Sunday, January 31, 2016

Fine Cakes

I have made these little gems for years!  They make good gifts for friends, visiting royalty and relatives alike.

Medieval Recipe from The Widowes Treasury by John Partridge, 1585 and redacted by
Cindy M. Renfrow, author of Take a Thousand Eggs or More and A Sip Through Time as found here

To make fine Cakes. Take a quantity of fine wheate Flower, and put it in an earthen pot. Stop it close and set it in an Oven, and bake it as long as you would a Pasty of Venison, and when it is baked it will be full of clods. Then searce your flower through a fine sercer. Then take clouted Creame or sweet butter, but Creame is best: then take sugar, cloves, Mace, saffron and yolks of eggs, so much as wil seeme to season your flower. Then put these things into the Creame, temper all together. Then put thereto your flower. So make your cakes. The paste will be very short; therefore make them very little. Lay paper under them.

Baked flour: Take some flour (4 cups, unsifted, made enough) and bake, covered, at 350F for about 1hr 15min, until slight color change and a nutty smell.

To every 3 cups of sifted baked flour, take the following:
1 1/2 cups butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon clove powder
1/4 teaspoon mace powder
1/2 pinch saffron, crumbled
3 egg yolks

Preheat oven to 350 F.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Add the spices and egg yolks, and beat to mix thoroughly. Add the flour, and beat until smooth. Use a non-stick cookie sheet, or line a cookie sheet with baking parchment. Take the dough, 1 level teaspoonful at a time, and roll into small balls with your hands. (Resist the temptation to make them larger -- they won't cook in the middle if they're too big.) Flatten the balls slightly, and place them 2 inches apart on the cookie sheet. Bake for 9-12 minutes, or until the cookies are puffed and golden around the edges. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks.

Urchins recipe


Quick little queen of the East

Known in song as the quick little queen of the east, Alexandre Saint Pierre and I wrote these words for Duchess Anna's scroll:

An Eastern Tiger in Truth

All hear tell of Anna Ophelia
Halloway Tarragon.
Mother, duchess, equestrian.
She is a shining beacon,
a paragon of virtue,
an example for us all
in either peace or war.
Thus we, Brennan & Coailfhionn
swiftly name her a Tyger of the East
on this xxx of January, a.s. l.

Which were quickly and deftly translated into Latin by Steffan ap Kennydd

Tigris Orientalis Vero

Omnes cognoscant Annam Opheliam Holloviam Tarragon.
Matrem, ducissam, caballariam.
Haec est ignis nitidus, specimen virtutis
Exemplar pro nobis omnibus
Et in pace et in bello
Itaque Nos Brennan et Caolfhionn
Eam dicimus velociter
Tigrem Orientis
Hoc die XXX [tricesimo] Januaris anno Societatis L [quinquagesimo].