[Sca-cooks] Drummond on Butter

Ian Kusz sprucebranch at gmail.com
Thu Jun 26 01:16:18 PDT 2008

> \
> Doc wrote:
>> So I finally get home and open the copy of Drummond, and here's what  he
>> has to say on the topic (presented in its entirety):snipped
>>   As with a lot of "The Englishman and His Food", Drummond here has  mixed
>> some useful information with conjecture and unsubstantiated  claims.
>> Assertions made without substantiation:
>> 1.  Butter was used medicinally for growing pains
>> 2.  Most butter sold was rancid
>> 3.  Butter left out for 12-14 days would have "a good deal of rancidity"
>>    (I don't say this isn't true, but I intend to find out)
>> 4.  Rancid butter has a laxative effect
>>    (I don't say this isn't true, and I'm not sure I want to find out)
>> 5.  "May Butter" was used in the spring to relieve pain in the joints
>> 6.  Rickets was a problem in the middle ages
>> 7.  "May Butter" was used in the middle ages for its antirachitic
>>  properties
>> 8.  "May Butter" has antirachitic properties
>> I think the assertion that bothers me the most is #2, since it is so
>>  reminiscent of the Moldy-Meat-Myth.  They've got butter being sold,  but
>> they hold onto it until it's rancid before selling it?  The  butter's
>> rancid, but nevertheless they use a lot of it?  Feh!
>> - Doc
>> \
One thing about all this conjecture that has bothered me is what you've just
mentioned.  Whether the butter goes rancid will depend, in part, upon the
temperatures of the local area.  Even just England has enough variation in
latitude that this is significant.

Is it cold enough at night to keep the butter refrigerated?  Is it hot
enough during the day to cook off any bacteria?  Latitude and altitude will
mean different temps.  And you'd get different effects during that
mini-ice-age stuff that happened in the 1600s...diff temps.

also, you have to tell me, are they covering the butter (with cloth or
glass, or whatever) when they leave it out in the sun?  I can't tell...I
suspect you're going to say no....but covering the butter might give a
greenhouse effect.

done some experiments with butter under glass, even in weak sun....cooked up
proper.  Think hot car in sunlight.

>> --
>> Ian of Oertha

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