Le Viandier de Taillevent - Translation - Desserts
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[DESSERTS AND OTHER THINGS]
182. Parti-coloured white dish.
Take blanched and peeled almonds, crush very well, steep in boiled water, [and make your milk]. For thickening you need some starch or beaten rice. When your milk has been boiled, divide it into several parts, into two pots (if you wish to make only two colours) or (if you wish) into 3 or 4 parts. It should be as solidly thickened as Frumenty, so that it can not spread out when it is set out on the plate or in the bowl. Take alkanets, turnsole, fine azure, parsley, or avens. Sieve a little saffron with the greens so that they will hold their colour better when boiled. Soak the alkanets or turnsole, and the azure likewise, in some lard. Throw some sugar into the milk when it boils, remove it to the back [of the fire], salt it, and stir it strongly until it is thickened and has taken the colour that you wish to give it.
183. Larded milk.
Take some [cow's] milk, boil it on the fire, lift it down from the fire, put it on a few coals, and thread in beaten egg yolks. If you wish it for a meat day, take lardons, cut them into two or three bits, and throw them into the milk to boil. If you wish it for a fish day, do not add lardons, but throw in some wine and verjuice to curdle it before you lift it down. Remove it from the fire, put it in a white cloth, let it drain, wrap it in 2 or 3 layers of the cloth, and press it until it is as firm as beef liver. Put it on a table, slice it into strips the size of a full palm or three fingers, button them with whole cloves, fry them until they are browned, set them out, and throw some sugar on top.
184. Milk tarts.
Take some [cow's] milk, boil it on a little fire of coals, and throw in some eggs (including the white if you wish). When it boils, divide it into two dishes. Sieve parsley greens with half of your eggs. Throw in some wine and verjuice so that it is well curdled, and put it to cool until you can hold your hand in it. Have a cheesecloth two feet long, take a spoonful or two of the milk, wrap it two or three times in the cheesecloth, rub it by hand good and hard, and when it is set and firm, remove it from the cheesecloth. Put it to cool, and in it prick two or three rows of whole cloves. Afterwards, fry them in lard until they are russet. Serve them with the Larded Milk on a plate, half one and half the other.
185. Large and small crisps.
Cook the large crisps in some hot lard in a syrup pot or brass casserole. Make them from egg whites and fine flour beaten together. It should not be too thick. Have a deep wooden bowl, put some batter in the bowl, and shake the hand inside the pan above the hot lard [pouring batter into the lard]. Keep them from browning too much.
Cook the small crisps in an iron pan. Beat egg yolks and whites with some fine flour. It should be a little stiffer than the batter for large crisps. Have a little fire (as long as it is hot). Take your wooden bowl pierced at the bottom, and put some batter in it. When everything is ready, pour [a thread of batter from the hole in the bowl] and form it into the shape of a small buckle (or larger), with a kind of tongue of the same batter through the buckle. Let them cook in the lard until they are plump.
186. [Stuffed tubes.]
If you wish to make some stuffed tubes, have good harvest cheese in strips as fat as your finger. Coat them in the batter for Small Crisps, insert them into your hot lard, and keep them from burning. When they are dry and yellowish, set them out with the Crisps.
187. Marrow fritters and rissoles.
Take beef marrow or fat from the beef kidney, and slice it into bits as long and fat as a man's finger. Refresh them in hot water. Do nothing but insert and remove the beef marrow, but refresh the fat more generously. Have a shin of veal, remove the meat from the bones as intact as you can, cut it into strips as thin as a thick wafer, and stand them on a clean dresser. Wrap the marrow bits in your veal strips with a little white salt and Fine or White Powder. Have a very slender iron spit and spit them. Have some of the batter suitable for Small Crisps, and coat them with it when the marrow is well cooked.
Quite similar to the Meat Rosy (with almonds) above, but do not give it as strong a colour, and do not stir it as much in the pot as the Rosy. For it you need sufficient sugar, the same for the one pottage as for the other. Have plenty of meat fried in lard just as for the other.
Take unpeeled almonds, wash, crush very well, and steep in beef broth, wine and verjuice. Add spices as for Meat Rosy and Diapered, except that you need more cassia and cinnamon. You need chicken and veal fried in lard, and sufficient sugar. It should be sweet with sugar.
191. [On fish days].
If you wish to change these pottages for a fish day, and if you can not find verjuice, use some boiled water and steep the almonds without peeling. For the meat, you need perch and pike. Boil them until you can scale them, then fry them in fresh butter. Have spices similar to Diapered and Meat Rosy (ginger, cinnamon and Small Spices). If you do not have freshwater fish, take soles, plaice and dabs. Have a generous amount of sugar, more than for the aforesaid pottages on meat days. Salt them to taste.
192. Lenten slices.
Take peeled almonds, crush very well in a mortar, steep in water boiled and cooled to lukewarm, strain through cheesecloth, and boil your almond milk on a few coals for an instant or two. Take some cooked hot water pastries a day or two old and cut them into bits as small as large dice. Take figs, dates and Digne raisins, and slice the figs and dates like the hot water pastries. Throw everything into it, leave it to thicken like Frumenty, and boil some sugar with it. To give it colour, have some saffron for colouring it like Frumenty. It should be gently salted.
193. Norse pies.
Take cooked meat chopped very small, pine nut paste, currants, harvest cheese crumbled very small, a bit of sugar and a little salt.
194. Lorey pastries.
To make little Lorey pastries, make pastries the size of a blank or smaller, and fry them. The pastry should not be too high [thick?]. If you wish to make some lettuces and small ears, make pastry lids, some larger than others, and fry them in lard until they are as hard as if cooked in an oven. If you wish, gild them with gold or silver leaf, or with saffron.
195, 196. Hedgehogs and Spanish pots.
Take raw meat chopped as fine as possible, Digne raisins and crumbled harvest cheese, all mixed together with Fine Powder. Have some mutton rennet stomachs, scald and wash them very well (not in water so hot that they shrivel), fill them with the chopped meat, and stitch them with a small wooden skewer.
If you wish to make some Spanish pots, take little earthenware bottles in the shape of little ewers, wet them inside with egg white so that the stuffing holds together better, fill them, and boil them on the fire in pan or boiler.
When they are well cooked, withdraw them and leave them to drain, and when they are cold, break the pots (but cut nothing up). Have slender spits (not so small as for the hedgehogs). Make little quenelles, put them on skewers in two or 3 rows, and gild them with [egg] batter and fine flour.
197, 198. Stuffed mutton shoulders. Mottes and mangonels.
Cook them in a pan on the fire with some haunches of mutton and pork, but do not cook them too much. Put them to cool, remove the meat from around the bones, and chop it very small. [Prepare] the meat for the mangonels and mottes similarly. Have some pine nut paste and currants. Have a large egg omelet fried in white pork fat (make sure that it is not burnt), and slice it into bits as small as large dice. Take all of these mixtures and some crumbled harvest cheese, put everything in a clean pan or basin, and mix very well. Have some mutton mesenteries, spread them out, put the bones and some Fine Powder inside (but with no stuffing), wrap the bones in stuffing, then wrap them in the mutton mesenteries. Stitch them with wooden skewers to hold the meat so that it does not fall from around the shoulder, in the manner that journeymen know well.
For the mottes (which are made in the manner of little tartlets) and the mangonels (as long as little sausages), wrap them in the mesenteries and glaze them well and sufficiently with eggs. In addition, make that which belongs to the situation. [A siege in miniature?]
199. Swans reclothed in their skin.
Blow them, scald them, slit them along the belly, skin them, and remove the carcasses. Roast the carcasses on a spit and glaze them (while turning) with batter of beaten egg white and egg yolk. Remove them from the spit, let them cool, and (if you wish) clothe them in their skin. Have little wooden skewers put in the neck to hold it upright as if it were alive. At a feast [serve] in the second course.
Blow and inflate them like the swans, and roast and glaze them similarly. Serve them in the last course. When they are reclothed, have thin slender wooden spits to pass among the tail feathers, or a bit of brass wire for setting out the feathers as if the peacock were spreading its tail.
201. Sauce for a fatted capon.
Collect the fat and liver from the capon, strain with beef broth through cheesecloth, soak a bit of ginger with verjuice, and boil everything together in a pan. Thicken it generously with beaten egg yolks and some sugar. Lift the wings and thighs of your capon, and pour your sauce on top.
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