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Period spice mixtures. Poudre Forte, Poudre Douce, Spice Poudre.

 

NOTE: See also the files: spices-msg, cinnamon-msg, herbs-msg, merch-spices-msg, saffron-art, saffron-msg, capers-msg, lavender-msg, herb-uses-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

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

 

<<< By the way, even though it's period, I do not adulterate [my spices and spice mixes with ground bark, chalk, charcoal, lead, juniper berries, or dung.

 

mistress aramanthra the vicious

midrealm cooking laurel >>>

 

 

Date: Mon, 20 Jul 1998 09:00:31 -0700

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

Subject: SC poudre forte Re: SC - Spice cabinet-what do we stock?

 

HI all from Anne-Marie:

we are asked:

> For those us who are new, what does go into poudre forte?

 

Mine is a mix of my own devising, according to spices mentioned in the

poudre fortes and spice mixes of le menagier (1390s Paris), Chiquart (1420

Savoy) and Taillevent (14th century French).

Anne-Maries Poudre Forte...

1 1/2 T ground ginger

1/2 tsp grains of paradise, ground with a mortar and pestle

1 T ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground clove

1/.2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

combine and store in an airtight container, away from heat and light.

 

Its a very spicy mix...great in mushroom pasties, paste en pot du mouton,

wardens in syrop, medieval pasta dishes, etc.

 

by the way, you can mailorder this stuff ready made from Worldspice here in

Seattle at hill at worldspice.com

 

I'm famous! :)

- --AM

 

 

Date: Tue, 15 Sep 1998 14:16:35 -0600 (MDT)

From: Mary Morman <memorman at oldcolo.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Poudre Forte and Poudre Douce

 

poudre douce is a "sweet powder" and is usually a mix of sweet spices such

as sugar, cinnamon, and ginger.

 

elaina

 

 

Date: Thu, 17 Sep 1998 01:01:07 -0500

From: allilyn at juno.com (LYN M PARKINSON)

Subject: Re: SC - Poudre Forte and Poudre Douce

 

Micaylah,

 

Redon, Odile. Sabban, Francoise. & Serventi, Silvano.  The Medieval

Kitchen, Recipes from   France and Italy.   Translated, Edward

Schneider, U of         Chicago Press,  Chicago & London, 1998.

ISBN 0 226 70684 2.

 

Fine Spice Mixture

 

Take an onza of pepper and one of cinnamon and one of ginger, and half a

quarter [onza] of cloves and a quarter of saffron.  Fr 40.   [from the

Venic region but not necessarily from Venice]

 

2 rounded tablespoons freshly ground black pepper [16 g]

2 rounded tablespoons ground cinnamon [16 g]

2 rounded tablespoons ground ginger [16 g]

1 1/2  tablespoons saffron threads, loosely measured, crushed to a powder

in a mortar or with your fingers [4 g]

3/4 teaspoon ground cloves [2 g]

 

{Try this, but 1 1/2 T. doesn't equal a quarter of 2 T. in my math}

 

Sweet Spice Mixture

 

The best sweet spices you can make are good for lamprey in pastry and for

other good freshwater fish cooked in a crust, and to make good brodetto

and good sauces.  Take a quarter of cloves and an onza of good ginger,

and take an onza of fine cinnamon, and take the same quantity of leaf;

and pound all these spices together as you like; if you want to make

more, use the ingredients in the same proportions; this is wonderfully

good. [Fr 40]             They aren't sure that 'leaf' means bay leaf,

but says use that until the Indian mint leaf related to patchouli is

investigated.

 

2 rounded tablespoons ground ginger [16 g]

2 rounded tablespoons ground cinnamon [16 g]

2 heaping tablespoons powdered bay leaves, or dried, ground to a powder

in a spice grinder to yield 2 heaping tablespoons [16 g]

1 1/2  teaspoons ground cloves

 

Strong Black Spice Mixture

 

Black strong spices to make sauces: take half a quarter of cloves and two

onze of pepper, and take the same amount of lon pepper and two nutmegs;

this will serve for all spices. [Fr 40]

 

1/4 Cup freshly ground black pepper [30 g]

1/4 cup ground lon pepper (or additional black pepper) [30 g]

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1 whole nutmeg, grated

 

8. Libro di Cucina del Secolo XIV

                                       Fr

 

Scully, Terence & D. Eleanor.  Early French Cookery.  U. of Michigan,

1995.

 

Scully equates fine powder with sweet powder, and says it contains

ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and grains of paradise.  Their redaction is

from the Menagier, and includes sugar.  The quantities are not the same,

from ms to ms.  Experiment with your own version, he says.

 

3 tsp           ground ginger

1 1/2 tbsp      cinnamon

1 tsp           grains of paradise

1 tsp           ground cloves

2 tbsp          sugar

 

Platina discusses spices one by one; no combination.  It seems to me I

have seen nutmeg in a mixture, but that may be because I think of it as

sweet, and like it best.  I may have added it arbitrarily, in place of

pepper or grains.

 

Allison

 

 

Date: Fri, 16 Oct 1998 21:38:05 -0400

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

Subject: Re: SC - Pepperer's Guild

 

Susan Browning wrote:

> Greetings the list!  My name is Elenor d'Aubrecicourt.  I have been lurking

> on the list for about a year now.  I was looking at the Pepperer's Guild

> site, and have a question about the poudre forte.   Actually, I have

> questions about forte and dolce.  What the different members of the list use

> for forte and dolce?  Does everybody make their own?  Or would the PG's

> poudre be a good choice?   Many thanks.

 

The PG's might be an adequate choice, depending on how fresh it is. It struck

me as having an awful lot of ingredients, which would have the advantage of

making for a more consistent-seeming product from batch to batch if one

ingredient was unavailable, which would be more of a problem is the powder

called for, say, three or four spices. I seem to recall this one called for

maybe seven or eight spices.

 

As far as I know, we don't really know what was in most of the medieval

pre-mixed spice powders, except for Hippocras powder (which I've occasionally

used quite successfully in recipes calling for powder forte, BTW), and a fine

spice powder recipe in Le Menagier de Paris. What we really have to go on,

apart from a general knowledge of what Eastern spices were imported and used

in the cookery of the medieval European nobs, is that powder forte should be,

well, forte (strong), while powder douce should be douce (sweet), and powder

blanche should be white, etc. Fine spice powder is, of course, fine ;  ).

 

So, we end up with the idea that, say, cloves, cinnamon, and maybe some nutmeg

would be good in a powder douce, while pepper, galingale, grains of paradise,

and cubeb might make a good powder forte. Since there are a limited number of

things that would make a whitish combination, we assume things like Columbine

ginger and refined sugar might be in blanche powder... .

 

I believe you do find some recipes for some of these powders in the very tail

end of period, at which point the mixtures are largely obsolete anyway, and

there's no guarantee that what is in them reflects closely what was in them

in earlier centuries.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Fri, 16 Oct 1998 18:04:20 -0700

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

Subject: Re: SC - Pepperer's Guild

 

Hi all from Anne-Marie

Elenor asks us: What the different members of the list use

> for forte and dolce?  Does everybody make their own?  Or would the PG's

> poudre be a good choice?

 

Just like in the real middle ages :) many of us have our own special

mixture of spices. Mine uses cinnamon, black pepper, clove, nutmeg and

grains of paradise, as dictated in le Menagier and other French sources.

Conveniently, Worldspice borrowed my recipe and sells it already mixed up.

You can check them out at www.worldspice.com...they do mail order. Look for

"Anne-Marie's Poudre Forte"! :D

 

- --AM, who has something named after. A life long ambition realized!

Madrone/ An Tir

Seattle/WA

 

 

Date: Wed, 11 Nov 1998 23:11:28 EST

From: korrin.daardain at juno.com (Korrin S DaArdain)

Subject: Re: SC - Still Looking for Powder Douce

 

<mmartines at brighthorizons.com> writes:

>I posted a question earlier this week asking what the ingredients in

>the spice mixture powder douce are and haven't got any answers yet.

>Morgan MacBride

 

Here are the references that I found in my collection.

 

powder douce: 2 t sugar, 3/8 t cinnamon, 3/8 t ginger

powder douce: 1 t sugar, 1/4 t mace, 1/4 t cinnamon

power douce (by our interpretation, 4 parts sugar to 2 of cinnamon to 1

of ginger)

“powder douce”: 2 t sugar, 2 t cinnamon

powder douce: 2 t sugar, 1 t cinnamon, 1/2 t ginger

powder douce (2 parts ground nutmeg, 1 pt. ground fennel seed, and 1 pt.

ground anise.)

powder douce: 2 t sugar, 1 t cinnamon, 1/2 t ginger

Powder douce: 1 cup sugar, 1 tsp. ground cloves, 2 tsp. ground cinnamon,

2 tsp. ground ginger, 1 Tbs. ground cubebs (opt.), 2 tsp. ground galingal

(opt.), 1 Tbs. grains of Paradise (opt.)

 

Korrin S. DaArdain

Kitchen Steward of Household Port Karr

Kingdom of An Tir in the Society for Creative Anachronism.

 

 

Date: Thu, 12 Nov 1998 22:53:47 +1100

From: "Phillippa Venn-Brown" <p.vbrown at tsc.nsw.edu.au>

Subject: Re: SC - Still Looking for Powder Douce

 

From my research Powdre Douce can be a bit of a movable feast. It is a

mixture of ground sweet spices, usually about 2 parts cinnamon:1 part

nutmeg: 1/2 part ground cloves (depending on your taste): 1 part ground

sugar. It can or not contain 1 part ground ginger/galangale. I tend to use

this mixture a lot (mundanely and in SCA cooking) so make it to fill a

1quart preserving jar. Kept air tight the flavours meld and improve with

age. Sometimes I decant it into small jars and add them to Christmas

hampers for my cooking friends.

 

Powdre Forte is a similar blend but has pepper and mace replacing the sugar

and slightly more ginger.

 

As I say, these amounts are personal preferences which I have found work

well but some recipes in Two Fifteenth Century Cookbooks and Curye on

English specify the mixtures and amounts for the powdres Douce and Forte.

 

Filippa Ginevra

 

 

Date: Wed, 18 Nov 1998 03:42:55 -0600

From: allilyn at juno.com (LYN M PARKINSON)

Subject: Re: SC - Still Looking for Powder Douce

 

This answer certainly can't help with last Saturday, but last night I

used a recipe from Medieval Kitchen, that gave a reference and recipe for

powder douce as 2 rounded T. ground ginger, same of cinnamon, 2 heaping

T. powdered bay leaves (that's a fun job, I don't think!) ground to a

powder, 1 1/2 t. ground cloves.  I made a proportionately smaller amount,

and also added sugar to mine.

 

Allison

allilyn at juno.com, Barony Marche of the Debatable Lands, Pittsburgh, PA

Kingdom of Aethelmearc

 

 

Date: Mon, 12 Apr 1999 00:30:50 -0700

From: "David Dendy" <ddendy at silk.net>

Subject: SC - Spice quantities for Helen

 

My recipe for strong powder (poudre forte) calls for 1/8 oz cloves, 2 oz

pepper, 2 oz long pepper, and 2 nutmegs (about 1/3 to 1/2 oz). My recipe for

sweet powder (poudre douce) calls for 1/4 oz cloves, 1 oz ginger, 1 oz

cinnamon, and 1 oz malabathron (substitute bay leaves and a little more

cinnamon, or go to the Indian store and ask for "tejpat"). My recipe for

fine powder (poudre fine) calls for 1 1/16 oz ginger, 1/4 oz cinnamon, 1/8

oz cloves, 1/8 oz cloves, 1/8 oz grains of paradise, and 1/4 oz lump sugar.

 

However, I strongly suspect that the recipes were quite variable, so you can

adjust them to what is available. Just make sure that strong spices like

cloves and pepper predominate in the strong powder, and sweet spices like

ginger and cinnamon in the sweet powder. The grains and galingale should be

enough to give an exotic touch; substitute grains of paradise for some of

the pepper, and galingale for some of the ginger.

 

Francesco Sirene

 

 

Date: Mon, 12 Apr 1999 22:00:01 -0700

From: "David Dendy" <ddendy at silk.net>

Subject: Re: SC - Spice quantities for Helen

 

>This is interesting. Do you have  a period reference which shows long

>pepper and black pepper being used in the same resipe? Thanks in advance.

>Ras

 

Here you are, My Lord.

 

LXXV.  SPECIE NEGRE E FORTE PER ASSAY SAVORE.

   Specie negre e forte per fare savore; toy mezo quarto de garofali e do

onze de pevere e toy arquanto pevere longo e do noce moscate e fa de tute

specie.

LXXV.  A STRONG BLACK SPICE FOR MANY [?] SAUCES.

   A black strong for making sauces; take an eighth of an ounce of cloves,

two ounces each of pepper and [?] long pepper, and two nutmegs, and make

them all into spice. [trans. DD -- my Italian is not strong, but I assume

that "arquanto" means something to the effect of "the same quantity"]

 

Ludovico Frati, ed., Libro di Cucina del Secolo XIV, Livorno: Raffaello

Giusti, Editore, 1899, p. 40.  [a Venetian cookbook of the 14th century]

 

Francesco Sirene

David Dendy / ddendy at silk.net

partner in Francesco Sirene, Spicer / sirene at silk.net

Visit our Website at http://www.silk.net/sirene/

 

 

Date: Tue, 31 Aug 1999 00:04:44 -0700

From: swbro at mail.telis.org

Subject: RE: SC - SPICES

 

>cclark at vicon.net said:

>Snip

> POUDER-FORTE: I don't know that there is any period recipe

> for this,

>Snip

 

The Viander de Tallievant sp)lists proportions of spices for Pouder-Forte,

Pouder Douce and Spice Pouder.  I tried his mixture for Pouder-Forte, it was

very like pumpkin pie spice, but with a distinct after bite from the warmer

spices. Quite good.

 

Eleanor d'Aubrecicourt

 

 

Date: Mon, 06 Sep 1999 09:26:42 -0400From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy at asan.com>Subject: Re: SC - Powder DouceSusan P Laing wrote:> What is the main difference between Powder forte & Powder douce?  Is Powder> douce required in many period recipes??Umm, not to sound flippant, because I'm not (at least not now), butpowder douce is made from sweet spices and powder forte is made fromstrong spices. I've seen recipes for each in which some spices appear in both.Without recipes in front of me, and without caffeine singing through myveins (I like to do e-mail before everyone else wakes up) I can saytypical recipes might include cloves and cinnamon, possibly mace forpowder douce, and pepper, nutmeg, galingale, grains of paradise, etc.,for powder forte.I'd say that in the medieval English corpus of recipes there are atleast as many recipes calling for specific spices, such as poudre pepir,clowes, etc., as for powder douce, powder forte, and some others such asblanche powder, and fine powder. In other cases a recipe will simplycall for powder of sweet spices or strong spices.My suspicion is that while there are certainly formulae for producingthe mixes you mention, they might be regarded as something of aconvenience item, with some cooks not deigning to use them, just as mostIndian cooks wouldn't stoop to using curry powder. On the other hand,for large feast situations (in the middle ages, that is, not for ourstuff, necessarily) it might have been seen as eminently practical toeither purchase such mixtures in bulk or or make them up in bulk.I recall an occasion where I happened to have a fair amount, perhapsfour ounces, of leftover hippocras powder which I used to fill one ofthose industrial-strength flour-duster/salt-shaker thingies. The mixwent really well in the recipes calling for powder forte. Off the top ofmy head I think it contained pepper, grains of paradise, nutmeg,galingale, and cinnamon, and came from the hippocras recipe in LeMenagier de Paris.Adamantius

 

 

Date: Fri, 31 Mar 2000 09:56:59 -0500

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

Subject: Duke's powder (was Re: SC - saffron)

 

And it came to pass on 31 Mar 00,, that Philip & Susan Troy wrote:

Robin Carroll-Mann wrote:

> > This is his comment at the end of a recipe for "Duke's powder", a spice

> > mixture:

>

> Whoa... is this the same Duke's Powder that Le Menagier mentions as

> pre-sweetened hippocras spice?

>

> Adamantius

 

I don't know.  Possibly.  It certainly contains sugar, and appears just

after de Nola's recipe for a hippocras spice mixture.  I'm translating the

1529 edition of de Nola, BTW.  There is a slightly different version of this

mixture in the 1525 edition, plus a second recipe which does not appear

in the 1529.  Here are the recipes:

 

Source: Roberto de Nola, _Libro de Cozina_ (Spanish, 1525)

Translation: Brighid ni Chiarain (Robin Carroll-Mann)

 

POLUORA DE DUQUE -- Duke's Powder

 

Cinnamon, half an ounce; ginger, half an ounce; cloves, one eighth;

sugar, one pound; all this well ground and strained through a hair sieve

so that it should be quite delicate and subtle, or at least just like the

one for the sauces.

 

 

POLUORA DE DUQUE DE OTRA MANERA -- Duke's Powder in

another manner

 

White ginger, two ounces; galangal, one eighth of an ounce; cinnamon,

one ounce; long pepper, one ounce; grains of paradise, one ounce;

nutmeg, one ounce; fine sugar, one pound; all this should be well

ground and strained through a delicate hair sieve.

 

[The paragraph on weighing spices follows]

 

 

Source: Ruperto de Nola, _Libro de Guisados_ (Spanish, 1529)

Translation: Brighid ni Chiarain (Robin Carroll-Mann)

 

POLVORA DE DUQUE - Duke's Powder

 

        Half an ounce of cinnamon; an eighth of cloves; and for the lords

cast in nothing but cinnamon, and a pound of sugar; if you wish to make

it sharp in flavor and [good] for pains in the stomach, cast in a little

ginger.

 

        And the weights of the spices in the apothecary shops are in this

manner: one pound is twelve ounces; one ounce, eight drachmas; one

drachma, three scruples: another way that you can more clearly

understand this: a drachma weights three dineros; a scruple is the

weight of one dinero; and a scruple is twenty grains of wheat.

 

- - - -

 

How do those compare to the Menagier's recipe?  Or doesn't he give

one? (I have a copy somewhere, but don't want to hunt through an

unindexed book before I finish my second cup of coffee.)

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Settmour Swamp, East (NJ)

 

 

Date: Fri, 31 Mar 2000 10:23:08 -0500

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

Subject: Re: Duke's powder (was Re: SC - saffron)

 

Robin Carroll-Mann wrote:

> How do those compare to the Menagier's recipe? Or doesn't he give one? (I have

> a copy somewhere, but don't want to hunt through an unindexed book before I

> finish my second cup of coffee.)

 

Well, here's Le Menagier's recipe, probably the Powers translation,

courtesy of His Grace Cariadoc:

 

> Hippocras

>

> Goodman p. 299/28

>

> To make powdered hippocras, take a quarter of very fine cinnamon selected by

> tasting it, and half a quarter of fine flour of cinnamon, an ounce of selected

> string ginger, fine and white, and an ounce of grain of Paradise, a sixth of

> nutmegs and galingale together, and bray them all together. And when you

> would make your hippocras, take a good half ounce of this powder and two

> quarters of sugar and mix them with a quart of wine, by Paris measure. And

> note that the powder and the sugar mixed together is the Duke's powder.

 

Adamantius

 

<See other hippocras recipes in the spiced-wine-msg file - Stefan>

 

 

Date: Fri, 31 Mar 2000 10:53:30 -0500

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

Subject: Re: Duke's powder (was Re: SC - saffron)

 

And it came to pass on 31 Mar 00,, that Philip & Susan Troy wrote:

> Well, here's Le Menagier's recipe, probably the Powers translation,

> courtesy of His Grace Cariadoc:

>

> > Hippocras

> >

> > Goodman p. 299/28

> >

> > To make powdered hippocras, take a quarter of very fine cinnamon

> > selected by tasting it, and half a quarter of fine flour of cinnamon, an

> > ounce of selected string ginger, fine and white, and an ounce of grain

> > of Paradise, a sixth of nutmegs and galingale together, and bray them

> > all together. And when you would make your hippocras, take a good half

> > ounce of this powder and two quarters of sugar and mix them with a quart

> > of wine, by Paris measure. And note that the powder and the sugar mixed

> > together is the Duke's powder.

>

> Adamantius

 

Hmmm.... the spice combination (though not the exact proportions)

looks a lot like the 1525 version of "Duke's powder in another manner".  

Interesting. I imagine these spice mixtures for wine were a lot like

Indian garam masala mixtures today -- a basic similarity in contents,

and a *lot* of variations.

 

I noticed something else in the above recipe, though.  The "flour of

cinnamon" made my ears prick up, because I remember something I

read on Francesco Sirene's web page.  He sells cassia buds, which he

says are called "flor de canel" in period recipes.  This, he says, is often

mistranslated "flour of cinnamon" or "flower of cinnamon" (ie., the best).  

The tipoff is if it appears in the same recipe as canel, cinnamon.

 

Francesco? Cariadoc?  Someone want to comment on this?

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Settmour Swamp, East (NJ)

 

 

Date: Sat, 4 Nov 2000 01:00:24 -0000

From: "=?iso-8859-1?Q?Nanna_R=F6gnvaldard=F3ttir?=" <nannar at isholf.is>

Subject: SC - Ras al Hanout

 

Stefan asked:

>What is Ras al Hanout?

 

A North African spice mixture - there are different Moroccan, Algerian and

Tunisian versions, and many different variations within each country, as

each spice shop generally has its own versions, which often include over 20

different spices and flavourings - the main ingredients are usually

cardamom, pepper, ginger, nutmeg, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric and

cinnamon, and also frequently cloves, cayenne pepper, oregano, rose petals

or rosebuds. And lots of other stuff; it is said that some Moroccan mixtures

include Spanish fly and other rather dubious stuff.

 

Nanna

 

 

From: rcmann4 at earthlink.net

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Date: Sat, 2 Jun 2001 06:01:44 -0400

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] 'powders' - recipes please

 

On 2 Jun 01,, Christina van Tets wrote:

> Can anyone help me with recipes for Poudre de Duc or Lombard Powder?  I have

> references to these in the van der Noot text, but no recipe is

> given.  If there is more than one recipe, I would prefer the one

> closest to 1514 and/or Brussels.

 

I know of a couple of recipes for "Duke's Powder" (which some authorities

believe is a mistranslation of Poudre Douce -- "Sweet Powder").

 

One is in the Menagier of Paris, c. 1393:

<http://www.best.com/~ddfr/Medieval/Cookbooks/Menagier/Menagier.html#

OTHER ODDS AND ENDS>

 

"HIPPOCRAS. To make powdered hippocras, take a

quarter-ounce of very fine cinnamon, hand-picked by

tasting it, an ounce of very fine meche ginger and an

ounce of grains of paradise, a sixth of an ounce of nutmeg

and galingale together, and pound it all together. And

when you want to make hippocras, take a good half-ounce

or more of this powder and two quarter-ounces of sugar,

and mix them together, and a quart of wine as measured in

Paris.

And note that the powder and the sugar mixed together

make "duke's powder".

 

And here are two versions from the 1525 edition of Nola:

POLUORA DE DUQUE -- Duke's Powder

Cinnamon, half an ounce; ginger, half an ounce; cloves, one eighth;

sugar, one pound; all this well ground and strained through a hair sieve

so that it should be quite delicate and subtle, or at least just like the one

for the sauces.

POLUORA DE DUQUE DE OTRA MANERA

Duke's Powder in another manner

White ginger, two ounces; galangal, one eighth of an ounce; cinnamon,

one ounce; long pepper, one ounce; grains of paradise, one ounce;

nutmeg, one ounce; fine sugar, one pound; all this should be well ground

and strained through a delicate hair sieve.

 

And from the 1529 edition of Nola:

POLVORA DE DUQUE - Duke's Powder Half an ounce of cinnamon;

an eighth of cloves; and for the lords cast in nothing but cinnamon, and a

pound of sugar; if you wish to make it sharp in flavor and [good] for

pains in the stomach, cast in a little ginger.

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Settmour Swamp, East (NJ)

 

 

From: "Olwen the Odd" <olwentheodd at hotmail.com>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] hair sieve

Date: Fri, 08 Jun 2001 13:21:35 -0000

 

Poluora De Duque - Dukes Powder

Cinnamon, half an ounce; ginger, half and ounce; cloves, on eighth; sugar,

one pound; all this well ground and strained thrugh a hair sieve so that it

should be quite delicate and subtle, or at least just like the one for the

sauces.

 

And there is this from Digby;

White metheglin of my Lady Hungerford:

 

<snip - see meads-msg>

 

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

Recipes from The Closet of the Eminently Learned Sir Kenelme Digbie Kt

Opened: Whereby is Discovered Several ways for making of Metheglin, Sider,

Cherry-Wine, &c. together with Excellent Directions for Cookery: As also for

Preserving, Conserving, Candying, &c. First edition, London, 1669.

 

Transcribed by Joyce Miller <jmiller at genome.wi.mit.edu>

 

 

Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2001 01:57:55 -0700

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

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Finding Recipes for spices

 

At 23:50 -0500 2001-06-10, Stefan li Rous wrote:

> Thorvald said:

> > If 'poudre forte' is the same as 'spice powder', which is my belief,

> then ..."

> Since there were a variety of spice mixtures, upon what do you base

> this comment that 'poudre forte' is the spice mixture meant by 'spice

> powder'?

 

Since I formed that belief back in 1987, I'm going to have to try to

recreate at least some of the logic.

 

1)

 

In Hieatt and Butler _Curye on Inglysch_ page 208 they list 'powdour

marchant', 'powdour douce', and 'powdour fort'.  For the latter they

say "strong mixture of ground spices, generally including pepper

and/or cloves; we have not found a recipe, but suggested substitutions,

and the name, make its nature clear."

 

The recipe quoted by Pichon and Vicaire page 26 for 'Spice powder'

includes ginger, pepper, long pepper, and cloves; two ingredients

of middling strength (galingale and grains of paradise); and two

milder ingredients.  This sounds like a recipe for a definitely

'strong powder'.

 

"Forme of Cury" (part IV in _Curye on Inglysch_) has frequent

mentions of 'powdour douce' and 'powdour fort'.  In Viandier

there is no use of 'powdour douce', so one is led to wonder

if any of the powders that _are_ used in Viandier correspond

in any way to the 'powdour fort' of Forme of Cury.  We'll ask

this question again in item 2.

 

2)

 

Sass _To the King's Taste_ page 23 distinguishes between 'whyte

pouder', 'pouder fort', and 'pouder douce'.  For 'pouder fort'

they suggest "ginger or a blend of cinnamon and mace" (contrast

Hieatt and Butler who say that it is "ginger, cinamon, and mace").

 

Viandier uses 'Fine Powder', 'Spice Powder', and 'White Powder'.

Spice Powder is used exclusively in the first part of Viandier,

and Fine Powder exclusively in the second part (with White

Powder listed as an alternative, and only in a couple of places).

This suggests that the name and exact composition may have changed

between the two parts, but that they may be approximate synonyms.

With ginger and cloves as two of the ingredients (Menagier) Fine

Powder would have been somewhat strong, though it also contained

some sugar.  This would be consistent with the observation by

Hieatt and Butler that spicing in the English recipes became

sweeter as time progressed.  With 'Sweet Powder' not used in

Viandier, though known in Menagier; and with Fine and Spice

powders at least occupying the same culinary ecological niche

even if Fine is not the lineal descendant of Spice; and with

'powdour fort' being prominent in Forme of Cury (see item 1

above); we are tempted to speculate that Fine/Spice Powder

corresponds to 'pouder fort'.  That would avoid having four

distinct spice mixtures (by Occam's Razor).

 

Scully (E&T) in _Early French Cookery_ page 54-55 call it

"Fine Powder", "Fine Spice Powder", and "Spice Powder" without

distinction.

 

3)

 

Rather than being merely tempted to speculate, I go further

and conclude that in all likelihood "Fine Powder" and "Spice

Powder" from Viandier, and "Strong Powder" from other sources,

are either the 'same' mixture or at least occupy the same

culinary ecological niche.

 

Since the ingredients vary widely this is as illuminating (or

otherwise) as noting that 'curry powder' is the same thing the

whole world over.  Every single curry powder is different, yet

when viewed in a global light there is no difference among them.

 

In the same way every strong powder was the same, yet different.

Since the Fine and Spice powders from Viandier and Menagier do

contain a predominance of 'strong' spices I find it simplest to

conclude that they are synonyms for Strong powder.

 

Thorvald

 

 

Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2001 06:50:20 -0400

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

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Finding Recipes for spices

 

James Prescott wrote:

> 3)

> Rather than being merely tempted to speculate, I go further

> and conclude that in all likelihood "Fine Powder" and "Spice

> Powder" from Viandier, and "Strong Powder" from other sources,

> are either the 'same' mixture or at least occupy the same

> culinary ecological niche.

 

Nah, no speculation here ;  ) . I do suspect that in the latter

instance, though, you're right. My own feeling is that there's some

rather strained mathematical proofing going on in this discussion, and

that the bottom line will end up with a bunch of medieval cooks and

scribes who want us to put a nice mix of some ground spices in or on the

dish.

 

> Since the ingredients vary widely this is as illuminating (or

> otherwise) as noting that 'curry powder' is the same thing the

> whole world over.  Every single curry powder is different, yet

> when viewed in a global light there is no difference among them.

 

I dunno, I never really thought of it that way. You don't consider the

curry powder to be somewhat defined by its applications? Yeah, they're

spice mixtures, and yes, they're even composed somewhat similarly, but

don't you see a difference between, say, Madras and West Indian curry

blends? Now that I think of it, considering that they're all basically

English inventions anyway, there may be something in what you say.

 

> In the same way every strong powder was the same, yet different.

> Since the Fine and Spice powders from Viandier and Menagier do

> contain a predominance of 'strong' spices I find it simplest to

> conclude that they are synonyms for Strong powder.

 

Simplest, yes, but I think perhaps you're taking the logic too far. When

a recipe calls for powder douce, say, I expect a powdered mix of sweet

spices is indicated, and could be bought preground, mixed by the spicer,

or perhaps even mixed in the kitchen from available supplies. For strong

spices, the same thing. Buy a strong spice blend, order it specially or

make it from another cook's (or your own) formula, or just use whatever

strong spices you have on hand for the purpose.

 

Or, to put it another way, even if, on a case-by-case basis, the exact

formulas (if any) of powder douce, powder forte, fine powder, etc.,

happen occasionally to intersect, I think it is more a matter of

discretionary coincidence than any provable state of sameness.

 

It's possible to agonize about this stuff too much...

 

Adamantius

 

 

From: rcmann4 at earthlink.net

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Date: Fri, 29 Jun 2001 23:28:04 -0400

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] lombard powder

 

On 30 Jun 01,, Christina van Tets wrote:

> Does

> anyone have a recipe for Lombard Powder, the other one I need for the text I

> am working on?

 

It appears to be unknown.  Constance Hieatt in _An Ordinance of Pottage_

lists several 15th century recipes that call for "Poudyr Lombard".  She says

that it "was a commericially sold mixed spice powder, but unfortunately it

does not seem possible to guess at its composition."

 

Brighid ni Chiarain

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

mka Robin Carroll-Mann  ***  rcmann4 at earthlink.net

 

 

From: "Vincent Cuenca" <bootkiller at hotmail.com>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Date: Fri, 09 Nov 2001 23:00:02 +0000

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: Glossary

 

>Duke's Powder ==

 

Okay, this one I know.  A spice mixture, featuring mainly sugar.  From de

Nola (1529 edition):

Polvora Duque (Duke's Powder)

Cinnamon half an ounce; cloves half a quarter; and for lords only add

cinnamon, and a pound of sugar; if you wish it to have a sharp taste and

make it good for passions of the stomach add a little ginger.

 

I think it may also be in Llibre de Sent Sovi.

 

Vicente

 

 

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

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Date: Fri, 9 Nov 2001 19:59:05 -0500

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: Glossary

 

On 9 Nov 2001, at 23:00, Vincent Cuenca wrote:

> >Duke's Powder ====

> Okay, this one I know.  A spice mixture, featuring mainly sugar.  From

> de Nola (1529 edition): Polvora Duque (Duke's Powder) Cinnamon half an

> ounce; cloves half a quarter; and for lords only add cinnamon, and a

> pound of sugar; if you wish it to have a sharp taste and make it good

> for passions of the stomach add a little ginger.

> I think it may also be in Llibre de Sent Sovi.

 

Here are the footnotes I wrote to accompany my translation of the Duke's

Powder recipe.  (Cindy, feel free to incorporate them into your glossary.)

 

Barbara Santich suggests that this recipe title is a misnomer, and an

indication of Italian influence on Catalan cooking. A very similar blend of

spices =AD minus the sugar -- is found in an anonymous Venetian

cookbook of the late 15th century. It is called specie dolce, "sweet

spices". Several recipes in that cookbook call for dishes to be topped

with sugar and unspecified spices before serving. Santich theorizes that

specie dolce was the spice blend which was sprinkled with the sugar.

The Italian name specie dolce, "sweet spices", may have been mangled

in translation to become the Catalan polvora de duch, "powder of the

duke".

The Libre del Coch has a second recipe for this spice mix, De altra

polvora de duch, which contains 2 oz. ginger, 1/2 drachm galingale, 1

oz. cinnamon, 1 oz. long pepper, 1 oz. grains of paradise, 1 oz. nutmeg,

1/4 oz. fine sugar. The Libre de Sent Sovi gives yet another recipe: 1

pound sugar; 1/2 oz. cinnamon; 3/4 oz. ginger; 1/4 oz. total of cloves,

nutmeg, galingale, and cardamon.

 

Brighid ni Chiarain *** mka Robin Carroll-Mann

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

 

 

Date: Sat, 10 Nov 2001 21:41:40 -0500

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

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] online glossary

 

Philip & Susan Troy wrote:

> > Duke's Powder ==

> See Le Menagier's hippocras recipe: he says the spice mixture can be

> mixed with sugar and added to wine, and that you can buy the spice

> mixture already sweetened, which is the Duke's Powder. It's been

> suggested that this is in fact a reference to Powder Douce, or Sweet

> Powder (or perhaps simply a sweet powder bearing no relation to the

> English spice mix by this name). HTH,> Adamantius

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

Nicole Crosley-Holland in Living and Dining in Medieval Paris

which is an examination of Le Menagier de Paris says that

"pouldre de duc" "comes from the Catalan treatise Sent Sovi;

polvora de duch, or powder of sweetness according to Thibaut-

Comelade (262, 121) who gives the components: fine sugar, ginger,

cinnamon, pepper, clove, mace, nutmeg and saffron. ...The

Menagier probably heard of this powder when he served in

Languedoc and transcribed as duc the sound duch." [pages159-160]

 

Johnnae llyn Lewis  Johnna Holloway

 

 

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

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Date: Sat, 10 Nov 2001 22:29:14 -0500

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: Glossary

 

On 10 Nov 2001, at 12:01, Cindy M. Renfrow wrote:

> >Barbara Santich suggests that this recipe title is a misnomer, and an

> >indication of Italian influence on Catalan cooking. A very similar

> >blend of spices - minus the sugar -- is found in an anonymous

> >Venetian cookbook of the late 15th century. It is called specie

> >dolce, "sweet spices". <snip>

> Then how would you account for Le menagier's recipe of 100 years

> earlier calling for pouldre de duc?

 

I took another look at the article.  Santich's point is that the recipe

in the 1529 Nola is closer to the Italian tradition than to its Catalan

predecessors. She does not mean (and I hope I didn't imply) that

the anonymous Venetian is the first appearance of this recipe.

Santich goes on to discuss other similarities in Nola to Italian

recipes. So, if I dare summarize her reasoning: this spice blend is

similar to the Italian version; its name may be a corruption of the

Italian name.

 

Perhaps *all* such blends were originally "sweet powder", or

perhaps there were two different blends (duc/dolce), each with its

many variations.  To confuse matters further, the Menagier's blend

is for making Hypocras.  Nola has a different blend entirely for that

purpose, and uses "Duke's Powder" in cooking.

 

A tangled matter, this.

 

Brighid ni Chiarain *** mka Robin Carroll-Mann

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

 

 

From: "a5foil" <a5foil at ix.netcom.com>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Duke's powder

Date: Sun, 11 Nov 2001 11:03:36 -0500

 

> >  Lady Brighid's translation says: "and for the lords cast in nothing

> >  but cinnamon,"

> > What does the original say?

> "y para los senores, no se echa sino sola canela"

 

This appears in the Logrono editions (Castillian translations), but not in

the first edition of Nola (1520, published in Catalan). Neither recipe in

the first edition gives an instruction like this, just the measure of the

ingredients and brief instructions on mixing them up. So, this class

distinction is something introduced by the Aragonese mayor of Logrono, in

his translation. Where he got it, I don't know. I suspect the wide variation

in recipes for this powder is at least as much a matter of preference as it

is a matter of economics. I would caution against over-interpreting this

through the filter of political power. Yes, it was conspicuous consumption,

but I think it was food, first. For REALLY conspicuous consumption, look at

the recipes for Fine Spice powder (Salsa ffina), which called for a

half-pound of saffron in a pound of powder...

 

The earliest reference to Duke's Powder I have found in the Iberian cuisine

is the Barcelona copy of the Libre de Sent Sovi (Biblioteca Universitat de

Barcelona MS 68, ca. 1450). It also gives no indication of a class

distinction in the composition of the powder. That recipe follows. I am not

as convinced as Dr. Santich that this powder is of Italian origin. The

Aragonese/Catalan empire had tremendous influence on the Italian cuisine of

the 15th century, and the culinary influences flowed both ways. The Italian

influence may be over-rated, and as much a product of academic bias as of

fact.

 

"Si vols ffer polvora de duch que sa ffina se ffa axi per una liura

Primerament tu pendras una liura de sucre blanch Canella mige hunsa que sia

ffina Gingebre que sia bo un quart e mig Giroffle nous noscades garangal

cardemom entre tot un quart E tot aso picaras E pessar ho as per sadas."

 

Translation (the punctuation is mine): If you wish to make Duke's Powder

that will be fine, it is made in this way for one pound. First you will take

one pound of white sugar, Cinnamon half ounce that will be fine, Ginger that

will be good one quarter [ounce] and a half [so, three quarters of an

ounce], Cloves, nutmeg, galingale, cardamom between all one quarter [I

interpret this as "of each" because a 16th of an ounce of any of these

spices in a pound of powder would hardly be detectable and thus would serve

neither palate nor politics]. And all this you will pound. And you have to

pass it through [a] sieve.

 

My recipe, using the proportions of the period measures by weight, and

translated to modern volumetric form:

 

1/4 cup + 1-1/2 teaspoons turbinado sugar, ground fine

1-3/8 teaspoon ground Ceylon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg, preferably freshly grated

5/8 teaspoon ground galingale, or substitute 5/8 teaspoon ginger

2-1/4 teaspoons ground cardamom

 

Grind the sugar very fine in a large mortar (it changes from light brown to

white as you grind it). Mix with the other spices and pass the mixture

through a fine sieve to break up any clumps of spice. Store in a sealed

spice bottle.

 

This makes about 1/3 cup, and fills a 4-oz. spice bottle.

 

This recipe will appear in my booklet of recipes from the Sent Sovi, which,

with luck, will be available by Twelfth Night.

 

Regards,

Thomas Longshanks

 

 

Date: Thu, 12 Jun 2003 22:32:45 -0700

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Powder Fort

 

Personally, i haven't run across any information that would suggest

the use of cardamom in poudre forte, although i'm sure it tastes good

:-)

 

-----

 

I have made "Good Powder" - i'm not sure how different "Good Powder"

is from Poudre Forte... Anyone?

 

Good Powder

 

1 TB ginger

1 TB cinnamon

1 TB cloves

1 TB mace

1-1/2 tsp. black pepper

1-1/2 tsp. grains of paradise

 

Makes 3/8 cup, approx.

 

This is sort of a weaselly recipe, since i used more or less equal

quantities by volume of everything, but i like the taste.

 

-----

 

I've also made "Strong Black Spice Powder", inspired by the Specia

Negre e Forte per Assay Savore, from Libro di Cucina del Secolo XIV,

posted by Francesco Sirene. There's a similar recipe in "The Medieval

Kitchen". Lacking long pepper, i used 1/2 the quantity of cubebs and

half the quantity of grains of paradise, not that they really taste

like long pepper, but, well, they taste Medieval (ok, so i'm being a

bit silly).

 

Strong Black Spice Powder

 

1/4 oz ground cloves

2 whole nutmeg, ground

4 oz ground black pepper

2 oz cubebs, ground

2 oz grains of paradise, ground

 

I gave bags of this to people as Twelfth Night gifts. Gee, I never

asked what they did with it... Mine i use on cooked eggs mundanely,

since i don't like plain black pepper.

 

------

 

Anahita

 

 

Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2003 12:00:27 -0400

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Powder Fort

From: Daniel Myers <doc at medievalcookery.com>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

On Friday, June 13, 2003, at 11:05 AM, Leah A. Montgomery wrote:

> Ok, what is powder fort, or poudre forte, or however you spell it?

 

It's one of the more common spice mixtures used in England and France

-  powder forte (strong powder), powder douce (sweet powder), powder

fine, powder blanc (white powder), etc....  So far, the only one that

I've found strong documentation for is the powder fine.

 

Source [Le Menagier de Paris, Janet Hinson (trans.)]: FINE POWDER of

spices. Take an ounce and a drachma of white ginger, a quarter-ounce of

hand-picked cinnamon, half a quarter-ounce each of grains and cloves,

and a quarter-ounce of rock sugar, and grind to powder.

 

- Doc

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

   Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers)

   http://www.medievalcookery.com/

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

 

 

Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2003 13:53:08 -0400

From: "Melanie  Unruh-Bays" <maredudd at caerthe.org>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Powder Fort

 

From: Linda Peterson <mirhaxa at morktorn.com>

> On Fri, 13 Jun 2003, Daniel Myers wrote:

>> Source [Le Menagier de Paris, Janet Hinson (trans.)]: FINE POWDER of

>> spices. Take an ounce and a drachma of white ginger, a quarter-ounce of

>> hand-picked cinnamon, half a quarter-ounce each of grains and cloves,

>> and a quarter-ounce of rock sugar, and grind to powder.

>> 

> Most of us probably assemble our powders from already ground spices. Do

> you think grinding them all together would have an effect on the  

> flavor, more blending of essential oils or something?

> Mirhaxa

>  mirhaxa at morktorn.com

 

I find that if I grind them together, they seem to work on one another,  

and I get a product that seems to (I haven't ground with a stopwatch in my  

hand) grind faster, and to become a more uniform m[e']lange. I don't  

notice a change in flavor.

 

BTW, isn't there a reference or two to period poudre forte recipes in  

Odile Redon's _The Medieval Kitchen_? I'm at work, and can't check just  

now...

 

Eirene

 

 

Date: Sat, 14 Jun 2003 11:25:25 -0700 (PDT)

From: Jill Koski <jillksk24 at yahoo.com>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: [Sca-cooks] poudre forte

 

>Powder fort is a spice mixture mentioned in various period recipes;

we have not yet been able to find a description of what spices

it contains.<

 

The Pepperer's Guild sells it at their site.  The

"Traveling Dysshes, etc" cookbook by Siobhan Medhbh

O'Roarke and Cordelia Toser lists their combination as:

 

1/2 tsp fresh ginger

1/2 t fresh nutmeg

1/2 t mace powder

1 t finely ground black pepper

1/2 t ground grains of paradise

1/2 t cubeb, ground

 

They also mention that after 6 months or so, it may need to

be replaced or refreshed.

 

Lady Johanna

Skerrstrand

Northshield

Midrealm

 

 

From: Jane Boyko <jboyko at magma.ca>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org, "Melanie  Unruh-Bays" <maredudd at caerthe.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Powder Fort

Date: Sun, 15 Jun 2003 09:11:43 -0400

 

> BTW, isn't there a reference or two to period poudre forte recipes in

> Odile Redon's _The Medieval Kitchen_? I'm at work, and can't check just

> now...

> Eirene

 

Odile does indeed have some of the spice mixture recipes:  Fine spice and

sweet spice mixture and one for hypocras. (pages 220-222)  No Powder fort

though.

 

Marina

 

 

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

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] poudre forte

Date: Sun, 15 Jun 2003 20:39:15 -0500

 

> I have read this thread for some time, but still have a basic question:

> What does one DO with poudre forte?

>    Mike Acord

 

There are a number of recipes which call for it.  It is used in Medieval

cooking approximately in the same way bell peppers and chile peppers are

used today to provide a hot, pungent flavor.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Mon, 16 Jun 2003 08:47:24 -0400 (EDT)

From: <jenne at fiedlerfamily.net>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Powder Fort

 

>> Source [Le Menagier de Paris, Janet Hinson (trans.)]: FINE POWDER of

>> spices. Take an ounce and a drachma of white ginger, a quarter-ounce of

>> hand-picked cinnamon, half a quarter-ounce each of grains and cloves,

>> and a quarter-ounce of rock sugar, and grind to powder.

>> 

> Most of us probably assemble our powders from already ground spices. Do

> you think grinding them all together would have an effect on the flavor,

> more blending of essential oils or something?

 

It depens on the spice. For instance, ground cardamom has a very short

shelf life (about a month to a month and a half, I've found, before it

becomes mostly sawdusty rather than spice); I don't know that I've ever

tried to store or use ground grains of paradise, but they might also have

a short shelf life. Ginger has about a 6 month shelf life maximum. Nutmeg

has NO shelf life and should be grated fresh every time you use it, and I

feel the same way about using pre-ground pepper, though I don't know how

long it takes to start fading.

 

So, if you are starting with fresh, preground spices there wouldn't be as

much difference than if you used, say, McCormick from your grocery store.

Le Menagier wouldn't have bought preground spices if he could avoid it,

because they are too easy to adulterate and he was, ahem, thrifty. The

general concensus that I've seen, though, is that most people bought their

powder forte and powder douce and so-on preground, just as we buy apple

pie spice and Herbs de Provence.

 

-- Pani Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika   jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

 

 

Date: Mon, 23 Jun 2003 14:55:18 +1000

From: Robyn.Hodgkin at affa.gov.au

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] Spice Blends

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

The Alfarhaugr Publishing Society print of Le Viandier de Taillevent  

(translator James Prescott) has in it additional recipes.  222 is Spice  

powder, which says:

 

"Grind ginger (4 parts), Cassia (3 1/2 parts) nutmeg (2 parts) pepper  

(1 1/2 parts), long pepper, cloves, grains of paradise and galingale (1  

part each)  (A recipe quoted by Pichon et al p26)"

 

Kiriel

 

 

Date: Tue, 23 Sep 2003 23:20:17 -0600

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

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: Ras el Haout

To: Christine Seelye-King <kingstaste at mindspring.com>, "SCA Cooks'

        Lis" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

It's one of those amorphous blends like "curry."

I actually used google to try and find some recipes.  Ingredients varied

quite a bit.  A far number included roses, or turmeric, and then there

were the weird ones that included things like spanish fly (!)

So I made myself a list of the most commonly repeated spices and worked

from there--at the time, I had a lot of lovely spices in my cupboard

but was trying to cut down on some stuff because I was getting ready to

move.

A couple of the recipes mentioned doing the blend as whole spices, and

then roasting/grinding as needed, but I was after a powdered blend, so

that's what I did.  I used roughlyequal portions, I think, of most of

the spices, with the exception of the saffron (better part of one little

package, which happened to be what I had in the house) and cayenne (done

at about a quarter the amount of the others, because of its potency).

IIR, I included the following spices, in no particular order:

Cinnamon (ceylon)

Ginger

Galingale

Mace

Nutmeg

Cloves (a little light on this one, too)

Cardamom (green, decorticated)

Black peppercorns

White peppercorns

Long pepper (only a little)

Cubeb berriesGrains of Paradise

Coriander

Cumin

Cayenne

Saffron

I think there were a few others, too (think I had 20 when I was done),

but those are the main ones.

I ended up with a LOT of the stuff, which I was making to fill spice

bottles for an event Their Majestie were going to.

You can actually buy it online, Christine (at least, I saw websites that

sold it), but I got the impression it was like a good curry

blend--better made fresh, 'cuz goodness only knows how long the powdered

stuff had been sitting around.

Oryou could send me your addy off-list, and I could send you a little

baggie of it.

I'll try to find my links to the websites I found (think they're on my

computer at work), and hopefully post them soon.  They're interesting

from the ethnic/foodie perspectie, even if not catering to pre-17th c.

European food.

--maire

 

Christine Seelye-King wrote:

>  I'll contributed spiced, glazed almonds.  I was playing around this summer,

> trying to come up with fun little food things for Their Majesties, and

> had the odd idea to add Ras el Hanout (a non-rose variety) to the sugar

> instead of cinnamon.  Yummmmmm. Spicey-warm (from the things like

> cinnamon and galingale and cardamom and ginger and long pepper and two

> kinds of pepper-pepper), with just a hint ofkick.  And they travel

> nicely!

> --maire, catching up on old emails....

>     So, do you have recipes or ingredients lists for your Ras el Hanout? (Rose

> and/or non-rose variety?)  I was working with a lamb recipe that called for

> it, but I had other spices and didn't end up using any (didn't know exactly

> what was in it). I did try it out with some mastic I got at Pennsic, boy, a

> little of that goes a very long way.

> Christianna

 

 

Date: Wed, 24 Sep 2003 12:27:25 -0700 (PDT)

From: Naquiba Katira al-Maghrebiyya <cynaguanswan at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] RE: Ras el Haout

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

 

Yes, it means something like "head of the shop" and

indeed every spice shop has it's own blend.  A couple

of my spice books have recipes as do some of Paula

Wolfert's cookbooks and they are all different.  So, I

suggest you go with the common ingredients and

add/subtract increase/decrease as your own tastes

direct you.  Then you are "head" of your OWN shop!!

 

I haven't done so myself yet, but I do have dried rose

buds and some of the other more esoteric items (not

the illegal ones like spanish fly (an aphrodisiac)) so

I can try a known combination and then play from

there.  I know I have particular tastes when it comes

to curry powders so I will probably tend to work

around those ingredients.

 

Katira

 

 

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2004 21:21:38 -0800

From: Elaine Koogler <ekoogler1 at comcast.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Poudre Fine / Fine Spices

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

 

Most of what I'm finding in my search for recipes for my Italian feast

are references to "good spices", "fine spices", "mild spices", etc.  One

definite recipe that specifies "fine spices", which could be another way

of saying poudre fine is from de Nola:

 

Libro de Cozina of Master Ruperto de Nola, translated by Vincent F.

Cuenca

 

p. 42:  To Eat Figs in the French Style

 

Take the sweetest black and white figs you can find; and remove the

stems and wash them with good white wine that should be sweet, and when

they are very clean, take a pot that should be a bit large and made of

clay, with a flat bottom, and put them in and stir them around a little

bit and then put this pot on the coals, well covered so that it stews

there, and when they are stewed, and have soaked up into themselves all

the moisture from the wine, stir them a little; and scatter fine spices

over them; and stir them again so that they incorporate the spices and

then eat this dish, and it is a remarkable thing, and

should be eaten at the beginning of the meal.

 

and this recipe from the same source for poudre fines...Jadwiga's Web

page had this listed along with her redaction:

 

*Poudre Fines: Spices for Common Sauce (De Nola)

 

Three parts cinnamon, two parts cloves, one part ginger, one part

pepper, and a little dry coriander, well-ground, and a little saffron if

you wish; let everything be well-ground and sifted.

 

3 tbsp cinnamon

2 tbsp ground cloves

1 tbsp ground ginger

1 tbsp ground pepper

1 pinch coriander

1 pinch saffron, ground

 

Mix together.

 

Kiri

 

 

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2004 22:40:04 -0500

From: "a5foil" <a5foil at ix.netcom.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Poudre Fine / Fine Spices

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

 

In the Barcelona manuscript of "Libre de Sent Sovi" there are two spice

powders: Salsa Ffina and Polvora de Duch. If you need particulars let me

know. I have junicode transcriptions including the scribal abbreviations,

translations, and redactions for both.

 

Cynara

 

 

Date: Sat, 28 Feb 2004 23:01:17 -0500

From: Daniel Myers <edouard at medievalcookery.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Poudre Fine / Fine Spices

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

 

On Feb 28, 2004, at 1:43 AM, david friedman wrote:

> Anahita wrote:

>> I am certainly not asking people to do my research for me, but i

>> would appreciate it if people remember where there are references to

>> poudre fine / pouldre fine / fine spice powder / fine spices, please

>> let me know, i.e., book titles.

> Le Menagier de Paris has a recipe, with quantites if I remember

> correctly, for fine spice powder.

 

Here ya go...

 

Powder Fine

        1 1/2 Tbsp. cinnamon (canelle)

        1 tsp. cloves

        3 Tbsp. ginger

        1 tsp. grains of paradise

        2 Tbsp. sugar

 

Source [Le Menagier de Paris, Janet Hinson (trans.)]: FINE POWDER of

spices. Take an ounce and a drachma of white ginger, a quarter-ounce of

hand-picked cinnamon, half a quarter-ounce each of grains and cloves,

and a quarter-ounce of rock sugar, and grind to powder.

 

- Doc

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

   Edouard Halidai  (Daniel Myers)

   http://www.medievalcookery.com/

 

 

Date: Wed, 3 Mar 2004 15:19:56 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Le Viandier Spice uestion

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

 

>  So what is Picon? Is this referring to the Picon edition of Le

> Menagier? Isthere a Picon edition of Taillevent? Or a Picon

> article published elsewhere?

 

"Pichon":  there's clearly a typo in the Florilegium, is the 1893

French transcription of several of the MSs.  Here's the citation.

 

Taillevent.  Le Viandier.  Published as L Viandier de Guillaume

Tirel dit Taillevent edited by J. Pichon and G. Vicaire 1892.  Second

edition 1893.  Third edition edited by S. Martinet.  Slatkine

Reprints.  Geneva.  1967.

 

>  Does anyone have this resource in its original form? I would like

> t include it in my "Fine Spice" documentation, but i'd like to

> verify the source.

 

Somewhere I have my research photocopies of Pichon & Vicaire, and

could type in the French original.  Just not immediately.

 

My translation reads:

 

222. Spice Powder.

 

Gind ginger (4 parts), cassia (3 1/2 parts), nutmeg (2 parts),

pepper (1 1/2 parts), long pepper, cloves, grains of paradise and

galingale (1 part each).  (A recipe quoted by Pichon et al., p. 26.)

 

 

A citation for the translation would read:

Tirel, Guillume. <i>Le Viandier de Taillevent:</i> c. 1395. Trans.

James Prescott. 2nd ed. Eugene: Alfarhaugr Publishing Society, 1989.

 

I hope this helps.  If you need the French original typed in, including

whatever Pichon & Vicaire say about where it came from, let me know.

 

Thorvald

 

 

Date: Thu, 4 Mar 2004 22:33:25 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Le Viandier Spice Question

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

 

At 17:35 -0500 2004-03-03, a5foil wrote:

> Well, this whole thing about the spice blends has me curious, so I

> would be interested in the original, when you get a chance.

> Cynara

>> Thorvald scripsit:

>> Somewhere I have my research photocopies of Pichon & Vicaire, and

>> could type in the French original.  Just not immediately.

 

The footnote is to Pichon & Vicaire's version of the Bibliothèque

Nationale MS of Viandier.

 

The text being footnoted on page 26 reads:

 

"BRESME. Soit cuite en eaue, mengié à la saulce vert, en rost au

verjus, ou en potaige poudrée de fine poudre d'espices(6), au sel

menu."

 

The footnote reads:

 

(6) Taillevent parle souvent de la poudre d'épices mais sans dire

de quelles épices se composoit cette poudre. Le <i>Thrés. de

sant.</i>, p. 395, donne la composition de plusieurs poudres,

suivant qu'elles doivent servir à l'assaisonnement de tel ou

tel mets.  Voice de quoi se composoit la poudre en usage pour

les potages et les sauces: "Gingembre, quatre onces; canelle,

trois onces et demie; poivre rond, une once et demie; poivre

long, une once; muscade, deux onces; clous de girofle, une

once; graine de paradis, garingal, de chacun une once."

L'auteur ajoute: "Toutes ces pouldres se gardent un mois,

voire quarante jours sans se gaster. On les doit tenir en des

sacs de cuir, pour ne s'esventer, ne l'estans ja que trop par

la longue traite de leur apport. Car on compte depuis l'Espagne

jusques a Calicuth où on débite le poivre et le gingembre quatre

mille lieuës par mer, & de là jusques aux isles Moluques & autres

qui n'en sont fort esloignées, rapportans le girofle et la muscade,

deus mille lieuës."

 

NOTE: "Thrés. de sant." is Thrésor de santé, 1607 edition.

 

Thorvald

 

 

Date: Fri, 05 Mar 2004 13:03:31 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] e Viandier Spice Question

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

 

This same recipe appears in Barbara Wheaton's Savoring the Past

he French Kitchen and Table from 1300 to 1789. See pages

249-250. She includes her modern version there as well.

 

Johnnae

 

James Prescott wrote:

> The footnote is to Pichon & Vicaire's version of the Bibliothèque

> NationaleMS of Viandier.

> The text being footnoted on page 26 reads:

> "BRESME. Soit cuite en eaue, mengié à la saulce vert, en rost au

> verjus, ou en potaige poudrée de fine poudre d'espices(6), au sel

> menu."

> snipped

> NOTE: "Thrés. de sant." is Thrésr de santé, 1607 edition.

> Thorvald

 

 

Date: Fri, 5 Mar 2004 12:20:44 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Le Viandier Spice Question

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

 

> I really really really appreciate receiving the original French.

> Unfortunately, diacritical marks don't come through in e-mail very

> well.

 

Sorry for their failure to arrive in readable form.  Perhaps I should

have sent them as HTML.

 

>> Calicuth o˜

> (in this case it's the second word - i see "o [carat]"

 

The word is 'o' followed by 'u grave'.

 

>> mille lieuÎs."

> (in this case  see "lieu[capital I circumflex]s")

 

The second last letter is 'e umlaut' (yes, really).

 

Thorvald

 

 

Date: Sat, 6 Mar 2004 14:10:10 -0800

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Le Menagier Fine Powder

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

 

Herein lies a mystery - at least to me.

 

The Pouldre Fine recipe as reproduced in Scully and Scully, "Early

French Cookery" on page 54 reads as follows

 

Pouldre Fine

(Menagier de Paris, p. 247/Sec. 314)

(where through out Scully2, the page no. refers to Vol. II of the

Pichon ed.; and Sec no. to the same material in the Georgine E.

Brereton and Janet M. Ferrier, pp. 191-283)

 

Prenez gingembre blanc 1 (degree sign) .3, canelle triee 3 (degree

sign), giroffle et graine de chascun demy quart d'once, et de succre

en pierre 3 (degree sign), et faicts pouldre.

 

If i assume the degree sign represents an ounce, my translation is:

Take white ginger 1 ounce .3, selected cinnamon 3 ounces, cloves and

grains [of paradise] of each half quarter of an ounce, and of rock

sugar 3 ounces, and make powder.

 

However, the Janet Hinson version, in Duke Cariadoc's collection and

on the web at:

http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Medieval/Cookbooks/Menagier/

Menagier.html#OTHER%20ODDS%20AND%20ENDS

which says it's from the same Pichon ed. says

FINE POWDER of spices. Take (probably: Ed.) an ounce and a drachma of

white ginger, (probably: Ed.) a quarter-ounce of hand-picked

cinnamon, half a quarter-ounce each of grains and cloves, and

(probably: Ed.) a quarter-ounce of rock sugar, and grind to powder.

 

How did she get 1/4 ounce each for the cinnamon and the sugar?

 

Anahita

still puzzling over Fine Spices

 

 

Date: Sun, 07 Mar 2004 00:29:14 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Le Menagier Fine Powder

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

 

The Brereton/Ferrier version is found on page 270 under Miscellaneous

Cooking Hints II v. 314. reads

Pouldre fine. Prenez gingerbre blanc 1 (degree). 3, canelle triee 3 (degree),

giroffle et graine de chascun demy quart d'once, et de succre en pierre

3 (degree). et faictes pouldre.

 

I am using (degree) for the super-imposed degree sign that I am sure

will not e-mail at all well.

 

The note for this as found on page 329 states: Pouldre fine... et faictes pouldre The quantities prescribed here are difficult to interpret. The apothecary's sign 3 indicates a drachm 9cf. lines 29 and 30 where drame is spelt out), and I (degree) may be meant for one ounce. The sign 3 (degree), however, is baffling. B has replaced this by 4 (degree), presumably an abbreviation for 4 ounces. Pichon's   suggestion (ii, 247 n.3) that 4 (degree) means un quarteron is weakened by the fact that the usual abbreviation is iiii (on ----written there as superscript).

 

{ I will note that what they reproduce in the text to the note looks

like a funny bold face 3}

 

I suspect that if my reading of the note is correct that there may be

differences between versions of the manuscript.

 

Eileen Power in The Goodman of Paris on page 298 gives this as:

FINE [SPICE] POWDER. Take of white ginger an ounce and a dram,

of selected cinnamon a quarter, of cloves and grain [of  Paradise] each  

half a quarter of an ounce, and of lump sugar a quarter and reduce them to

powder.

 

I suspect Hinson stuck more closely to Power's version.

 

I also have at hand: Le Mesnagier de Paris which is Brereton and

Ferrier's edition of Le Menagier de Paris translated into

modern French by Karin Ueltschi [Librairie Generale Francaise, 1994] and

the Slatkine Reprints edition of Le Menagier de Paris  [or the Pichon

edition](Geneve) if you think those versions

might help. I can check those in the morning, but it's too late tonight

to get into them.

 

Have you seen my article in the Florilegium---

French & Italian Herb and Spice Mixtures by THLady Johnnae llyn Lewis.

Stefan added it to the Florilegium in December.

 

Hope this helps---

 

Johnnae

 

lilinah at earthlink.net wrote:

> Herein lies a mystery - at least to me.

> The Pouldre Fine recipe as reproduced in Scully and Scully, "Early

> French Cookery" on page 54 reads as follows

> Pouldre Fine

> (Menagier de Paris, p. 247/Sec. 314)

> (where through out Scully2, the page no. refers to Vol. II of the

> Pichon ed.; and Sec no. to the same material in the Georgine E.

> Brereton and Janet M. Ferrier, pp. 191-283)

<snip>

> Anahita

> still puzzling over Fine Spices

 

 

Date: Sun, 07 Mar 2004 16:34:04 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Le Menagier Fine Powder

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

 

Continuing from where I left off last night or rather early this am---

  Le Mesnagier de Paris which is Brereton and Ferrier's edition f Le

Menagier de Paris

translated into modern French by Karin Ueltschi [Librairie Generale

Francaise, 1994]

page 776 in this edition

 

Line 3222-3224

314. Pouldre Fine. Prenez gingembre blanc 1 (degree). 3, canelle

triee 3 (degree), giroffle et graine de cascun demy quart d'once,

et de succre en pierre 3 (degree), et faictes pouldre.

 

The notes read:

3222. b 7(degree) 3 (?) c. A, t. 4 (degree) g. B.

3224. p. 4(degree) et B.

 

Again I am using (degree) for the super-imposed degree sign and that  the 3 that  hey reproduce in the text looks like a funny bold face 3.

 

The Slatkine Reprints edition of Le Menagier de Paris  [of the 1846 Pichon edition] (Geneve) reads: Section "Menues Choses" of volume II, page 247. POULDRE FINE. Prenez gingembre blanc 4 [degree] at  (une once et une drachme?) canelle trie'e + [degree] (un quarteron?) giroffle et graine de chascun demi quart d'once, et de succre en pierre +[degree] (un quarteron?) et faictes pouldre.

 

The  at  sign is a symbol for a scrawl that looks like the top half f  question mark with an additional line at the top. The + sign is for a symbol that looks very much like a plus scrawl.

 

The notes read: Je crois que ce signe, reproduit exactement ice d'apres  le Ms. B, est un 4. Il figure aussi dans les Menus I, II, IV VI. Voy. p.91, n.5. Il est remplace dans le Ms. A par  at  (un gros ou drachme). Voy, pour la poudre de due (or maybe it's duc), aussi estimee que celle-ci au xiv siecle., p. 248.

 

Again there are references to the differences between the versions

between te texts.

 

I'll reply to the other questions in my next post.

 

Johnnae llyn Lewis

 

 

Date: Sun, 07 Mar 2004 16:56:31 -0500

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Le Menagier Fine Powder

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

 

> I have another annoying question. Does Barbara Wheaton in Savoring the

> Past give the original French by any chance for:

> Spice Mixture from Livre fort excellent de cuisine 1555.

> Wheaton. Savoring the Past . p.247.

 

She gives it as:

 

> Menues espices

 

Prenez z iiij de Gingembre z iiii de canelle z ii de poyure rond z i de

poyure long ij de noix de muscade z i de cloux de Giroffle z i de Graine de paradis z i de muscade z i de Garingal et i le tout mis en pouldre et passes par lesset. <

 

She includes in a note that Long pepper was unobtainable and that grains

of paradise almost as rare. I have substituted cardamon.

Keep in mind that the work was done on this volume in the early

1980's and first appeared in 1983 when such spices were harder to obtain.

 

> Also, i'm now curious about the Thresor de sante recipe in Wheaton.

> The recipe Thorvald/James Prescott sent which is on p. 395 of this

> work, says, in the original French:

> "Gingembre, quatre onces; canelle,  trois onces et demie; poivre rond,

> une once et demie; poivre long, une once; muscade, deux onces; clous

> de girofle, une once; graine de paradis, garingal, de chacun une once.

> snipped---Whereas Wheaton has:

> Another Spice Mixture from the 1607 Thresor de Sante. snipped

> Again, does she give the original French? It looks to me like she is

> using the recipe James sent, but is substituting cardamom for grains

> of paradise. And in my experience, since i have access to both grains

> and cardamom, they are not all that similar.

 

Yes she gives the original French as taken from the Pichon edition of Le

Viandier---where they cited the 17th century recipe apparently. It reads the same as given by James earlier.

 

Again there is a footnote that explains her reasoning--- stating again that Long Pepper was unavailable, and that here the question was how much more black pepper might be added or if one should add any at all as she already found it peppery enough. Again she substituted cardamon for the grains of paradise--- probably for those reasons that Bear mentioned as regards the true and false cardamon. Davidson has a long article about the confusion in the Oxford Companion.

 

>Anahita

 

Glad to be of help---

 

Johnnae llyn Lewis

 

 

Date: Sun, 7 Mar 2004 16:35:46 -0700

From: James Prescott <prescotj at telusplanet.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Drachma Weight

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

 

At 12:08 -0800 2004-03-07, lilinah at earthlink.net wrote:

> Le Menagier's recipe for Pouldre Fine in Scully and Scully in "Early

> French Cookery" calls for 1 ounce and 1 drachma of ginger. However,

> the authors appear not to address the drachma weight (at least i can't

> find an explanation).

> Checking The Florilegium

> http://www.florilegium.org/files/COMMERCE/measures-art.html

> I found:

> Dram - A weight, orig. the ancient Greek drachma; hence, in

> Apothecaries' weight, a weight of 60 grains = 1/8 of an ounce; in

> Avoirdupois weight, of 27.13 grains = 1/16 of an ounce; = drachm

> What i want to verify is WHICH is being used in Le Menagier,

> Apothecaries' weight or Avoirdupois (since one weighs about twice the

> other).

 

Not clear.  None of the sources I've checked so far is clear.

More later if I unearth any additional information.

 

The cook would probably weigh other things in avoirdupois, but

perhaps purchase spices in apothecary. Which does the recipe

mean?  Or did they have two sets of scales in the kitchen?

 

In Menagier's Fine Powder recipe we have "half a quarter of an

ounce".  That is, an eighth of an ounce.  If they were using

apothecary weight, that would be exactly a drachm.  So why

wouldn't they choose to call it a drachm, given that elsewhere

in the same recipe it appears that drachms are mentioned?

 

On the other hand, the ms seems to use the character sometimes

called the 'yogh' (the one that can look misleadingly like a 3),

which is the apothecary symbol for a drachm.  Does that mean that

if they are using the symbol then they are also using the apothecary

definition for the drachm?

 

On the same other hand, if the ginger is one ounce and one drachm,

why bother with the extra little bit if the drachm is only one

sixteenth of an ounce, a 6% difference? The 12% difference

represented by the apothecary dram would be larger, enough to

be tasted.

 

Note that the modern Troy drachm is about 3.888 grams.

 

The Paris avoirdupois drachm of the time of Menagier was about

1.912 grams (not the modern 1.772 grams).

 

Thorvald

 

 

Date: Sun, 7 Mar 2004 18:55:27 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Drachma Weight

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

 

> Le Menagier's recipe for Pouldre Fine in Scully and Scully in "Early

> French Cookery" calls for 1 ounce and 1 drachma of ginger. However,

> the authors appear not to address the drachma weight (at least i

> can't find an explanation).

> Checking The Florilegium

> http://www.florilegium.org/files/COMMERCE/measures-art.html

> I found:

> Dram - A weight, orig. the ancient Greek drachma; hence, in

> Apothecaries' weight, a weight of 60 grains = 1/8 of an ounce; in

> Avoirdupois weight, of 27.13 grains = 1/16 of an ounce; = drachm

> What i want to verify is WHICH is being used in Le Menagier,

> Apothecaries' weight or Avoirdupois (since one weighs about twice the

> other).

 

Use the apothecaries' measure.  It is the system used to weigh spices

at the time.

 

> Also, i am led to believe that in this case a livre = 12 ounces.

> For most spice blend recipes, this doesn't matter - when they give

> quantities, they are given all given in ounces. But Le Menagier uses

> both ounces and dramchae, and i want to keep the proportions correct.

> Anahita

 

The French livre is a pound of 16 ounces which was standardized in 1350

To approximately 1.079 pounds avoirdupois or 489.5 grams.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Sun, 7 Mar 2004 19:12:11 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Drachma Weight

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

 

> On the other hand, the ms seems to use the character sometimes

> called the 'yogh' (the one that can look misleadingly like a 3),

> which is the apothecary symbol for a drachm.  Does that mean that

> if they are using the symbol then they are also using the apothecary

> definition for the drachm?

 

Remember that most spices in period were sold through apothecaries or

spicers and that the spices were sold in apothecary measures.

 

> On the same other hand, if the ginger is one ounce and one drachm,

> why bother with the extra little bit if the drachm is only one

> sixteenth of an ounce, a 6% difference?  The 12% difference

> represented by the apothecary dram would be larger, enough to

> be tasted.

> Note that the modern Troy drachm is about 3.888 grams.

> The Paris avoirdupois drachm of the time of Menagier was about

> 1.912 grams (not the modern 1.772 grams).

> Thorvald

 

This is because the standard French pound was set at 1.079 U.S. pounds.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Mar 2004 19:21:31 -0800

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Poudre Fote and Other Spicy Thoughts

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

 

First, I'm polishing up my documentation for the Fine Powder

competition Saturday. I wandered through the bowels of the

UC-Berkeley library last night and found a seventh recipe within

period and an interesting recipe called A Spice Powder for Patissiers

in _Le patissier francois_ by LaVarenne from 1652 that is BIG on

pepper with other spices added (the ones typical for Poudre Fine).

There's even a spiced salt - you make the spice powder up and mix it

with an equal quantity of salt.

 

I thought it was odd that the recipes for spice powders from 1555 and

1607 both included long pepper, which i thought was out of fashion by

that time. If this thought of mine is right, then i would suspect the

recipes ere copied from an older cookbook. Additionally, both

recipes use both "round pepper" and long pepper.

 

Second, now I've been thinking about Poudre Forte... Besides the

recipe in the Anonymous Venetian cookbook, reproduced in Redon,

Sabban, and Serventi, re there other period recipes for Poudre Forte?

 

LXXV.  Specie Negre e Forte per Assay Savore.

Specie negre e forte per fare savore; toy mezo quarto de garofali e

do onze de pevere e toy arquanto pevere longo e do noce moscate e fa

de tute specie.

 

LXXV. A Strong Black Spice for Enough Sauces.

A black and strong spice for making sauces; take half a quarter of

cloves and two ounces of pepper and take as much of long pepper and

two nutmegs and make of all a spice.

 

Ludovico Frati, ed., Libro di Cucina del Scolo XIV, Livorno:

Raffaello Giusti, Editore, 1899, p. 40.

 

Anahita

 

 

Date: Sat, 23 Jul 2005 15:20:15 -0400

From: Patrick Levesque <petruvoda at videotron.ca>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Powders

To: "EKCooksGuild at yahoogroups.com" <EKCooksGuild at yahoogroups.com>,

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

        <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

One of the medical texts I'm using right now is giving instructions on powders for meats and sauces. Thought you might be interested, especially those who deal in late-period French cookery.

 

This is from 'La pharmacopée' by André Caille. This edition is from 1574. There are four recipes given. Keep in mind that ounces here are apothecary’s measures (12 ounces to the pound):

 

Powder of small, or minor, spices (Poudre de menues epices): 1 pound ginger,

4 ounces black pepper, 2 ounces nutmeg, 1 ounce each clove and grains of paradise, 1/2 ounce cinnamon.

 

White powder: white ginger reduced to powder

 

Fine powder: white ginger (1/2 pound), 2 ounces grains of paradise, 2 drachmas saffron (8 drachma to the ounce), and a little vinegar, to color everything the color of saffron.

 

Ducal powder: 1 pound sugar, 1 ounce cinnamon.

 

Petru

 

 

Date: Fri, 25 Aug 2006 21:50:48 -0400

From: "Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius"

        <adamantius.magister at verizon.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cubebs

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

 

On Aug 25, 2006, at 8:45 PM, Stefan li Rous wrote:

 

> niccolo difrancesco commented back on August 6:

>> Powder douce, powder forte, fine spice powder, black spices, Dry BBQ rubs,

>> hypocras, Duke's Powder, etc., in addition to some more exotic individual

>> spices.  These are all wonders that could catch on right now in the

>> real world food market.  Taking the historical to the masses.

> Which one is "Duke's Powder"?

 

Duke's Powder is a phrase used in somebody's (Powers'?) translation of Le Menagier, in a translated hippocras recipe. As I recall, it refers to the weighed-out spice mixture being mixed with a specific amount of sugar and then with wine to make the hippocras, but it also says, according to the translator, that the spice-and-sugar mixture is called The Duke's Powder.

 

Of course, some have argued that this should be translated as Powder

Douce, or simply Sweetened Powder, and that it really has no relation to anyone of Ducal rank.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Fri, 25 Aug 2006 23:42:42 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cubebs

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

 

>Of course, some have argued that this should be translated as Powder Douce, or >simply Sweetened Powder, and that it really has no relation to anyone of Ducal >rank.

>Adamantius

 

I agree with the likelihood of the mistranslation, always had thought it more probable that it was douce.  It sounds spiffier to have the word DUKE out there, though, and it doesn't confuse the sweet spice blend I know as powder douce.

 

 

Date: Sat, 26 Aug 2006 05:55:25 +0200

From: Volker Bach <carlton_bach at yahoo.de>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cubebs

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

 

Am Samstag, 26. August 2006 03:50 schrieb Phil Troy / G. Tacitus  

Adamantius:

 

> Of course, some have argued that this should be translated as Powder

> Douce, or simply Sweetened Powder, and that it really has no relation

> to anyone of Ducal rank.

 

I wonder. IIRC the spelling is 'pouldre de duc', and Jeanne Bourin (admittedly not a noted authority on linguistics, but a native speaker with some experience in reading medieval texts) also believes that this refers to a duke, not to sweetness.

 

Does anyone know how other recipes for poudre douce compare?

 

Giano

 

 

Date: Sat, 26 Aug 2006 03:07:31 -0700 (PDT)

From: Huette von Ahrens <ahrenshav at yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cubebs

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

 

This is what Cindy Renfrow has in her online culinary glossary:

 

Duke's Powder, POLUORA DE DUQUE, pouldre de duc = A spice mixture.

 

   "Barbara Santich suggests that this recipe title is a misnomer, and an indication of Italian influence on Catalan cooking. A very similar blend of spices minus the sugar -- is found in anonymous Venetian cookbook of the late 15th century. It is called specie dolce, "sweet spices". Several recipes in that cookbook call for dishes to be topped with sugar and unspecified spices before serving. Santich theorizes that specie dolce was the spice blend which was sprinkled with the sugar. The Italian name specie dolce, "sweet spices", may have been mangled in translation to become the Catalan polvora de duch, "powder of the duke". The Libre del Coch has a second recipe for this spice mix, De altra polvora de duch, which contains 2 oz.  ginger, 1/2 drachm galingale, 1oz. cinnamon, 1 oz. long pepper, 1 oz. grains of paradise, 1 oz.  nutmeg, 1/4 oz. fine sugar. The Libre de Sent Sovi gives yet another recipe: 1 pound sugar; 1/2 oz.  cinnamon; 3/4 oz. ginger; 1/4oz. total of cloves, nutmeg, galingale, and cardamon.  Santich's point is that the recipe in the1529 Nola is closer to the Italian tradition than to its Catalan predecessors.  She does not mean... that the anonymous Venetian is the first appearance of this recipe. Santich goes on to discuss other similarities in Nola to Italian recipes.  So, if I dare summarize her reasoning: this spice blend is similar to the Italian version; its name may be a corruption of the Italian name.

 

   Perhaps *all* such blends were originally "sweet powder", or perhaps there were two different blends (duc/dolce), each with its many variations.  To confuse matters further, the Menagier's blend is for making Hypocras.  Nola has a different blend entirely for that purpose, and uses "Duke's Powder" in cooking." (Carroll-Mann)

 

   "Nicole Crosley-Holland in Living and Dining in Medieval Paris which is an examination of Le Menagier de Paris says that "pouldre de duc" "comes from the Catalan treatise Sent Sovi; polvora de duch, or powder of sweetness according to Thibaut-Comelade (262,121) who gives the components: fine sugar, ginger, cinnamon, pepper, clove, mace, nutmeg and saffron. ...The Menagier probably heard of this powder when he served in Languedoc and transcribed as duc the sound duch." [pages159-160] (Holloway)

 

(Le Menagier de Paris, c. 1393, found in Goodman of Paris, E. Power, tr., 1928) - Hippocras..."And note that the powder and the sugar mixed together is [hight] the Duke's powder."  Pichon's edition says: "...Et nota que la pouldre et le succre mesl?s ensemble, font  pouldre de duc." Le Menagier's spice mixture calls for 1 quarter of very fine cinnamon, 1/2 quarter fine flour of cinnamon, 1 ounce fine white string ginger (gingembre de mesche), 1 ounce grains of paradise, 1/6 [ounce?] nutmegs and galingale mixed together. His Duke's Powder consists of   1/2 ounce of this mixture added to 2 quarters of sugar. The Brereton and Ferrier translation of Le Menagier de Paris contains the following notes:

 

"au gros pois i.e. the Parisian weight as distinct from that of Beziers, Carcassonne, and Montpellier. The pound in the south of France was equivalent to only 13 ounces.  (NOTES p.329 ) RE Pouldre fine ... et faictes pouldre. They also question the Pichon suggestion that 4 [superscript 0] means un quarteron is weakened by the fact that the usual abbreviation is iiii [supercript on]. "(NOTES p. 329) (Holloway) (de Nola, 1525 edition) - "POLUORA DE DUQUE -- Duke's Powder - Cinnamon, half an ounce; ginger, half an ounce; cloves, one eighth; sugar, one pound; all this well ground and strained through a hair sieve so that it should be quite delicate and subtle, or at   least just like the one for the sauces."

 

(de Nola, 1525 edition) - "POLUORA DE DUQUE DE OTRA MANERA - Duke's   Powder in another manner - White ginger, two ounces; galangal, one eighth of an ounce; cinnamon, one ounce; long pepper, one ounce; grains of paradise, one ounce; nutmeg, one ounce; fine sugar, one pound; all this should be well ground and strained through a delicate hair sieve." (de Nola1529 edition) -"POLVORA DE DUQUE - Duke's Powder - Half an ounce of cinnamon; an eighth of cloves; and for the lords cast in nothing but cinnamon, and a pound   of sugar; if you wish to make it sharp in flavor and [good] for pains in the stomach, cast in a little ginger." (Carroll-Mann) Slightly different translation: (de Nola, 1529 edition) - "Polvora Duque (Duke's Powder) Cinnamon half an ounce; cloves half a quarter; and for lords only add cinnamon ["y para los senores, no se echa sino sola canela"], and a pound of sugar; if you wish it to have a sharp taste and make it good for passions of the stomach add a little ginger." ANALYSIS of de Nola's phrase: "y para los senores, no se echa sino   sola canela"

 

"This appears in the Logrono editions (Castillian translations), but not in the first edition of Nola (1520, published in Catalan). Neither recipe in the first edition gives an instruction like this, just the measure of the ingredients and brief instructions on mixing them up. So, this class distinction is something introduced by the Aragonese mayor of Logrono, in his translation. Where he got it, I don't know. I suspect the wide variation in recipes for this powder is at least as much a matter of preference as it is a matter of economics. I would caution against over-interpreting this through the filter of political power. Yes, it was conspicuous consumption, but I think it was food, first. For REALLY conspicuous consumption, look at the recipes for Fine Spice powder (Salsa ffina), which called for a half-pound of saffron   in a pound of powder...

 

The earliest reference to Duke's Powder I have found in the Iberian   cuisine is the Barcelona copy of the Libre de Sent Sovi (Biblioteca Universitat de Barcelona MS 68, ca. 1450). It also gives no indication of a class distinction in the composition of the powder.  That recipe follows. I am not as convinced as Dr. Santich that this powder is of Italian origin.  The Aragonese/Catalan empire had tremendous influence on the Italian cuisine of the 15th century, and the culinary influences flowed both ways. The Italian influence may be over-rated, and as much a product of academic bias as of fact.

 

(Libre de Sent Sovi , ca. 1450) - "Si vols ffer polvora de duch que sa ffina se ffa axi per una liura Primerament tu pendras una liura de sucre blanch Canella mige hunsa que sia ffina Gingebre que sia bo un quart e mig Giroffle nous noscades garangal cardemom entre tot un quart E tot aso picaras E pessar ho as per sadas."

 

Translation (the punctuation is mine): If you wish to make Duke's Powder that will be fine, it is made in this way for one pound. First you will take one pound of white sugar, Cinnamon half ounce that will be fine, Ginger that will be good one quarter [ounce] and a half [so, three quarters of an ounce], Cloves, nutmeg, galingale, cardamom between all one quarter [I interpret this as "of each" because a 16th of an ounce of any of these spices in a pound of powder would hardly be detectable and thus would serve neither palate nor politics]. And all this you will pound. And you have to pass it through [a] sieve." (McDonald)

 

Huette

 

 

Date: Sat, 26 Aug 2006 08:08:36 -0400

From: Patrick Levesque <petruvoda at videotron.ca>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cubebs

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

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

Poudre du duc actually appears under that very name in other French apothecary texts in period.

 

I'll hunt out the exact recipe and wording later in the day and post it to the list

 

Petru

 

 

Date: Sat, 26 Aug 2006 15:38:08 -0400

From: Patrick Levesque <petruvoda at videotron.ca>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cubebs

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

        <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

As promised earlier, here are various cooking powders found in "La Pharmacop?e" (French translation 1574, re-ed 1580) on p. 598, for those interested in such things :-)

 

All ounces measurements are apothecary's weight, not volume, measures.

 

Petru

 

 

Poudre de menues epices (Powder of little spices)

 

Gingembre blanc (1 lb) (White ginger)

Poivre (4 on) (Pepper)

noix muscade (2 on) (Nutmeg)

gyrofle, graine de paradis (1 on ch) (Cloves, Grains of Paradise)

canelle (1/2 on) (Cinnamon)

 

            poudre blanche

 

gingembre blanc (1 lb) (Ginger)

 

            poudre fine

 

gingembre blanc (1/2 lb) (White ginger)

graine de paradis (2 on) (Graims of paradise)

saffran (2 dr) (saffron)

Vinaigre (Vinegar)

 

            poudre de Duc

 

1lb de sucre (sugar)

1 on de canelle (cinnamon)

 

 

Date: Sun, 27 Aug 2006 16:11:11 -0500

From: "Craig Daniel" <teucer at pobox.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Cubebs

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

 

I'm a newbie to this list (and to the society), so I may have missed an e-mail where it was mentioned already, but there's a Duke's powder in Ruperto de Nola as well. The operative word in the Spanish version is "duque", meaning Duke, and the Catalan is "duch", evidently with the same meaning.

 

Of course de Nola is relatively late, and the mistake would have already been made by then. So this doesn't help track down the source, but it does provide one more example of the "duke" version.

 

Question: does anybody know of a cookbook that contains both sweet and ducal powders? That is, did the two either start distinct enough or develop to be so that anyone was familiar with both as different mixes?

 

Jaume / Craig Daniel

 

 

Date: Wed, 25 Apr 2007 22:02:46 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Recipe(s) Request

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

 

Try here. Sources are noted.

http://home.comcast.net/~iasmin/mkcc/MKCCfiles/FrenchHerbSpiceMix.html

 

Johnnae

 

 

Date: Mon, 20 Aug 2007 19:27:40 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Bishop's Powder

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

 

There is a Bishop's Powder that is mentioned in connection

with magic and alchemy and the philosopher's stone.

If you go to Google Books and search under the phrase

"bishop powder" in quotes, it turns up in accounts

involving John Dee.

 

Johnnae

 

Stefan li Rous wrote:

> While visiting with Auntie Arwen at "Auntie Arwen's Spice Blends" at

> Pennsic, she asked me about "Bishop's Powder". I've checked the

> Florilegium and I don't turn up any matches there. So does anyone

> here know anything about this spice mixture? It supposedly has lots

> of mustard in it.

> Stefan

 

 

Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2007 13:14:34 -0000

From: <euriol at ptd.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Question about a spice recipe

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

 

I found a translation at:

http://www.telusplanet.net/public/prescotj/data/viandier/viandier5.html

 

Euriol

 

Elaine Koogler <kiridono at gmail.com> said:

> Some time ago (early 2004) I got a recipe on this list from Thorvald for a

> spice powder from Taillevent.  The number is 222, but, in my translation by

> Scully, there is no 222.  The translated recipe:

> 222. Spice Powder.

> Grind ginger (4 parts), cassia (3 1/2 parts), nutmeg (2 parts), pepper (1

> 1/2 parts), long pepper, cloves, grains of paradise and galingale (1 part

> each).  (A recipe quoted by Pichon et al., p. 26.)

> Does anyone have the Pichon translation?  If so, could you please send me

> the original French version...along with any other information in the book?

> I made the spice powder yesterday and it's really great...

> Kiri

 

 

Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2007 13:28:37 -0000

From: <euriol at ptd.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Question about a spice recipe

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

 

I think this may have the original you are looking for, but I read very

little modern french, let alone medieval french.

 

http://www.uni-giessen.de/gloning/tx/viand15.htm

 

I do have the book at home, but someone else may have it closer at hand at

the moment.

 

Euriol

 

"euriol at ptd.net" <euriol at ptd.net> said:

> I found a translation at:

> http://www.telusplanet.net/public/prescotj/data/viandier/

> viandier5.html

> Euriol

 

 

Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2007 18:47:56 +0000

From: Olwen the Odd <olwentheodd at hotmail.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Question about a spice recipe

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

 

This is the spice powder I made a large batch of and packaged nicely  

for Queen Rowan to give as a Consort gift to each of the other  

Consorts at Crown Tourney when King Logan won earlier this year.  It  

was very well recieved.  I posted a little hanging note with the  

ingredients in case anyone wanted to check for allergies or reproduce  

the recipe.  Queen Rowan was very happy to give such a nice gift but  

had to use a bit of caution as she is allergic to cloves.

 

Some of this mixture and other spices or mixtures will be made up and  

sold at our upcoming Holiday Faire as part of a fundraiser for the  

Royal Travel Fund.

 

Olwen the Odd

 

> Some time ago (early 2004) I got a recipe on this list from Thorvald for a

> spice powder from Taillevent. The number is 222, but, in my translation by

> Scully, there is no 222.

 

> Kiri

 

 

Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2007 17:41:04 -0400

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Question about a spice recipe

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

 

It's on page 26 of the Pichon in footnote 6. Try

http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/bpt6k62367s/f105.table

 

This is that recipe and note that appears elsewhere in the Florilegium.

 

The recipe is not really in Taillevent-- it's in a later cookbook.

 

Johnnae

 

 

_spice-mixes-msg 9/17/06_

 

>> Thorvald scripsit:

>> Somewhere I have my research photocopies of Pichon & Vicaire, and

>> could type in the French original. Just not immediately.

 

The footnote is to Pichon & Vicaire's version of the Biblioth?que

 

Nationale MS of Viandier.

The text being footnoted on page 26 reads:

 

"BRESME. Soit cuite en eaue, mengi? ? la saulce vert, en rost au

verjus, ou en potaige poudr?e de fine poudre d'espices(6), au sel

menu."

 

The footnote reads:

 

(6) Taillevent parle souvent de la poudre d'?pices mais sans dire

de quelles ?pices se composoit cette poudre. Le <i>Thr?s. de

sant.</i>, p. 395, donne la composition de plusieurs poudres,

suivant qu'elles doivent servir ? l'assaisonnement de tel ou

tel mets. Voice de quoi se composoit la poudre en usage pour

les potages et les sauces: "Gingembre, quatre onces; canelle,

trois onces et demie; poivre rond, une once et demie; poivre

long, une once; muscade, deux onces; clous de girofle, une

once; graine de paradis, garingal, de chacun une once."

L'auteur ajoute: "Toutes ces pouldres se gardent un mois,

voire quarante jours sans se gaster. On les doit tenir en des

sacs de cuir, pour ne s'esventer, ne l'estans ja que trop par

la longue traite de leur apport. Car on compte depuis l'Espagne

jusques a Calicuth o? on d?bite le poivre et le gingembre quatre

mille lieu?s par mer, & de l? jusques aux isles Moluques & autres

qui n'en sont fort esloign?es, rapportans le girofle et la muscade,

deus mille lieu?s."

 

NOTE: "Thr?s. de sant." is Thr?sor de sant?, 1607 edition.

 

Thorvald

 

 

Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2007 21:57:08 +0000 (GMT)

From: emilio szabo <emilio_szabo at yahoo.it>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Question about a spice recipe

To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org

 

222. *Spice* Powder.

Grind ginger (4 parts), cassia (3 1/2 parts), nutmeg (2 parts),

pepper (1 1/2 parts), long pepper, cloves, grains of paradise and

galingale (1 part each).  (A recipe quoted by Pichon et al., p. 26.)

> Does anyone have this resource in its original form?

 

This is not from the Viandier. According to Pichon and Vicaire, it is  

from the "Thr?s. de sant.". They quote it in a footnote in order to  

explain a passage from Viandier: "... fine poudre d'espices". The  

explanation, that "Thr?s. de sant." refers to the 1607 edition of the  

"Thr?sor de sant?" is found in note 2, page 8.

 

 

The recipe is quoted without heading, but Pichon and Vicaire state  

that it was used to season sauces and soups (potages). It goes like  

this:

 

"Gingembre, quatre onces; canelle, trois onces et demie; poivre rond,  

une once et demie; poivre long, une once; muscade, deux onces; clous  

de girofle, une once; graine de paradis, garingal, de chacun une once".

 

http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/bpt6k62367s/f105.table

 

Emilio

 

 

Date: Sun, 9 Dec 2007 20:13:18 -0500

From: "Sam Wallace" <guillaumedep at worldnet.att.net>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Ober eine altfranzische Handschrift zu Innsbruck

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

 

I was trying to track down a word for a translation I am working on

("mughettes" which turns out to be grains of paradise) and I found  

this link to a journal with an article on medieval medicinal recipes:

 

Ober eine altfranzische Handschrift zu Innsbruck, Romanische  

Forschungen, IX Band

 

(http://books.google.com/books?

id=DRUMAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA303&lpg=PA303&dq=mughettes&source=web&ots=jg8rgSoOh

T&sig=JQXero9DZjIRNT9DT6J_ekmN8nk#PPA22,M1 )

 

There were a few powder recipes I thought might be of interest to this

group, so I translated them. I am posting the transcription for each recipe,

followed by the translation, and then followed by any notes I might have.

Please not that this is a "quick and dirty" translation. I followed the

original for punctuation and grammar and lack thereof. I have been compiling

a bibliography of culinary works. I had not come across this one before, so

it was a happy surprise for me - a sort of early holiday gift. I hope  

it is enjoyed in that spirit.

 

Guillaume

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

 

[Fol. 30a]

 

Pouldre de duc a le mani?re de coulongne. Prendez succre fin troiz sattins

dont le sattin fait chincq estrellins et demi sattin de fleurs muschades et

demi sattin de claux de giroffle et demi sattin de canelle et vne noix

mnschade seiche et les estampez en pouldre delye et puiz sy le passes.

 

Duke's powder in the manner of Cologne. Take three sattins of fine sugar

such that the sattin makes five estrellins and a half sattin of mace and a

half sattin of cloves and a half sattin of cinnamon and a dry nutmeg and

crush in delicate powder and then sift.

 

Sattin - One quarter of an ounce, in Li?ge 7.298 grams (0.2574 modern

ounces) (Doursther).

 

Estrellin - apparently, a fifth of a sattin. I do not have the Doursther

reference handy to check.

 

 

Pouldre de duc pour en faire vng quarteron prendes de canelle vng sissain et

de gingembre vng tierchain et demi tierchain de cloux et graine et les

mettez tout ensamble. Et puiz sy prendez vng sissain dicelle pouldre  

et vng quarteron de chucre et mettez tout ensamble.

 

Duke's powder to make a fourth part take of cinnamon a sixth part and of

ginger a third part and a half third part of cloves and grains of paradise

and put them all together. And then take a sixth part of this powder and a

fourth part of sugar and put all together.

 

Quarteron - Litterally a quarter, but here probably a quarter pound.

 

 

Pouldre bien bonne. Prendez de rouges roses secques des noix mughettes du

galliofille cest a scauoir des rachines de le chamamille du garingal et des

foelles de lorier a?, et essues ce com se doit essuer. Et puiz battez tout

ensamble en pouldre tres delie et le gardez. Car ycelle pouldre vault a

moult de choses. Car elle est moult confortatine. Et qui en metteroit en

lessuie et puiz en lauast on son chief il ne seroit riens plus souef

flairans et se conforte le chief. Et qui en frotroit ses membres son  

corps et sa poittrine elle les feroit flairier tr?s souef.

 

Well good powder. Take dried red roses grains of paradise cloves clean

chamomille roots galingale and bay leaves thus, and water as needed to wash.

And then beat all together in very delicate powder and hold. Because this

powder goes with many things. Because it is very comforting. And who puts it

in water and then in washing his head he will no longer sniffle breathing

and will comfort his head. And who rubs her limbs her body and her  

chest she will breathe very strongly.

 

 

A? - I do not have access to the original manuscript, but it was common to

abbreviate words by truncating them and placing a line or other mark over

the last letter or letters. I am translating a? as ainsi based on this and

context.

 

Mughettes - Grains of paradise (Aframomum melegueta)

 

 

[fol. 30b]

 

Pouldre pour vser en potaiges bien bonne. Prendez du boin fin saffrencq

dortte le quart dun sattin et de gyngembre demi onche et de canelle de

fleurs muscades de cloux de giroffle de noix muscades a? demi sattin. Et

primes mettez vostre saffrencq repose en troiz louchies ou enniron de boin

vin aigre vng petit chault. Puiz le s?chiez et estampes bien. Et priz quant

tout est bien estampe et passe en pouldre d?lie si ostes le gros marcq et le

rebattez auecques vostre dit saffrencq et son vin aigre et puiz en faittes

masse.

 

Quite good powder for use in soups. Take good fine saffron it needs the

quarter of a sattin and of ginger half and ounce and of cinnamon of mace of

cloves of nutmegs thus half a sattin. And first put your saffron to repose

in three ladles or thereabouts of good vinegar a little bit hot. Then dry it

and stamp it well. And take when all is well stamped and sifted in delicate

powder so hoist the large grounds and re-beat with your said saffron and its

vinegar and then do into the mass.

 

 

Aultre pouldre pour vser en potaiges et en toutes les viandes. Prendez

canelle noix muscades et des foelles des noix muscades et de tout ce  

faittes pouldre tout ensamble.

 

Other good powder for using in soups and in all meats. Take cinnamon  

nutmegs and nutmeg leaves and of all this make powder all together.

 

 

Pouldre de duc. Pour en faire vne lieure prendez de canelle demi onche de

gyngembre vng sissain giroffle graine muscades et chucre vne liure.

 

Duke's powder. To make a pound take of cinnamon a half ounce of ginger a

sixth part cloves grains of paradise nutmegs and sugar one pound.

 

 

Pound - In Li?ge 467.1 grams (1.030 of a modern pound) (Doursther).

 

This totals to more than a pound! Are some of the ingredients lost in  

the grinding or is the author mathematically challenged?

 

 

Pouldre de poiure. Prendez de poiure deux parties et vne de coulombin  

et les broijez sans aultre chose.

 

Pepper powder. Take of pepper two parts and one of ginger and crush them

without other things.

 

Coulombin - a variety of ginger.

 

 

Pouldre bien forte. Prendez quarterons .III. de coulombin et de noir poiure

rout quarteron .I. et de muscade vng sissain et de saffrencq dortte vng

sissain. -

 

Good strong powder. Take 3 fourth parts of ginger and of black pepper sort a

fourth part 1 and of nutmeg a sixth part and of saffron it needs a sixth

part. -

 

 

Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2007 08:29:14 -0600

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Ober eine altfranzische Handschrift zu

        Innsbruck

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

 

 

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

From: "Sam Wallace" <guillaumedep at worldnet.att.net>

 

Guillaume

 

Sattin - One quarter of an ounce, in Li?ge 7.298 grams (0.2574 modern

ounces) (Doursther).

 

Estrellin - apparently, a fifth of a sattin. I do not have the Doursther

reference handy to check.

 

Quarteron - Litterally a quarter, but here probably a quarter pound.

 

 

Pound - In Liege 467.1 grams (1.030 of a modern pound) (Doursther).

 

This totals to more than a pound! Are some of the ingredients lost in  

the grinding or is the author mathematically challenged?

 

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

 

What's a pound?  The Roman pound (libra) had 12 ounces and weighed roughly

.722 English pounds.  The Spanish and Portuguese libras have 16 ounces and

usually weigh between 1.011 and 1.016 English pounds.  I would have expected

spices to be measured in troy weights, as that was a common practice of

apothecaries and spice sellers, but the troy pound is only about .822

English pounds.

 

The French pound was a variable weight that was standardized around 1350 as

the "livre de Paris" as a pound of 16 ounces weighing roughly 1.079 English

pounds.

 

What is interesting is Liege appears to be using the "libra mercatoria" of

7200 grains divided into 15 ounces.  This system was replaced in England by

avoirdupois weights around 1300.  The standard English pound is 7000 grains,

making the equivalent English weight 1.02857 pounds.

 

I've never encountered sattin or estrellin and given the common meanings of

quarter, the quarteron is probably and instruction to use 1/4 of whatever

measure you are basing the mixture on.  A pound is probably as good a  

basis as any for the recipe.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Mon, 13 Mar 2000 07:35:46 -0800 (PST)

From: Giovanna <valkyr8 at yahoo.com>

To: Arts SCA <sca-arts at listproc.cc.ukans.edu>

Subject: Spice mixtures

 

Here is the response from my Laurel concerning spice

mixtures in period.  I hope that you will find this of use.

Giovanna

 

--- N B Read <aramanthra at juno.com> wrote:

> To: valkyr8 at yahoo.com

> Subject: Re: cookbooks

> From: N B Read <aramanthra at juno.com>

> Date: Sun, 12 Mar 2000 14:22:00 EST

>

> "allspice", technically, is the pimenta dioica, sometimes known as the

> "jamaica pepper", thus called because it supposedly tastes like a

> combination of cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon, and because the term

> "allspice" was used in the 17th-19th c. for a combination of those spices,

> plus or minus others.

>

> call it poudre douce, poudre fin, or quatre epices, the "sweet" spice

> mixture known in medieval france and england has a long history. Apicius

> mentions the use of standard spice mixtures, probably mixed in his own

> preferred proportions by the cook, and kept for later use, much as modern

> east indians have their own curry spice mixtures (which usually don't

> bear any resemblance to the western "curry powder"!), each peculiar to

> the region, village or even the individual cook.

>

> both taillevant and le menagier mention spice mixtures, variously as

> poudre fin or poudre douce. poudre fort, by contrast, was the "stronger"

> spice mixture. the vivendier, a 15th c. french cookbook, mentions

> "pourldre de duc", specifying "precise" quantities of the spices

> required, whereas the viandier (taillevant) is rather more vague. some

> difficulty exists as to whether the viandier or the vivendier is the

> earlier manuscript, and as different versions, with different purported

> dates (it is rather hard to be sure, and plagiarism was not only rife,

> but not considered a "bad thing" in period) exist, it's probably best to

> say that they are both "school of" as in "school of rembrandt", when

> there is no *solid evidence to say that a particular wok was actually

> painted by rembrandt's hand or that of one of his

> many students or assistants. WHEW!

>

> that having been said, the french were not the only ones at it: in "two

> fifteenth century cookbooks", poudre douce is mentioned quite often, as

> is poudre fort, it's stronger cousin. in "curye on inglysche", not only

> are both poudre douce andpoudre fort mentioned repeatedly, there is also

> mentioned "powdres marchant" (merchant powders), a mixture of spices

> pre-ground and amalgamated by the merchant, and available for sale as is.

> note: these were probably heavily adulterated to keep the profit margin

> high! many writers of the period insist that you buy your spices whole

> and grind them yourself to guard against just such trickery.

>

> poudre douce, pouldres fines, or fines epices, it's all the same thing.

> poudre fort, as i've said, is just the "high octane" version.

>

> vague instructions follow:

>

> for "les quatres epices, use, in more or less descending order (but it's

> "to taste" now, as then): cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and maybe

> some sugar.

>

> for poudre douce the essentials are:

>

> one to three parts each: cinnamon

>                          ginger

>                          nutmeg

>                          sugar

>

> 1/2 to one part each:    cloves

>                          galingale

>

> maybe some:              cardamom

>                          mace

>                          grains of paradise

>                          saffron

> (but why waste it? too spendy!!)

>

> for poudre fort:

>

> two to three parts each: black pepper

>                          cloves

>                          ginger

>                          galingale

>

> one to two parts each:   cinnamon

>                          nutmeg

>                          cumin

>

> and maybe some:          mustard

>                          cardamom

>                          cubeb

>                          grains of paradise

>                          sugar

>

> these quantites are spoken of in purely the ground form, by measure, as

> it would be hard to be accurate in the whole forms, unless by weight, and

> not everyone has a sensitive enough kitchen scale.

>

> I sell not only whole and ground spices, but my own versions of pre-mixed

> poudre douce and poudre fort, so I am willing to give basic instructions

> for them, but not my exact recipe. it hardly matters, however, as there

> is no "wrong" way to go about this, except by adding non-period

> ingredients or herbs (this is a spice, not an herb mixture). it's

> completely up to your own taste.

>

> by the way, even though it's period, I do not adulterate mine with ground

> bark, chalk, charcoal, lead, juniper berries, or dung.

>

> mistress aramanthra the vicious

> midrealm cooking laurel

=====

Signora Giovanna Theresa Battista di Firenze

Barony of Nordskogen

Principality of Northshield

Middle Kingdom

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Sep 2009 15:28:20 -0700 (PDT)

From: Raphaella DiContini <raphaellad at yahoo.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] breadcrumbs & grain disheswas:gingerbread

 

<<< Okay - this sounds yummy - what sort of spices do you

consider 'sweet'?

And, since I'm not usually into strong spices - how much?

 

Shoshanna >>>

 

This one's a favorite, I've served it at least 6 times and it's always a hit!

 

I would suggest taking a look at what your serving it with and make sure the spices compliment each other and appropriate to the context. Luckily in this same source there are several spice mixes given, and that really helps take some of the guess work out of it.

 

LXXIII. Specie fine a tute cosse.

Toi una onza de pevere e una de cinamo e una de zenzevro e mezo quarto de garofali e uno quarto de zaferanno.

LXXIII Fine spices for all dishes (things)

Take one ounce of pepper, one of cinnamon, one of ginger, half a quarter (of an ounce) of cloves, and a quarter (of an ounce) of saffron.

 

LXXIV. Specie dolce per assay cosse bone e fine.

Le meior specie dolze fine che tu fay se vuoi per lampreda in crosta e per altri boni pessi d'aque dolze che se faga in crosto e per fare bono brodetto e bon savore. Toi uno quarto de garofali e una onza de bon zenzevro e toy una onza de cinamo leto e toy arquanto folio e tute queste specie fay pestare insiema caxa como te piaxe, e se ne vo' fare pi?, toy le cosse a questa medessima raxone et ? meravigliosamente bona.

LXXIV Sweet spices, enough for many good and fine things

The best fine sweet spices that you can make, for lamprey pie or for other good fresh water fish that one makes in a pie, and for good broths and sauces.  Take a quarter (of an ounce) of cloves, an ounce of good ginger, an ounce of soft (or sweet) cinnamon, and take a quantity (the same amount of?) Indian bay leaves (*) and grind all these spices together how you please.  And if you don?t want to do more, take these things (spices) in the same ratio (without grinding) and they will be marvelously good.

* the glossary at the end of the Arnaldo Forni edition of this book indicates that folio in this recipe refers to malabathrum or Cinnamomum tamala also known as Indian bay leaf.  Follow this link for further information.

 

LXXV. Specie negre e forte per assay savore.

Specie negre e forte per fare savore; toy mezo quarto de garofali e do onze de pevere e toy arquanto pevere longo e do noce moscate e fa de tute specie.

LXXV Black and strong spices for many sauces.

Black and strong spices to make sauces.  Take half a quarter (of an ounce) of cloves, two ounces of pepper and an (equal) quantity of long pepper and nutmeg and do as all spices (grind).

 

Translations by Helewyse de Birkestad, Original transcription by Thomas Glonings.

 

This has been my pet source for the last 6 years or so, like the pair of shoes that gets worn most often. :) I haven't redacted all of the recipes in it, but I'd say I've done at least 1/2 if not more.

 

Raffaella

 

 

Date: Sat, 10 Jul 2010 21:30:35 -0400

From: Johnna Holloway <johnnae at mac.com>

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

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Blank pouder FW: Caudle spices

 

On Jul 10, 2010, at 12:51 PM, James Prescott wrote:

<<< Blank powder is white powder is a merchant's or cook's mixture that  

would vary.  I have no period recipe. >>>

 

There are at least two recipes for blank pouder that I have found and  

noted:

To make fine Blaunch pouder for rosted Quinces.

 

Chapter. xiii.

 

TAke fyne Suger halfe a pound beaten in a whote Morter too fyne  

powder, of whyte

 

Ginger pared halfe an ounce, of chosen Sinimon a quarter of an ounce  

beaten ready to

 

fyne powder, mixt them well together, and yf you wyl haue it moste  

excellent cast two

 

Spoonful of Rose or Damask water in the heatyng of the Suger.

 

The work which contains this is the 1573 edition: Partridge, John. The  

Treasurie of

 

Commodious Conceits, & Hidden Secrets, and may be called, The huswiues  

closet,

 

of healthfull prouision. http://www.medievalcookery.com/etexts.html

 

---

 

The phrase "th? take blanch pouder made of Sinamon and Suger, and cast  

vpon it and so serue it forth." appears in the following recipe by  

Dawson:

 

To make Mortirs of a Capon, Hen, or pullet,

 

TAke a well fleshed Capon, Henne, or pullet, scalde and dresse him,  

then put him into a pot of faire water, and ther let it seeth til it  

be tender, then take it and pul all the flesh from his bones, and beat  

it in a stone morter, and when you thinke it halfe beaten, put some of  

the same licour into it, and then beate it til it be fine, then take  

it out and straine it with a litle rose|water out of a strainer into a  

dishe, then take it and set it on a chafingdish of coles, with a  

little Suger put to it, and so stirre it with your knife, & lay it in  

a faire dishe in three long howes, th? take blanch pou|der made of  

Sinamon and Suger, and cast vpon it and so serue it forth.

The second part of the good hus-wiues iewell  Thomas Dawson 1597

 

Johnnae

 

<the end>



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