HERB - the period pumpkin

ND Wederstrandt nweders at mail.utexas.edu
Wed Apr 29 09:10:25 PDT 1998

 This has become a big research thing for me as when I was on the SCA-cooks
it came up as a regular form of argument.  I have a copy of Sturyvevant's
book which lists a member of the gourd (like luffa, laengaria sp.) having
grown in Europe and been eaten on a regular basis.  there is an argument
and note that it says argument that hard shell squashes could have floated
to africa and then up to europe.  I'll see if I can find the exact quote
and post it.

The later cookbooks, "Good Huswife's Jewel" lists pompion and they were
probably pumpkins, (pepo sp.).

As far as I can determine the luffa family and the curcibits (cucumber) had
relatives grown in period in Europe but not pepos.  Luffas and cukes
families have small flowers (go out and look at your cucumber plants and
note the blooms)  The squashes and pumpkins families have big flowers
(zucchini/squash blossoms). That's an easy way of telling what family they
are in.

Clear as mud?.... If I'm in error let me know.


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