[Sca-cooks] masa

Volker Bach carlton_bach at yahoo.de
Sat Nov 10 13:05:52 PST 2007

"On other occasions they would carry grain to a water
mill to be  
ground into
flour, ...

The townswoman's grain was either grown in a family
plot outside the  
walls or
purchased in the municipal market.  Once it was
ground, she made the  
bread at home with the flour and the massa she kept
for leavening.   
Usually she
took her loaves to be baked at a municipal oven.  ..."

I thought masa was corn meal or corn flour (from
maize) used in  
tamales and for thickening chili. Obviously in this
case it can't be  
maize. It's not flour (wheat) since that is also
mentioned. So what  
is it?  And the comment about "kept for leavening"
confuses me also,  
unless this is something like ale barm.

I assume it could be sourdough. My Latin dictionary
gives 'dough, lump, mass' for 'massa'. That would also
explain why a maize-based dough could be called that.
Sourdough bread was the staple of the Mediterranean
for a long time, so it makes sense in this context. 


       __________________________________ Ihr erstes Fernweh? Wo gibt es den schönsten Strand? www.yahoo.de/clever

More information about the Sca-cooks mailing list