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freezing, pre-cooking and other horrible deeds ;)

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  • Marianne Perdomo Machin
    Greetings! I am on a quest to bring period food to the uneducated, unorganized masses (well, just part of those masses actually). Like last year I will go an
    Message 1 of 8 , Jun 28, 2002
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      Greetings!

      I am on a quest to bring period food to the uneducated, unorganized
      masses (well, just part of those masses actually). Like last year I
      will go an event in the mainland in late August and this year I would
      like to show there's more to medieval life than hacking people to
      pieces. The problem is that we'll be "camping" inside a 15th c. prison
      and will have only basic things (no kitchen, not even nice pits for
      making a good fire). Also the schedule is tight, as it's weekend
      event, and I wouldn't like to spend the whole time at the kitchen (and
      don't think I can pull people away from the attractions for long).
      Still, it's a good way to show off some of the good things about the
      SCA and I'd like it to work.

      What I was wondering is if we could precook several dishes, freeze
      them and then just heat them up inside our cozy prison ;). Any tips /
      warnings / whatever?
      I have seen lists of what can be frozen succesfully on the web, but
      are there any special considerations I should be aware of when dealing
      with period food? Like cinnamon/parsley/... taste wearing off if
      frozen? Do sauces based on almond milk freeze well?
      Any alternatives / ideas?

      Thanks and happy weekend!!


      Marianne
      Canary islander, preaching in the Castilian dessert (well, not quite)
    • rose@santiagosmagic.com
      Hello Marianne! I find that soups and stews survive the freeze and reheat cycle the best. And the frozen bags keep the ice chest nice and cool until they re
      Message 2 of 8 , Jun 28, 2002
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        Hello Marianne!

        I find that soups and stews survive the "freeze and reheat" cycle the best. And
        the frozen bags keep the ice chest nice and cool until they're used. You won't
        loose a lot of flavor over the weekend, but if you're freezing something for six
        months then I'd expect the flavors to degrade some.

        You should also be able to find suggestions in Cariadoc's "Camping Without a
        Cooler," and I think Despina put Bogdan's notes on period food that doesn't need
        refrigeration in the groups files.

        Given how full our events tend to be, the last thing I ever want to do is spend
        the entire day preparing dinner, so the more stuff I can do ahead of time, the
        better I like it!

        Rose
      • wodeford
        ... the best. And ... used. Not that my recipes have been period (yet), but I ve found that pre- cooked stews do fine in the ice chest for 24-48 hours. In the
        Message 3 of 8 , Jun 28, 2002
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          --- In Authentic_SCA@y..., rose@s... wrote:
          > Hello Marianne!
          >
          > I find that soups and stews survive the "freeze and reheat" cycle
          the best. And
          > the frozen bags keep the ice chest nice and cool until they're
          used.

          Not that my recipes have been period (yet), but I've found that pre-
          cooked stews do fine in the ice chest for 24-48 hours. In the
          interest of labor saving and reducing food poisoning, I've been pre-
          cooking and refrigerating things for weekend campouts: bacon (to be
          scrambled into our breakfast eggs), boeuf bourgignonne and chicken
          stewed in beer have all reheated nicely after storage in our cooler.
          Precooking the bacon also means I can dispose of the attendant grease
          in my own kitchen!

          The chicken stew was my own invention: white meat chicken, chicken
          broth, one bottle of beer (Henry Weinhardt's amber), mushrooms,
          onions and carrots, a little flour to thicken the broth. Served it
          in bread bowls. Good stuff.

          Jehanne
        • Cannoneer
          ... That s what the campfire s for :) BTW we ve found that a 50/50 mix of bacon fat and candlewax makes a GREAT firestarter for wet wood (or Greek Fire,
          Message 4 of 8 , Jun 30, 2002
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            At 09:39 PM 06/28/2002 +0000, you wrote:
            >Precooking the bacon also means I can dispose of the attendant grease
            >in my own kitchen!
            >
            >Jehanne

            That's what the campfire's for :)

            BTW we've found that a 50/50 mix of bacon fat and candlewax makes a
            GREAT firestarter for wet wood (or Greek Fire, whatever your needs are!)


            Roderic Hawkyns
            Master Gunner

            Artillery lends dignity to what might otherwise be a vulgar brawl
          • wodeford
            ... Assuming you live in a kingdom where ground fires are permitted, Master Gunner. I currently cook on an evil propane stove, though Gaius and I will probably
            Message 5 of 8 , Jun 30, 2002
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              --- In Authentic_SCA@y..., Cannoneer <cannoneer@s...> wrote:
              > That's what the campfire's for :)
              Assuming you live in a kingdom where ground fires are permitted,
              Master Gunner. I currently cook on an evil propane stove, though
              Gaius and I will probably acquire a "portable firepit" one of these
              days. (Imagine a large "bowl" constructed of articulated metal plates
              suspended from a tripod).

              > BTW we've found that a 50/50 mix of bacon fat and candlewax makes a
              > GREAT firestarter for wet wood (or Greek Fire, whatever your needs
              are!)

              I'll keep that in mind next time I have to shoot flaming arrows at
              someone.

              Jehanne
              (Bemused at the proliferation of legal fireworks shops in a state
              where brush fires are a common hazard.)
            • Marianne Perdomo Machin
              Greetings! Thanks for the suggestions! I think I ll go for the experimental approach. Make small batches, freeze for a week, then try it and see what works,
              Message 6 of 8 , Jul 1, 2002
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                Greetings!

                Thanks for the suggestions! I think I'll go for the experimental approach. Make
                small batches, freeze for a week, then try it and see what works, starting with the
                almond milk. (I might seem obsessed with that, but there's this lovely chicken in
                lemon, ginger and almond-milk sauce I want to make).

                As for the non-cooler texts I re-read them just in case but a lot of it seems to
                deal with keeping the food, not pre-doing the work. Still, we will be doing some
                bread, cheese, cured meats, olives, that sort of thing as a complement (a van sells
                bread on site early-ish in the mornings). Hopefully I'll do the non-cooler thing
                sometime, but I think this occasion is not the best for it.

                Thanks!


                Marianne
              • Cannoneer
                ... Actually, that s how we discovered this little gem. We were using a portable firepit with an attached tripod and trying to get it going so we could have
                Message 7 of 8 , Jul 1, 2002
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                  At 03:35 AM 07/01/2002 +0000, you wrote:
                  >Gaius and I will probably acquire a "portable firepit" one of these
                  >days. (Imagine a large "bowl" constructed of articulated metal plates
                  >suspended from a tripod).
                  >
                  >Jehanne

                  Actually, that's how we discovered this little gem. We were using a
                  portable firepit with an attached tripod and trying to get it going so we
                  could have breakfast on a damp morning. The pit part was made from an
                  old washing machine drum, pierced all over. The fire just dripped out the
                  holes and could only be put out with sand.

                  I have several period formulae for Greek Fire, but this is just so much
                  easier :>


                  Roderic Hawkyns
                  Master Gunner

                  Artillery lends dignity to what might otherwise be a vulgar brawl
                • marshamclean@rogers.com
                  May I suggest a chinese restaurant wok? They come in sizes up to HUGE! and have no holes. They are iron and run from CDN$19 up. Baroness Tamara, from up
                  Message 8 of 8 , Jul 2, 2002
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                    At 03:35 AM 07/01/2002 +0000, you wrote:
                    >Gaius and I will probably acquire a "portable firepit" one of these
                    >days. (Imagine a large "bowl" constructed of articulated metal plates
                    >suspended from a tripod).
                    >
                    >Jehanne

                    Actually, that's how we discovered this little gem.  We were using a
                    portable firepit with an attached tripod and trying to get it going so we
                    could have breakfast on a damp morning.    The pit part was made from an
                    old washing machine drum, pierced all over.  The fire just dripped out the
                    holes and could only be put out with sand.

                    I have several period formulae for Greek  Fire, but this is just so much
                    easier :>


                    Roderic Hawkyns
                    Master Gunner

                    Artillery lends dignity to what might otherwise be a vulgar brawl





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