28753RE: [SCA-JML] Re: Shijo-Ryu Hocho-do (Shijo School of the Kitchen Knife)
- May 13, 2014
There might be some validity to Rath’s assumption.. In modern day Beijing, duck is presented to guests at a dinner, then cut up in a very ritualistic way in front of the guests.. very entertaining.., each part/subsection is then displayed for the guests…if accepted, the duck is then taken away and served in several dishes .. an appetizer, soup, the classic Beijing duck, etc….
Eric Rath devotes a chapter to The Men of The Knife in his "Food and Fantasy In Early Modern Japan." These meat "subtleties" were created in front of the banquet guests, the final result was displayed for their admiration, and then whisked away never to be seen again - though Rath conjectures that the bits might find their way into a soup or other course.
IIRC, he also describes the presentation of dishes on feast trays that were there for symbolic reasons only and not to be eaten. Presumably the guests would be in the know that a particular arrangement of a certain food in a bowl or dish was ornamental only. I'll need to look when I get home as it's been a while since I read it.
Saionji no Hana
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