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The Return of the dreaded Recipe of the Week, January 3rd, 2013

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  • The Henson's
    A new year and a new subject. Did you think I forgot you? Which came first? The Chicken or the Egg? Well, this year it’s the egg. Eggs are integral
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 3, 2013
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      A new year and a new subject. Did you think I forgot you?

      Which came first? The Chicken or the Egg? Well, this year it’s the egg.
      Eggs are integral ingredients in practically every cuisine.
      The Tacuinum Sanitatis contains entries on chicken, goose, and ostrich
      eggs. The eggs of duck and other domestic foul such as, guineas and
      peacock would certainly have been available. The eggs of wild birds
      were also collected.
      Eggs were used as binders, leavening agents, to color and glaze, to thin
      and thicken, as stuffing and garnish in Medieval cookery. This month
      we’ll be looking at recipes featuring eggs in a starring role.
      This week we’ll look at some variations on stuffed eggs. These recipes
      show up in a variety of cultures. They share the basic plan of a hard
      boiled egg. sliced in two, the yolk scooped out and combined with herbs,
      spices, sometimes cheese, raw eggs, and other seasonings. But first you
      have to boil the eggs.
      Le Menagier de Paris (Janet Hinson Translation, available on line)
      offers this familiar advice on boiling eggs:
      A Note on the Nature of Eggs. Put them on to cook in boiling water and
      the yolk will not be hard, so long as you have not first put them in
      cold water: but if you put them in cold water and then incontinently
      into boiling water, they will surely harden. Item, if you put them in
      boiling water and leave them on the fire, they will always get hard.
      Item, hard or soft, if as soon as they are cooked, you put them in cold
      water, they will be easier to peel.
      And once your eggs are boiled you can stuff them. Most of you are
      probably familiar with farced eggs or split nuns but you might not have
      seen these from southern Europe.
      From Italy both the Toscano and the Venezianna offer versions.
      From the Toscana Note that the author references other methods of
      cooking eggs so well known that nothing need be said of them.
      Stuffed eggs.
      [140] Take eggs, boil them and peel them, and cut each one in half, and
      take out the yolk; and taking marjoram, saffron and cloves, mix them
      with said egg yolks, and pound them well, adding grated cheese: and for
      every eight eggs dilute with one raw egg; and when this is done, from
      this sauce fill the gaps in the eggs and fry them in good lard; and eat,
      adding to it the sauce called French verjuice. Fried, roasted, and
      beaten [scrambled?] eggs are so well known that nothing need be said
      about them.
      And from Veneziano
      XLVII Stuffed eggs
      If you want to make stuffed eggs. Take the eggs and put them to boil
      and make sure that they are hard cooked. When they are cooked pull them
      out (of the hot water) and put them in cold water. Peel and slice (the
      eggs) in half and remove the yolk (reserve). Take the fattest sweetest
      cheese that you have. Take the best herbs that you have, peel them
      (from the stalk) wash and grind them together in a mortar. When they
      (the herbs) are well ground take the egg yolks, the cheese and spices
      and put them in the mortar with the good herbs. Grind all these things
      together to make a fine paste and temper (mix) with raw eggs until it is
      good (has the right consistency). Meanwhile put a frying pan over the
      fire. Take the egg halves and stuff with the paste (of egg yolks and
      cheese) and put them to cook (in the frying pan). When they are cooked
      remove from the pan and powder them with sugar before serving them hot
      to the table. And if you want to serve them savory take them (without
      sugaring them), etc.
      An Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook of the 13th Century(Charles Perry
      Translation as available on line) offers these two variations. Note the
      technique of slicing the eggs with a thread and refastening the halves
      together with a stick.
      The Making of Stuffed Eggs
      Take as many eggs as you like, and boil them whole in hot water; put
      them in cold water and split them in half with a thread. Take the yolks
      aside and pound cilantro and put in onion juice, pepper and coriander,
      and beat all this together with murri, oil and salt and knead the yolks
      with this until it forms a dough. Then stuff the whites with this and
      fasten it together, insert a small stick into each egg, and sprinkle
      them with pepper, God willing.
      Stuffed Eggs
      Cook eggs, remove the shells and cut them in half. Remove the yolks, put
      together in a platter and throw on them cilantro, onion juice, spices
      and cinnamon; and it will become a paste with which you will stuff the
      eggs. Tie them with thread and hold them with a small stick. Dissolve
      some egg white and grease them with it along with a little saffron, and
      dust with fine flour and fry with fresh oil on an even fire, and when
      finished, sprinkle with chopped rue and serve. Make a sauce with the
      filling and sprinkle with spikenard and cinnamon, God willing.[94]

      And on a final note; I recently tuned into an episode of Jacques Pepin,
      and there he was cooking up a recipe his mother had taught him that he
      called Eggs Jeanette. Hard boiled eggs, filled with a mixture of cooked
      yolk, fresh herbs and fried in butter. Hmm, where I have I seen that

      Good Cooking
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