[Sca-cooks] Bread Recipe from my files

Patrick Levesque petruvoda at videotron.ca
Thu Jul 12 17:48:40 PDT 2007

Every time oil is called for in a recipe, I pretty much assume olive oil.

For medicinal purposes, olea communis (or something like this) refers to
olive oil as well. Do not use the greenish, extra-virgin kind. Use the very
yellow, common oil (as the name indicates). Something about the golden hue
having better medecinal qualities. This I learned at my utter dismay when my
Aureum unguent ended up with a sickly yellow-green color, instead of the
vivid golden yellow it ought to have been :-=)


On 12/07/07 14:08, "V A" <phoenissa at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 7/11/07, Vitaliano Vincenzi <vitaliano at shanelambert.com> wrote:
>> The only ingredient I question right now is the olive oil, which I know
>> was used in period for medicinal purposes, but haven't seen much use of
>> it in my readings as a food item.
> Olive oil was (and has been, for all of recorded history) used prolifically
> for many purposes -- medicinal, cosmetic, and culinary -- all along the
> Mediterranean.  Of course, the farther north you go in Europe, the harder it
> is to cultivate olives, so if olive oil was used in northern Europe, it
> would have been (for most of the Middle Ages) a fairly expensive commodity,
> since it had to be imported...so if you're looking at, say, 14th-century
> English recipes, you wouldn't see a ton of olive oil, but it'd be all over
> the Italian cookbooks of the same period.
> ---Recipe---
>> 2 Envelopes Active Dry Yeast
>> 2 cups warm water (100°F to 110°F)
>> 2/3 cup olive oil
>> 3 tablespoons sugar
>> 3 ½ cups whole wheat flour
>> 2 teaspoons salt
>> ¾ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
>> 2 teaspoons garlic powder
>> 2 teaspoons dried leaf basil
>> 1 teaspoon dried leaf oregano
>> ½ to 1 cup bread flour (can use all purpose flour)
> Looks yummy!  If you look at the ingredients individually, they were all
> used in *some* form (e.g. fresh garlic instead of garlic powder :-) in
> medieval and renaissance cooking.  But flavored breads, delicious as they
> are, seem to have been developed waaaay after the SCA period.  Bread in that
> time was very basic: flour, water and leavening.  Not even salt, in some
> places -- Tuscans were, and still are, (in)famous for not adding salt to
> their bread doughs!  (When Dante was exiled from Florence, he wrote that he
> longed to return to the land where the bread was unsalted...and the
> traditionally rustic Florentine breakfast is still a slice of wheat bread,
> toasted, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with coarse salt.  Beats
> buttered toast any day.)
> Even though bread was the most basic staple of pre-modern diets, it's one of
> the most difficult things for us to recreate, since very few recipes were
> actually written down.  There are a few from the 15th and 16th centuries.
> If you're curious to know more about it, check out this site:
> http://www.whirlwind-design.com/ATOC/temperance.html by Wulfric of Creigull,
> a fellow Westerner who also happens to have earned his Laurel for baking
> bread. :-)  I've used his version of the "Fine Manchet" recipe (it's on the
> site, in the baking section) several times with great success -- it's very
> easy, very straightforward, and very much like most of the modern bread
> recipes I use.
> Happy baking! :-)
> Vittoria
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