[Sca-cooks] Jam (was Medieval Questionnaire)

Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius adamantius1 at verizon.net
Mon Oct 29 19:49:53 PDT 2007

On Oct 29, 2007, at 10:21 PM, Daniel Myers wrote:

> It's hard to tell if this is "preserves" like or more "cotignac"  
> like...
> Source [A Book of Cookrye, 1591]: To make Conserve of Orenges. Take
> Orenges and pare them very thin the red of the out sides away and
> quarter them in four, and take away the white of the inside, then
> seeth them in faire water softlye for breaking, ofte change them in
> warm water til they be lost: as the yelownes dooth seeth away, so
> weareth away the bitternes, then take them out of the water and lay
> them in a fair vessell that the water may run away from them, then
> beate them small with a spoone, and put to every pound of Orenges one
> pound of sugar, and half a pound of Rosewater, and boile them
> togither and box them.
> The earliest marmalade recipe I've got is late 17th century...
> Source [The English Housewife, G. Markham]: Marmalade of Quinces,
> red. To make red Marmalade of Quinces, take a pound of Quinces and
> cut them in half, and take out the cores, and pare them; then take a
> pound of Sugar, and a quart of fair water, and put them all into a
> pan, and let them boyl with a soft fire, and sometimes turn and keep
> them covered with a pewter dish, so that the steam or air may come a
> little out: the longer they are in boyling, the better colour they
> will have: and when they be soft take a Knife, and cut them cross
> upon the top, it will make the syrup go through that they may be all
> of the like colour: then set a little of your syrup to cool, and when
> it beginneth to be thick, then break your Quinces with a slice or
> spoon, so small as you can in the pan, and then strew a little fine
> Sugar in your boxes bottom, and so put it up.
> As others have said, without the quantities and cooking times, some
> of the compotes and such could easily be "jam-like".

I agree, it's hard to tell. But the reference to the extra boiling for  
extra color (possibly a throwback to the quince paste being white --  
which is really sort of amber -- and red, which is a russet so deep it  
almost looks black), and the lining of boxes with sugar seems to me to  
make a solid paste that continues to dry and solidify in the box more  


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