TAIL OF TWO RABBITS

(Dear readers, We are still having technical difficulties. To see all post please go to the HOME button.  Thanks You for your patience.  Sandie)

PART ONE

                                                                   Francisco Goya

I grew up eating wild game meat.  My dad owned a fishing and hunting store. He, my brother Jim and sister Joan hunted all the time.  It was a great way to stretch the food budget of a household of nine.  One of my favorite was rabbit. My mom cooked it two ways, in a stew or deep fried.  I loved them both. So, while looking through Williams Verral’s cookery book, I came across “Collops of Rabbit in Champagne wine” and it looked interesting. Being that we don’t hunt, Allan and I took a ride up RT 4 to Loudon and the Hungry Buffalo. They sell all kinds of wild game. We purchased enough rabbit tenders for two meals.

A few days before I wanted to make this I printed Verral’s receipt and read it over twice. I recommend that everyone read early receipt at least  twice. This way you will understand what you need to do to change it into a modern equivalent and save yourself from a cooking catastrophe. Also, I need to decide what else would go with it. I felt that cranberries would complement the rabbit and, being that there would be a bit of a sauce, I decided to have French rolls to accompany it. Then I picked a dessert that Allan has been asking for, baked custard. Along with the custard I thought it would be nice to place a tiny Madeleine on top.

I made the cranberry sauce and the Madeleine the day before our meal and sealed them in a tight container. The next afternoon I made the Cream Custard  from Lady H in Richard Bradley ‘s 1732 cookery book, and put it in the refrigerator until later.

The next day arrived and I made the custard in the early afternoon in a nice water bath. Then I started the French rolls  from Hannah Glasse receipt. We are only two people here so I froze most of the rolls. This is an experiment I’ve been wanting to try to see how will they come out the next time I want to use them.  I also froze some of the cranberry sauce for later use.  That evening I assembled all the ingredients for the collops. I chopped the green onions and  shallots put the herbs and seasoning into a small bowl and poured out the right amount of broth. I salted and floured the collops and I was ready to cook.

The fire had been going for a while and the coals were ready.  I sautéed the rabbit tenders to a golden brown and then took them out and put the plate aside to keep warm. In the same pan used for the rabbit went some butter, the mushrooms, green onions and herbs, salt and pepper.  When they were softened and the mushrooms had turned a nice chestnut color, I added a knob of butter mixed with flour and stirred it in to make a roux, then cooked it. If you don’t cook a roux long enough the flour taste remains. I stirred in the white wine and lemon juice and some chicken stock and let this  simmer a while. The rabbit was then added in, tossed around to coat and cooked for a few more minutes. I moved the pan from the coals and covered it.

My French rolls would be baked in the new reflector oven that I recently bought, this was the first chance I had to use it. When the rabbit was out of the way, I moved it closer to the fire so they would obtain a crispy golden  top.

Dinner was ready.  With everything on the table, we began to plate.

We sat  leisurely eating while the custard heated up in a warm kettle by the fire. I like my custard warm. After I took them out I toasted the top with a hot iron out of the fire.

With the custard ready I placed a mini Madileine on it. Allan was in heaven.

Now the review on this meal is complicated.  I loved the cranberry sauce and the rolls were flaky and moist.  The custard delicious and the Madeleine on top was a perfect compliment.  The rabbit sauce I did not like. They say if you’re going to use wine in a recipe use one you love. Well, I am not a fan of white wine and should have thought about this.  I found the sauce to be overly sweet from the wine and the lemon didn’t help the matter. I did like the rabbit. After scraping off the sauce I found it very tender and tasting somewhere in-between white and dark chicken meat.

Now Allan, he loved it. The next day he had it for lunch and said it tasted even better after sitting  overnight. Don’t be reluctant about trying this rabbit receipt, if you like white wine.  You may love it like Allan did.

Our next rabbit receipt will be from Edward Kidder.  I’ve read this receipt and with a change or two I’m sure I will like it.  I’ll post it soon.

Sandie

“My dinner is still in the woods.” -Unknown

Receipt

William Verral, 1775

“The Complete System of Cookery”

 

SAUSAGE MARATHON


Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images

What could be better in the fall or winter months than a meal built around homemade sausages. We love them, and I decided to make different type. Looking over many receipts, I found several rather interesting ones.

lcanian sausage is a true old-world sausage and can be found in literature in the 4th century. Ten surviving  cookbooks of the Greco-Roman world survive under the name of Apicius and are the works of several authors.  One receipt included in this work is lcanian sausage which is the forerunner of the Greek Loukaniko. Loukaniko may have originated in Italy, however, it became popular in Portugal in addition to Greece and a few other countries.

Loukaniko is comprised of pork and lamb and a laundry list of spices, wine, and grated orange.  It was often served as a mezze (appetizer). I also came across a receipt for Saulcisses en Potage in  Lancelot de Casteau, Ouverture de Cuisine, 1585. This was a  “Tourney Dish” of sausages with apples, onion, cinnamon and nutmeg eaten at the mock battles during the Middle Ages. I thought this would be great to do together. In addition, I found a German venison receipt from the manuscript of Sabina Welser, 1553. It was edited by Hugo Stopp and published as Das Kochbuch der Sabina , 1980.This was timely, as I was given venison by a friend.

I made the two types of sausages,(receipt below) and  I took each receipt and divided it in half. one half I added pink curing salt; these sausage would be cold-smoked.  After the four different types of sausage were stuffed into their casings, they went into the refrigerator to sit overnight.

The next day I got out the Cameron’s Original Stove top Smoker and hickory chips. Once this started to smoke, the two different sausages with the curing salt went in and stayed for 4 hours on a low heat. I was careful to keep the two sausage separate  so I’d be able to know which was which. After two days, and help from Allan, my sausage making was complete; now to share them.

For the first night we had our neighbors in.  We always like to have them taste test things for us.  The menu would be Loukaniko  with pottage, Emmer flour Flat Bread. sautéed Brussels sprouts with New Hampshire elixir (maple syrup), and sautéed apples, onions, garlic and cabbage slaw. Now Allan dislikes Brussels sprouts, so I needed to do something a bit different so they would be not be as bitter as he recalls. I was hoping the maple syrup would do the trick.

 The first thing I had to prepare for the dinner was the dough for the flat bread.  Emmer flour is a rich and nutty, ancient, wholegrain flour, and I thought I would try it to see if I liked it.  After they were flattened I put them between strips of plastic wrap and stored them in the refrigerator.

The Saulcisses en Potage does not have cabbage, however, my Russian heritage was screaming put it in! Also I remembered similar receipt from Hannah Glass that I have made.  So I incorporated them together. As a result I made a slaw with cabbage and carrots to be added to the apples, onions and garlic all to be sautéed in butter, spiced with nutmeg, cinnamon, a tad of sugar, and a bit of dry white wine.  This also sat in the refrigerator ready to go.

Allan built the perfect fire, the neighbors arrived and we all enjoying appetizers, which included the smoked Loukaniko. The cooled smoking made the sausage firm and enhanced the flavoring of the spices and orange zest. Served with crackers and cheese. All in all a thumbs-up for sure.

When the coals in the fireplace were ready, it was time to get cooking. The  sausage went on the  gridiron first. The pottage and Brussels sprouts went into three-legged pans to sauté. Last but not least the flat bread went on the hanging griddle.

When everything was done and put on the table we just dug in, so, sorry no pictures. We took the flat bread and use it as a roll adding the sausage and the pottage on top.  OMG!!!  It was an epicurean delight, if I have to say so myself. A distinct flavor of lamb in the sausage then a subtle hint of the leeks and garlic hit with the zesty orange and herbs all exploding on your palate, glorified by the pottage all wrapped in a soft and fragrant flat bread. The Brussels sprouts being sautéed in oil and butter with the addition of syrup had a nice brown and sweet nutty finish, And all did try them. The meal was a success.

 A few days later we had our friends, who gave us the venison, over for dinner. On this occasion we sampled the cold-smoked venison sausage as an appetizer. To accompany the grilled venison sausage, I chose to serve sautéed wild mushrooms and oven roasted vegetables. Once again I use the fireplace to cook almost everything. (I put the roasted vegetables in the oven).

The venison sausage had just enough of a noticeable gamy taste, with a hint of the clove and the tart taste of the juniper berries was spot on. This time I wanted to try the three-legged griddle to cook the flat bread.  It cooked better, I think, as they browned better than on the hanging griddle. We tried the sausage and mushroom in the flat bread and it was good, however my choice would be the sausage with pottage. Again thumbs-up on this one. And what can you say about, farm-fresh, roasted vegetables except yum!

I was happy with the turnout of all the sausages and the wonderful sides that accompanied them. We were able to share this with friends by the hearth with a good glass of wine and beer and an evening of wonderful conversation.

 May you have many warm and happy winter days cooking,

Sandie

 “…no one is born a great cook, one learns by doing.”
― Julia Child, My Life in France

PS. Its nice to have the blog working again. Thank you all for putting up with all the tests.  And keep your fingers crossed.  Next blog will be two meals of Rabbit.

 

RECEIPT

 LOUKANIKO SAUSAGE

1 pounds pork shoulder, cubed

3 pound boneless leg of lamb, trimmed of silver skin and cubed

1 pound pork fatback, cubed

3 tablespoons kosher salt                     

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

4 whole leeks, trimmed of dark leaves and finely chopped

3 tablespoons minced garlic (about 9 medium cloves)

2 tablespoons freshly grated orange zest from about 3 oranges

1 tablespoon coriander seeds, toasted and finely ground

1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon dried oregano (preferably Greek)

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/3 cup red wine, chilled

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar, chilled

Hog casings

Lancelot de Casteau, Ouverture de cuisine, 1585

 SAUSAGES IN POTTAGE.

Sausages in Pottage. Take sausages, & fry them in butter, then take four or five peeled apples & cut into small quarters, & four or five onions cut into rings, & fry them in butter, & put all of them into a pot with the sausages, & put therein nutmeg, cinnamon, with red or white wine, sugar, & let them then all stew.

 The Art of Cookery Made Plain & Easy, Hannah Glasse (1796)

 FRIED SAUSAGE

Take half a pound of sausages, and six apples, slice four about as thick as a crown, cut the other two in quarters, fry them with the sausages of a fine light brown, lay the sausages in the middle of the dish, and the apples round. Garnish with the quartered apples. Stewed cabbage and sausages fried is a good dish.

Das Kuchbuch der Sabina Welserin

 TO MAKE VENISON SAUSAGE

 1 lb. ground venison                    6-8 oz. bacon          1 tsp. salt                 1 tsp. pepper

1/4 tsp. mace                                 1/2 tsp. cloves       1/2 tsp. ginger                  

1/2 tsp. grains of paradise         1/2 tsp. cubebs      pinch ground saffron

1 oz. water                                      casing                                   

 To this recipe I added 1/2 tsp of juniper berries ground

 Did you know that during the Middle Ages the word “venison” referred to any wild animal with edible flesh?

2017 WORKSHOPS

dsc_5905

February 25th

SAVORY AND SWEET

We create a selection of Sweet Treats for the Tea Table that you can take home, marzipan, wafers, imprinted cookies and more, some to eat too.  While we bake these confections we’ll make a nice pottage and bread for our midday meal.

March 11th

WILLIAM VERRAL & SARHA HARRISON

For the advanced cook. A changeling day of cooking with receipts from two great Cookey Books. A time to test your skills with marvelous, mysteriously little-known recipes worth getting acquainted with.

March 25th

FINDING YOUR WAY AROUND THE HEARTH

This is a beginners workshop, nothing to complicated but lots of fun and great food. You will get to experience  a range of  traditional hearth cooking techniques and equipment using recipes to make period dishes

 

 

Side Track Museum Exhibit

In the summer I don’t use the hearth often and like to keep busy with other interests. And what a summer it was! Not only record breaking heat, I co- produced an exhibit of wedding gowns with Kimberly Alexander for the Newmarket Historical Society. Along with this exhibit we had three programs.

A Wedding Tea, Gallery Talk and  Wedding Foods “Talk and Taste,”

where I paired food with the gowns.

We began this project by borrowing manikins from University of New Hamshire (UNH). Here, Astrida Schaeffer, who manages the collections at the Museum of Art at UNH, and I take out a gown to be fitted for a manikin.

13346761_975106725938131_7289073939066032059_n

It took a week to set the risers, cover them and put them in place. We had plenty of help.

risers

 Kimberly,Kris, Barbara, Jeff and others all pitched in to staple the cloth on the rises, hang the walls with white fabric, steam iron gowns and dress the manikins. Then we needed to find out where they should go.

place-mankins-1

Robert Irwin said “There’s no way to really mock up or simulate what I’m doing until I’m there. An exhibition for me is not a statement but an experiment.”

This was true with our exhibit, it wasn’t until we had all the gowns ready and on the manikins did we truly have a plan for their placements.

Thirteen gowns in all, plus the display cases

13495088_982132198568917_7754111461010704007_n

We had a reproduction 1775 gown worn for a recent wedding, a Victorian turn of the century linen embroidered gown and a flapper gown with shoes and hat.

3-gowns-copy

Two early 1800 farm wife’s everyday gowns that we put in the agriculture section, and a few Victorian gowns in our vignettes.

good-84

vinget-2

vinget-1

There was a dress worn in the 70s that causes quite a stir in the church, a Hot Pants number.

hot-pants

A stunning silk Laotian gown in gold and red that was breathtaking.

20160629_105038

We had several cases filled with shoes and other wedding objects also.

case-2case1

Along with our exhibit Kimberly’s gave a Gallery Talk, one Sunday, that was well attended.

good-4

Next came the “Victorian Tea” with Kandie Carl, the Victorian Lady, who did an amazing performance dressing from chemise to stays and then into a lovely mother of the bride Victorian outfit. We sold 93 tickets and there was so much food, it was piled high.

image3image1-2

image4-2 k13

And last but not least the Wedding Food “Talk and Taste” presented by Colonial Table. Starting with the 1770s, I made a rum punch and served it with navettes. This cookie began its life in Marseille, France, and some became popular with the English.

November, December, and January were the most popular months in which to marry as farm obligations were less pressing than during the summer. Family and friends, gathered in the morning at the minister’s home or in the bride’s parlor for the wedding,

In 1770, there were over 140 rum distilleries in the colonies cranking out 4.8 million gallons of rum every year, so for this wedding we served a punch of rum.

For 1843, I picked orange jellies as they are so festive and would show the skill of the host. Champagne began to be served as a wedding beverage in the late 1800, and in Newmarket, we had a population of French from Canada, so I thought it would be fun to make a croquembouche. This cone of pastry started being used as a French wedding cake in the early 1800s.

20160814_130913_resized_2

Along comes the 1900s and rationing, and Hello Refrigeration. However because of the war foods were rationed. This spurred homemakers to stretch their ingredients as far as possible. Savory as well as sweet food were encased in gelatin. I made aspic that encased hardboiled egg slice, ham and cornichons.

During prohibition, the speakeasies catered to the urban “upper crust,” and served small bites to their patrons, so they would not leave the building staggering down the street. These were called canapés, sometimes they were finger sandwiches or stuffed mushrooms something that could be carried in one hand and a drink in the other, while guests socialized. This was the beginning of the hors d’oeuvres.

With the popular cooking show of Julia Childs, quiche became the rage. I made my quiches of spinach, and cheese.

untitled-1-copy

The late 1960s were filled with bright, psychedelic colors, and long hair. Woman wore unbelievably short skirts. To represent our Hot Pants wedding outfit I made cheese fondue, that was introduced to the United States, and really took off, in the sixties.

2000 the new millennium

Things are moving fast we have new ways to get information quickly and wedding planners are showing all the new trends, Sushi went Global and was found at a buffet station near you.

untitled-1-copy

 

So it’s time to move over and get ready for Generation Z

Already they have food truck weddings, fresh locally sourced food and family style food stations. What next!

While wedding styles come and go, some things endure, the things that will stay are the traditional white dress, the wedding cake and a celebrating with family and friends.

This exhibit and the tea were worked on by the whole Board of Directors and its members. It was teamwork that made it so successful. A job well done! We took the gowns down packed them up and looked back at how this exhibit was so well-received. It brought in many new people to the museum some as guests and some who became members.

So after a long three months it was over. And we were all as tired as this manikin looks.

14045538_1029115827203887_6380487036662535241_n

It was a fun exhibit and I enjoyed working with all the participants in making it a success.

To see more, stay tune and see.

Kimberly Alexandria’s blog , Silk Damask at http://www.silkdamask.org/

Sandie

WILTON HISTORICAL SOCIETY

1_n

SCHOOL SHOW

I received a call from the Wilton Historical Society. They were in need of a hearth cook who could work with children during their school program.

So off to Connecticut I went. I would be there for the week, working at the hearth in the Sloan-Raymond-Fitch house

I stayed at the very comfortable home of Lola, the museum educator the first night, Sunday. I needed to make vegetable soup and little cakes for 92 students and their teachers and parents. The way I had set up the program was to have the children divided into two groups for a hands-on experience, making 18th century food. I had two parents who stayed in the room for the whole day, helping and that was wonderful, plus there was a teacher or other parent with the group as the moved from station to station .

5

The students arrive at the kitchen and wipe their hands with wipes, then divide into two groups in front of the table. I gave a 5- to 10-minute discussion on the hearth, bake oven and its door, peel, toe kick toaster, butter churn and chores that boys and girls would do in the 1700s, and I had put a chicken spinning on the hearth as one of the talking points.

5 to 10 minutes was about as long as they could stay still.

One group of six did the vegetables a the other one group was divided into two to make two batches of little cakes and one student started on the butter churn.

One mother helps with the cutting of the carrots, celery, onions and field greens.

The students managed a small knife, and everything they cut went into a large bowl. With 92 students each day we were very lucky to only have two, slight, finger cuts.

 

3

The other side of the table was busy making oatmeal jumbles and butter. Students took turns with the butter, changing places as they went.

 

2

When the bell rang we put the cookies in Tupperware, stashed it in the pantry , cleaned the table cloth and set up for the next group that was already filing in and washing their hands.

This procedure was repeated for each class.

Then came lunch, however no rest for the weary. It was time to regroup and wash some of the bowls and get ready for the afternoon students.

The cookies and soup I made the night before was served to the children by a parent or teacher to have with their lunch in the big hall. That is why I made them the night before.

While we were having lunch, Mario Pedone, the maintenance man, whom I could not have done without, kept the fires going for us, and sat in from time to time, which helped keep some of the boys in order.

 

4

Then came 2:15 and everyone was back on the bus. The parents left and I cleaned up the things in the room and the best thing is that several ladies from the museum came and helped me cart thing s to the real kitchen and wash them up so I could reset for the next day.

I left and went back to Lola’s and began baking the little cakes that the students made, making sure there were 150 for the following day. I didn’t have to do the soup, as that was being done at the museum the next day by the ladies.

So it went for five days about 92 children a day and each day was different. Some classes were very well behaved and others not so, parents very helpful and other not. It’s the name of the game when doing school groups.

I enjoyed myself, and hope I instilled, in some of the students, an interest in early American life and how their ancestors worked hard, took nothing for granted, and didn’t waste anything, if possible.

Sandie

“Education is not the filling of a bucket, but the lighting of a fire.”

– W.B. Yeats

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FORT 4

I had the opportunity to spend a “‘Women’s of the Fort” weekend at Fort 4 in Charlestown, NH, this month. This weekend, the women would demonstrate what it was like to be a women living there. The Fort at Number 4 was the northernmost British settlement along the Connecticut River until after the French and Indian War. Construction began in 1740 and by 1743, there were 10 families settled in a square of interconnected uses, enclosed in a stockade with a guard tower.14581419_10157584623395344_286759128099649110_n

14595585_10157584626125344_7105923017239844587_n

14633001_10157584624495344_5737020584329845821_n

Many of us arrived on Friday. Wendy, who was residing in Parker House, gave a wine and cheeses get-together. Everyone contributed, and there was so much more than that, foods of all kinds, I brought some of my Greek and venison sausage to share. We began to run out of chairs as more and more ladies arrived.20161007_191911

At the end of the evening we went off to our sleeping quarters in Willard House. I got the rope bed and the girls both brought a cot. The next day we moved it all together in the back of the room so we were not in the way of visitors.20161008_095352

For the Foodways presentation, I was accompanied by Patty and Rhondda in the Sartwell house. This was a large room with a great fireplace and bake oven. We would be showing how food was preserved during the winter months.

After a nice breakfast by the fire, we did the final setting up of the demonstrations.

For mine, I brought things that children would have done to helped out their mothers. It’s always nice to have something they can have that’s hands-on at a museum.

As visitor entered the room they saw our displays. My side of the demonstrations started with many herbs that were bundled and hanging from a small ladder. On a bench were pole beans dried and ready to shuck, corn to take off the cob and grind in the mortar and pestle, a pumpkin along with pumpkin leather and dried pumpkin pieces that looked like teeth. Last came the eggs, both free range and quail. These were to be covered in lard and put in sifted ash to last for the winter in the root cellar.

Also behind that were the apple press and the barrel with hops on top. This gave me a chance to talk to the parents about the fact that women did make the cider and small beer for the home, after all beer and bread making went hand-in-hand.display

On the other side of the room, Patty was demonstrating how roots vegetables were put away in hay or wood shavings in boxes and barrels. She had wonderful colored carrots and many other early variety vegetables. We even had a cabbage, with the roots on it, hanging from the ceiling. Next to that was a table with dried fruit and vegetables in glass jars along with some crocks, one with a bladder on top so they could see that some things were dried or pickled.

Rhondda did a wonderful demonstration of the importance of vinegar-making and what uses it had. She turned some into Switchel, or Haymakers punch, the Gatorade of the times. She was also making rye bread.

20161008_115143

There was to be a potluck dinner on Saturday night, so we were also cooking on the hearth. Here I am with a chicken skewered on an iron cross.20161008_125447

There were also other activities happening that weekend. The wool blanket that was finished on the loom was taken off and brought out for felting.20161008_135359

We were using the 1, 2, 3, turn method, and I mentioned that there must have been a song for this. Everyone piped up with their knowledge of songs and out came the fiddle. I wonder if in the past they had as much fun as we all did working together to make a felted blanket1

Then it was back to work in our own houses. I decided to do a meat and rice stuffed pumpkin for our pot luck.

We all took turns keeping the chicken spinning and I poked my pumpkin to make sure the inside was getting soft. untitled-4-copyI also brought pumpkin spiced Springerle cookies that I had made at home, and frozen manchets. As a side note, I forgot to take pictures of the cookies and their unique raised forms. However, they were a big hit, and the next day many of the ladies were looking for more.

Now the manchets were an experiment. I had read somewhere in a medieval website,  long ago , that someone made manchets and, before the last rise, they froze them to take to an event. So I made them at home froze them and gave it a try. And it worked.

I used this receipt – The making of Fine Manchet –

The good Huswifes Handmaide  for the Kitchin. London 1594, 1597

I did the first rise at home, then formed the dough into rolls. The timing was a bit off with the second rising. Even though I had the buns in the cooler with lots of ice they started to rise. By morning they were puffy and I had to peel them apart. The fire was not going to be ready until later in the day. So I put them on a tin sheet, greased them well and covered them. By late afternoon they had a crust on them. If I had the right size wood for our bake oven I would have baked them myself in the morning; however, we did not, so I had to wait until the large outdoor oven was ready.

untitled5-copy

Everyone’s bread and some apple pies being cooked by master baker Angela in the fort’s large outdoor bake oven. Surprisingly the manchets came out very well. I’d do this again if needed, however, I’d make arrangements to have then cook sooner.

untitled-6-copy

There is a group there that are called the MOLLYS. These ladies have guns and know how to use them. It was not unlikely to find a woman in a household back then, a woman who knew how to protect her family and/or shoot game to sustain them. Twice a day they put on a wonderful demonstration of their skills.

20161008_143809

So the Fort closed for the day, and this was the time to get all our food ready for the evening. Rhondda had an Indian pudding in the kettle baking, Patty put baked apples in hers and my pumpkin and the stew inside were done. We took the chicken off the fire but it still needed a bit of cooking, so Patty cut it up and we cooked it over the fire to make sure it was done perfectly.

20161008_170024

At 6:00 sharp everyone began to arrive at Hastings House laden with the bounty of the day’s food preparation. It was all lined up in a row with the dessert at the end. As people mingled waiting for the last dishes to be placed, cheeses, crackers and wine were served.

Everyone brought a chair, their eating equipment and wine glass. When we were all seated at the tables, the dinner began.

untitled-3-copy

The hall was full of talk and camaraderie as we filled our plates and discussed the day’s events. There was so much food, and all of it delicious.14581551_10154684222094165_3382728269725161282_n

A punch was made and passed around the room table by table, and then around again. Here Rhondda, Patty and I partake of the wonderful elixir.untitled-2-copy

It was a perfect ending to a wonderful day. I thank all the amazingly talented and diverse ladies who were so kind to include us in this, our first venture to Fort 4untitled-1-copy

Enjoy the beautiful fall weather and colorful leaves,

Sandie

“We are all different, which is great because we are all unique. Without diversity life would be very boring.”— Catherine Pulsifer

Photos were taken by many of the ladies at the Fort.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

things

  Do to unforeseen circumstances this seasons workshops have been cancelled.

I will be posting some blogs and in the new year a

New Schedule of Workshops

 

 

 

 

 

Fall and Winter Workshops

 

untitled-9-copy

Oct 1, HARVEST WORKSHOP I

This is a beginner’s workshop, nothing too complicated but lots of fun and great food. You will get to experience a range of traditional hearth cooking techniques and equipment using recipes to make period dishes

Oct 15, HARVEST WORKSHOP II

– For the advanced cook. A changeling day of cooking seasonal favorites in unique way, a time to test your skills with marvelous, little-known recipes worth getting acquainted with

Nov 5, JUST DESSERT-

Christmas parties are just around the corner.  We will create a selection of Sweet Treats for the Tea Table that you can take home, marzipan, wafers, imprinted cookies and more, some to eat some to freeze.  While we bake these confections we’ll share a nice pottage and bread for our midday meal.

Workshops run from 9:30 to 3ish

To register or for more information please contact

Sandra Tarbox at sandie@colonialtable.com

 

FALL WORKSHOPS

The hearth  is waiting in slumber for the cool weather to return and with it the sounds and smells of Fall and Winter cooking.

Come and join us for this years workshop offerings.

DSC_5905

Oct 1, HARVEST WORKSHOP I

This is a beginner’s workshop, nothing too complicated but lots of fun and great food. You will get to experience a range of traditional hearth cooking techniques and equipment using recipes to make period dishes

Oct 15, HARVEST WORKSHOP II

 For the advanced cook. A changeling day of cooking seasonal favorites in unique way, a time to test your skills with marvelous, little-known recipes worth getting acquainted with

Nov 5, JUST DESSERT

Christmas parties are just around the corner.  We will create a selection of Sweet Treats for the table , marzipan, wafers, imprinted cookies and more, some to eat some to take home and freeze.  While we bake these confections we’ll share a nice pottage and bread for our midday meal.

Workshops run from 19:30 to 3ish

To register or for more information please contact

Sandra Tarbox at sandie@colonialtable.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WEEKEND WORKSHOP

Day Two

Another lovely cool and sunny day outdoors, Trudy got the fire going with no help at all and Carl arrived about 8:30.

First thing was to look at the Venison Jerky.  Carl took it out of the oven and we all took a bite.  It was fantastic.  It was nothing like you buy in the store, it has a more pliable texture and you could tell it was venison.  The receipt is simple. Just some Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, onion and garlic powder, liquid smoke and a pinch of pepper all placed in a bowl and the venison marinated in it.

 I think the bake oven imparted a nice flavor also and the slow dehydration worked very well.  I tested the oven temperature and found that it was still warm at 116°.

Next thing was to dig into the coffin.  Carl did the honors of cutting the slices.

Untitled-2

They say a picture says a thousand words, and I think these two do.  What it can’t tell you is how luscious it tasted. Bits of savory forced meat mixed with spices, whole meat marinade and liver confit. A surprise of egg and a crisp bit of the pistachios rounded out the rustic pate.  It was heaven on a plate. Thank you, Carl.

If you have a chance you can see Carl,  at the open hearth, cooking at Pennsbury Manor in Morrisville, PA, every third Sunday.

Untitled-1

Our breakfast also included some fruit and some of yesterday’s sweet and savory pies and Indian pudding.  A meal fit for a king.

We did linger awhile at the table to truly enjoy the repast.  Then we were off again to experience some new techniques and receipts.

Untitled-3

Carl started on the Cheese Bread so it would have time for its two risings.  The cheese was less than stellar, but enough to add flavor to the flour mix.  When it was ready, it was covered with a damp cloth and left to rise on the high shelf.Untitled-4

Trudy wanted to do marzipan, so she mixed up a batch, rolled it in parchment paper and stored it in the refrigerator until later.

Meanwhile Carl wanted to do pickles. I gave him a bowl with heirloom red carrots, pickling cucumbers, regular carrots, string beans, cauliflower and a medium hot pepper. I also bought a red pepper, forgetting Carl doesn’t like them.

Untitled-7

After all the vegetables were cut, Carl toasted the aromatic spices in an iron pan to release their flavor. They were then put into a pot with water, vinegar, and salt and simmered for about seven minutes.Untitled-8

Carl packed the jars with the vegetables and some garlic and poured the hot liquid over them.  These were to sit uncovered for two hours.Untitled-9

In the refrigerator there were many packages of fish to be used for our dinner.  Trudy had picked the two fish receipts and she began to read all the directions before she started.

The cheese bread had risen, and because the room was so hot, the cloth dried out.  However, this is never a problem; you just push the center down, fold the edges in and knead it.t4

After kneading the dough, it was cut in eight pieces.  This is very sticky dough and Carl floured his hands so his could handle it and make the rolls.

Untitled-6

All types of seafood would be available at Fortress Louisburg in the summer months, and Trudy wanted to make Potage Deux Poissons (Two Fish Soup) after Le Varenne.  This is a soup with salmon and haddock.

10

With the fish for the soup cut, Trudy put them in the cauldron and added vinegar, parsley, thyme and pepper.

tu2

The mushrooms were  sautéed until they were caramelized then removed from the pan while a roux was made. The mushrooms were mixed back in.

tu6

The roux and mushrooms were added into the soup and the soup was left to simmer the rest of the day to develop its flavors.

tu7

Don’t know where the time went; all of a sudden it was time for lunch. Carl put the salad together and I tossed the chicken, which he had cooked on a string, in some salad dressing.  I made a lemon butter sauce for the leftover Indian pudding.

Untitled-16

Once again the porch was perfect for our respite from the fire.Untitled-17

Carl wanted to do something with sorrel and the 17th century French food writer, Nicholas de Bonnefons recommended a variety of greens for pies. He was instrumental in creating a revolutionary vision for the cuisine in France.

 De Bonnefons “Pot Herb Pie – A Spring Tonic” was the receipt Carl worked from, which had dandelions, sorrel, spinach and Swiss chard.

Untitled-18

After the greens were blanched, they were gently squeezed in a towel to remove as much of the liquid as possible.  Trudy was making a Béchamel sauce for the second fish dish and   added to the receipt so there were two more cups for Carl’s pie. The greens went into the sauce with eggs, nutmeg, salt and pepper, and lemon zest.

Untitled-19jpg

The crust was Pate Fine, which, when made, was put in the refrigerator and then rolled out for the pie. This is a particular wonderful receipt by  La Varenne. Carl poured the filling in and sprinkles a dusting of sugar and a drizzle of rose water on top before it was give its second crust.Untitled-20

Trudy went to the Cordon Bleu. And, of course, she learned a few neat tricks that she shared with us. One is how to use the other end of a wooden spoon to crimp the pie edges. Carl picked up the technique nicely and his pie looked wonderful even uncooked.Untitled22

Trudy put out all the ingredients for the Cod Sainte-Menehould. This turned out to be an interesting receipt. It has fresh cod fillets surrounded by a fish hash.  After reading it through, Trudy questioned the preparations of the hash of two types of white fish.  When our modern recipes call for us to make a hash we think it needs to be cooked.  With further discussion and rereading the receipt I reassured her that it was not cooked, but a raw hash.tu4

The large cod pieces were poached just a bit and put aside then the hash made.  Then Trudy made a béchamel sauce some of which was used by Carl.t3

The cod was placed in a buttered casserole dish and the hash put in between the fillets. Mushrooms and spices were added to the sauce and that was poured on top.  Next would come a topping of bread crumbs.t1

Now it was time to have some fun. Trudy is thinking of making marzipan at Fortress Louisbourg. To make a color for the painting of their creations Trudy boiled up some greens and I gave her some saunders for the red. While Trudy and Carl made fruit to be painted I got out some of the lovely cheese Trudy brought for a prelude to dinner. Untitled-25

Enjoying a chance to sit down, I made a small hedgehog.  The plate of candied orange and lemon peels was made from the leftovers from the birds nest. Untitled-26

We took out the jellies and unmolded them for our dessert. The bird nest came out wonderfully; on the other hand, the fish pond did not.  Next time we won’t put the hazelnut oil on the inside of the fish forms. The gold did not stick to the fish but stuck to the jelly instead. The flummery tasted amazing and the pigs feet jelly tasted more savory than I’d have liked. However, it was an experiment and I will try this again. They do look beautiful.Untitled-27

The last made dish for dinner was artichokes and mushrooms.Untitled-24

 Carl and Trudy pitched in, and cooked them in the spider.United-25

The cheese bread, made into rolls, smelled divine and was placed in a basket by Carl.Untitled-28

The Spring Tonic Herb Pie and the Cod- Sainte-Menehould were cooked to perfection. The last touch was to add the anchovies and capers to the top of the fish casserole.Untitled-23

The Potage aux Deux Poissons, that simmered throughout the day, was served by Trudy.Untitled-291

Allan joined us for dinner and dug into the two fish receipts. He was pleasantly surprised to find out how great they tasted. Sometimes he worries about what he might be served. Carl’s rolls went great with the soup and the main meal. We compared Carl’s spring tonic-pie and Trudy’s herb pot pie that she made the day before. They had many of the same ingredients; however; the herb pot pie had the addition of ground almonds, pine nuts and bread crumbs.  I would say that they were remarkable different.  Carl’s was more like a quiche and Trudy’s denser in texture, and they both had a different taste.!soup

Then it came time of our desert. Trudy played with her fish pond jelly and you can see how the gold stuck to it.  It was an experiment we wanted to try and we learned from making it, sometimes it best not to get too focused on a receipt. Though with all the receipts we were doing at the same time, it was hard not to.  Carl just enjoyed the taste o f the flummery. !jelly

This weekend was fun and we all learned from each other and had a chance to select some techniques and receipts we might not have had the chance to experience in a one day workshop. There is talk of doing it again in the fall.

After dinner we packed a large box of leftovers for Carl and put Trudy’s in one place in the refrigerator to take home in the morning.Untitled-39

Over the next few days we all emailed back and forth still talking about the food we made, our success and failures, and just how good leftovers are. Both Carl and I will see Trudy again when we go to the Eastfield Village workshop given by Neil Vincent De Marino this summer.

Sandie

 “Cookery is not chemistry. It is an art. It requires instinct and taste rather than exact measurements.”  Marcel Boulestin, chef, food writer (1878-1943)