Pieter Brueghel's Peasant Wedding shows pies which look suspiciously like

modern pies being carted around the table on some planking laid over two

poles.  I would say they could have been baked in a standard pie tin or a

plain tart pan.  This is Brueghel the Elder, c. 1525-1569.

 

Earlier woodcuts and drawings show bakers using dishes which resemble deep,

covered casserole dishes, but without explanation of precisely what is being

prepared.

 

IIRC, the illustrations from Scappi's Opera show some tart pans.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 02 Sep 1999 22:42:48 -0700

From: Anne-Marie Rousseau <acrouss at gte.net>

Subject: RE: SC - SC Re: New CA: French Food in the Renaissance

 

hey all from Anne-Marie

Terry sez:

>Pieter Brueghel's Peasant Wedding shows pies which look suspiciously like

>modern pies being carted around the table on some planking laid over two

>poles.  I would say they could have been baked in a standard pie tin or a

>plain tart pan.  This is Brueghel the Elder, c. 1525-1569.

 

Funny, I always interpreted this as bowls of soup or custard, seeing as how

there's a guy in the back tilting it back like a drinking bowl? Or am I

misremembering?

 

- --AM

 

 

Date: Fri, 3 Sep 1999 10:05:33 -0500

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

Subject: RE: SC - SC Re: New CA: French Food in the Renaissance

 

> Terry sez:

> >Pieter Brueghel's Peasant Wedding shows pies which look suspiciously like

> >modern pies being carted around the table on some planking laid over two

> Funny, I always interpreted this as bowls of soup or custard, seeing as how

> there's a guy in the back tilting it back like a drinking bowl? Or am I

> misremembering?

> --AM

 

I'm working for memory also so we both may be wrong.  It is also possible

there may be a series of paintings of the same subject.  The one I'm

remember has a couple husky fellows lugging the pies around in the

foreground.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Tue, 7 Sep 1999 02:41:06 -0400 (EDT)

From: cclark at vicon.net

Subject: SC - Edible pastry (was: The first fish recipe)

 

Kerri (Cedrin Etainnighean, OL) wrote:

> ... Also, what sources

>make distinctions between edible and inedible dough coverings?

 

Thanks for posing these precise questions. I was being a little too vague in

my previous remarks, and going on memory rather than consulting better sources.

 

I don't recall any that actually make that particular distinction, but as I

recall _The_English_Huswife_, ed. by Markham, has a group of pie crust

recipes ranging from coarse to fine & short. But it's in the library, and

the library is closed at this hour. Anyway it's relatively modern (slightly

after 1600), though it looks like a likely indication of what earlier

practices *might* have been.

 

_A_Proper_newe_Booke_of_Cokerye_, in Duke Cariadoc's collection, often makes

some specific mention of what kind of pastry is used, what is in it, or

(sometimes) even how to make it. Usually it's a short pastry. Here are some

examples, starting early in the book and proceding from there. Page numbers

are from the 1987 edition.

 

"a Custarde" (p. 23/C7) says that the coffin must first be hardened in the

oven, and then is filled with a cream and sugar custard with raisins and

dates, and choice of butter or marrow. No further instructions for the crust.

 

"pyes of grene apples" (p. 29/C8) calls for a coffin made with "a lyttle

fayre water and half a dyche of butter and a little Saffron," heated, mixed

with flour and two egg whites, and assembled in a two crust pie.

 

"chekins in lyke paest" (pp. 29-31/C8-C9) describes chickens baked in the

same pastry as the "grene apples," with fruit and butter. After it's baked,

it says "drawe youre baken chekins" and serve with a sauce of verjuice and

egg yolks. The recipe does not mention whether the chickens are served in

the pastry. The next recipe calls for pigeons, spices, and verjuice, baked

in the same pastry. At the end, it says "If ye think theym drye, take a

lyttle vergis and butter and put to theim and serve theym."

 

"pescoddes" (p. 33/C9) are spiced marrow fried in a pastry described as

follows: "make youre paeste as fyne as ye canne, and as shorte and thyn as

ye canne." The next recipe, "stock frytures," is cooked in the same pastry,

and may be fried or baked.

 

"a pye of alowes" (p. 35/C10) is filled with dried fruit, hard egg yolks,

herbs and spices, all rolled in thin slices of mutton, plus spices, more

hard egg yolks, and dried fruit. It is baked in an unspecified pastry, and

then a spiced syrup is poured in before serving.

 

The next few pages (37-41/C10-C11) have recipes for tarts. First comes the

recipe for "short paest for tarte:" flour, water, butter, saffron, and egg

yolks. It looks like the only definite proportion stated is a dish of butter

to two egg yolks. The tarts that follow are filled with beans, various

fruits and flowers, spinach, and cheese.

 

"couer tarte after the frenche fashyan" (p. 45/C12) has two crusts; the

crusts are described as "cakes of fyne paeste." The filling is a sweet cream

custard.

 

Earlier recipes that call for pastry tend not to specify the kind of pastry,

except for the rare inclusion of a sometimes incomplete ingredient list,

such as the eggs or almond milk in the dough for cuskyn ... Am I allowed to

mention those here? What the heck:

 

Cuskynoles! :-)

 

I get the impression that in the earlier sources pastry is more often

described for things like rissoles, turnovers, or dumplings, rather than for

pies and tarts. Perhaps that means that there was more variety for the

former, while the latter were baked with just one or two standard types of

pastry. Maybe the former were more often cooked in fine, sweet, or short

pastry. Or maybe not. Who knows? (That's not necessarily a rhetorical question.)

 

If I were to leap to conclusions now, I would guess that almost any pie from

the late middle ages or renaissance (at least in England) could have been

baked in a short pastry, but that some types, such as savory meat pies,

might have been cooked in a coarser and less buttery crust. The "Proper newe

Booke" seems to prefer egg whites in the pastry for two crust pies and yolks

for one crust tarts. Some fried foods in pastry seem to have used

unshortened pastry, while others used a pastry as short as the cook could

handle without tearing (see "pescoddes" above).

 

Alex Clark/Henry of Maldon

 

 

Date: Tue, 7 Sep 1999 08:58:16 -0500

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Edible pastry (was: The first fish recipe)

 

At 2:41 AM -0400 9/7/99, cclark at vicon.net wrote:

>Kerri (Cedrin Etainnighean, OL) wrote:

>> ... Also, what sources

>>make distinctions between edible and inedible dough coverings?

 

I'm not convinced they used inedible dough, although it's possible. There

seems to be a distinction between paste and short paste. I think a possible

interpretation of the evidence is that "paste" normally means flour and

water (and probably salt) kneaded to a dough, that it was edible (that is

how I do Icelandic chicken, and the casing is edible--even the top part

that hasn't soaked in the fat and juices) but relatively tough, like a hard

pizza dough rather than a pie crust. In practice it might not all get

eaten, and the remains might be sent out to the poor at the gate, of fed to

the pigs or something. So "paste" is dough optimized as a container, "short

paste" is optimized as food (and contains fat), but each also serves the

other purpose.

 

Does anyone have clear evidence that that interpretation is wrong? I'm

basing it on my experience with making "paste" in that sense, plus the

general idea that people would be reluctant to routinely waste flour on

something nobody could eat when they could always use crockery containers

instead.

 

David/Cariadoc

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

 

 

Date: Tue, 2 Mar 1999 19:26:07 -0800 (PST)

From: Laura C Minnick <lainie at gladstone.uoregon.edu>

Subject: Re: SC - four and twenty blackbirds

 

On Tue, 2 Mar 1999, Cindy Renfrow wrote:

> The problem is that the flour used to fill the coffin hardened

> into a chalky mass.  I've chipped away at it, & finally managed to remove

> it all without breaking the bottom crust. (The bottom crust was not stiff

> enough, so I've popped it back in the oven at 400F.)  My question is, can

> my 6 lbs. of baked flour be re-used for another recipe?

 

I don't know what to do with the flour either, but I have an idea

for an alternative- my grandma, when baking bottom crusts for custard,

etc, used to put a couple of inches of dried beans in the bottom. She had

a tin of beans set aside for that- once you've baked them, they're next to

impossible to cook up for soup. Could you fill a whole shell with beans,

enough to support the top crust? I also seen to remember that

Williams-Sonoma had some bean-like things made of ceramics that were for

the same purpose, though beans are alot cheaper.

 

'Lainie

- -

Laura C. Minnick

University of Oregon

Department of English

 

 

Date: Tue, 2 Mar 1999 22:57:48 EST

From: SigridPW at aol.com

Subject: Re: SC - four and twenty blackbirds

 

fiondel at fastrans.net writes:

<< suggestion- next time, try using rice instead of flour. >>

 

Or beans, or blind pie crust weights....

 

Lady Giuglia

 

 

Date: Thu, 09 Mar 2000 01:13:44 PST

From: "Linda Taylor" <lmt_inpnw at hotmail.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Traps?

 

In regard to pies and tarts and what, if anything, they were baked in, I did

some checking on this a few months back when I taught a class on hot water

pastry for our monthly Baronial culinary night.

 

I noticed that there actually seemed to be two distinct types of pie/tart

referred to in period pictures and texts. One was generally called _Pie_,

was as tall or taller than it was wide, seems to have been made with

hot-water pastry, and was generally made by specialized pie-makers, and

baked in a full-size oven. The other was called _Tart_ (or torte, torta). It

was shallow and broad, as our modern American pies are, and was made with a

flour-water-olive oil pastry or any of several different kinds of

shortcrust, but not hot-water pastry. It could be baked at home, on the

hearth, in a lidded pan with coals placed both beneath the pan and on top of

the lid, making a small oven of the pan itself. The filling for a Pie could

include whole, unboned poultry or joints of meat (though it did not always),

and seems to have often been served by scooping the contents out of the

crust after the lid was removed (the lid being put back on the leftovers to

save them for the next day). Tarts, on the other hand, were filled with

fine-textured mixtures, which could be sliced, and served, with the crust.

The hot-water pastry crust of the Pie was sturdy enough that it would hold

its shape in the oven without benefit of a pan (indeed, that was largely the

point), and so it was baked without one. The (usually) more tender and

thinly-rolled dough of the Tart needed more support, not only for its own

sake, but also because it was frequently filled with fillings like custard

or applesauce which were fairly liquid before being baked. The dough for a

Tart was laid in a _trap_, a pie pan/pie plate, before it was filled. Pies

always had a top crust, which was necessary to keep the filling moist during

the long baking their deep shape required. Tarts could have a top crust or

not, as they were shallow, and baked relatively quickly.

 

I would be interested to hear if others have gotten these impressions as

well.

A couple of specific references:

 

I am looking at some drawings from _Opera_ by Bartolomeo Scappi, 1570, as

reproduced in Elizabeth David's _Italian Cooking_ (the 1996 edition with all

the pretty pictures). The drawings are of cooking equipment. He shows

several round pans which he labels _tortere_. One has sloping sides and is

very shallow,looking very much like an American pie pan. Another has

straight sides and is slightly deeper (there is no scale here, but if the

pans were 9 inches in diameter, I would say the first would be about 1 inch

deep, the second about 1-1/2 inches). Then there are pans labelled _padelle

da torta alte_ which are slightly deeper (1-1/2 to 2 inches, again assuming

a 9 inch diameter) and have a shallow rim around the top edge as well. One

of these appears to have a torta with a lattice-top in it! He also shows a

_tortera con il coperto_, an assemblage of one of the shallower tortere

sitting on/in a short, 3-legged base, with a sort of inverted pan on longer

legs above it for a lid. There are other items labelled _coperchi per

tortere_ which appear to be another sort of lid - they look like nothing so

much as the flat, broad-brimmed hats worn by Cardinals. Unfortunately, I do

not have a picture of these pans actually in use, but Platina's recipes for

torte seem to refer to these same arrangements.

 

From the same Elizabeth David book, a reproduction of a late 15th Century

fresco in Val d'Aosta shows a pie-baker's shop. One man is spreading a lump

of dough out by pressing with his hands, while another is using a peel to

put a completed pie into a large oven built into the wall. Many more pies

await on the counter. They are all the same shape, cylindrical with a

slightly domed top, but of varying sizes. The majority look to be about 8

inches across and 5 inches high, with some smaller ones about 6x4 inches,

and a large one about 10x5 inches. They appear to be free-standing, and

there are no molds or pans pictured in the shop.

 

Hope this helps. There's more, but I gotta get to bed.

 

Morwyn of Wye, O.L.

Barony of Three Mountains, An Tir

(Portland, OR, USA)

mka Linda Taylor, lmt_inpnw at hotmail.com

 

 

Date: Thu, 9 Mar 2000 07:31:16 EST

From: Elysant at aol.com

Subject: SC - Pies and Tarts

 

Morwyn wrote:

>I noticed that there actually seemed to be two distinct types of pie/tart

>referred to in period pictures and texts. One was generally called _Pie_,

>was as tall or taller than it was wide, seems to have been made with

>hot-water pastry, and was generally made by specialized pie-makers, and

>baked in a full-size oven. The other was called _Tart_ (or torte, torta). It

>was shallow and broad, as our modern American pies are, and was made with a

>flour-water-olive oil pastry or any of several different kinds of

>?shortcrust, but not hot-water pastry.

 

I think generally this still holds true with pies and tarts in Britain today.

Pork pies and another pie of a veal and ham combination with whole hard

boiled eggs in the middle, to name two, are hot water pastry pies, with thick

crusts, and both are very deep pies, Pork pie "sides" measure almost, if not

more than the diameter of the top crust, and usually they are smaller and

round shaped.  The veal and ham pies, on the other hand, are a long loaf

shape, and look square when viewed "edge on" (like a long brick).

 

Inside these pies, there is usually just a solid chunk of minced meat, or

meat and whole hard boiled eggs.  They are usually eaten cold, and are

popular "pub food".  I believe both pies to have come down to us from quite

some time back, but I do not have documentation as to how old they really are

unfortunately.  

"Tarts"  continue still to be constructed as m'lady Morwyn states.

 

>It could be baked at home, on the

>hearth, in a lidded pan with coals placed both beneath the pan and on top of

>the lid, making a small oven of the pan itself.

 

Using this method of cooking cakes is found in traditional Welsh recipes

also, one version of  "Teisen Lap" that I posted a while back has this

method, but no coals on top of the lid.

 

Also, I have a "very old and good" Welsh pie recipe wherein the meat and

vegetables are placed in a dish, 2 inches of water is poured on top, a crust

is added, the pie is then cooked, the bones and onion and salt and pepper are

boiled together seperately as the pie is baking, and this stock is then

strained and poured into the pie, on top of the filling, before the pie is

served.

 

I'm wondering if there are any other pie recipes people know that are

prepared like this?

 

Also, this recipe is for a one crust pie.  Is there any documentation as to

whether one crust or two crust pies are earlier in origin?  I seem to

remember this was brought up a while ago here, but I might be mistaken...  

 

Elysant

 

 

Date: Thu, 9 Mar 2000 00:44:34 -0500

From: "Bethany Public Library" <betpulib at ptdprolog.net>

Subject: Re: SC - Traps?

 

Actually, the crust in which the meat pies were often cooked could be

referred to as Coffins in many English recipes. Sometimes one might

receive the instruction to "raise" the coffin. Now, if  one were deceased,

that might prove an interesting feat. However, the coffin was actually a

box-shape (coffin being a generic word for Box in Middle English, IIRC), and

the contents of the coffin was usually fowl or pork or game, rarely beef,

though there are always exceptions. Naturally I don't have my sources with

me here at work, but I have looked into it in the past. Usta teach a class

on the subject. My favorite English butcher has departed this earth, but she

always made her Melton Mowbray pies square or rectangular, using just such a

, well, not a ring, but a bottomless rectangle with a rolled upper edge.

That's not evidence of period practice, however, just a fond memory.

 

Raising the coffin referred to the process of using a stiff dough to mold

the shape: perhaps with the aid of a trap (mold), perhaps not. I know that

clay pot-making skills have always been handy for me, and sometimes I use

the outside of a handy container for the mold. We know those solid pies were

meant to stand on their own after cooking, without the aid of a pan or form.

You'd need a very hard-baking, stiff crust  to do that. It has been

postulated that the crust, at least in earlier pies, was meant to be

discarded and was used primarily for containment (I have even read a

description of the crust in a modern discussion as part of those ubiquitous

"alms" that were given to the poor though I am not sure if this is

verifiable). There is no doubt that the contents were the main "thing"

however, and the crust may have served the purpose of a temporary container,

helping to preserve the food inside for a few more days of it's limited

shelf life.

 

Adamantius could probably give us a good exposition on the make-up of a

good, hard crust, if he was feeling so inclined on this nice spring day. I

go for hot-water crust myself, made with real butter. Butter always hardens

well for me, and is much harder than most other fats are when cold IMO. I

usually need the use of a collar to restrain the sides of the pie while

baking.

 

And given my modern background, I usually serve meat pies cold. How else

would done get that wonderful, flavorful jelly?

 

Aoife

 

 

Date: Thu, 9 Mar 2000 19:32:28 -0600

From: "RANDALL DIAMOND" <ringofkings at mindspring.com>

Subject: SC - RE:SC Traps

 

Aoife comments:

>>>Adamantius could probably give us a good exposition on the make-up of a

good, hard crust, if he was feeling so inclined on this nice spring day. I

go for hot-water crust myself, made with real butter. Butter always hardens

well for me, and is much harder than most other fats are when cold IMO. I

usually need the use of a collar to restrain the sides of the pie while

baking.<<<

 

I have always made my Melton Mowbrays in raised pastry coffins, though

usually round.   Hi-gluten flour and boiling lard are what I use to make the

dough, coiling on an inch thick base like making pottery.  This is what

Elisabeth Ayrton instructs in _Provential English Cooking_.   She notes

that her recipe comes from the 14th century. Arundel Castle I think.

Actually, the crust if you pour in sufficient stock becomes quite tasty

and a good deal usually is eaten by the feasters in my experience (about

a third of the crust)

 

Akim Yaroslavich

 

 

Date: Tue, 21 Mar 2000 08:21:50 -0600

From: "Rhonda New" <rbnew at ftw.nrcs.usda.gov>

Subject: Re: SC - pie crust advice

 

Greetings from Lady Elizabeth Hawkwood of Elfsea.

 

I have done meat pies for feast (several days ahead - some

were frozen, some were refrigerated) and had no problem

with the bottom crust being soggy. All the pie dough was

made from "scratch."  (Food processor yielded a tougher

dough, mixing by hand was much softer/flakier.) I never

oil the bottom of the pan, but I sometimes dust it with flour.

 

When I do meat pies at home for dinner, I use a cake pan

with straight sides instead of the slanted side pie pan. This

works great, too, and I've never had a soggy bottom - only

nice slices which can be held in the hand.

 

Perhaps it's the length of time spent baking? And, if the

meat mixture is not too soupy.

 

/Ly Elizabeth

 

 

Date: Wed, 22 Mar 2000 01:14:41 EST

From: allilyn at juno.com

Subject: Re: SC - pie crust advice

 

>> I personally

deplore uncooked/soggy bottom crust, and since it's  *MY* feast, I want to

do everything I can to make sure the bottom crust bakes up nice & dry and

intact.<<

 

Buy some extra beans--northern, pea, whatever sort of dry beans, or rice,

you get a good deal on.  Use them to 'blind bake' your pie shells, before

the filling goes in.  Any good modern cook book should have a description

of the process, and times, etc.  I'm with you--soggy bottom crusts are

yucky.  

 

You can use a foil 'collar' around the edge to keep the crust there from

overcooking or burning.  Just take it off when you add the top crust, or

lattice, or whatever you are using for the topper.  Brushing the baked

bottom crust with some egg yolk mixed with a little water will help to

seal it, too.

 

Allison,     allilyn at juno.com

 

 

Date: Sun, 14 May 2000 21:25:11 -0800

From: Kerri Canepa <kerric at pobox.alaska.net>

Subject: Re: SC - Lard

 

Maredudd begins:

>I'll use lard in preference to butter (unless the recipe calls for butter)

>for the reasons cited by Niccolo, and because lard is somewhat better for us

>than butter.

 

and then states some interesting dietary info about lard.

 

Thanks for quoting the particulars; I _knew_ I'd heard that lard was better than

butter in terms of diet.

 

With that in mind, I'll agree that lard makes wonderfully flaky pastry. It,

however, makes a terrible crust for a free standing tall coffin shape. You look

at it funny and you have a pile of flakes. Don't even think about trying to cut

through it.

 

What I'd like to know is what type of pastry would work best for a free standing

coffin? Or would a dough be a better idea?

 

Cedrin

Princess Oertha

 

 

Date: Mon, 15 May 2000 02:54:58 EDT

From: CBlackwill at aol.com

Subject: Re: SC - Lard

 

kerric at pobox.alaska.net writes:

>  What I'd like to know is what type of pastry would work best for a free

> standing coffin? Or would a dough be a better idea?

 

Is this "coffin" supposed to be edible, or merely for a

centerpiece/decoration effect?  If it is meant to be edible, you may want to

consider a cream cheese pastry (substitute half the fat with cream cheese,

and proceed with the recipe as usual).  If it is merely decorative, a good

salt dough is probably the best way to go.  Salt dough has been used for a

long time for all manner of centerpiece and dough sculpture work, and is very

easy to make and mold.  It doesn't taste particularly good, nor is it flaky

(rather like plaster of paris when it is baked), but it will hold its shape

come Heck or High Water...

 

Balthazar of Blackmoor

 

 

Date: Mon, 15 May 2000 19:38:42 -0600

From: Sue Clemenger <mooncat at in-tch.com>

Subject: SC - Re: hand-grinding wheat and sturdy pastry crusts

 

Re: wheat grinding.  According to the documentation, she used a lava

millstone and grinding roller, and hand-ground the wheat.

Oh, and the recipe she used for her pastry castle, the walls and turrets

of which were around the thickness of your average graham cracker, and

both sturdy and edible, used a mix of flour, lard, butter, egg yolk, and

a bit of cheese.  She notes a source that talks about pastry being

hard/strong "because it was often made with little fat."  Perhaps that's

the key to making pastry less flaky.  Her finished product had a texture

quite similar to that of a cracker.

- --Maire

 

 

Date: Thu, 18 May 2000 21:53:25 -0500

From: "RANDALL DIAMOND" <ringofkings at mindspring.com>

Subject: SC - Re: Lard

 

Balthazar says:

>>>>Allright...I think I am clueless again.  Can anyone send me the recipe

for

this?  I would like to see what you are talking about.  I think my idea of a

"coffin" pastry is different than the one you folks are thinking of.<<<<

 

Here is the recipe I use for raised (coffin) pyes:

1 Kg high gluten wheat flour (2.2 lb.) (NEVER self rising)

15g Salt (1 Tbsp)

1/2 Kg Lard (1.1 lb.)

1.5 dl milk (5/8 cup)

1.5 dl water (5/8 cup)

2 large eggs well beaten

1 stick butter

 

Sift the flour and salt together and rub the

firm butter into the flour with the fingertips

until crumbly.  Boil the lard with the milk and

water.  (Warning: do not add either to already

boiling lard.  Bring them to a boil together!)

Make a well in your mixed flour and pour in the

boiling (actually boiling, not just hot) lard. Stir

with a stout wood spoon until cooled enough to

knead with your bare hands... still very hot, mind

you.  You may wear rubber gloves, but I find the

very hot dough and grease to be very good for

my arthiritis and very moisturizing to the skin.

Knead well and let stand for 10 minutes.

Roll out some of the dough for the bottom of

the coffin 2cm to 3cm thick (3/4" to1 1/4" +/-)

and cut to shape of pye (round is easiest) and

about 1cm (1/3") bigger than you think you want

the finished coffin to be.  The dough/ paste must be

worked while hot or at least warm. The taller the coffin,

the thicker the base and walls required, so adjust

your dough amounts prepared accordingly.  Build

up the sides with coiled dough like a potter builds

a pot until you get it the height you want. Smooth

the outsides carefully outside and in, always working

the paste upwards.  If you are using a soild meat

filling like small pieces of pork with currants and such,

you can pack it in solidly and put on a lid piece without

setting the pastry.   If your filling is more liquid like

a fruit filling, you will need to set the form before filling.

I recommend using long sheets of aluminum foil folded

several times lengthwise to make a kind of "bellyband"

to help keep the form from bowing or collapsing. I use

paperclips to hold the joined folds of foil closed.

 

Brush the pye with the beaten egg, reserving some for later.

Bake at 190C (375F, Gas Mark 5) for 20 minutes to set

the pastry.  If already filled, reduce to 170C (325F, Gas Mark

3) to continue baking.  If not filled, cool and fill, then bake at

170C (325F, Gas Mark 3).  Obviously, the filling will have

a great deal to do with the time of baking required, as will

the size of your creation.  A soild raw meat filling will take 1 3/4

to 2 1/2 hours for a largish pye like this one. Fruit/ mincemeat

will take about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.  Success requires some

experimentation, but generally even the failures are delicious.

About 10 minutes before the end of cooking time, baste the

whole thing with the remaining beaten egg to give the pastry

a good gold gloss.  Let the pye become quite cool before

serving.

 

A few notes:  For the pork pye, trim picnic shoulder to bite

sized gobbets, including fat (but not skin or gristle).  Season

with fresh rubbed sage, basil, salt and pepper; maybe some

rosemary or galingale if you like the taste). Leave a 5cm (2") hole

in the top crust to let out steam and to pour in some reduced

stock if you like to fill the pye after it comes out of the oven.

You can use leftover paste/dough to ornament the lid with

flowers or heraldic critters.  It is very easy to do fairly elaborate

sculpture as long as you do it in high relief and not freestanding.

Baste liberally with beaten egg and use foil tents to keep it from

browning unevenly.   For the less adventuresome, I suggest using

a large springform to mold the coffin, however, the bottom and

sides must still be thick so as not to fall apart from the weight of

the filling when you release it from the form.

 

This is not a period method, though I assume pyes were raised

by the coil method in period.  I would think they had some kind

of clay pottery forms though, as they made these quite reqularly,

whereas a special form for our ocassional use is not very

practical.  The dough ingredients are traditional to English cookery,

allegedly back to the 14th century.  Of late, the English have been

substituting half of the lard with butter though. The particular

recipe for Melton Mowbray Pyes supposedly has its roots in 14th c.

Arundel Castle.  Perhaps some of our list members across the pond

could see if they can find a period source from there?

Have fun experimenting!

 

Akim Yaroslavich

 

 

Date: Tue, 06 Jun 2000 09:48:30 -0400

From: "Jeff Gedney" <JGedney at dictaphone.com>

Subject: Re: SC -Mus, Brei and confusion

 

Adamantius (long may he wave) did write:

> Oh, definitely! A terrine, though, is generally made from raw meat,

> etc., packed into an earthenware pot/mold, and baked, while a mortrews

> is, as far as I know, invariably made from minced, and pounded,

> previously cooked meat, then thickened with bread or other starchy

> stuff.

 

Heiatt has a Caudon of Beef in an "Ordinance of Pottage", which reads

as a minced beef mixture, which is molded, and cooked in a "Coffin".

 

> As for the idea of mortrews being molded, it's a nice idea, and

> makes sense, but how much evidence do you really have for this actually

> being done? It occurs to me that unless you have a recipe or a specific

> reference to mortrews in connection with molds, a feast description, or

> some such (which you may actually have, for all I know), it would be

> hard to make that strong a case for it. Of course it's still perfectly

> viable as speculation.

 

My personal theory is that they used Prebaked molded shells of Coffin dough

as baking dishes. Then the Dough could be broken off and given to the

staff, or given out with the crusts to the poor.

Certainly a number of forcemeat type recipes seem to be placed in coffins

but dont otherwise read like pie recipes. I think that it is likely that they

used coffin dough a lot like we sometimes bake with aluminum foil today,

as a disposible dish or dish liner to aid cleanup.

 

FWIW, a hard coffin shell, infused with meat juices, egg, and fat would

be dandy dog fare, and I think a thrifty household would find a way use

them, without waste.

 

brandu

 

 

Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2001 17:39:48 -0400

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

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Tur-duc-kin Q and A

 

<snip>

 

Bear most ably answered the query about pies and

the word pie. One might keep in mind that the English

today tend to call open-faced (single crust) fruit pies

"tarts". We here in the USA still call them pies, despite

the foodie craze of the last 20 years where fancied up

ones were called "tarts".

 

Johnnae llyn Lewis  Johnna Holloway

 

 

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

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

Subject: Dough was ([Sca-cooks] za'atar seeds and more)

Date: Mon, 17 Dec 2001 16:07:02 -0600

 

If the recipe actually says "take dough" rather than "take flour," I would

say that it is a flour and water dough possibly with a little salt.  It

might also be a sourdough to help the pastry puff up when it is fried.

However, an unleavened dough will work fine.  I tend to use a German recipe

for this kind of thing.

 

I am of the opinion the original dough should be a little stiff.  The egg

and the oil will shorten and soften it. I would try 1 egg and 1 tablespoon

of oil to 1-1 1/2 cups of dough as a starting point.  I might also suggest

using soft flour to reduce the gluten.

 

Bear

 

Just for reference, here's the German dough recipe from Sabina Welserin I

tend to use as a thinly rolled wrapper:

 

61 To make a pastry dough for all shaped pies

 

Take flour, the best that you can get, about two handfuls, depending on how

large or small you would have the pie. Put it on the table and with a knife

stir in two eggs and a little salt. Put water in a small pan and a piece of

fat the size of two good eggs, let it all dissolve together and boil.

Afterwards pour it on the flour on the table and make a strong dough and

work it well, however you feel is right. If it is summer, one must take meat

broth instead of water and in the place of the fat the skimmings from the

broth. When the dough is kneaded, then make of it a round ball and draw it

out well on the sides with the fingers or with a rolling pin, so that in the

middle a raised area remains, then let it chill in the cold. Afterwards

shape the dough as I have pointed out to you. Also reserve dough for the

cover and roll it out into a cover and take water and spread it over the top

of the cover and the top of the formed pastry shell and join it together

well with the fingers. Leave a small hole. And see that it is pressed

together well, so that it does not come open. Blow in the small hole which

you have left, then the cover will lift itself up. Then quickly press the

hole closed. Afterwards put it in the oven. Sprinkle flour in the dish

beforehand. Take care that the oven is properly heated, then it will be a

pretty pastry. The dough for all shaped pastries is made in this manner.

 

> Lastly,  can anyone help me with a dough made from flour, egg and oil?  It

> will wrap a filling and be fried, then covered with honey and sugar.  The

> recipe says take a dough and kneed in egg and good sweet oil.

> Does this mean a water and flour dough, then the egg and oil or just flour,

> egg and oil.

> Recipe is 1520 Catalan.

> Kay

 

 

From: "Barbara Benson" <vox8 at mindspring.com>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie Crust

Date: Tue, 28 May 2002 18:16:04 -0400

 

<quoth Mistress Christiana>

> I have been asked a question that I'd like to pass on to the group.

> "One of these days I will do some food entries.  So tell me, how

> do you document pie crust?  Was that common item ever written down?"

> Is Digby the best place to recommend, or is there something earlier?

 

I am certain that good gentles such as Bear will have many more thoughts,

but the one that sprang to my mind was in Sabina Welserin - German 1553. I

have found two in the manuscript and I am not certain the difference in

intent between them. I am more inclined towards 70 for normal pies and

tarts. 61 seems to be more for a freextanding coffin style pie, but i could

be wrong.

 

61 To make a pastry dough for all shaped pies

Take flour, the best that you can get, about two handfuls, depending on how

large or small you would have the pie. Put it on the table and with a knife

stir in two eggs and a little salt. Put water in a small pan and a piece of

fat the size of two good eggs, let it all dissolve together and boil.

Afterwards pour it on the flour on the table and make a strong dough and

work it well, however you feel is right. If it is summer, one must take meat

broth instead of water and in the place of the fat the skimmings from the

broth. When the dough is kneaded, then make of it a round ball and draw it

out well on the sides with the fingers or with a rolling pin, so that in the

middle a raised area remains, then let it chill in the cold. Afterwards

shape the dough as I have pointed out to you. Also reserve dough for the

cover and roll it out into a cover and take water and spread it over the top

of the cover and the top of the formed pastry shell and join it together

well with the fingers. Leave a small hole. And see that it is pressed

together well, so that it does not come open. Blow in the small hole which

you have left, then the cover will lift itself up. Then quickly press the

hole closed. Afterwards put it in the oven. Sprinkle flour in the dish

beforehand. Take care that the oven is properly heated, then it will be a

pretty pastry. The dough for all shaped pastries is made in this manner.

 

 

70 A tart with plums, which can be dried or fresh

Let them cook beforehand in wine and strain them and take eggs, cinnamon and

sugar. Bake the dough for the tart. That is made like so: take two eggs and

beat them. Afterwards stir flour therein until it becomes a thick dough.

Pour it on the table and work it well, until it is ready. After that take

somewhat more than half the dough and roll it into a flat cake as wide as

you would have your tart. Afterwards pour the plums on it and roll out after

that the other crust and cut it up, however you would like it, and put it on

top over the tart and press it together well and let it bake. So one makes

the dough for a tart.

 

I haven't tried it yet, but I need to if I am going to make a Cinnamon tart

from scratch. Now if I can only figure out what size/shape it might be.

 

Glad Tidings,

Serena da Riva

 

 

Date: Sat, 6 Sep 2003 13:15:18 -0400

From: "Barbara Benson" <vox8 at mindspring.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: Pie Crusts

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

 

I have made pie crusts and such and for some reason have never had any

problem - you can probably chalk it up to luck. That being said, I have a

crust recipit that pretty much takes all of the touchy feely aspects out of

it and hot hands do not enter into the picture:

 

> From Sabina Welserin #61 To make a pastry dough for all shaped pies

Take flour, the best that you can get, about two handfuls, depending on how

large or small you would have the pie. Put it on the table and with a knife

stir in two eggs and a little salt. Put water in a small pan and a piece of

fat the size of two good eggs, let it all dissolve together and boil.

Afterwards pour it on the flour on the table and make a strong dough and

work it well, however you feel is right. If it is summer, one must take meat

broth instead of water and in the place of the fat the skimmings from the

broth. When the dough is kneaded, then make of it a round ball and draw it

out well on the sides with the fingers or with a rolling pin, so that in the

middle a raised area remains, then let it chill in the cold. ...

My interpretation:

3 C - Flour

1 t - Kosher salt

2 - Eggs, beaten

1/3 C - Water

1/3 +1/4 C – Lard

 

Measure flour into a goodly size bowl and add salt. Stir together with a

knife. Crack eggs into a separate bowl and beat moderately, add eggs to

flour mixture and cut together with a knife until you all egg has been

absorbed and you have a crumbly textured flour. In a small saucepan combine

water and lard, melt and bring to a boil. Add boiling lard mixture to bowl

and combine until well mixed and cool enough to handle. Turn out onto table

and knead a bit, adding flour if the dough is sticky or greasy. Pat dough

into a disk shape and wrap with plastic - place in refrigerator. Allow to

cool for at least an hour. Roll out on a well floured surface. This makes

enough for two tarts or one covered tart.

 

I have also made this subbing shortening for the lard and I go with 2/3 C of

shortening. The resulting dough is easier to work with than the lard based

dough. The lard based dough can be a bit fiddly when you roll it out, if it

gets too warm it starts tearing and sticking. I have only had this problem

when making many small tarts out of a doubled recipie. To fix that I have

taken to making sure that the dough is seperated into single crust disks and

kept in the fridge until needed. And if it gets too warm when I am working

with it I just re-wrap it and chuck it back into the fridge and work

with another disk.

 

The other thing I have found is that if it is allowed to stay in the fridge

for more than a couple of hours the dough gets tough. I once kept it

overnight and the crust I formed the next day was very tough and didn't have

the nice flavor that it does initially. Conversely, once the crust is

baked it keeps very well.

 

If you feel like trying this please let me know how your crust comes

out and if my instructions are confusing in any way.

 

Hope this helps.

Glad Tidings,

Serena da Riva

 

> Samrah [or anyone else for that matter]:  I have never managed to learn

> the Dao of Pie Crusts, which is more of an art than a mere craft.  

> Could you teach me?

> Humbly, Selene C.

 

 

Date: Sat, 06 Sep 2003 22:58:28 -0400

From: Ron Carnegie <r.carnegie at verizon.net>

Subject: Re: Pie Crusts was Re: [Sca-cook] Cookies was hello there

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

 

ahrenshav> Neither have I, because you have to have cold

ahrenshav> hands t make proper pie crusts and mine are

ahrenshav> always too hot and will melt the butter, which is

ahrenshav> a no-no.

ahrenshav>

ahrenshav> Huette

 

     You can make crusts with hot hands.  I use to make them in a very

hot high humidity kitchen!  The tric is to work quickly.  Do not

overwork the crust.  I used ice water as well (a trick I picked up from

a visitor).  Not period but effective.  Most people think they are

harder then they are and fuss with them to much. The fussing destroys

them.

 

Ranald deBalinhard,

 

 

Date: Sun, 7 Sep 2003 06:50:25 -0400

From: "Avraham haRofeh of Sudentur" <goldbergr1 at cox.net>

Subject: Re: Pie Crusts was Re: [Sca-cooks] Cookies was helo there

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

 

> Samrah [or anyone else for that matter]:  I have never managed to learn

> the Dao of Pie Crsts, which is more of an art than a mere craft.  

> Could you teach me?

 

1. Keep everything COLD COLD COLD.

2. Use your food processor to work in the butter/shortening/lard - use

1-second pulses, until the chunks of fat are the size of peas.

3. Use iced water. Use the MINIMUM amount of water necessary to bring

the mass together - more water = more gluten, which is tough.

4. Do NOT overwork the dough. It's better to leave some flour behind

than to overwork the dough.

5. Use a light hand when dusting thecounter to roll out the dough.

6. Use a French rolling pin, it gives you more control.

7. When it's the right size, dust the top of the dough LIGHTLY, then roll it

onto your pin to carry it to the pie plate. Brush the excess flour away with

a pastry bruh/paint brush once it's in the pan.

 

Hope these tips help.

 

Avraham

*******************************************************

Reb Avraham haRofeh of Sudentur

      (mka Randy Goldberg MD)

 

 

Date: Mon, 8 Sep 2003 09:52:59 -0400

From: "Generys ferch Ednuyed" <generys at blazemail.com>

Subject: RE: Pie Crusts was Re: [Sca-cooks] Cookies was hello there

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

 

> Samrah [or anyone else for that matter]:  I have never managed to learn

> the Dao of Pie Crusts, which is more of an art than a mere craft.  

> Could you teach me?

> Humbly, Selene C.

 

Selene,

 

My tricks for insuring flaky pie crusts are some that I got from a book

called "Butter, Sugar, Flour, Eggs", which is my favorite mundane

dessert cookbook.  They are:

 

1.  Stick your pastry marble and rolling pin, also pref. marble, in the

freezer while making your dough.

 

2.  Use ice water for the liquid in said dough, also, add a teaspoon or so

of vinegar per batch (top and bottom crust for a pie worth).  This prevents

gluten from forming, and is imperceptible in the final crust.

 

3.  Chill your hands in ice water as much as possible before working

with dough.

 

(All these "chill everything" steps keep the butter from melting, so it

can make flaky bits later...)

 

Generys

 

 

Date: Sun, 30 Nov 2003 02:13:43 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] torte vs. tart

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

 

At 01:00 -0600 2003-11-30, Stefan li Rous wrote:

>> Indeed, my wife has made me suspicious that a lot of the "tart" recipes

>> in the translations of Sabina Welserin (and Guter Spise?) really ARE

>> "torte" and not "tarts" at all...

> Ok, so what is the difference between a "torte" and a "tart"? Tarts

> are pies without a top pastry shell or even lacing, right?

 

That's probably going to depend very much on the country and / or

cookbook that you consult.  There's no 'right' answer.

 

Since we're generally dealing with European cuisine when we talk

about historical food, I tend to go with Larousse Gastronomique

(1961) as being the most typically 'European' source of modern

cooking terms.

 

The 'tart' in Larousse is exclusively sweet, and comes in versions

without upper crusts, with upper crusts, and with pastry lattices.

 

The 'tourte' in Larousse is a two-crust savoury main dish.  The

author says "There are also sweet tourtes, but these are really

tarts...."

 

The 'torte', another creature entirely, is a (Germanic) cake.

 

Thorvald

 

 

Date: Sun, 30 Nov 2003 09:05:16 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] torte vs. tart

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

 

>> Indeed, my wife has made me suspicious that a lot of the "tart" recipes

>> in the translations of Sabina Welserin (and Guter Spise?) really ARE

>> "torte" and not "tarts" at all...

> Ok, so what is the difference between a "torte" and a "tart"? Tarts are

> pies without a top pastry shell or even lacing, right?

> Stefan

 

There is no difference in German. "Torte" can mean pie, flan, tart or a

flat cake.  You start getting specific when you modify the noun with a

prefix, as in "Linzertorte."  To make matters more confusing, sometimes the

prefix is used to describe two different things. "Obsttorte" is used to

describe both tarts and flans, although it is common to drop the "Obst"

when referring to a tart.

 

As near as I can tell, the derivation of all European forms of "tart"

Are from the Latin "torta" meaning "flat cake."

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2004 19:39:22 -0500

From: "Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius"

        <adamantius.magister at verizon.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Standing crust

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

 

Also sprach Nancy Kiel:

>I've had good luck using 18th & 19th century receipts (haven't had

>occasion to research a period standing crust).  They called for

>boiling the fat & water together, and a lot of kneading.

>Also, I thought a "standing crust" meant more specifically a

>completely closed pie form, not intended to be eaten.

 

A standing crust is one made independently of a pie pan or pate mold.

It... stands. Modern ones, at least, are intended to be eaten, as in

English pork pies, that sort of thing.

 

One of the things about hot-water doughs is that period pie doughs

seem to occasionally, or maybe often, call for egg yolks. (See Ein

Buoch Von Guter Spise, Digby, etc.) You can't boil the liquid to add

to your pastry if the liquid is egg yolk, so even though there's a

lot of talk about raising a coffin, these are presumably made with a

cold pastry. Or at least, the small bits of evidence we have would

seem to point that way, if not conclusively.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2004 23:38:10 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Standing crust

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

 

On Feb 17, 2004, at 6:56 PM, Nancy Kiel wrote:

> I've had good luck using 18th & 19th century receipts (haven't had

> occasion to research a period standing crust).  They called for

> boiling the fat & water together, and a lot of kneading.

> Also, I thought a "standing crust" meant more specifically a

> completely closed pie form, not intended to be eaten.  Out of

> curiousity, what receipt/idea are you basing your crust on?

 

The closest period recipe that I get to would probably be from "A

Proper newe Booke of Cokerye":

"To make short paest for tarte. Take fyne floure and a cursey of fayre

water and a dysche of swete butter and a lyttel saffron, and the

yolckes of two egges and make it thynne and as tender as ye maye."

 

That's about the earliest reference to a short crust that I've come

across.  In the same source is a recipe for meat pies which has a note

at the end stating "and yf you wyll have paest royall, take butter and

yolkes of egges and so tempre the flowre to make the paeste."

 

Really though, I make no claim that what I made was period - the whole

topic seems to be something that's very hard to thoroughly document.  I

was basically trying to see what I could do with short crust in the way

of making a serving dish.

 

- Doc

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

  Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers)

  http://www.medievalcookery.com/

 

 

Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2004 12:52:54 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Medieval History Magazine (was   meatpastiesand

        theirlongevity)

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

 

On Feb 23, 2004, at 11:54 AM, vicki shaw wrote:

> Well, the article does say that they experimented with the coffyn because

> they flt the period ones were probably unpalatablen and most likely

> discarded after the filling was reached and consumed.  I am going to write

> to Stefan right now and give the recipe for the coffyn and the filling.

> Among the ingredients for the coffyns s 200 g of drippings.  What is meant

> by that?  would this be drippings from roasting meat, that has become solid

> at room temperature?  I say that because in the recipe you are to put water

> and the drippings into a saucepan and simmer until the drippings melt.....

> Ok okay, you are getting it all back asswards here, but for those of

> you who may have the resource:

> "The original source for this recipe is Harleian MS. 279, in the section

> titled 'Dyuerese Bake Metis,' as reproduced by indy Renfrow nin Take a

> Thousand Eggs or More.  An almost identical recipe occurs in Harleian MS.

> 4016, as well as a number of similar recipes with titles such as 'Tarte de

> chare' amd 'Another manere [of tartes]' and 'Doucettes' in MS. 279, and

Douce MS. "

 

Below are the relevant recipes from Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery

Books.  In them I can find references to pre-baking the coffin, to

coloring it with saffron and egg yolks, and to putting a top crust on

it, but I do not see any notes about te thickness of the coffin walls,

whether they were edible, or the ingredients or methods used for making

them.

 

Are there any other sources or recipes mentioned to document their

methods?  I am concerned that the "hot liquid fat poured into flour"

way of aking a crust is a (relatively) modern one that arose from a

faulty source or assumption and is unintentionally being promoted as

period without supporting evidence (e.g. probably period because it's

very rustic looking - thick and inedible).

 

  From TFCB

[http://www.hti.umich.edu/cgi/c/cme/cme-idx?

type=HTML&rgn=TEI.2&byte=3356093]

 

.I. Tartes de chare.--Take Freyssche Porke, & hew it, & grynd it on a

mortere; & take it vppe in-to a fayre vesselle; & take þe whyte an þe

3olkys of Eyroun, & strayne into  Vesselle þorw a straynoure, &

tempere þin Porke þer-with; þan take Pynez, Roysonys of Coraunce, &

frye hem in freysshe grece, & caste þer-to pouder Pepir, & Gyngere,

Canelle, Sugre, Safroun, & Salt, & caste þer-to, & do it on a cofynne,

& plante þin cofyne a-boue with Pyne3, & kyt Datys, & gret Roysonys, &

smal byrdys, or ellys hard 3olkys of Eyroun; & 3if þou take byrdys,

frye hem on a lytel grece or þow putte hem on þin cofynne, & endore

with 3olkys of Eyroun, & Safroun, & lat bake til it be y-now, & srue

forth.

 

.xv. Doucete3.--Take Creme a gode cupfulle, & put it on a straynoure;

þanne take 3olkys of Eyroun & put þer-to, & a lytel mylke; þen strayne

it þorw a straynoure in-to a bolle; þen take Sugre y-now, & put þer-to,

or ellys hony forde faute of Sgre, þan coloure it with Safroun; þan

take þin cofyns, & put in þe ovynne lere, & lat hem ben hardyd; þan

take a dysshe y-fastenyd on þe pelys ende; & pore þin comade in-to þe

dyssche, & fro þe dyssche in-to þe cofyns; & when þey don a-ryse wel,

take hem ut, & serue hem forth.

 

Pye3 de pare3.--Take & smyte fayre buttys of Porke, & buttys of Vele,

to-gederys, & put it on a fayre potte, & do þer-to Freyssche broþe, & a

quantyte of wyne, & lat boyle alle to-gederys tyl yt be y-now; þan take

it fro þe fyre, &lat kele a lytelle; þan caste þer-to 3olkys of

Eyroun, & pouder of Gyngere, Sugre, & Salt, & mynced Datys, & Roysonys

of Coraunce; þen make fayre past, and cofynnys, & do þer-on; kyuer it,

& let bake, & serue f.

 

- Doc

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-==-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

   Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers)

   http://www.medievalcookery.com/

 

 

Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2004 13:53:00 EST

From: KristiWhyKelly at aol.com

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Medieval History Magazine (was meatpastiesand

        theirlongevity)

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

While a little later than Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery books, this recipe

below from Sabrina Welserin's cook book does call for boiled water and

butter to be mixed with flour.  It was then shaped baked then filled.

 

Grace

 

61 To make a pastry dough for all shaped pies

 

Take flour, the best that you can get, about two handfuls, depending on how large or small you would have the pie. Put it on the table and with a knife stir in two eggs and a little salt. Put water in a small pan an a piece of fat the size of two good eggs, let it all dissolve together and boil. Afterwards pour it on the flour on the table and make a strong dough and work it well, however you feel is right. If it is summer, one must take meat broth instead of water and in the place of the fat the skimmings from the broth. When the dough is kneaded, then make of it a round ball and draw it out well on the sides with the fingers or with a rolling pin, so that in the middle a raised area remains, then let it chillin the cold. Afterwards shape the dough as I have pointed out to you. Also reserve dough for the cover and roll it out into a  cover and take water and spread it over the top of the cover and the top of the  formed pastry shell and join it together well ith the fingers. Leave a small  hole. And see that it is pressed together well, so that it does not come  open. Blow in the small hole which you have left, then the cover will lift itself  up. Then quickly press the hole closed. Afterwards put it in the oen. Sprinkle  flour in the dish beforehand. Take care that the oven is properly heated,  then it will be a pretty pastry. The dough for all shaped pastries is made in  this manner.

 

edouard at meievalcookery.com writes:

Below are the relevant recipes from Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery

Books.  In them I can find references to pre-baking the coffin, to

coloring it with saffron and egg yolks, and to putting a top crust on

it, but I do not see any noes about the thickness of the coffin walls,

whether they were edible, or the ingredients or methods used for making

them.

 

Are there any other sources or recipes mentioned to document their

methods?  I am concerned that the "hot liquid fat poured into flor"

way of making a crust is a (relatively) modern one that arose from a

faulty source or assumption and is unintentionally being promoted as

period without supporting evidence (e.g. probably period because it's

very rustic looking - thick and inedible).

 

 

Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2004 16:17:48 -0800

From: Edouard de Bruyerecourt <bruyere at jeffnet.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Medieval History Magazine (was   meat

        pastiesand   theirlongevity)

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

 

Caillin wrote:

> The Pyes of Parys article was quite fascinating.   What I found

> interesting was when he made his coffyns he made them in 3 separate

> parts; a bottom part, the side part and then the top.  He pre-baked them

> and then filled them and did a flour- water mixture to seal them.  What

> I am curious about is the need for the sides to be separate.  I have not

> seen any documentation for this and was curious to find out if this was

> indeed period.

 

My deductions are that using the three parts is a more efficient use of

the pastry, and that it avoids either the thicker folds along the top of

walls, or the thicker walls and thinner bottom, if you took formed the

coffin from a large circle. The three piece design makes all three sides

the same thickness and with the same heating and drying properties.

 

I don't know how old the 'tin can' style of meat pie coffin has been

used, but it's fairly ubiquitious in the British Isles and former

colonies. The original pyes could have been just as easily a pasty

shaped from one large round of pastry. But, then again, you might run

into problems with a good seal along the crimped seam.

 

Might make for an interesting experiment. Make a dozen pies, three each

of different designs: three-piece 'tin can,' 'tin can' with whole

bottom/sides, pasty/turn-over, and something else. See how the fare over

a four week period on the counter, checking for cracks and drying, as

well as the pastry to filling ratio it took to make each style.

--  

Edouard, Sire de Bruyerecourt

 

 

Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2004 16:49:1 -0800

From: david friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Make Fayre Paste (was: Medieval History

        Magazine...)

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

 

Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers) wrote:

> Below are the relevant recipes from Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery

> Books.  In them I can find references to pre-baking the coffin, to

> coloring it with saffron and egg yols, and to putting a top crust

> on it, but I do not see any notes about the thickness of the coffin

> walls, whether they were edible, or the ingredients or methods used

> for making them.

> Are there any other sources or recipes mentioned to document teir

> methods?  I am concerned that the "hot liquid fat poured into flour"

> way of making a crust is a (relatively) modern one that arose from a

> faulty source or assumption and is unintentionally being promoted as

> period without supporting evidence (.g. probably period because

> it's very rustic looking - thick and inedible).

 

(recipes snipped)

 

As far as I know, none of the pie recipes in Two Fifteenth-Century

Cookery Books tells you anything about how to make the pastry. The

only recipes I remember which do tell you are for pasty-types things

(at least, that is my guess about what they are) that are going to be

fried, and I am not sure how much of a guide that is to what pastry

you would use for something that is going to be baked. Here is one of

these recipes:

 

Ryschewys Closed and Fried. Take figs, and grind them small in a

mortar with a little oil, and grind with them cloves and maces; and

then take it up into a vessel, and cast thereto pines, saunders and

raisons of corinth and minced dates, powdred pepper, canel, salt,

saffron; then take fine paste of flour and water, sugar, saffron and

salt, and make fair cakes thereof; then roll thine stuff in thine

hand and couch it in the cakes and cut it, and fold them in ryshews,

and fry them up in oil; an serve forth hot. [spelling modernized]

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2004 20:13:51 +1300

From: Phil Anderson <urizen at paradise.net.nz>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Pyes of Pares article author's comments

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

I forwarded the digests containing the discussion of Del's Pyes of

Pares article to him and he sent back the reply below. He can be

contacted at del at babel.com.au

 

===========

 

Yes, I'm the author of the article, despite the fact that the

magazine failed to spell my last name correctly. It is in

fact "Elson".

 

I'm happy to discuss any issues with the article off list but

I don't really have the time to subscribe to this list.  I'm

on too many mailing lists already, I have a full time job and

a half, and trying to keep a kingdom together at the moment

as well.

 

To answer some specific questions:

 

* I was aware that there were no period recipes covering how

to make pastry for these "coffins", and have used the post-period

sources that I was able to trace back.  The article conjectures

that *should* pastry have been made in this way in period then

it *can be proven* to be an effective means of preservation.

Therefore it is reasonable to conjecture that these pies would

have been made in this way, based on both the literature and

scientific evidence presented.

 

* The "pies bought from a service station" were in fact plain

meat pies.  They were not kept refrigerated, and were just

stored in paper bags.  I don't believe that the difference

between the wooden bowl, cloth, and paper bags made a significant

difference to the experiment.  The reason that the service-

station pies were kept in their original packing was to remove

any doubt about introducing baccillus or fungi through handling.

 

The primary difference between the service station pies and

the pyes de pares was the pastry.  The service station pies

had a meat filling, but the pastry was a thin-walled flaky

pastry, with some gaps and somewhat ineffective seals.  It is

apparent that airborne baccilli or spores were able to enter

the pies through the walls and/or seals of the pastry.  Making

the pastry heavier, dryer, and of a different composition,

prevented that.

 

On camp, we keep our pyes in a wicker basket covered with a

dry cloth.  This is based on our understanding of the use

of wicker containers in field kitchens of the late 15th C,

based on woodcuts and artwork of the period.  The wooden

bowl and cloth reproduced that part of the experiment under

laboratory supervision as much as I was able to (I wasn't

able to find a small sized wicker basket in time).  Also

there appears to be some use of wooden boxes for food storage,

again based on iconographic evidence of the period, and it

appears that these boxes are not usually well sealed or

airtight.  Therefore it is my conjecture that the food stored

inside these boxes or baskets had the ability to withstand

attack by airborne pathogens.

 

* The pastry that I normally use to make the pyes de pares

is somewhat, although not excessively salted.  It is edible,

and quite tasty especially at a camping event where you tend

to get dehydrated and crave salt anyway.  I often make larger

coffins to store roasted or boiled and salted meats, and the

pastry that I use to act as a storage is very salty, rock

hard, and not particularly edible.

 

* I am unable to get a release for posting this article to

the florilegium without first a word with the magazine editor.

I will do that shortly.  I'm reasonably sure that he will

have no problems with that, perhaps after a suitable time

period, but I have to make the call first.

--

Del

aka Delbert von Strassburg

Lochac

 

 

Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2004 06:05:58 -0500

From: "Nancy Kiel" <nancy_kiel at hotmail.com>

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] Make Fayre Paste (was: Medieval History

        Magazine...)

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

So I'm an idiot, of course the coffin pastries CAN be baked empty-- those

four-and-twenty blackbirds won't be singing if the crust isn't pre-baked.  I

was wondering why one would pre-bake the crust and then bake it again with

the filling; no doubt it depends on the filling (you would think that by now

   I would know that no one did everything exactly the same way all the

time).

 

Nancy Kiel

 

> From: david friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

> Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers) wrote:

>> Below are the relevant recipes from Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery Books.

>> In them I can find references to pre-baking the coffin, to coloring it

>> with saffron and egg yolks, and to putting a top crust on it, but I do not

>> see any notes about the thickness of the coffin walls, whether they were

>> edible, or the ingredients or methods used for making them.

 

 

Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2004 16:15:47 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Make Fayre Paste (was: Medieval History

        Magazine...)

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

 

One reason to pre-bake a pie shell is to prepare it to hold liquid filling.

Pie shells, especially those without shortening, have a tendency to absorb

liquids.  An unbaked pie shell that is absorbing liquids may not bake

properly.  The answer s to partially or fully bake it before filling.

 

Bear

 

 

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Period Pie crust recipies

Date: Sat, 17 Jul 2004 22:29:51 -0700

 

Kimberly Sargen <ksargen at charter.net> wrote:

> I'm trying to find something that is more period than our

> modern shortcrust, but is a bit more palatable than some of the "coffins

> made of paste" pie crusts of our esteemed ancestors.

 

You might want to try this one:

 

To make short paest for tarte

A Proper Newe Book p. 37/C10

 

Take fyne floure and a curscy of fayre water and a dysche of swete

butter and a lyttel saffron, and the yolkes of two egges and make it

thynne and as tender as ye maye.

 

Our version (from the Miscellany)

 

Crust: 6 threads saffron crushed in 1 t cool water 5-6 T very soft butter

1 c flour   2 egg yolks

 

To make crust, mix saffron water into flour; add egg yolks and mix well

(will be crumbly). Add 4 T butter and mix well; add enough of remaining

butter to make a smooth paste. (Amount used depends upon softness of

butter and warmth of kitchen.) Roll smooth and place in 9" pie plate.

Crimp edge. Pour into raw crust and bake at 350? for about 50 minutes

(top cracks). Cool before eating.

--

David/Cariadoc

www.daviddfriedman.com

 

 

Date: Mon, 19 Jul 2004 12:21:43 EDT

From: Devra at aol.com

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re:pie soggy problem

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

This won't work with baked fruit pies, but if you are making a custard pie,

either plain or with raw fruit on top, you can do the ol' slide thing. Bake the

crust.  Bake the filling in an identical-sized pan.  After they both cool,

slither the filling into the baked shell.  You have to be careful, but it should

just slide right in and settle down...  I used to do that with a coffee

custard pie.

 

      Devra (mmm - haven't thought of that coffee pie for years...)

 

Devra Langsam

www.poisonpenpress.com

 

 

Date: Wed, 3 Nov 2004 09:25:32 -0800

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] A small feast (long)

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

 

Cynata wrote:

> You said you made the pie crusts in advance and froze them. Do you have a

> recipe, and more importantly, sme pointers on making good pie crust? Up

> until now I have relied on pre-made crusts, but Pillsbury just recently

> changed their packaging on their refrigerated crusts, and it seems like they

> have also changed their formula and the size of the pece of dough as well.

> At any rate, I haven't had good luck with the new crusts. And my local

> grocery is no longer carrying the Mrs. Smith's (dairy-free) frozen shells.

> So I have to learn to make my own. I would need to use either vegetable

> sortening or soy margarine instead of butter.

 

For recipes with no indication of what the pie crust should be, I use

a standard modern flaky pie crust made with partly whole wheat flour

and butter, although it can be done with margarine. I have no idea

wheher or not this is right--I know of no pie crust recipes before

the 16th century, and the ones then include both "short paste" and

pie crusts without fat.

 

For two 9" crusts, mix 2/3 c whole wheat flour and 1 1/3 c white

flour, cut a quarter pound of butter into the flour until it is in

very small lumps (I generally use a food processor for this; I have

done it with two knives cutting X-wise against each other, but not

for feast quantities), then add about 6 tablespoons of water a

spoonful or two at a timeand mix very carefully with a fork until it

starts to hang together, working it as little as possible. I roll

them out between two sheets of waxed paper into a circle the diameter

of the waxed paper, remove one sheet of waxed paper and loosen the

other beore inverting the crust into a pie pan (it being a lot

easier to peel waxed paper off the pie crust when it is lying flat

than after it is in the pie pan). Put into a gallon zip-lock bag,

squeeze the air out and seal, and you can have a stack of these

siting in your freezer for when you need them. I remember one

earlier occasion for a larger feast when we had a real assembly line

going in my kitchen and dining room making 20 or more pie crusts for

the event a few weeks away. It is a way of getting a labor intensive

job out of the way when you have the leisure, without, as far as I

can tell, compromising quality.

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Thu, 4 Nov 2004 13:54:31 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pillsbury pie crusts

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

 

On Nov 4, 2004, at 11:48 AM, Chris Stanifer wrote:

> Another reason you may wish to make 'pie crusts' by hand for period

> feasts is that there appears

> to be a bit of evidence that the 'pie crusts' used in many of the

> extant recipes were not all that

> flaky or tender to begin with.  It all depends on how authentic you

> want to be.  A crust used to

> encase a rabbit (Hare Pie???), and take the shape of the original

> creature would need to be

> sturdy.  A modern flaky pie crust may well crumble under its own

> weight if used in this manner.

 

Having done a good amount of research and experimentation on pie

crusts, I'm inclined to disagree.  There are many paintings from just

after period of standing crust pies where it can clearly be seen that

the walls are less than a quarter of an inch thick.  I've also made a

number of dishes using standard pie crust recipes that are sculpted and

stand up quite well on their own (see the pics at the URLs below).

None of them had a tendency to crumble.  As long as there's something

that the crust is wrapped around, then it has plenty of support.

 

        "Still-life with Turkey-Pie" (detail), Pieter Claesz, c. 1630

        http://www.medievalcookery.com/images/standing1.jpg

 

        "Breakfast Table with Blackberry Pie" (detail), Willem Claesz Heda

(1631)

        http://www.medievalcookery.com/images/standing4.jpg

 

Some of my own experiments:

        A Dish of Artichokes  -

http://www.medievalcookery.com/images/artichoke.jpg

        A chicken pie shaped like a fish  -

http://www.medievalcookery.com/images/fish.jpg

 

        Standing crust experiment -

http://www.medievalcookery.com/images/crust.jpg

        (the final version of this one was larger and thinner)

 

Also see the painting "Kitchen" (Vincenzo Campi, 1580s) in which there

is a woman rolling out a thin top crust for a double crust pie in a

modern-shaped pie pan.

 

        http://www.wga.hu/art/c/campi/vincenzo/2kitchen.jpg

 

> There are those, like myself, who believe that some of these crusts

> were not even meant to be

> eaten, but rather acted as sturdy little pastry ovens to help keep the

> contents moist and

> protected from excessive heat.  When the dish was served, the crust

> was cut away and discarded.

 

While some standing crusts may have been used as a preservation method

and were not intended to be eaten, this is certainly not the case for

all crusts, as evidenced by the following (emphasis added):

 

"To make Paste, and to raise Coffins. Take fine flower, and lay it on a

boord, and take a certaine of yolkes of Egges as your quantitie of

flower is, then take a certaine of Butter and water, and boil them

together, but ye must take heed ye put not too many yolks of Egges, ***

for if you doe, it will make it drie and not pleasant in eating ***:

and yee must take heed ye put not in too much Butter for if you doe, it

will make it so fine and short that you cannot raise. And this paste is

good to raise all manner of Coffins: Likewise if ye bake Venison, bake

it in the paste above named. "

 

Source [The Good Huswifes Handmaide for the Kitchen, Stuart Peachey

(ed.), c. 1588]

 

- Doc

 

 

Date: Thu, 4 Nov 2004 23:10:43 -0500

From: "Glenn A. Crawford" <tavernkeeper at phoenixroost.com>

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] Pillsbury pie crusts

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

 

> "To make Paste, and to raise Coffins. Take fine flower, and lay it on a

> boord, and take a certaine of yolkes of Egges as your quantitie of

> flower is, then take a certaine of Butter and water, and boil them

> together, but ye must take heed ye put not too many yolks of Egges, ***

> for if you doe, it will make it drie and not pleasant in eating ***:

> and yee must take heed ye put not in too much Butter for if you doe, it

> will make it so fine and short that you cannot raise. And this paste is

> good to raise all manner of Coffins: Likewise if ye bake Venison, bake

> it in the paste above named. "

 

Just a lurker peek out again, when I read this recipe it sounds like a

recipe for today's pâte à choux (puff shell pastry). As I read the

instructions, it is similar to the procedure except the egg is added last

not first.

 

6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter

3/4 cup water

1 cup all purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

4 eggs

 

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In 2 quart pot, combine the butter and water.

On a piece of wax or parchment paper, sift together the flour, salt and

sugar. Bring the water and butter to a rolling boil, remove from heat and

dump the flour mixture in all at once. Stir with a wooden spoon or paddle to

incorporate.

 

Return the saucepot to high heat and cook, stirring, for about one minute.

The mixture will form a ball and coat the pan with a thin film.

 

Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl or standing mixer equipped with the

paddle attachment. Mix the dough for a minute or so, on low speed, to

release some of the heat. Add the eggs, one at a time, completely

incorporating each one before adding the next. Beat until the dough gets

thick and ribbony.

 

Fit a pastry bag with a round #5 tip and fill with the warm dough. Line a

heavy cookie sheet with parchment paper and anchor it to the tray with a

little dab of the dough at each corner. Pipe about forty to forty five 1

1/2-inch mounds about 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet lined with parchment

paper. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until golden and puffed. Reduce heat to

350 degrees and bake for another 10 minutes or until they are golden brown

and there are no droplets of moisture in the crevices. Turn off oven and

leave the choux to dry for another 10 minutes. Use when cool, or freeze,

wrapped in a plastic bag, for 2-3 months.

 

Glenn A. Crawford

 

 

Date: Sun, 7 Nov 2004 19:14:24 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re:non-soggy pie crust bottoms - OOP

To: "Bill Fisher" <liamfisher at gmail.com>, "Cook within the SCA"

        <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

> Typically the easiest (and probably non-period) way to make your

> bottom crust non-soggy would be to blind-bake your pie crust filled

> with beans, or arbles, or small stones.   Then put in the fillling

> and bake the pie.

> Cadoc

 

Blind baking may not be common, but Martino describes blind baking a closed

pie shell for a dish of live birds in a pie. We've discussed it here

previously, so the recipe may be in them Florilegium.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 10:28:50 -0500 (GMT-05:00)

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Carrot-Cheese Pie (recipe and redaction)

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

 

Here's the recipe I was mentioning.

 

Torta de Zanahoria (Carrot Pie)

 

        Wash and scrape the carrots, and remove them from the water and cook

them in good meat broth, and being cooked remove them and chop them

small with the knife, adding to them mint and marjoram, and for each

two pounds of chopped carrots [use] a pound of Tronchon cheese and a

pound and a half of buttery Pinto cheese, and six ounces of fresh

cheese, and one ounce of ground pepper, one ounce of cinnamon, two

ounces of candied orange peel cut small, one pound of sugar, eight

eggs, three ounces of cow's butter, and from this composition make a

torta with pastry above and below, and the tart pan with pastry all

around, and make it cook in the oven, making the crust of sugar,

cinnamon, and rosewater. In this manner you can make tortas of all

sorts of roots, such as that of parsley, having taken the core out of

them. 

 

Diego Granado, Libro del Arte de Cozina, 1599

 

Redaction:

1/2 lb. carrots, cooked and drained                  

1/2 oz. candied orange peel

4 oz. mozzarella, shredded                             

1/4 tsp. dried marjoram

6 oz. monterey jack, shredded                  

1/2 tsp dried mint

1-1/2 oz. ricotta cheese                        

2 eggs, beaten

1-1/2 TBS butter                                 

pastry for 2-crust pie (preferably made with butter)

1/2 TBS cinnamon                         

cinnamon sugar

1/2 c. sugar                              

rosewater

 

Preheat oven to 375 F.  Combine all of the filling ingredients and mix

thoroughly.  Place in the bottom crust.  Put on the top crust, and seal

the edges well.  Brush the top crust with rosewater, and sprinkle with

cinnamon sugar.  Bake for 45-50 minutes, until the crust is brown, and

the filling is set.

 

Notes:

This appears to be one of the recipes that Granado "borrowed" from

Scappi.  It appears in a chapter entitled, "Divers Manners of Tortas,

or Tortadas, Which in Italy are Called Costradas, and in Naples,

Copos".  I made some substitutions in the cheeses.  I have been unable

to identify Pinto cheese, so I substituted mozzarella, which is a

period cheese (Granado refers to it in other recipes).  Tronchon is a

Spanish variety which is still produced today, but it is rare and hard

to obtain.  Its flavor is supposed to be mild, and I thought Monterey

Jack, though a modern cheese, might work in this recipe.  Fresh cheese

is a soft, newly-made cheese, and Ricotta has a similar taste and

texture, even though it is a whey cheese.

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 07:59:31 -0800

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Carrot-Cheese Pie (recipe and redaction)

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

 

Carrot Cheese Pie may not sound appetizing to those un-socialized to the

Historical Cooking asthetic, but Carrot Cake and Cheese Cake do.  Go

figure.  I think this recipe [and your redaction] sound yummy!

 

A snail recipe in the Granado Libro,

PARA HAZER COSTRADAS DE CARACOLES SACADOS DE LA

CASCARA -- To Make Cakes of Snails Removed from the Shell, calls for "a

little grated Pinto Cheese" which implies something about its texture

which is not soft like Ricotta, yesno?

 

  From a cheese merchant's website:

http://www.bacchuscellars.com/cheese/tronchon.htm

 

"Tronchon is a very small village in the southeastern part of Spain's

wild and mountainous Teruel province. The town and its surrounding area

has an age-old tradition of raising sheep and goats in mixed herds. This

tradition led to the creation of Tronchon cheese, which is made from a

blend of goat, sheep and cow milk. This uniquely volcano-shaped cheese

is beautiful and delicious. With its smooth, buttery, fresh flavor and

springy texture, Tronchon is a longtime family favorite in Spain. It

goes great with green Spanish olives and a fruity red Rioja."

 

Best, Selene

 

> Notes:

> This appears to be one of the recipes that Granado "borrowed" from

> Scappi.  It appears in a chapter entitled, "Divers Manners of Tortas,

> or Tortadas, Which in Italy are Called Costradas, and in Naples,

> Copos".  I made some substitutions in the cheeses.  I have been unable

> to identify Pinto cheese, so I substituted mozzarella, which is a

> period cheese (Granado refers to it in other recipes).  Tronchon is a

> Spanish variety which is still produced today, but it is rare and hard

> to obtain.  Its flavor is supposed to be mild, and I thought Monterey

> Jack, though a modern cheese, might work in this recipe.  Fresh cheese

> is a soft, newly-made cheese, and Ricotta has a similar taste and

> texture, even though it is a whey cheese.

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 11:09:05 -0500 (GMT-05:00)

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Carrot-Cheese Pie (recipe and redaction)

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

 

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

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

> Carrot Cheese Pie may not sound appetizing to those un-socialized to the

> Historical Cooking asthetic, but Carrot Cake and Cheese Cake do.  Go

> figure.  I think this recipe [and your redaction] sound yummy!

 

It went over well at the feast.  Leftovers were made available to the

populace, and all the pie disappeared.

 

> A snail recipe in the Granado Libro, PARA HAZER COSTRADAS DE CARACOLES

> SACADOS DE LA

> CASCARA -- To Make Cakes of Snails Removed from the Shell, calls for "a

> little grated Pinto Cheese" which implies something about its texture

> which is not soft like Ricotta, yesno?

 

True.  I substituted mozzarella for the pinto cheese; the ricotta was

serving as "new cheese".

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 12:32:33 -0500

From: Bill Fisher <liamfisher at gmail.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Carrot-Cheese Pie (recipe and redaction)

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

 

On Thu, 11 Nov 2004 10:28:50 -0500 (GMT-05:00), Robin Carroll-Mann

<rcmann4 at earthlink.net> wrote:

> Here's the recipe I was mentioning.

> Torta de Zanahoria (Carrot Pie)

> pound of Tronchon cheese and a pound and a half of buttery Pinto

> cheese, and six ounces of fresh cheese,

 

You could use Queso Blanco for a new cheese in this, I've used it before, it is a curd cheese (it looks like compacted cottage cheese, which I think it is) has a nice fresh taste, and melts well.  Depending on your local market, I was able to find it in PA when I lived there and used it when I made tarts that called for fresh cheese.

 

If you have any carnicerias in your area they should have it.  I found it at Shady Maple up in PA and at Giant.  Farmer's cheese is a new cheese as well.

 

I would use goat cheese for Tronchon.  I wouldn't go with a raw milk one though,

they tend to be stronger in flavor.

 

Cadoc

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 18:31:47 -0500 (GMT-05:00)

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Carrot-Cheese Pie in Scappi

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

 

Okay, I've located the original recipe in Scappi's "Opera".  It's at:

http://alfama.sim.ucm.es/dioscorides/consulta_libro.asp?ref=X533351951

Go to image 739.

 

I could use some help from the Italian readers out there.  (Helwyse,  

you listening?)

 

It calls for one pound of grated Parmasan cheese or _________ (can't read the word)

A pound and a half of fatty cheese

Six ounces of provatura

 

To refresh your memories, Granado's version calls for "a pound of  

Tronchon cheese and a pound and a half of buttery Pinto cheese, and six  

ounces of fresh cheese".

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 20:19:33 -0500

From: Bill Fisher <liamfisher at gmail.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Carrot-Cheese Pie in Scappi

To: Robin Carroll-Mann <rcmann4 at earthlink.net>,  Cooks within the SCA

        <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

On Thu, 11 Nov 2004 18:31:47 -0500 (GMT-05:00), Robin Carroll-Mann

<rcmann4 at earthlink.net> wrote:

> Okay, I've located the original recipe in Scappi's "Opera".  It's at:

> http://alfama.sim.ucm.es/dioscorides/consulta_libro.asp?ref=X533351951

> Go to image 739.

> I could use some help from the Italian readers out there.  (Helwyse,  

> you listening?)

> It calls for one pound of grated Parmasan cheese or _________ (can't  

> read the word)

> A pound and a half of fatty cheese

> Six ounces of provatura

> To refresh your memories, Granado's version calls for "a pound of  

> Tronchon cheese and a pound and a half of buttery Pinto cheese, and  

> six ounces of fresh cheese".

> Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

 

I blew it up, it looks like Riuiera, at least from looking at the script in the

rest of the document.  No idea what it means, but I have found references

online that it seems to correlate to River Riuiera de Genua  - Riviera de Genova - River of Genova

 

Are there any italian cheeses aged near rivers or maybe river caves?

 

Maybe it is a bleu cheese? Gorgonzola

 

Cadoc

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 20:35:58 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pinto cheese?

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

 

While I can't prove it, I suspect Pinto cheese may be a cheese once made in

Pinto, Spain (near Madrid).  The region is mostly industrial these days and

most of the old agricultural base is long gone. There is another reference

to Pinto cheese in a poem from around the early 17th Century.

 

Bear

 

> I haven't been able to find a mention of this cheese anywhere.  Could it

> perhaps be a mispronunciation/misspelling for a Catalan cheese named Picón?

> Picón, a close relative of Cabrales is made in the Cantabrian villages of

> Bejes and Tresviso. The cheeses are soft inside, some spreadably and others

> crumbly, and when cut reveal little galleries and caverns inhabited by the

> greenish-blue mold which gives them their characteristic strong big complex

> flavor.

> Kateryn de Develyn

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 20:40:25 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Carrot-Cheese Pie in Scappi

To: "Robin Carroll-Mann" <rcmann4 at earthlink.net>,       "Cooks within the

        SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Provatura is a buffalo (not bison) milk cheese with a texture similar to

mozzarella.  You can use mozzarella as a substitute.

 

Bear

 

> Okay, I've located the original recipe in Scappi's "Opera".  It's at:

> http://alfama.sim.ucm.es/dioscorides/consulta_libro.asp?ref=X533351951

> Go to image 739.

> It calls for one pound of grated Parmasan cheese or _________ (can't  

> read the word)

> A pound and a half of fatty cheese

> Six ounces of provatura

 

 

Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2004 06:55:30 -0800 (PST)

From: Louise Smithson <helewyse at yahoo.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: Carrot-Cheese Pie in Scappi

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

>>>> 

Okay, I've located the original recipe in Scappi's "Opera". It's at:

http://alfama.sim.ucm.es/dioscorides/consulta_libro.asp?ref=X533351951

Go to image 739.

 

I could use some help from the Italian readers out there. (Helwyse, you  

listening?)

 

It calls for one pound of grated Parmasan cheese or _________ (can't  

read the word)

A pound and a half of fatty cheese

Six ounces of provatura

 

To refresh your memories, Granado's version calls for "a pound of  

Tronchon cheese and a pound and a half of buttery Pinto cheese, and six  

ounces of fresh cheese".

<<<< 

 

Ask and you shall receive.  (I have not transcribed it for speed and  

space).

 

To make a pie of carrots and other roots and other things.  Chapter 111

 

Wash and peel the carrots, and parboil them in water, then take them  

out of the water and put them to cook in good meat broth.  When they  

are cooked take them out and cut them very small with a knife.  Add  

mint and marjoram and for every two pounds of chopped carrots add a  

pound of Parmegian cheese or of Riviera  grated, one pound and a half  

of fat cheese and six ounces of provatura.  One ounce of pepper ground,  

two ounces of Napoletan biscotti ground, one ounce of cinnamon, two  

ounces of candied sour orange peel cut small, one poind of sugar, eight  

eggs, three ounces of butter. And with the mixture make a pie with a  

sheet (of pastry) below and above and "tortiglione sfogliato" around,  

and cook it in the oven or under a "testo".  Make a crust (icing) with  

sugar and cinnamon and rose water.  In this way you can make a tart of  

any kind of parsnip or root of parsley, having emptied out the  

heart/seed.

 

Notes: Parmesan - a hard salty cheese,

Riviera - another hard aged cheese, think of grano padano.

fat cheese - never quite worked out what this is other than a fresh,  

softer cheese, maybe akin to farmers cheese but is not ricotta OR  

mozzarella because those are always refered to by name.

Provatura - the original mozzarella made with buffalo milk.

Napoletan biscotti - biscotti made with flour, eggs, sugar, aniseed and  

if I remember rightly musk.  Often used as a thickening agent.

Pies were frequently embelished around the rim with Tortiglione  

sfogliato.  The best description I can give is of very thin layers of  

pasty (think flaky or filo) layered and then twisted into rounds.

The Testo is the dutch oven of the Italian renaisance, it allows you to  

cook pies in the coals of the fire.

The Italian pound or libro is about 12 modern ounces.

 

Helewyse

 

 

Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2004 11:07:19 -0500

From: ranvaig at columbus.rr.com

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pie crust was what's wierd-ish, what isn't

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

 

Cailte asked:

> speaking of pastry and pie crust.... i am about to do 700 small

> salmon pasties. has anyone made pie crust in a food processor?  how

> do you do it, and does it work well?

 

I have use a food processor.  It might not be quite as flaky, but its

more than acceptable.  Use the pulse cycle and make sure you don't

cut the fat in too finely, leave pieces the size of peas, then pulse

in the water.  Stop before it quite forms a ball.

 

Ranvaig

 

 

Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2004 11:00:07 -0800 (PST)

From: Samrah <auntie_samrah at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pie crust was what's wierd-ish, what isn't

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

 

Cailte wrote:

speaking of pastry and pie crust.... i am about to do 700

small salmon pasties.

 

  Unfortunately, I am not together enough to make more than 1 crust at

time (she could do 2), and a pastry blender ("d-shaped" hand tool with

lots of wires bent in half circle) is now my "weapon" of choice.

 

Although it makes me feel rather intellectually challenged to admit it,

I can be a rather slow learner.  Originally for pasties, I was rolling

out all of the dough and cutting it in circles with a salad plate.  

Makes the dough awful tough when you rework it. Tried adding sour

cream and lots of thinks to make it flakier. Finally learned to make a

roll/log, cut off slices and roll each pasty crust separately.  Better

crust.

 

I am sure you know that, but thought I would mention it out there in

case we had anyone who didn't.  Although better (ie softer, flakier)

crust is probably much less common in period, and I am not certain I am

devoted enough to roll out 700 pasties individually.

 

Good luck with your pasties--all 700 of 'em ;0)

 

Samrah

 

 

Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2004 14:48:39 -0800

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pie crust was what's wierd-ish, what isn't

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

 

cailte asked:

> speaking of pastry and pie crust.... i am about to do 700 small

> salmon pasties. has anyone made pie crust in a food processor?  how

> do you do it, and does it work well?

 

It is how I usually do it, and yes, it works well, giving me the same

results as if I do it by hand. I use the food processor to cut the

butter into the flour, then dump into a bowl and mix the water in by

hand. In fact, I posted my description of doing it to this list a

week or two ago--I'll repeat that post at the bottom of this.

 

Elizabeth of Dendermonde/Betty Cook

----------

 

Cynara wrote:

 

> You said you made the pie crusts in advance and froze them. Do you have a

> recipe, and more importantly, some pointers on making good pie crust? Up

> until now I have relied on pre-made crusts, but Pillsbury just recently

> changed their packaging on their refrigerated crusts, and it seems

> like they

> have also changed their formula and the size of the piece of dough as well.

> At any rate, I haven't had good luck with the new crusts. And my local

> grocery is no longer carrying the Mrs. Smith's (dairy-free) frozen shells.

> So I have to learn to make my own. I would need to use either vegetable

> shortening or soy margarine instead of butter.

 

For recipes with no indication of what the pie crust should be, I use

a standard modern flaky pie crust made with partly whole wheat flour

and butter, although it can be done with margarine. I have no idea

whether or not this is right--I know of no pie crust recipes before

the 16th century, and the ones then include both "short paste" and

pie crusts without fat.

 

For two 9" crusts, mix 2/3 c whole wheat flour and 1 1/3 c white

flour, cut a quarter pound of butter into the flour until it is in

very small lumps (I generally use a food processor for this; I have

done it with two knives cutting X-wise against each other, but not

for feast quantities), then add about 6 tablespoons of water a

spoonful or two at a time and mix very carefully with a fork until it

starts to hang together, working it as little as possible. I roll

them out between two sheets of waxed paper into a circle the diameter

of the waxed paper, remove one sheet of waxed paper and loosen the

other before inverting the crust into a pie pan (it being a lot

easier to peel waxed paper off the pie crust when it is lying flat

than after it is in the pie pan). Put into a gallon zip-lock bag,

squeeze the air out and seal, and you can have a stack of these

sitting in your freezer for when you need them. I remember one

earlier occasion for a larger feast when we had a real assembly line

going in my kitchen and dining room making 20 or more pie crusts for

the event a few weeks away. It is a way of getting a labor-intensive

job out of the way when you have the leisure, without, as far as I

can tell, compromising quality.

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2004 15:14:16 -0800 (PST)

From: Chris Stanifer <jugglethis at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pie crust was what's wierd-ish, what isn't

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

 

--- David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com> wrote:

> cailte asked:

>> speaking of pastry and pie crust.... i am about to do 700 small

>> salmon pasties. has anyone made pie crust in a food processor?  how

>> do you do it, and does it work well?

> It is how I usually do it, and yes, it works well, giving me the same

> results as if I do it by hand. I use the food processor to cut the

> butter into the flour, then dump into a bowl and mix the water in by

> hand. In fact, I posted my description of doing it to this list a

> week or two ago--I'll repeat that post at the bottom of this.

 

This is a much faster way to do the pie crust, and if you have a plastic blade attachment for your food processor, you can even mix the pastry to completion in it.  Place all of your liquid into the bowl at one time, and mix only until the mass comes together, and not a moment longer.  If you drizzle the liquid in, or add it in batches, you'll over mix the dough, so make sure your recipe is

accurate.

 

William de Grandfort

 

 

Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2004 19:52:29 -0500

From: Bill Fisher <liamfisher at gmail.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pie crust was what's wierd-ish, what isn't

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

 

On Fri, 12 Nov 2004 11:07:19 -0500, ranvaig at columbus.rr.com

<ranvaig at columbus.rr.com> wrote:

>> speaking of pastry and pie crust.... i am about to do 700 small

>> salmon pasties. has anyone made pie crust in a food processor?  how

>> do you do it, and does it work well?

> I have use a food processor.  It might not be quite as flaky, but its

> more than acceptable.  Use the pulse cycle and make sure you don't

> cut the fat in too finely, leave pieces the size of peas, then pulse

> in the water.  Stop before it quite forms a ball.

> Ranvaig

 

I freeze the fat first, cut it in with the machine till it looks ok,

re-freeze it again, then work in the water by hand.  Then

rest it in the fridge till I need to use it, wrapped in plastic

wrap.  I find that the freezings keeps the fat (usually butter

for me) from melting and prematurely causing the gluten

strands to swell, because the whirring blades of a food

processor generate quite a bit of heat.

 

I work the dough as little as possible, kind of like making

a biscuit.   But if I need it to be standing on its own, I

abuse it a bit to create some gluten.

 

I've also made pie dough with oil as well, it is an interesting

texture.

 

Cadoc

 

 

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 2004 04:31:29 -0500

From: "Ruth Tannahill" <rtanhil at fast.net>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: tips for making better pies

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

So spoke Anahita:

> So first, he suggests for the crust: make it with less liquid and

> more fat. The fat will repel some of the moistness from the filling.

 

Yep. I do that when I'm making pies that I will fill and bake that day. I

deliberately add a bit more fat (shortening or butter, depending on the

audience) and less water. But I find that when I'm making pastry to freeze

and roll out later, or pie shells to freeze and fill later, or transport to

an event and fill there, the high fat ratio makes them a little too brittle

for easy handling. In other words, if I'm going to make the pastry and bake

the pie then and there, I go with the richer crust. If there's storage or

transport involved, I sacrifice a bit of crispness, flakiness, and

tenderness for a crust that won't disintigrate. The more water you add, the

more gluten will toughen the dough. It will hold together better in storage

or transport, but you just won't get that crisp-yet-melting crust I can get

when I know the pies won't be handled a lot between prep and serving.

Probably why hot water pastry is so durable. It's a traditional picnic food,

used for something like pork pies, and needs to be able to handle a bit of

rough handling.

 

> Then, second, for the filling: make it less moist by pre-cooking it

> to some extent before putting into crust to bake.

 

I routinely do this with fruit fillings. I cook the fruit with whatever

butter and sugar I'm going to use, then allow it to cool before filling the

pies. You must let the filling cool. Otherwise you'll melt the fat in the

pastry and lose the flakiness. All the extra liquid will do is steam the

crust. Also, once the filling is cooked (sweated out is probably a more

appropriate term, since you aren't going for mush), it won't shrink as much

or bubble over. You can get a pie with a domed top that will stay that way

throughout and after baking. Less likelihood of oven spillover accidents,

too. As an added bonus, you don't need to add as much thickener (e.g. flour)

as you would with raw fruit. When I make apple pie, as I will in about 6

hours, I don't need to add any flour. The apples and butter turn out just

fine without any thickener at all.

 

If I were making a vegetable or meat pie, I would not dream of using raw

ingredients. I would definitely brown the meat and sweat the vegetables.

 

For custard pies, you really can't cook your filling. I prebake the shells

for 10-20 minutes (depending on size and thickness of pastry--for a standard

9" pie with an average crust, 15 minutes is about right). But I prick the

bottom with a fork and use dried beans to keep the crust from warping during

blind baking.

 

> I haven't had a chance to experiment and test this, but if anyone

> gives it a try, please report back.

 

The advice is good. It works for me, and I'm the official pie baker of my

family.

 

When baking pies for an event, I often make a few sacrifices. I go for a

more durable crust, which means more liquid. It's just easier to handle the

pastry without it falling apart. And I go for speed. Ideally, I would use my

food processor to cut the cold fat into the dry ingredients, then transfer

the result into a bowl, where I would judiciously add water until it just

held together enough to roll out. In production mode, however, I just run

the processor and slowly add water, a tablespoon or so at a time, until it

forms a mass and starts thumping around the workbowl. That generally means

I've reached workable texture. I know that's dough brutality, but it's

fast.

 

Berelinde

 

 

Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 11:05:42 -0800 (PST)

From: Lawrence Bayne <shonsu_78 at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Tips for Better Pies

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

 

>>> 

-- "Laura C. Minnick" <lcm at jeffnet.org> wrote:

"for the filling: make it less moist by pre-cooking it

to some extent...I prebaked the crust for about 10

minutes of so enough to dry it a bit, so it doesn't

get waterlogged with the filling."

<<< 

 

While apprenticed to a Swiss Master Pastry Chef I was

told and it proved itself true, that whenever we were

to back a pie with a moist filling we would line the

prebaked shell with cake crumbs, which would help

absorb some of the moisture and keep the bottom crust

from becoming soggy.

 

Lothar

 

 

Date: Wed, 09 Feb 2005 23:57:08 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Okay Harlien MS 279 & Harl. MS 4016

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

 

Micheal wrote:

> Unfortunately I can not get the  books themselves yet.

> Cealian Of Moray

 

Those two manuscripts were published by the Early English Text Society

as "Two Fifteenth Century Cookery Books".  They are online at:

http://www.hti.umich.edu/cgi/c/cme/cme-idx?type=header&;idno=CookBk

 

You might also look at the Liber Cure Cocorun

http://staff-www.uni-marburg.de/~gloning/lcc3.htm

Recipe #51 "For a Pye" is worth looking at.  The pie contains a capon

(apparently whole), two woodcocks, and a mallard, so I think that would

qualify as "grete".

--

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Feb 2005 06:11:59 -0800 (PST)

From: Pat <mordonna22 at yahoo.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] re: Okay Harlien MS 279 & Harl. MS 4016

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

 

Cealian of Moray asked:

> are these the only books with Pyes de Paris or Great Pyes , is there

> any other primary source work out there. Everywhere I have tried

> already, refers you directly back to them. Including mincemeat pies

> in new England. I am looking for slightly more documentation then I

> have been able to find so far. Unfortunately I can not get the  books

> themselves yet.

> Cealian Of Moray

 

Pyes of Pares

 

Hieatt, Constance B. An Ordinance of Pottage: An Edition of the

Fifteenth Century Culinary Recipes in Yale University's MS Beinecke

163. Published by Prospect Books. 1988. ISBN 0 907325 38 6. Pages 88,

202

 

Pies of Parys

 

A Boke of Kokery,  from the facsimile in Duke Cariadoc's Cookbook

Collection

 

To make Pyes

A Propre new booke of Cokery

 

I am sure one of the librarians on the list could probably come up with

more for you.

 

Pat Griffin

Lady Anne du Bosc

known as Mordonna the Cook

Shire of Thorngill, Meridies

Mundanely, Millbrook, AL

 

 

Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2005 10:23:26 -0500

From: "Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius"

        <adamantius.magister at verizon.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Okay Harlien MS 279 & Harl. MS 4016

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

 

Also sprach Micheal:

> Actually I was looking for more primary and secondary sources then

> the 2 15th century cook books. Which although very good books are

> the source for multitude of other papers of the same topic. I have

> copied or downloaded the books them selves or at least what's up on

> their web pages.

> Da

 

Perhaps the "dead end" you're running into for finding earlier

references to Great Pies is that the concept may not be English,

originally. There appear to be somewhat older recipes for the kind of

huge pies with multiple filling ingredients, but they're in French,

Italian, and perhaps ultimately, Middle Eastern sources.

 

I know that Chiquart writes extensively on Pies of Parma in Du Fait

de Cuisine (he gives long, huge, and very detailed accounts for both

meat and fish-day versions), and that's just a little bit earlier

than the T15CCB references to Grete Pyes/Pyes of Parys. There seems

to be no reference to such a dish in The Forme of Cury, which is

surprising, but there's a recipe for Tourtes Parmerienne in the

Viandier de Taillevent (late 14th-century French), and I vaguely

recall some reference, at least, to them in the Enseignements, which

is earlier still.

 

I remember reading, a couple of years ago, I guess, a fascinating

article in Petits Propos Culinaires about the origins of the huge,

multi-layered pie (I forget exactly when, or which issue... Johnnae?

Can you help us out with a pointer here?). Anyway, the article

suggested the origins of the dish could, originally, be Greek or

Middle Eastern, if I'm remembering it correctly.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2005 22:19:10 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Okay Harlien MS 279 & Harl. MS 4016

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

 

>>> 

I remember reading, a couple of years ago, I guess, a fascinating

article in Petits Propos Culinaires about the origins of the huge,

multi-layered pie (I forget exactly when, or which issue.. Johnnae? Can

you help us out with a pointer here?). Anyway, the article suggested the

origins of the dish could, originally, be Greek or Middle Eastern, if

I'm remembering it correctly.

 

Adamantius

<<< 

 

I suspect that the articles are those that appear i PPC 59 and 61 (1998 and 1999).  The Parmesan Pie by Anna Martellotti appeared in those issues in two  

parts. She does tie it altogether from the Middle Eastern to Italian recipes

found in Libro per cuoco.

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Fri, 18 Feb 2005 13:24:01 -0500

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: Coffyns

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

 

Greetings!  Ivan Day has some "fancy pies" on his website

(historicfood.com).  With one of them is a carved wooden mould to produce

leaves which are placed as decoration on the lids.  That ould be a fast

way for non-artistic types to produce quality decorations in quantity.  He

also shows some  metal tins for making the decorative sides.  I think these

are from the mid-1600s and later.

 

Alys Katharine

 

 

Date: Sat, 19 Feb 2005 09:16:50 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: Coffyns

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

 

On Feb 19, 2005, at 1:59 AM, Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius wrote:

> It may also be that large pies, containing birds (as opposed to the

> custardy variants that may also contain small birds, marrow, etc., in

> the filling), were made of tough, free-standing pastry to help get

> them safely to the table intact, and possibly to preserve the filling

> for a time (although that really doesn't kick off until the

> seventeenth century, AFAICT, when you start seeing the pie recipes

> with "great store of butter" being poured in). I guess there may have

> been some visual expectation on the part of the diner, such that, when

> they saw such a large pastry, they expected something like pigeons

> inside, which is what made the live birds inside so cool...

 

Depends on what you mean by "kick off". Here's two 15th c. recipes and

a 16th c. one using pie crusts as a preservation method:

 

Source [Liber cure cocorum]: For lyoure best. Take drye floure, in

cofyne hit close, And bake hit hard, as I suppose. Thou may hit kepe

alle thys fyve 3ere, There-with alye mony metes sere. (England, c.

1430)

 

Source [Liber cure cocorum]: To keep herb3 over the wyntur. Take floure

and rere tho cofyns fyne, Wele stondande withouten stine. Take

tenderons of sauge with owte lesyng, And stop one fulle up to tho ryng.

Thenne close tho lyd fayre and wele, That ayre go not oute never a

dele, Do so with saveray, percil and rewe. And thenne bake hom harde,

wel ne3e brende. Sythun, kepe hom drye and to hom tent. This powder

schalle be of more vertu, Then opone erthe when hit gru. (England, c.

1430)

 

Source [The Good Huswifes Handmaide for the Kitchen, Stuart Peachey

(ed.)] To make a pie to keep long. You must first perboile your flesh +

press it, + when it is pressed, season it with pepper and salt whilest

it is hot, then lard it, make your paste of rie flower, it must be very

thick, or else it wil not holde, when it is seasoned + larded, lay it

in your pie, then cast on it before you close it, a good deale of

cloves and Mace beaten small, and lay upon that a good deale of Butter,

and so close it up: but you must leave a hole in the top of the lid, +

when it hath stood two houres in the Oven, you must fill it as full of

vinigar as you can, and then stop the hole as close as you can with

paste, and then set it in the Oven again: your Oven must bee verie hot

at the first, and then your pies will keep a great while: the longer

you keepe them the better wil they be: and when ye have taken them out

of the oven, and that they be almost cold, you must shake them betweene

your hands, and set them into the Oven, be well ware that one pie touch

not another by more than ones hand bredth: Remember also to let them

stand in the Oven after the Vinigar be in, two houres and more.

(England, c. 1588)

 

- Doc

 

 

Date: Sat, 19 Feb 2005 10:34:32 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: Coffyns

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

 

Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius wrote:

> Now, I have no compelling evidence to suggest that this method was

> used in period, nor that anything like a hot-water dough appears until

> the seventeenth century, but it's tempting to assume such a thing

> could have been done (whether or not it actually was is another

> story), since the technology clearly existed for other types of

> manufacture.

> As for the question of the thickness of the pastry and whether you

> need support, it also becomes more stable when the pastry is filled

> with something fairly solid, and a lid sealed in place.

> Adamantius

 

I am on my way out the door but Markham does include a

"rye paste would be kneaded only with hot water and a little

butter, or sweet seam and rye flour very finely sifted, and it

would be made tough and stiff that it may stand well in the raising

for the coffin thereof must ever be very deep: your coarse wheat crust

would be kneaded with hot water, or mutton broth and good store of butter,

and the paste made stiff and tough because that coffin must be deep also..."

 

Best edition on pages 96-98.

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Tue, 22 Feb 2005 00:10:30 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: Coffyns

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

 

On Feb 21, 2005, at 6:50 PM, Nancy Kiel wrote:

> My understanding is that since the piecrust of a standing pie was not

> the light, flaky delicacy we know and love today, it was not intended

> to be eaten, and therefore needn't be made really thin. Looking at

> some pictures of standing pies from Dutch paintings, the pies appear

> to have been broken open, rather than sliced, and the crust is

> definitely thicker (2-3 times at least) than the metal plate onwhich

> it is served (Jan Davidsz. de Heem, 1606-1648, from  THe Dutch Table

> by Gillian Riley).

 

While this may partly true, it is not always the case.  Note the

warning in the recipe below about putting in too many eggs.  This

implies that the crusts were (at least sometimes) intended to be eaten.

 

Source [The Good Huswifes Handmaide for the Kitchen, Stuart Peachey

(ed.)] To make Paste, and to raise Coffins. Take fine flower, and lay

it on a boord, and take a certaine of yolkes of Egges as your quantitie

of flower is, then take a certaine of Butter and water, and boil them

together, but ye must take heed ye put not too many yolks of Egges, for

if you doe, it will make it drie and not pleasant in eating: and yee

must take heed ye put not in too much Butter for if you doe, it will

make it so fine and short that you cannot raise. And this paste is good

to raise all manner of Coffins: Likewise if ye bake Venison, bake it in

the paste above named. (England, c. 1588) [emphasis added]

 

As for the thickness, check out the pictures below.  In each the crust

is notably thin (with parts missing, which I assume have been eaten).

 

Still-life with Turkey-Pie, Pieter Claesz (c. 1630)

http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/images/aria/sk/z/sk-a-4646.z

 

Breakfast Still-Life, Willem Claesz Heda (1637)

http://gallery.euroweb.hu/art/h/heda/breakfa.jpg

 

Breakfast Table with Blackberry Pie, Willem Claesz Heda (1631)

http://gallery.euroweb.hu/art/h/heda/breakfas.jpg

 

- Doc

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

   Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers)

 

 

Date: Tue, 22 Feb 2005 20:22:32 -0600

From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net>Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: Coffyns

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

 

All of these appear to have been baked in a form. Woodcuts from about 200

years earlier show pastries being baked in round deep walled dishes

(trappes).  These look suspiciously like what would come out of the dishes

in the woodcut.

 

Bear

 

> As for the thickness, check out the pictures below.  In each the crust

> is notably thin (with parts missing, which I assume have been eaten).

> Still-life with Turkey-Pie, Pieter Claesz (c. 1630)

> http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/images/aria/sk/z/sk-a-4646.z

> Breakfast Still-Life, Willm Claesz Heda (1637)

> http://gallery.euroweb.hu/art/h/heda/breakfa.jpg

> Breakfast Table with Blackberry Pie, Willem Claesz Heda (1631)

> http://gallery.euroweb.hu/art/h/heda/breakfas.jpg

> - Doc

 

 

Date: Wed, 23 Feb 2005 20:55:21 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: coffyns

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

 

On Feb 23, 2005, at 7:07 PM, Nancy Kiel wrote:

> Something to look for (hint, hint, researchers): period

> descriptions/instructions for serving pies

 

  From "The Boke of Keruynge" by Wynkyn de Worde (Peter Brears, ed.)

 

[from facsimile]

All bake metes that ben hote open them aboue the coffyn & all that ben

colde open theym in the mydwaye.

Custarde cheke them inche square that your souerayne may ete therof.

Doucettes pare away the sydes & the bottome beware of fumosytees. (?)

Fruyter vaunte fruyter saye be good better is fruyter pouche apple

fruyters ben good hote: and all cold fruyters touche not.

 

[Brears' translation]

All hot meat pies: open the crust at the top, and all cold, at the side.

Custard: cut it in inch squares for your lord.

Doucettes: pare away the sides and the bottom; beware of indigestible

parts.

Meat fritters and sage fritters are good; pouch fritter is better.

Apple fritters are good hot; but do not touch any cold fritters.

 

- Doc

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

   Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers)

 

 

Date: Tue, 1 Mar 2005 11:12:44 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] tarts vs. pies, a bit of help

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

 

I think a lot of the problem here is that even within a specific

source, the terms "pie", "tart", "tort", and "pasty" are not used

consistently.  This can be further compounded by differences in

translation.

 

For example, in Scully's "Neapolitan Recipe Collection", there are some

recipes called "torta" that are double-crust pies, and others that are

tarts.  The only way to figure out which one is meant is through

context.

 

- Doc

 

 

Date: Tue, 1 Mar 2005 08:35:10 -0800

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] tarts vs. pies, a bit of help

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

Alexa wrote:

> --- Micheal <dmreid at hfx.eastlink.ca> wrote:

>>  Most of us think of tarts as mini pies but the term tartlet is more

>> properly the  name. Such things as Apple tart, Mince tarts, Butter tarts,

>> and so on. For anything around 3 " in diameter or smaller they may or may

>> not have a cover.

> Ok, I was hoping for the small ones.  Now, the fun

> part, how do you make them look nice for say 80-120

> and still keep what little bit of sanity you have?  Is

> it too inappropriate and OOP to use the little tart

> tins-kind of what potpies come out of only shorter.  I

> know the aluminum wouldnt be period, but for sake of

> the SCA, it would make preparing this a little simpler.

 

Why make hors d'oeuvre tarts? They wouldn't have done so in SCA-period.

 

Around here (central West Kingdom) we tend to have tables for eight.

I make one pie/tart/torta per table.

 

I bought a pie-cutter thingy at a restaurant supply place. It's a

circle of metal with eight blunt metal "knives" attached. You just

put the thingy over the pie and press down and, viola! eight equally

sized pieces. Since folks are often concerned about everyone getting

a fair serving, this guarantees equally sized pieces.

 

OK, so that's not period either. But i have to say, i really don't

like having someone else's dirty knife cutting the pie - even thought

that would be period. BUT... we have about 10 per cent vegetarians at

my feasts, and by pre-cutting, they don't have to worry about

someone's meat-contaminated knife touching their pie slice.

 

Some cooks have expressed objections to using this device at a feast

as (a) it interferes with a Medieval experience, and (b) some folks

might want larger or smaller pieces. I figure that if someone wants a

smaller piece, they can cut one in half, and whoever wants the larger

piece can have it.

 

There are also slicers that make 6 pieces - and i think ones that

make more smaller slices.

 

At one feast we needed more small pieces of a rich creamy cheese

tart/torta/pie. We just used the cutter twice on each pie and got 16

pieces. One of the cooks had expressed skepticism about the cutter,

but was converted after using it on one pie.

 

Anyway, back to the question at hand...

 

I think you're making way too much work for yourself trying to make

cocktail quiches. Just do it the Medieval way with large

pies/tarts/tortas. If you're concerned about serving size, pre-cut

them in the kitchen.

 

Anahita

 

 

Date: Wed, 2 Mar 2005 11:23:47 -0500

From: Barbara Benson <voxeight at gmail.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] tarts vs. pies, a bit of help

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

 

>> Ok, I was hoping for the small ones. Now, the fun

>> part, how do you make them look nice for say 80-120

>> and still keep what little bit of sanity you have?  Is

>> it too inappropriate and OOP to use the little tart

>> tins-kind of what potpies come out of only shorter.

 

> Anahita > Why make hors d'oeuvre tarts? They wouldn't have done so in

> SCA-period.

 

> Cealian Of Moray > On what per chance Anahita do you base that opinion

> ?  I have never found a size restriction  so I am curious.   Honestly

> I am simply trying to learn .

 

I have never seen a recipe call for making tiny tarts, but I have read

numerous instructions to make a pie "whatever size you will". Because

of this, I have never had a difficulty justifying small tarts to

myself. I see no reason why a period cook might not have decided to do

small tarts. As we have discussed, it is much less time consuming to

make one big, or several good sized pies/tarts than it is to make many

small ones. I believe that presenting dozens and dozens of teeny pies

would be an exercise in conspicuous consumption in that you have the

labor and the ability to produce something like that.

 

So, I have presented small pies, but not along the lines of appetizer

sized. A suggestion to the good gentle that started this conversation.

When I make many small tarts I use standard muffin tins. You can make

a dozen or so per pan and they have high straight sides. They are also

a very non-modern size in visual appearance in contrast to both the

standard 9" size and the standard mini-quiche size.

 

Another option that I have been taught to use is the half sheet pan

version. In the same spirit of making something "whatever size you

will". I have made large flat pies that are then divided up and served

in individual pieces. This works best with a filling that has some

bulk and holds together on it's own, and needs some finagling for a

covered version.

 

I had planned to do that at my most recent feast, but when I got there

I was luck enough to find that they had some very strange sheet pans

that were long but narrow. I used those and was able to achieve some

very interesting shapes.

 

I hope that this may be of some use.

Glad Tidings,

--Serena da Riva

 

 

Date: Sun, 27 Mar 2005 06:44:15 -0800 (PST)

From: Louise Smithson <helewyse at yahoo.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Wheat tart was Re: Spring/Easter pies?

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

Amelyn wrote: Here is a traditional Italian Easter Pie but I'm not sure  

how far back it goes.

http://www.recipezaar.com/65382

 

It's ancestor was cooked and eaten in 16th century Italy.  I know that  

there is a copy in Messisbugo and below is the one from Scappi.  More  

cheese, more spices no "cream" but definately the ancester of the wheat  

pie recipe given above.

 

Per fare torta di formentone grosso Cap LXXXVIII

 

Il formentone e un grano assai piu grande & piu grosso del formento, &  

in Lombardia se n'usa assai in vivande, piglisi, & nettisi & faccisi  

stare in mollo nell'acqua tiepida, per quattro hore, & lavisi a piu  

acqua tiepide, & facciasi cuocere in buon brodo di carne che se  fatto  

il riso, & farro, & faccisene torta con le medesime compositione &  

ordine del capitolo sopradetto.

 

To make a tart of large wheat berries

 

Formentone is a grain much larger and fatter than wheat and in Lombardy  

it is widely used in dishes.  Take it, wash it and let it soak in tepid  

water for four hours then wash with more warm water and put it to cook  

in good meat broth as one makes the rice and wheat, and make a tart  

with the same ingredients and method as that in the chaper above.

 

Per fare torta di riso cotta in brodo di carne Cap LXXXVII

 

Cuocasi una libra di riso ben mondo in brodo di carne grasso, & cotto  

che sara di modo che sia ben sodo, cavisi & lasci scolare & pestisi nel  

mortaro con libra una e mezza di prevatura fresca, & una lebra & mezza  

di cascio Parmigiano buono, & mezza libra di cascio grasso, tre quarti  

di pepe, un'oncia di cannella, una libra e mezza di zuccaro, quattro  

oncie di buttiro per conservarla morbida, sei ova fresche, & d'essa  

compositione facciasene torta con un sfoglio sotto e sopra, & il  

tortiglione intorno; facciasi cuocere nel forno, o sotto il testo con  

la sua crostata sopra.  In questo modo si puo fare del farro, &  

volendosi bianca faccisi cuocere il riso nel latte di capra, &  

volendosi passare per la stamigna sara in arbitrio, in luogo della  

provatura pongasi ricotta, & in luogo delle spetierie, gengevero pisto,  

& chiare d'ova senza il rosso, con piu zuccaro, & un poco di cascio  

Parmigiano grattato.

 

To make a tart of rice cooked with meat broth.

 

Cook a pound of well peeled rice in good fat broth, and when it is  

cooked in a way that it is good and soft empty it out (of the pan) and  

let it drain.  Then grind it in a mortar with a pound and a half of  

fresh mozzarella, a pound and a half of good Parmesan cheese, and half  

a pound of fat (soft) cheese, three quarters of an ounce of pepper, an  

ounce of cinnamon, a pound and a half of sugar, and four ounces of  

sugar to keep it moist, six fresh eggs.  And of this mixture make a  

tart with a sheet (of pastry) below and above and pastry decorations  

around the rim.  Put it to cook in the oven or under a "testo" with the  

crust on top. In this way one can make wheat. And if you want it white  

cook the rice in goats milk, and you can pass it through a sieve if you  

want, and in place of mozzarella add ricotta, in place of the spices  

use ground ginger, add egg whites without the yolk, with more sugar,  

and a little bit of grated Parmesan.

 

 

Date: Tue, 11 Apr 2006 19:54:09 -0700

From: Susan Fox <selene at earthlink.net>

Subject: Green Pyes was Re: [Sca-cooks] Cooking Feasts without a

        Kitchen

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

 

>> My mother suggested this morning that we make the Green Pyes that I'm so

>> fond of.  It can be done in advance and served at room temp.  Muriath

>> has this recipe already.  Load it up with roasted garlic and I  

>> think we will have a winner.

 

I wouldn't have "spoon teased" but I was at work and the recipe was  

at home.

Oh drat, the one on my computer is the abbreviated "atkins" type with no

crust.  Let me dredge this up from my brain:

 

Take an unbaked pie crust of your choice.  Put it on a cookie sheet because

it will inevitably spill, burn and meld to the bottom of your oven.  Place

therein, in this order:

 

Julienned fresh herbs of your choice  - I like sage

 

One medium onion, chopped fine and sauteed. [Maybe not sauteed if you are

using one of those Vidalias we have discussed recently.]  This is where the

Garlic should go also if you are using that.

 

1 layer of grated cheese of your choice.

 

"Spring Greens" or "Mesclun Mix" available pre-washed and bagged these days.

[Actually, spinach or any leafy greens will work.]  1 average handful if

you have big hands, 2 big handfulls if you have little paws like mine.  Yes,

this will poke out over the top and look like a big salad, that's all right,

it shrinks as it cooks.

 

1 layer of grated cheese of your choice.

 

Pour over with a mixture of 3 eggs to 2 cups of milk.  If it does not reach

the lip of the pie crust, mix up some more.  Make Pain Perdu with the excess

egg-milk, you deserve a treat.

 

Bake at 350 degrees F for One Hour or until well browned on top.  Use  

the skewer test to determine doneness.

 

I have tried this in a convection oven and found that it browned nicely on

the outside LONG BEFORE it was done inside, so I cannot recommend using a

convection oven for this kind of cooking.

 

Selene

 

 

Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2006 20:29:29 +0200

From: Volker Bach <carlton_bach at yahoo.de>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Seeking Period pie Crust

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

 

Am Mittwoch, 28. Juni 2006 20:15 schrieb wildecelery at aol.com:

I am making sambocade (cheesecake with rosewater and elderflower) as part

of a Royalty presentation for Pennsic.  I plan to make them tart/muffin tin

sized.  Does anyone have a period (yet edible...not coffyn style) crust

recipe?  Last time I made them, I used a standard 3-2-1 dough, but I would

like to use something more period, if there's a simple one out there ( I

need something that will survive the travel from Northern VT to Pennsic).

 

This might help

 

Ain pastetentaig z? machen z? allen auffgesetzten pasteten

Nempt ain mell, das pest, so jr bekomen m?gen, vngefarlich

2 g?t ga?ffen oder darnach jr die gros? oder klain haben

welt, thiets auff den disch vnnd riert 2 air mit ainem messer

daran vnnd saltzt ain wenig, macht jn ainem pfenndlin ain

wasser vnnd wie 2 g?te air gros? schmaltz, last es als anainander

ergan vnnd sieden/ darnach schit es an das obgemelt

mell ob dem disch vnnd mach ain starcken taig vnnd

arbait jn woll, wie dich g?t d?nckt, wan es jm somer jst,

m?s? man an des wasser stat ain fleschbrie nemen vnnd an

des schmaltz stat ain abscheffet von der s?pen nemen, wan

der taig gearbait jst, so machent jn z? ainer r?nden k?gel

vnnd thenet jn fein mit den fingern vornen aus oder mit ainem

walgelholtz/ das jn der mit ain hechin beleib, darnach

lands erstaren an der keltin,

 

To make a pastry dough for all shaped pies

 

Take flour, the best that you can get, about two handfuls, depending on how

large or small you would have the pie. Put it on the table and with a knife stir in two eggs and a little salt. Put water in a small pan and a piece of fat the size of two good eggs, let it all dissolve together and boil. Afterwards pour it on the flour on the table and make a strong dough and work it well, however you feel is right. If it is summer, one must take meat broth instead of water and in the place of the fat the skimmings from the broth. When the dough is kneaded, then make of it a round ball and draw it out well on the sides with the fingers or with a rolling pin, so that in the middle a raised area remains, then let it chill in the cold.

(Kochbuch der Sabina Welserin, translation by Valoise Armstrong)

 

 

This one also works for sweet pies

 

Czu machen ein krapffen teig. Item seud honig in wein al? vil du wilt und

nym auch ein weitte schussel und zwir den wein mit weissem melbe als ein

muslein. Schlach ein ayer tottern der rot sey in ein ander schussel und

auch ein wenig saffran das treib gar wol mit dem gemachten honig wein und

tu es in den gezwerten teig temperir es auch wol. Und wurff ye ein

steublein melbs dar zu in die schusseln als lang bi? du ein litigen teig

gemachst. Den so bereit ein sauber tuch auf und zeug den teig darauf mit

einem welgerholtz zu massen duen. Un schneid den form gro? od klein all? du

die krapffen haben wilt nach yeder ful da richt dich nach. Od was teig man

mit hefel od bier od hopf wasser macht dy mu? man lassen auf gen und

darnach aber ein knetten mit loem wasser od mit einem gesotten honig wein

da wi? dich nach zu richten.

(K?chenmaisterey, 1490)

 

To make dough for Krapfen. Boil honey in wine, as much as you need, take a

wide bowl and stir the wine with white flour until it is the consistency of

porridge. Break an egg yolk that is red with saffron into another bowl and

stir it with the honey wine. Add that to the other bowl and mix it well.

Add flour, little by little, until you geta stiff (?) dough. Turn that out

on a clean cloth and roll it out to the proper thickness. Cut out the

shapes you want the Krapfen in, large or small, depending on the filling

you want to use. But the doughs that are made with yeast or beer or hop

water need to rise first and then be kneaded with lukewarm water or honey

wine. Heed this advice.

 

Now, this is not very clear, but it shows the major components of one dough

while pointing at a number of other possibilities. My reading of this would

be:

 

1/2 cup white wine

3-4 tblsp honey

2 eggs

2-3 cups flour

saffron

 

Heat the wine and dissolve the honey in it. Beat the eggs with a pinch of

saffron. In a large mixing bowl, combine honey-wine, egg, and flour until a

stiff dough results. Cool and rest, then roll out to use. This dough does not

have any leavening agents in it (unless unboiled wine is added, which might

introduce a miminal quantity of yeast), but it deep-fries well and the honey

flavour harmonises with sweet fillings.

 

Giano

 

 

Date: Thu, 29 Jun 2006 09:22:30 +0200

From: Volker Bach <carlton_bach at yahoo.de>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Seeking Period pie Crust

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

 

Am Donnerstag, 29. Juni 2006 08:20 schrieb ranvaig at columbus.rr.com:

<<< Czu machen ein krapffen teig.

 

To make dough for Krapfen.

 

Modernly Krapfen are fried donuts, not pies. Maybe the word has

changed, but this doesn't sound like a pie crust. And 1/2 c wiine

for 3 c flour sounds like too much liquid.

Ranvaig   >>>

 

This is for fritters, not baked goods, but at the same time it's not for

anything like modern Krapfen. It makes something like deep-fried pastries,

and it can be baked successfully, though it does not behave like the pie

crust dough we are used to - much softer and liable to tear in unbaked form.

It is, however, older by several decades than other surviving pie crust

recipes, and indicates considerable variety in existence at the time.

 

1/2 cup is the high estimate - depends on what flour and what kind of honey

you use and how you like your dough. I might well try less to get a more

crust-like mix, but for fritters, this makes a decent proportion.

 

Also, it's an early sweetened crust. That's a good thing. Almost a century

later, the Koekerye still refers only to 'make a crust of eggs and flour',

which tastes less than satisfying.

 

Giano

 

 

Date: Thu, 29 Jun 2006 06:50:31 -0700 (PDT)

From: Tomasia <taelyne at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Seeking Period pie Crust

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

wildecelery at aol.com:

<<< I am making sambocade (cheesecake with rosewater

and elderflower) as part

of a Royalty presentation for Pennsic.  I plan to

make them tart/muffin tin

sized.  Does anyone have a period (yet

edible...not coffyn style) crust recipe? >>>

 

Before I answer, I should introduce myself as I have

been lurking here for about 6 months. My name is

Signora Tomasia da Collivento, I am apprenticed to

Master Huen Damebrigge, owner of Gode Cookery. I

reside in Aethelmearc. Ciao to the list!

 

I have been researching period pie crusts for about 2

years now. I plan to present this class this fall. My

handout is nearly complete. My findings from over 30

some period sources basically come down to this: There

are 8 basic period pastry recipes, each with their own

purpose to enhance the filling. The one that would

work the best to enhance the sambocade is my redaction

of what I call

 

"The Custard Paste"

The original comes from Libro di Cucina - Recipe "C"

3# white flour

1# Almonds

1/2# hazelnuts, toasted, ground

1/4 c. butter melted

2T sugar

2-3 T almond milk

Make almond milk from your almonds. Drain milk

reserving nuts and chop them well. Mix the almonds

with the flour and the hazelnuts. Add sugar and butter

until your dough forms. This dough works out better if

you press it in the pan, however, if you roll slowly

on a WELL floured surface this will work. Place in

your pie pan. Fill. Bake. Yield:2 crusts

 

Notes: This has been tested and accepted by the

populace and they loved it. For tarts grease your tart

pans well with BUTTER. You may add 1/2 t salt to help

preserve the crust a bit longer without affecting the

taste. 1 recipe will yield about 48 tarts. I have used

pecans as a substitute for hazelnuts due to price and

availability. A little extra flour will help stiffen

the dough a bit.

 

If anyone is interested in the hand out, either now or

when completed, please contact me privately at:

tomasia at padronadicasa dot us.

I hope that this will work well for you.

 

Signora Tomasia

 

 

Date: Sat, 8 Jul 2006 13:06:26 -0700 (PDT)

From: Carole Smith <renaissancespirit2 at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] help with a pie

To: dailleurs at liripipe.com,   Cooks within the SCA

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

I second what Anne-Marie said about overfilling the pie and about  

chilling the crust. I have found that a crust that is/was chilled  

browns slower, which may well be a good thing.

 

   One more thought that might be useful.  If you look at Robert  

May's line drawings of pie crust tops, all that are not fancy designs  

(which have holes) have a round hole in the middle.  There's no way I  

can think of to cut the design after baking without damaging the  

crust once it is crispy, so I cut it before placing it over the  

filled pie.  (Funny that's exactly what my English cousin did and she  

knows nothing about historic cooking.)

 

   Cordelia Toser

 

Anne-Marie Rousseau <dailleurs at liripipe.com> wrote:

   on pies:

 

yes, chilling the crust would have let it bake before it slumped a  

bit better. Like how you prebake a shell and it sometimes slumps on the edges?

 

also, overfilling the shell so that as teh fruit cooked down, you were left with a space helps (my homemade fruit pies will often have this by accident. grr. Blue ribbon pies dont do that. oh well. I tended to enter pickles in the  

fair anyway.)

 

lastly, the amount of "slump" is very much dictated by the type of crust. a

sturdier crust will be less likely to slump (many of the period recipes for pie

crust yield a sturdy dough indeed...). a soft dough will slump more.  I learned this the hard way...the test recipe for my parma tarts had pretty little  

sturdy crenellations. when we did it forthe banquet, in a hot kitchen with  

store bought dough, they all slumped something fierce and it was very very sad.

 

(another life lesson...do your test with EXACTLY the same

brands/recipe/ingredients/conditions for a true test....)

 

hope this helps some! (raspberry cream tart sounds very yummy, by the  

way :))

 

--Anne-Marie

 

 

Date: Sat, 8 Jul 2006 17:18:51 -0400

From: "Daniel  Phelps" <phelpsd at gate.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] help with a pie

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

 

Was written:

<<<   One more thought that might be useful.  If you look at Robert May's line

drawings of pie crust tops, all that are not fancy designs (which have

holes) have a round hole in the middle.  There's no way I can think of to

cut the design after baking without damaging the crust once it is crispy, so

I cut it before placing it over the filled pie. (Funny that's exactly what

my English cousin did and she knows nothing about historic cooking.) >>>

 

When I cook my modern lamb pie I pre-back the bottom crust fill it with the

cooked ground lamb and veggie mixture, pop on the pastry top and cut a

little X in the center of  the top.  I then fold back the four tabs created

by the X, pour in sherry. and cook the pie.

 

Works for me.

 

Daniel

 

 

Date: Sat, 08 Jul 2006 19:13:49 -0400

From: Nina <bateshotel at rogers.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] help with a pie

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

 

You might try an old fashioned pie bird or pie funnel.  Besides helping

vent the steam to keep the top crust flaky and tender, they also help

keep  the top crust from sagging.

 

Odette

 

On Fri Jul 7 11:44 , Devra at aol.com sent:

> Help! A number of period recipes call for a pie to be partly cooked, and

> then a hole made in the crust and a 'lyre' of some kind of liquid poured in

> before the finishing cooking. I have a nice book ('Book of Old Tarts') that I

> got on sale while in England, and have been trying a few recipes. One  

> of them (raspberry cream tart) called for just such a process.

 

 

Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2006 17:25:53 EDT

From: Devra at aol.com

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pie bird/pie funnel?

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

A pie bird is a hollow ceramic item, usually made in the shape of a blackbird, with open mouth (kind of playing on the '4 & 20  blackbirds'  joke.) It is placed on the bottom crust of the pie, and the filling is piled   around it. Then the top crust is put on, and vented over the bird so that the   head and beak poke out. Then you bake the pie. The bird functions to vent steam   and also extra liquid; it helps keep the pie from boiling over. I guess a pie   funnel would serve the same function; never seen one of them, though...

 

     Devra, who thought she had one of them there things here somewhere

 

 

Date: Wed, 06 Sep 2006 23:36:23 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Coffins was beets...

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

 

As regards coffyns-- Ivan Day has pictures of raised pies

along with a description of various recipes.

http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe.htm

http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe2.htm

 

Coffins need not be casket shaped.

A coffin also was a basket. OED says

*coffin*

 

*1. * A basket; transl. L. /cophinus/, Gr. /ko/enticons/acute.giffinoj/.

 

[So in OF. and many mod.F. dialects.]

 

     * *C. 1380* Wyclif /Serm./ Sel. Wks. I. 62 ?ei gedriden and filden

       twelve coffynes of relif of fyve barly loves;

     * *1382* Wyclif /2 Kings/ x. 7 Thei..slewen the seventy men, and

       putten the hevedis of hem in cofynes.

     * *1432-50* tr. /Higden/ (Rolls) I. 15 Gedrenge..the fragmentes of

       the cophinnes remanent.

     * *1542* Elyot /Dict./, /Tibin/, a baskette or coffyn made of

       wyckers or bull rushes, or barke of a tree: such oone was Moyses

       put in to.

 

*. * Cookery.* * A mould of paste for a pie; the crust of a pie. Obs.

 

     * *C. 1420* /Liber Cocorum/ (1862) 41 Make a cofyne as to smalle pye.

     * *C. 1420* /Cookery Bk./ 45 Make fayre past of flowre & water,

       Sugre, & Safroun, & Salt; & ?an make fayre round cofyns ?er-of;

     * *1588* Shaks. /Tit. A./ v. ii. 189 Of the paste a coffen I will

       reare.

     * *A. 1654* Selden /Table-t./ (Arb.) 33 The Coffin of our Christmas

       Pies in shape long, is in imitation of the Cratch.

 

It was also

A paper case; spec. a receptacle made by twisting paper into a conical

form or `cornet', to contain groceries, etc., or for use as a filter;

still applied by printers to small paper bags of this shape to hold

spare type, superfluous sorts, etc.*1577* Frampton /Joyful News/ (1580)

42 The smoke of this Hearbe, which they receaue at the mouth through

certaine coffins, suche as the Grocers do vse to put in their Spices.

 

There are various reasons why pies might have been round. Stability

is one aspect. It's also probably far easier to raise a piecrust in a

round shape.

 

Johnnae

 

Stephanie Ross wrote:

> Also, I have another question.

> Were there certain shapes for making cofyns/coffins, and did the shapes

> change over the centuries? I can't imagine anything more wasteful of space

> in an oven than a round pie tin. Weren't coffins square for the most part?

> What could you use to imitate a coffin pan? I think an 8 X 8 pan would be

> too deep, but I'm really not sure.

> ~Aislinn~

 

 

Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2006 22:53:09 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Speaking of beets...

To: <hlaislinn at earthlink.net>,       "Cooks within the SCA"

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

>  Also, I have another question.

> Were there certain shapes for making cofyns/coffins, and did the shapes

> change over the centuries? I can't imagine anything more wasteful of space

> in an oven than a round pie tin. Weren't coffins square for the most part?

> What could you use to imitate a coffin pan? I think an 8 X 8 pan would be

> too deep, but I'm really not sure.

> ~Aislinn~

 

Bread was round, trappes were round, tart pans were round, so I see no

particular problem with a round, free standing coffyn.  When you are talking

about a hemispherical baking chamber (fairly common in heat mass ovens),

square or rectangular actually wastes space.

 

As a baker, I would say the shape of the piece is less of an issue than

being able to get it in and out of the oven and the shape of any pans, molds

or utensils for preparing the dish.  In fact, I was looking at a wood-cut

tonight of a tart shaped like a peacock where the body is formed in an oval

pan.  I can also see where a heavy paste might have been shaped to the cut

of meat rather than made round, square, or some other specific shape.

 

As for depth, in the illustrations, trappes look like deep casserole pans

with sides that might be 4 to 8 inches deep, while tart pans have relatively

shallow sides.  The pans you used would likely have been decided by the dish

you were preparing and the type of paste or dough you used.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Fri, 08 Sep 2006 07:51:53 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie Shapers:  Was Speaking of Beets

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

 

The web sites that I gave in the posting on coffins

also show several illustrations from Robert May

and several raised pies--

 

See also the marvelous cutwork custard pies at

http://www.historicfood.com/Setcustards.htm

 

As regards coffyns-- Ivan Day has pictures of raised pies

along with a description of various recipes.

http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe.htm

http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe2.htm

 

Johnnae

 

Terry Decker wrote:

> One of the great skills of a baker is to be able to cut and form dough by

> hand to produce decorations for breads and other bakegoods (I haven't

> practiced enough to be anywhere near good). The little that I have found

> makes me think molds were used where freehand decoration wasn't practical

> (as with ginger bread) or where standardization was required (as  

> with the Eucharist).

> Using molds with a pie shaper or for a pie cover would probably work, but I

> haven't seen anything to suggest it occurred.  It's an interesting  

> question.

> Bear

 

 

Date: Sat, 9 Sep 2006 15:44:13 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie Shapers

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

 

Cealian wrote:

> Now you see the one in the second site has crowns on the side with a vent on

> top bottom of the picture. That one is the one which set me to  

> thinking of wood cut mold.

  ( http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe.htm )

 

Actually, I believe Cealian is correct.  That crown was made using  

Ivan's gingerbread mold which Johnnae, I, and others used last  

April.  Ivan let me make a "Sculpy" copy of it which is sitting in my  

kitchen.  I would hazard a guess that Ivan used the mold to print the  

crowns, cut around the shape and affixed that dough to the side of  

the pie.  I would stake a cookbook of mine that the mold was used,  

although I'm not sure about the cutting-out method.

 

Alys Katharine

 

 

Date: Sat, 09 Sep 2006 23:50:49 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie Shapers

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

 

Start with Three pies were made from seventeenth century designs

http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe.htm

 

Now compare those pies with the ones pictured here

http://www.historicfood.com/FransFranken.htm

 

The picture is by Frans Franken [Frans Francken II]

and was painted in circa 1603-1605.

It's titled /Lazarus and Dives/ or Der Arme Lazarus.

So decorated pies were appearing in paintings just after 1600.

 

The painting Lazarus at the Rich Man's Table, 1618 by Kaspar van den Hoecke

is also probably the inspiration for the pie with the peacock. It's featured

on the front of The Pleasures of the Table which is a book that Ivan

day co-authored with Peter Brown. I've [not] found anything on the web  

except for a couple of posters.

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Sun, 10 Sep 2006 07:35:44 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie Shapers

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

 

I shouldn't post late on Saturday nights.

It's Ivan Day and I found only posters on the web of that Lazarus

painting. There are a number of these so it's a rich area to explore.

 

Johnnae.

 

> The painting Lazarus at the Rich Man's Table, 1618 by Kaspar van den Hoecke

> is also probably the inspiration for the pie with the peacock. It's featured

> on the front of The Pleasures of the Table which is a book that Ivan

> day co-authored with Peter Brown.I've found anything on the web  

> except for a couple of posters.

 

 

Date: Sun, 10 Sep 2006 21:11:54 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie Shapers

To: <alysk at ix.netcom.com>,    "Cooks within the SCA"

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

> Cealian wrote:

>> Now you see the one in the second site has crowns on the side with  

>> a vent on

>> top bottom of the picture. That one is the one which set me to  

>> thinking of wood cut mold.

> ( http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe.htm )

> Actually, I believe Cealian is correct. That crown was made using Ivan's

> gingerbread mold which Johnnae, I, and others used last April.  Ivan let

> me make a "Sculpy" copy of it which is sitting in my kitchen.  I would

> hazard a guess that Ivan used the mold to print the crowns, cut around the

> shape and affixed that dough to the side of the pie.  I would stake a

> cookbook of mine that the mold was used, although I'm not sure  

> about the cutting-out method.

> Alys Katharine

 

I can't tell if the crowns are imprinted separately and affixed to the

panels or if the crown is cut into plate that would create the panel while

embossing the crown.  The pie to the right looks as if it has been carved,

but due to the even work and sharpness of the detail, I'm wondering if it

hasn't been pressed into a flat strip of dough with a modernly milled

rolling stamp.

 

I've got 15 pounds of flour and a can of shortening.  Using Markham's short

dough recipe, I can do some experimenting.  I think a simnel decorated like

one of these pies might be fun.

 

Come to think of it, I've inherited some German tin molds.  It might be fun

to drop Markham's "pie of minced meat" made from lamb in the shape of a lamb

on the head table one of these days.  Not quite period, due to the style of

mold (I think), but fun.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Sun, 4 Mar 2007 21:57:19 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cofyns

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

 

> Here's a question that came up while I was helping to judge the Royal

> Baker competition in Atlantia:

> When a recipe refers to a "Cofyn", does it ALWAYS mean an inedible pie

> crust or is there room to assume/prove that it was an edible crust?

> Vitha

> Lady Hrosvitha von Celle

 

Coffin, in any of its various spellings, is usually a reference to a

container; a basket, a box, a chest or a pie shell.  There are some more

obscure meanings, but let's stick with the container.  The word in this

usage appears from at least the early 15th Century into the 18th Century.

In most references, they are talking about a pastry pie shell, but Hugh Plat

makes reference to "coffins of white plate" in Delights for Ladies.

 

Coffins range from a hard paste of flour and water to Elizabethean pie

shells that are apparently meant to be eaten. According to the OED, there

is a reference to coffins from "1420 Cookery Bk." that reads, "make fayre

past of flowre & water, Sugre, & Safroun & Salt; & then make fayre, round

cofyns thereof." (substituting "th" for the Middle English thorn symbol).

In this case, the addition of sugar makes me think this coffin was meant to

be eaten.  From the 1420 date, the source is probably Harleian 279.

 

IIRC, the earliest addition of fat to a pie shell recipe, which would

improve the edibility, is mid-16th Century.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Sun, 4 Mar 2007 23:01:49 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edoard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cofyns

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

 

On Mar 4, 2007, at 10:01 PM, Kerri Martinsen wrote:

> Here's a question that came up while I was helping to judge the

> Royal Baker competition in Atlantia:

> When a recipe refers to a "Cofyn", does it ALWAYS mean an inedible

> pie crust or is there room to assume/prove that it was an edible crust?

 

There is some clear proof that raised coffins weren't always inedible

- note the marked text.

 

  From "The Good Huswifes Handmaide for the Kitchen", Stuart Peachey

(ed.)  -  England, c. 1588

To make Paste, and to raise Coffins. Take fine flower, and lay it on

a boord, and take a certaine of yolkes of Egges as your quantitie of

flower is, then take a certaine of Butter and water, and boil them

together, but ye must take heed ye put not too many yolks of Egges,

for if you doe, ***it will make it drie and not pleasant in

eating***: and yee must take heed ye put not in too much Butter for

if you doe, it will make it so fine and short that you cannot raise.

And this paste is good to raise all manner of Coffins: Likewise if ye

bake Venison, bake it in the paste above named.

 

I've got some notes collected about pie crusts online, but not too

many conclusions yet.

 

        http://www.medievalcookery.com/notes/piecrust.shtm

 

- Doc

 

 

Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2007 19:36:16 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edoard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cofyns

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

 

On Mar 5, 2007, at 7:17 AM, Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius wrote:

> Isn't there a relatively early French piecrust recipe in verse that

> is more or less contemporary with Le Menagier and Taillevent? As I

> recall (which I don't, not very well) it called for little bits of

> fat. Maybe it appears in a footnote in the Pichon edition of Le

> Menagier?

 

The recipe below from Viandier (1485) seems to suggest a crust made

with eggs and butter.

 

TARTRES COUVERTES. Tartres couvertes, soit destramp?

la crouste d'oeufz et de beurre, la farce destramp?e de deux

oeufz et d'eaue en chescune tartre et non plus, et beurre

destramp? avec le fromage broy? en ung mortier.

 

 

[rough translation]

COVERED TARTS.  Covered tarts, that is tempered

the crust of eggs and butter, the filling tempered with two

eggs and water for each tart and no more, and butter

tempered with cheese ground in a mortar.

 

- Doc

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

   Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers)

 

 

Date: Sat, 07 Jun 2008 13:42:13 +1200

From: Antonia Calvo <ladyadele at paradise.net.nz>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Coffyn Paste

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

 

Lilinah wrote:

<<< We've had some lively conversations about the dough needed to make an

inedible, free-standing coffyn in the past few months.

 

People have mentioned ingredients - flour - lard and/or water - salt -

sometimes eggs. But i don't recall seeing one with some idea of

proportions. I know that flours vary in the amount of water they'll

absorb, so i'm not asking for an exact recipe. But i was hoping to get

something with more details than just a list of potential ingredients.

 

I realize this would be based on the experience of cooks on the list

and not an actual historical recipe. >>>

 

I just use Mrs. Beeton's recipe (no. 1217)-- 1lb flour, 10oz water, 3oz

fat.  

 

http://www.mrsbeeton.com/27-chapter27.html

--

Antonia di Benedetto Calvo

 

 

Date: Thu, 17 Jan 2008 19:53:41 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edoard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Coffyn Pan?

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

 

On Jan 17, 2008, at 6:30 PM, Elise Fleming wrote:

> Doc wrote:

>> There is clear evidence that the crusts in period were sometimes

>> intended to be eaten, that they were not always thick, and that they

>> were sometimes made with fine flour instead of rye. I've collected a

>> number of recipes and pictures on the subject, and have them online

>> at the URL below.

>> http://www.medievalcookery.com/notes/piecrust.shtm

> What a superb web page!  Just the thing I was always hoping someone would

> do. While I don't disagree that people could have eaten some of the

> missing crusts that are pictured there, I don't think that that is what

> necessarily happened.  If the pie were broken into and the crust was not

> edible, would it really have been left on the serving dish?  I would

> surmise that it might have been removed and given to the poor - or to

> whomever the leftovers went.

 

Yes, they might have thrown/given the crust away, but then there's

this recipe (note the part between the ***):

 

To make Paste, and to raise Coffins. Take fine flower, and lay it on

a boord, and take a certaine of yolkes of Egges as your quantitie of

flower is, then take a certaine of Butter and water, and boil them

together,

***but ye must take heed ye put not too many yolks of Egges, for if

you doe, it will make it drie and not pleasant in eating:***and yee

must take heed ye put not in too much Butter for if you doe, it will

make it so fine and short that you cannot raise. And this paste is

good to raise all manner of Coffins: Likewise if ye bake Venison,

bake it in the paste above named.  [The Good Huswifes Handmaide for

the Kitchen, Stuart Peachey (ed.)]

 

- Doc

 

 

Date: Thu, 17 Jan 2008 21:05:21 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Coffyn Pan?

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

 

Here are a few recipes I lifted from Sass years ago.

 

Bear

 

Of the Mixture of Paste...Your course Wheat-crust should be kneaded with hot

water, or Mutton broth, and good store of butter, and the paste stiff and

tough, because that Coffin must be deep.

 

Gervase Markham, The English Hous-wife, 1615

 

To make Paste another Way.  Take butter and ale, and seeth them together;

then take your flower, and put there into three egs, sugar, saffron, and

salt.

 

The Good Huswives Handmaid for Cookerie, 1588

 

Another Way.  Then make your paste with butter, fair water, and the yolks of

two or three Egs, and so soone as ye have driven your paste, cast on a

little sugar, and rosewater, and harden your paste afore in the oven.  Then

take it out, and fill it, and set it in againe...

 

The Good Huswives Handmaid for Cookerie, 1588

 

 

Date: Sat, 27 Dec 2008 07:07:13 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pastry Question

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

 

On Dec 26, 2008, at 10:41 PM, osermart at msu.edu wrote:

<<< After the crust had baked for 10 minutes, I took it out to remove  

the beans I'd used to weight it and the the sides of the crust had  

slumped over in spots!  I was able to use my long icing spatula to  

press everything back up against the sides of the pan and it stayed  

that way for the rest of the baking.

 

The pan I used was a straight-sided 8-inch round cake pan (the  

recipe called for an 8-inch springform pan, which also has straight  

sides).  Husband says I should have filled it with beans high enough  

up to hold the sides up as it baked.  Is this the case, or is there  

some trick to sticking the pastry to the sides of the pan so it  

doesn't slump while baking? >>>

 

Piling the beans high enough to give a little added support to the  

sides couldn't hurt, as long as there's enough time for the heat to  

get to the sides in baking (you can get artificial pie beans made of  

aluminum that are a little more heat-conductive).

 

Some recipes do specify greasing the bottom but not the sides of the  

pan for this reason, but I believe that's mostly a cake thing.

 

In general, though, piling the beans a little higher and being  

prepared to fix it while the pastry is still warm, moist and flexible,  

as you did, should the problem arise, is what most people do.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Thu, 22 Jan 2009 10:50:23 -0600 (CST)

From: "Pixel, Goddess and Queen" <pixel at hundred-acre-wood.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Best bulk pie crust recipe?

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

 

On Thu, 22 Jan 2009, jimandandi at cox.net wrote:

<<< I am embarrassed to admit I have never made pie crusts from scratch for a feast.

 

I am making chard and ricotta pies for a feast coming up, and I'd like to do covered coffin-style pies but I'm afraid a period hard crust would be seen as just "bad pie crust" around here.

 

I would prefer not to use vegetable shortening (yuck), but butter would be too expensive and lard means even fewer vegetarian dishes. Oil pastry doesn't have enough stability for a coffin-style pie.

 

What is your favorite bulk pastry recipe? Have you made hard pastry cases for feasts? How were they received?

 

Madhavi >>>

 

I use the recipe from here for pie crusts:

http://www.diynetwork.com/diy/lc_desserts/article/0,2041,DIY_14000_2273785,00.html

 

With the fibro and the tendinitis my hands aren't up to cutting fat into

flour anymore so it gets made in the KitchenAid. For feasts, a double

batch will make five generous 9" single crusts easily. I've found that

you can play with the proportions of fat without too much trouble,

although I've not tried an entirely butter or an entirely shortening crust

yet, nor have I tried using lard instead of the shortening.

 

This crust is pretty durable, easy to roll, pretty forgiving, and it's

tasty. It's also hella easy, which my hands appreciate.

 

Margaret FitzWilliam

 

 

Date: Thu, 22 Jan 2009 10:25:02 -0500

From: "Euriol of Lothian" <euriol at ptd.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Best bulk pie crust recipe?

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

 

<<< What is your favorite bulk pastry recipe? Have you made hard pastry cases

for feasts? How were they received?

 

Madhavi >>>

 

How many pie crusts are you expecting to do?

 

I've used a ratio of 1 cup flour, 1/3 cup butter, 1/2 tsp. salt and 3-4 Tbsp

ice cold water with lots of success for making a single pie crust. For a 1

lb. box of butter, I can get 6 pie crusts. I know that butter is sold in

bulk at some of the big wholesale stores and sometimes I can find it for

$2/pound at the local market.

 

Euriol

 

 

Date: Mon, 30 Mar 2009 15:07:30 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pie sources

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

 

Spinach pie recipes are available. Here's a one from source (haven't

interpreted them yet):

 

From the Good Housewife's Handmaid in the Kitchen (1594)

 

To make a tart of Spinnage.

 

        Take some cast creame, and seeth some spinnage in faire water till it be

verie soft, then put it into a Collendar, that the water may soake from it:

then straine the Spinnage, and cast the creame together, let there be good

plenty of Spinnage: set it upon a chafing dish of coales, and put to it

Sugar and some Butter, and let it boyle a while. Then put it in the paste,

and bake it, and caste blanch powder or it, and so serve it in.

 

toodles, margaret

 

 

Date: Mon, 30 Mar 2009 14:32:06 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] lunch suggestions

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

 

<<< Indeed -- with pies and $2-3*50, cost becomes an issue. Do you want to

spend $.25 per head on something that's just going to be used once then

thrown away (the pie tins), or can you use that extra $12 for a food item? >>>

 

When I purchase frozen pie shells in bulk, I usually get tins and shells for

around $.15 per serving.  However, YMMV depending on what kind of discount

groceries and suppliers you have available.  For 50 people, I'd probably

just pull the tins out of the cupboard. (Something about being addicted to

baking.)

 

<<< Note, though, that when you go with the empanada press, you're trading

money cost with time cost (it takes more time to make the individual

items--and having at least two presses is a really good thing)

 

toodles, Margaret >>>

 

While many small pies are kind of neat, a few large pies require a lot less

exertion.  I like my 4" and 5" pastry presses.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Mon, 30 Mar 2009 18:43:49 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] lunch suggestions

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

 

<<< Just out of curiosity, though... where do you get your frozen pie shells?

Celia >>>

 

I tend to buy mine at a local grocery chain, Crest Foods.  They have larger

quantity packages and better quality than Wal-Mart and a couple other

discount groceries.  I haven't checked out Sam's Club and we don't have a

Costco close at hand.  At Christmastide, I was in New Mexico and found Marie

Callendar frozen pie shells on sale at $1.25 each.  They're the best quality

frozen pie shell I've found and are vegetarian friendly, but I'd hesitate to

buy them at full price for a feast.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 2 Apr 2009 09:56:41 -0700 (PDT)

From: Arianwen ferch Arthur <caer_mab at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Sca-cooks Digest, Vol 36, Issue 6

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

<snip>

<<< lumpia wrappers...As pie pastry? Did it hold well? I would have never thought to use that and while I positively am horrible at making pastry dough, I can sling lumpia wrappers with the best of them. How did you get them to not burst with only one layer of pastry?

 

That would make little pasties quite easy to bring for our potluck

sideboards. (The season is upon us.) <snip> >>>

 

As long as they are not overstuffed it should work just fine (but there may be different thicknesses of wrappers too!

 

Arianwen ferch Arthur

 

 

Date: Thu, 26 Nov 2009 10:02:23 -0500

From: Elaine Koogler <kiridono at gmail.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Does pie crust freeze?

 

Yup...I've frozen pie crusts...and, to be honest, often I use commercially

prepared crusts which are usually frozen.  So you shouldn't have any

problem.

 

Kiri

 

On Thu, Nov 26, 2009 at 9:57 AM, Volker Bach <carlton_bach at yahoo.de> wrote:

<<< I have been asked to cook a small feast away from home, and it looks

increasingly like the kitchen facilities are suboptimal. My transport is

also limited, though not very, and the best solution thus seems to be to

bring anything that might be a problem to make on site, such as pie crust

dough (modern - people here don't react well to non-edible coffins). My

problem is, I don't think it will survive the trip and Friday unless i

freeze it, and I'm not sure that's a viable plan. Any experience either way?

 

Giano >>>

 

 

Date: Thu, 26 Nov 2009 08:45:31 -0800

From: "Anne-Marie Rousseau" <dailleurs at liripipe.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Does pie crust freeze?

 

I agree, but the key seems to be not letting them get dried out. You can

freeze them as a dough ball in a ziplock that you've squooshed all the air

out of, or even in the pan if you cover them in saran wrap and put in a 1

gallon ziplock that you've squooshed all the air out of

 

--Anne-Marie who routinely buys or makes pie crust in bulk and then stores

in freezer till needed :)

 

 

Date: Fri, 27 Nov 2009 07:14:58 +1300

From: Antonia Calvo <ladyadele at paradise.net.nz>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Does pie crust freeze?

 

Volker Bach wrote:

<<< I have been asked to cpook a small feast away from home, and it looks increasingly like the kitchen facilities are suboptimal. My transport is also limited, though not very, and the best solution thus seems to be to bring anything that might be a problem to make on site, such as pie crust dough (modern - people here don't react well to non-edible coffins). My problem is, I don't think it will survive the trip and Friday unless i freeze it, and I'm not sure that's a viable plan. Any experience either way? >>>

 

My usual plan is to make hot-water pastry (sturdier than shortcrust, but

still edible).  I roll all of it out and stack it on a pizza pan with

Glad wrap (clingfilm) between the layers.  Then I wrap and freeze the

wrole thing.  Once it's frozen, I remove the pizza pan.  Then, when I

want to use it, I can thaw it and put into pie pans.

 

Caveat: the taller the stack, the more thawing time needed, so if you'

think you'll want it thawed quickly, make stacks of just 4-5 sheets.

--

Antonia di Benedetto Calvo

 

 

Date: Mon, 30 Nov 2009 09:32:23 -0500

From: Audrey Bergeron-Morin <audreybmorin at gmail.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Does pie crust freeze?

 

<<< Another tip -- after you've squooshed all the air out of the ziplock, zip

it up to the last inch or so, stick a drinking straw in and "suk" MORE air

out. >>>

 

I wrap the dough in plastic cling wrap before I put it in the ziploc bag,

seems to work pretty well too.

 

 

Date: Fri, 11 Dec 2009 07:28:37 -0500

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

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] "Correct" pies

 

On Dec 11, 2009, at 6:22 AM, Nancy Kiel wrote:

<<< I am intrigued by "the familiar medieval porkpie shape," as it is something with which I am not familiar. Which cookbooks is it described in?

 

Nancy Kiel >>>

 

It actually shows up with fair frequency in graphical depictions of feasts, illuminated manuscripts, woodcuts, etc.

 

The shape in question is generally a squat round cylinder shape with vertical sides, or slightly bulging sides with a slightly pinched-in upper circumference, like one of those pot-bellied bean pots, with a slightly domed top. The point is that the shape reflects the lack of a pie plate in forming the dough.

 

It can be a little difficult to build a frame of reference using circular logic, I know. Pork pies look like the crown of a porkpie hat, of course! Which look like a pork pie...

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Fri, 11 Dec 2009 09:03:07 -0600

From: Michael Gunter <countgunthar at hotmail.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] "Correct" pies

 

<<< The shape in question is generally a squat round cylinder shape with vertical sides, or slightly bulging sides with a slightly pinched-in upper circumference, like one of those pot-bellied bean pots, with a slightly domed top. The point is that the shape reflects the lack of a pie plate in forming the dough.

 

Adamantius >>>

 

Here's a link showing what they look like, along with a video of

making a pie.

 

http://tudorcook.blogspot.com/2009/03/hmmmmm-pie.html

 

I really want to try this.

 

Gunthar

 

 

Date: Fri, 11 Dec 2009 16:38:17 -0500

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

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] pork pies

 

--On Friday, December 11, 2009 4:28 PM -0500 devra at aol.com wrote:

<<< When I took a cooking workshop with Ivan Day several years ago (hi, Alys,

Johanne, Guilliane, Susan!) we made what I guess were chewettes, although

I thought of them as raised pies.  Ivan had several wooden forms, which

looked rather like dashers or plungers, and we raised the dough up around

them to make the pie.  An amusing side note: we ran out of time and

weren't able to prepare the filling, so we stuffed the crust with tea

towels in order to have the experience of fitting on the lids. >>>

 

My friend Philip and I made chewettes for a vigil this summer. Working from

the photos on Ivan Day's website, we used a muffin tin to shape the crust.

Turned out pretty well, although shaping around rather than into a form

sounds better! (easier too)

 

toodles, margaret

 

 

Date: Sat, 13 Feb 2010 14:57:22 -0800

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pie dough - the elusive footnote

 

Looking at the poem (English translation), the relevant part appears to be:

 

Roll out the dough.

Whereupon you should purchase

A bit of fat bacon, not at all rancid,

That you will carve as dice:

So it will be sprinkled on the dough.

 

The dough is being rolled out before the bacon enters the recipe, so

it doesn't look as though it can be cut into the dough. More as

though it's an ingredient at the bottom of the filling.

 

When we do Icelandic chicken, the dough wrapping it is straight flour

and water, but the contents provide both bacon fat and chicken fat

which soaks into the pastry when it's baked, especially underneath,

and makes it yummy. This could well be something similar.

 

Later we have:

 

If you wish that the pastry should taste of it,

Make the dough with eggs;

The crust, coarse as peas,

Made of flour of pure wheat,

 

If the bacon fat was supposed to go into the dough, one would expect

some similar comment about it.

 

So I don't think this can be taken as evidence for a short crust in

the 14th century.

 

You do get explicit references in the 16th century--I don't remember

seeing any earlier, which doesn't mean they are not there.

 

Note also that in Islamic cookbooks back to the 10th century, you get

pastry things--in particular khuskhananaj--with crust of flour and

sesame oil (and water and sourdough).

 

On the other hand, Platina's Canisiones, which are similar, have a

pastry "made of meal with sugar and rosewater"--no mention of any oil.

--

David/Cariadoc

www.daviddfriedman.com

 

 

Date: Fri, 26 Feb 2010 19:53:55 -0500

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

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Recipe for short paste in lent

 

I seem to recall a question some time back about how to make pastry dough

without lard or butter.

 

I found this in A Good Houswiues treasurie; late 16th C English. Don't know

if it is of interest or not:

 

To make short paste in Lent

 

        Take thick Almond milke seething hot, and so wet your flower with it,: and

Sallet oyl fryed, and Saffron, and so mingle your past altogether, and that

will make good paste.

 

toodles, margaret

 

<the end>



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