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Re: [albanach] Food Research

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  • Vitaliano Vincenzi
    I have been trying to find a copy of The Scots Kitchen at our local library but they don t seem to have it. I see that Amazon.com has it and I will probably
    Message 1 of 15 , Feb 23, 2007
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      I have been trying to find a copy of "The Scots Kitchen" at our local
      library but they don't seem to have it. I see that Amazon.com has it and
      I will probably pick it up unless I can find it locally. Thank you.

      Diana Cosby wrote:

      > ~Have you checked out, "The Scots Kitchen," by F. Marian McNeill? An
      > on-line source for traditional Scottish recipes is:
      > http://www.rampantscotland.com/recipes/blrecipe_index.htm
      >
      > Hope this helps.

      --
      Lord Vitaliano Vincenzi
      aka Shane Lambert
      http://www.periodfood.blogspot.com
    • Sharon L. Krossa
      ... But not particularly associated with Scotland in period, to best of my knowledge. (They did have haggis, but it wasn t yet considered particularly Scottish
      Message 2 of 15 , Feb 28, 2007
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        At 5:29 PM +0000 2/22/07, Julie Stackable wrote:
        >Regrettably, the earliest known Scottish written recipes are very
        >late 17th century. It's just one of those 'holes' in the Scottish
        >written records. I have never found a good answer for why there were
        >no Scottish cookery books printed during the period. Having said
        >that - Haggis was certainly period.

        But not particularly associated with Scotland in period, to best of
        my knowledge. (They did have haggis, but it wasn't yet considered
        particularly Scottish -- and I don't think there is any reason to
        think it must have been Scottish in origin. Search DSL-DOST headwords
        for haggis for the two known quotes mentioning it --
        http://www.dsl.ac.uk/)

        However, there is a period recipe (transcription of original text)
        from "Two fifteenth-century cookery-books : Harleian MS. 279 (ab
        1430), & Harl. MS. 4016 (ab. 1450), with extracts from Ashmole MS.
        1439, Laud MS. 553, & Douce MS. 55 " available online specifically at

        <http://www.hti.umich.edu:80/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=cme;cc=cme;type=simple;rgn=div2;q1=hag%2A;view=text;subview=detail;sort=occur;idno=CookBk;node=CookBk%3A6.3#hl1>

        Note this is from an English cookbook, not a Scottish one.

        BTW, similarly bagpipes were not particularly associated with
        Scotland in period -- and in fact appear to have arrived in Scotland
        from England in the late medieval era (first in Lowland Scotland,
        then the Highlands). If I recall correctly, the earliest references
        to bagpipes in Scotland are payments to English bagpipers.

        >I would suggest any good 'peasant' oat bread recipe for the Scottish
        >bread. The Scottish preference for oats, which the 'civilized' world
        >considered fit only for livestock, was commented upon in the 16th
        >century.

        I wouldn't call this so much a "preference" as an economic thing.
        Scots who could afford it ate white (wheat flour) bread. The poor ate
        (oat) "cakes". (Which weren't like what we would call a cake -- they
        were probably quite similar to modern oatcakes, and so basically a
        water and oats cracker-like thing.)

        For some period quotes about oat cakes, search DSL-DOST headwords for cake.

        As for serving the haggis spread on oatcakes, I don't particularly
        recommend it unless you've got some period evidence that this is how
        these foods were eaten in period somewhere in Europe (Scotland or
        elsewhere). How food is mixed together, combined, served, etc.
        changed just as much by culture and time period as anything else, and
        while to us moderns putting haggis on oatcakes sounds quite obvious,
        it may not have done so to period Scots (or any other Europeans).

        If you're worried people won't like the haggis (and if they like hot
        dogs or sausages of any kind, or pate, they should like haggis --
        people think they don't like it only because everyone tells them they
        shouldn't like it, but all haggis is is a kind of sausage served
        without the skin) then just serve very small amounts.

        >The kitchen and buttery accounts of the Earl of Angus from five
        >months in 1608 are the most complete picture, I think. There are
        >references to royal and ecclesiastical food purchases and feast
        >throughout the 16th century, but the Earl's record is one of food
        >purchased for his household in Glasgow and the Canongate. Oat bread
        >is definitely listed, it is the cheapest sort of bread purchased, so
        >I would rate it a 'common' sort of bread and representative of Scots
        >fare in the way you are looking for.

        Well, common in the sense of eaten by the poorer people (and recall
        the SCA assumes everyone is a noble unless otherwise specified ;-)

        >Again, ale was the beverage of choice, being considered fine for
        >breakfast. Also listed in the accounts are purchases of an array of
        >wines (French,Canary, Spanish, Malaga and Sack were all purchased).
        >Normally the family's ale would have been made by themselves, but
        >they were living in lodgings, so all the ale was purchased. But the
        >family's prodigious wine consumption was a mark of their rank and
        >what they could afford.

        You mean this family's -- the Earl of Angus's? Because it was very
        common for people to buy ale, even if they also made their own.

        >There were not a lot of fresh vegetable dishes served in Scotland in
        >period. The only vegetables purchased by the Earl's family were
        >cabbages and parsley in June, carrots in September and cabbages in
        >October. And most of these vegetables were mean for the broth. Herbs
        >were the only 'green' things that were regularly purchased.

        Kale is often mentioned in Aberdeen. And keep in mind that purchases
        do not tell the whole story with regard to food. Even in towns people
        had gardens in their back yards, where vegetables (like kale, etc.)
        were typically grown.

        Anyway, for resources on Scottish things in general, including
        clothing, see my website (Medieval Scotland) at
        http://MedievalScotland.org/ (BTW, note that I believe everything
        discussed so far for food is based on Lowland or English evidence,
        not Gaelic or Highland.)

        Sharon, ska Affrick nyn Ken3e
        --
        Sharon Krossa, PhD - skrossa-ml@...
        Resources for Scottish history, names, clothing, language & more:
        Medieval Scotland - http://www.MedievalScotland.org/
        Shopping Online? Help support! - http://MedievalScotland.org/patron/
        The most complete index of reliable web articles about pre-1600 names:
        The Medieval Names Archive - http://www.s-gabriel.org/names/
      • Julie Stackable
        ... of ... Yes, I was specifically referring to the Earl s family. They were living in cramped quarters. The Earl had been in a lot of legal trouble and things
        Message 3 of 15 , Mar 1, 2007
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          --- In albanach@yahoogroups.com, "Sharon L. Krossa" <skrossa-ml@...>
          wrote:
          > >Again, ale was the beverage of choice, being considered fine for
          > >breakfast. Also listed in the accounts are purchases of an array
          of
          > >wines (French,Canary, Spanish, Malaga and Sack were all purchased).
          > >Normally the family's ale would have been made by themselves, but
          > >they were living in lodgings, so all the ale was purchased. But the
          > >family's prodigious wine consumption was a mark of their rank and
          > >what they could afford.
          >
          > You mean this family's -- the Earl of Angus's? Because it was very
          > common for people to buy ale, even if they also made their own.

          Yes, I was specifically referring to the Earl's family. They were
          living in cramped quarters. The Earl had been in a lot of legal
          trouble and things were not going so well. For quite a bit of the
          time, it doesn't look like a lot of his normal household was with
          him, including his wife. (there is an excellent discussion of his
          situation in the 'Laird's Kitchen', along with the accounts)

          > >There were not a lot of fresh vegetable dishes served in Scotland
          in
          > >period. The only vegetables purchased by the Earl's family were
          > >cabbages and parsley in June, carrots in September and cabbages in
          > >October. And most of these vegetables were mean for the broth.
          Herbs
          > >were the only 'green' things that were regularly purchased.
          >
          > Kale is often mentioned in Aberdeen. And keep in mind that
          purchases
          > do not tell the whole story with regard to food. Even in towns
          people
          > had gardens in their back yards, where vegetables (like kale, etc.)
          > were typically grown.

          Again, these were transitory rented lodgings, so it is doubtful they
          had their own kaleyard. However, it is very possible that the
          lodgings had their own kaleyard, but mention was not made in the
          accounts. If it wasn't clear in the paragraph, again, I was
          specifically referring to the Earl's family, since there was a
          written record, not discussing Scots as a whole.

          > Anyway, for resources on Scottish things in general, including
          > clothing, see my website (Medieval Scotland) at
          > http://MedievalScotland.org/ (BTW, note that I believe everything
          > discussed so far for food is based on Lowland or English evidence,
          > not Gaelic or Highland.)

          Is there any anecdotal evidence for Scottish Gaelic or Highland food
          (obviously they ate something, I just mean written records)? I'm
          thinking we're a go for cattle (grin), and I know I've seen
          references to the use of seaweed in coastal areas, but it's not
          really my area of research....

          By the way, there used to be a really great website on the history of
          Scottish cheese, which has sadly disappeared!

          Toujours a vos ordres,
          Margaret Hepburn
        • Diana Cosby
          ... ~I m not sure if you ve ever used ebay, but a new version of The Scot s Kitchen is up: Item #: 220097127889
          Message 4 of 15 , Apr 3, 2007
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            Vitaliano Vincenzi wrote:

            >I have been trying to find a copy of "The Scots Kitchen" at our local
            >library but they don't seem to have it. I see that Amazon.com has it and
            >I will probably pick it up unless I can find it locally. Thank you.
            >
            >
            ~I'm not sure if you've ever used ebay, but a new version of The Scot's
            Kitchen is up:
            Item #: 220097127889
            http://cgi.ebay.com/THE-SCOTS-KITCHEN-F-MARIAN-MCNEILL-PB_W0QQitemZ220097127889QQcategoryZ276QQrdZ1QQssPageNameZWD2VQQcmdZViewItem

            Hope that helps.
            Diana

            www.dianacosby.com
            Zebra/November 07/His Captive
            Zebra/November 08/Title TBA
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