Date: Thu, 9 May 2002 15:19:38 -0500 (CDT)
From: Jeff Heilveil <heilveil@...
Subject: events without a cooler (long and slightly meandering)
Okay, All of this is off the top of my head, so I cannot promise
isn't a total repeat of the article.
while food pathology is not my specialty, I have spent a
number of years working with pathogens of all sorts, and use
knowledge in my dealing with non-cooler events. Also, no one I
fed has gotten sick from anything I served, so I guess it works
that being said, on to the fun. To me, non-cooler cooking is
absolute best way to go. Despina and I do it as often as
possible, and it
makes life easier and less expensive. I don't have to worry
and best of all, I can buy ingredients when they come on sale
keep them around until I need them.
I have two very different methods of dealing with events, based
length of the event and the type of cooking apparati available
I'll start with the short event/day-trip. This counts for 1-2
Often with short events, of about 1-2 days, I'll pick a menu of
either need minimal heating/cooking or were served cold in
are a lot of items (including meat items) that were served
"cold" and are
therefore ideal. I avoid any recipes that are served hot, as
and texture will not be as they would have been, and I've often
if something in period was written down, there is a reason for
it (I could
digress with an example, but I'll just say "cut deviled eggs
thread"). So when a dish says "serve cold" that's probably the
to serve it. Sure enough, with the gefuellte roest it would
nasty served hot, I won't even bother trying it, as I am not a
Many items that have been cooked can sit around at room temp for
a day or
so without adverse effects. Remember that bacteria don't
all over your food. They also don't have an "r" of 30seconds
intrinsic growth rate, sorry). If they did, how many males
died in college from eating cold pizza? So if you cook it the
before you head to the event, keep it in a cool, dark place,
will be fine. If you want, you can test this ahead. Make the
it in a chest at home and see if it seems okay.
Let us digress now to telling if things are bad:
fuzzy is bad. colored splotches are bad. If there is a slimy
it's not oil, that's bad. Smell it. If it smells different
should, don't eat it (I'd say "if it smells bad" but some things
smell unpleasant taste good). Use common sense here.
Raw dairy products don't hold up well. Cheese isn't raw.
you've cooked the item first, it will hold up better. Veggies
haven't been in the refrigerator will last longer. Also, if
been sprayed every five minutes in the grocery store, that helps
Hard cheeses work better than soft cheeses. Butter is a
problem, but lard
works well and was often preferred in period. There are a
german recipes that basically say "if you can't use lard you can
Okay, what about longer events? well, SALTED MEAT is great. It
takes time to unsalt it. Pickled meat for those of the
persuasion and other areas too. Cured meat. Now something to
mind: smoked food is NOT ALL PRESERVED. a cold smoke (<80F)
while a smoking temp above 80 cooks. cold smoked food stays
longer. There are even directions for a simiple (post period)
on Foodtv.com under Good Eats (One of my favs!).
I think the rest of this is covered pretty well in the article,
but as it
says at the end I WOULD LOVE TO HELP. I'd be happy to help you
pick a set
of recipes for an event or whatever, just email me. Note that
will get to me fast. If you email to the list
sometimes takes a while because I don't always have time to read
Hope this wasn't too too discombobulated.
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