[Sca-cooks] Fruit and Meat

Johnna Holloway johnnae at mac.com
Wed Aug 13 17:49:21 PDT 2008

The traditional  recipe in my family contains real meat in the
mincemeat. One puts up the mincemeat, lets it age and then
one makes the traditional dark fruitcakes in part with the homemade
One then lets the cakes age for a suitable period of time, while soaking
every once in awhile in brandy or whisky.

So that answers the question about there being a dessert dish that
contains meat!

As for Mince meat recipes and mentions- part of the problem lies on the
spelling of the
terms. Mince or minst or minse, etc.

After some searching here are some mentions in chronological order from OED

*1573* C. HOLLYBAND /French Schoole-maister/ 94 O Lorde, he hath supped 
up all the brothe of this mince pie.
*1578* Lyte /Dodoens/ i. ciii. 146 Chopte or minsed meate.
*1585* T. Washington tr. /Nicholay's Voy/ iii. xi. 90 b, Pies of minced
meate, and rice.
*1604* T. DEKKER /News from Graves-end/ Ep. Ded. sig B3, Ten thousand in 
London swore to feast their neighbors with nothing but plum-porredge, 
and mince-pyes all
*1626* Bacon /Sylva/ /enticons/sect.gif46 With a good strong
Chopping-knife, mince the two Capons..as small as ordinary Minced Meat.
*1630* /Tincker of Turvey/ 23 If his wife puts but two fingers daintily
into a dish of mince-meat, he sweares she makes hornes at him.
*1662* S. PEPYS  /Diary/ 6 Jan. (1970) III. 4 We have, besides a good 
chine of beef and other good cheer, eighteen mince-pies in a dish, the 
number of the years that he hath been married.
*1673* T. SHADWELL  /Epsom-Wells/ IV, in /Wks./ (1720) II. 247 For 
currants to make mince-pyes with.

[OED doesn't list it but there's also this mention too.

Frilingotti,a kinde of daintie chewet or mincedpie.

John Florio A vvorlde of wordes, 1598]

Recipe wise

To bake a Connie, Veale, or Mutton.
TAke a Conny and perboile it almoste enough, then mince the flesh of it 
verie fine, and take with it three yolkes of hard egges, and mince with 
it, then lay another Conny in your Pie being perboiled, and your minced 
meat with it, being seasoned with Cloues, Mace, Ginger, Saffron Pepper & 
Salt, with two dishes of swéete butter mixed with it, lay vpon your 
Con|nie Barberies Gooseberies, or grapes, or the smal raisons, and so 
bake it.

Thomas Dawson The second part of the good hus-wiues iewell. 1597


A minc't pie.
Take a Legge of Mutton, and cut the best of the flesh from the bone, and 
parboyle it well: then put to it three pound of the best Mutton suet, 
and shred it very small: then spread it abroad, and season it with 
Pepper and Salt, Cloues and Mace: then put in good store of Currants, 
great Raisins and Prunes cleane washt and pickt, a few Dates slic't, and 
some Orenge pills slic't: then being all well mixt together, put it into 
a coffin, or into diuers coffins, and so bake them: and when they are 
serued vp open the liddes, and strow store of Sugar on the top of the 
meate, and vpon the lid. And in this sort you may also bake Beefe or 
Veale; onely the Beefe would not bee parboyld, and the Veale will aske a 
double quantity of Suet.

Markham, Gervase. The English house-vvife. 1631

There's a long association of the pies with Christmas. In his 
“Ceremonies for Christmasse” the poet Robert Herrick wrote:

Drink now the strong Beere,
Cut the white loafe here,
The while the meat is a shredding;
For the rare Mince-Pie
And the Plums stand by
To fill the Paste that's a kneading.

This was published in 1648 in his collection titled Hesperides.

Last but not least Ivan Day has a selection of recipes for mince pies on 
website under the heading Bake Metes and Mince Pies.
See http://www.historicfood.com/Pie%20recipe2.htm

hope this helps


> On Aug 13, 2008, at 6:52 PM, Stefan li Rous wrote:
>> Some of this may be true. Can anyone give me a "dessert" dish that 
>> *does* contain meat?
>> He answered-- The only one I could think of is mincemeat pie, but I also believe 
>> mincemeat pie doesn't actually contain any meat.
> Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius wrote:
> It used to; there are several extant 17th (and, I think, 16th) century 
> recipes calling for beef or veal, plus suet. The filling is 
> essentially a sausage mixture with lots of fruit mixed in.
> Many modern recipes still call for the suet, though.
> There's also suet in quite a few English steamed, boiled and baked 
> puddings that are sweet and eaten as desserts.
> Adamantius 

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