Friday, April 9, 2010


15th century cookbook
Ab. 1420 A.D.

—Take Buttes of Porke, & smyte hem in pecys, & sette it ouer þe fyre; & seþe hem in fayre Watere; & whan it is y-soþe y-now, ley it on a fayre bord, & pyke owt alle þe bonys, & hew it smal, & put it in a fayre bolle; þan take ysope, Sawge, Percely a gode quantite, & hew it smal, & putte it on a fayre vesselle; þan take a lytel of þe broþe, þat þe porke was soþin in, & draw þorw a straynoure, & caste to þe Erbys, & ȝif it a boyle; þenne take owt þe Erbys with a Skymoure fro þe broþe, & caste hem to þe Porke in þe bolle; þan mynce Datys smal, & caste hem þer-to, & Roysonys of Coraunce, & Pyneȝ, & drawe þorw a straynoure ȝolkys of Eyroun þer-to, & Sugre, & pouder Gyngere, & Salt, & coloure it a lytel with Safroune; & toyle yt with þin hond al þes to-gederys; þan make fayre round cofyns, & harde hem a lytel in þe ovyn; þan take hem owt, & wyth a [leaf 43.] dyssche in þin hond, fylle hem fulle of þe Stuffe; þan sette hem þer-in a-ȝen; & lat hem bake y-now, & serue forth.

Modern English

—Take buts of pork, and chop them in pieces, and set it over the fire; and boil them in fair water; and when it is boiled/cooked enough, lay it on a fair board and pick out all the bones, and hew(chop) it small and put it in a fair bowl; then take hyssop, sage, a good quantity of parsley, and chop it small and put it on(in) a fair vessel; then take a little of the broth that the pork was boiled in and draw (it) through a strainer and cast in the herbs, and if it a boiled (when they are boiled?); then take out the herbs with a peel/skimmer from the broth and cast them into the pork in the bowl; then finely mince some dates and cast them in, and currants and pine nuts, and draw eggs yolks through a strainer into the bowl, and sugar and powdered ginger and salt and colour it a little with saffron, and stir/mix this all together with your hand; then make fair round coffins and harden them a little in the oven; then take them out and with the dish in your hand, fill them full of the stuff; then set them therein again(set them back in the oven); and let them bake enough and serve forth.

Break down:
-Chop pork in pieces and boil in water
-When it is cooked, bring it to a chopping board and remove the bones and chop it finely and put aside in a good sized bowl
-Take some hyssop, sage and a good quantity of parsley and finely chop it (and put in a vessel/bowl)
-Take the pork broth and run it through a strainer (to make a clear broth) and then cast in the herbs
-it seems to suggest boiling the herbs in the broth and then skimming them out and adding them into the bowl with the pork
-Finely chop up some dates and cast these in with the pork along with some currants and pine nuts.
-Strain some egg yolk (this being the binder) into the mixture and add some sugar, powdered ginger and salt to the mixture as well.
-colour the mixture a little with saffron
-mix this all with your hand
(it does not specify using the broth in the mixture, however it would be useful should the mixture end up too dry)

-A standard paste would be made from flour, butter, egg yolk and water though either the butter, yolk or water may be omitted.
-Make as many raised pie shells as you feel will hold the filling (does not specify size) and bake them in a low oven just to harden and dry them out a bit (they should likely still be whiteish).
-Fill the shells with the mixture and bake them until they are done and serve forth
(though many pies could be served cold, this does not specify to do so, nor does it mention if the pastry is to be covered or not so it may be an open/cover-less pie)

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