[Sca-cooks] treacle RE: German Breads

Stefan li Rous StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
Mon Mar 31 18:17:24 PDT 2008

Otsisto asked:

<< Long shot here - how about the use of fruit pulp instead of  
molasses or
honey, say pounded raisens? >>

Yes, in limited uses and geographic areas. It doesn't seem to have  
created a strong international trade. When we've discussed this  
previously date sugar was one of these, and often you find raisins in  
medieval recipes and I suspect that this was a way of adding some  

sugar-msg        (172K)  3/ 7/08    Sugar and other medieval sweeteners.

carob-msg          (4K)  6/13/01    Use of carob in period.

-----Original Message-----
Treacle and molasses come out of the sugarmaking process, so my argument
against their use in period German bread is same.  First, sugar is a  
transportable, high value good with wide application.  Molasses has less
value, has limited application, and costs more to ship with greater  
risk of
leakage. >>>

Thank you for the elaboration, Bear. This was about what I was going  
to say. Thank you Otsisto for the differentiation between molasses  
and treacle. We've discussed both before but I hadn't realized they  
weren't the same thing.

I was going to question Bear on his mention of 16th century as far as  
export/use of molasses went. I'd have said 17th century. But...

<<< Let me say that this is my analysis and interpetation of the  
situation and
that I have no direct evidence of the use or non-use of molasses in the
German States during the 15th and 16th Centuries. >>>

I think both of us are working more on gut-feel on this than having  
specific facts to work from. If someone does have more specific  
information on the time of commercialization of molasses/treacle, I'd  
love to see it. It might be instructive to see at what dates the  
triangle of trade developed with molasses/treacle to the American  
colonies, where it got turned into rum, and much of that got shipped  
to Africa to buy slaves to be transported and sold in the West  
Indies, linked with the price (falling) of sugar.

A similar situation existed with Maple syrup. While Maple trees were  
tapped beginning in the 17th century, what little wasn't used locally  
was shipped out, even to New England towns, as Maple sugar, not Maple  
syrup. It wasn't until the middle of the 19th century that any Maple  
syrup was being shipped in quantity with improvements in transportation.

THLord Stefan li Rous    Barony of Bryn Gwlad    Kingdom of Ansteorra
    Mark S. Harris           Austin, Texas           
StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
**** See Stefan's Florilegium files at:  http://www.florilegium.org ****

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