[Sca-cooks] Animals stuffed with other animals etc. was: Hello, Intorducing myself

Huette von Ahrens ahrenshav at yahoo.com
Wed Dec 9 11:54:35 PST 2009

The closest thing to what Bakus is asking for is from the Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook of the 13th Century.  Here are the three recipes that come close [but not exactly] what Bakus has asked:

Stuffed and Roast Mutton; Called "The Complete" [or "The Inclusive"]
Take a plump skinned ram; make a narrow opening in the belly between the thighs and take out what is inside it and clean. Then take as many plump chickens, pigeons, doves and small birds as you can; take out their entrails and clean them; split the breasts and cook them, each part by itself; then fry them with plenty of oil and set them aside. Then take what remains of their broth and add grated wheat breadcrumbs and break over them sufficient of eggs, pepper, ginger, split and pounded almonds and plenty of oil; beat all this and stuff inside the fried birds and put them inside the ram, one after another, and pour upon it the rest of the stuffing of cooked meatballs, fried mirkâs and whole egg yolks. When it is stuffed, sew up the cut place and sprinkle the ram inside and out with a sauce made of murri naqî', oil and thyme, and put it, as it is, in a heated tannur [clay oven] and leave it a while; then take it out and sprinkle again with the sauce,
 return to the oven and leave it until it is completely done and browned. The take it out and present it.

Roast Lamb
Take a skinned lamb, clean the inside, as in the preceding; gather the innards, after cleaning, cover [literally, "bend"] them with grease and wrap up in fine gut; then stuff the inside of the lamb with small birds and starlings, fried and stuffed as was explained before; sew it up, put in a tajine large enough to hold it and pour on it the sauce, according to the preceding, with cilantro juice and oil; put it in the oven and leave it until it is done, take it out and present it.

Roast Calf, which was made for the Sayyid Abu al-'Ala in Ceuta
Take a young, plump lamb, skinned and cleaned. Make a narrow opening between the thighs and carefully take out everything inside of it of its entrails. Then put in the interior a roasted goose and into its belly a roasted hen and in the belly of the hen a roasted pigeon and in the belly of the pigeon a roasted starling and in the belly of this a small bird, roasted or fried, all this roasted and greased with the sauce described for roasting. Sew up this opening and place the ram in a hot tannur and leave it until it is done and browned. Paint it with that sauce and then place it in the body cavity of a calf which has been prepared clean; sew it up and place it in the hot tannur and leave it until it is done and browned; then take it out and present it.

I think key to these recipes is the fact that all the animals stuffed into other animals have been roasted or fried prior to the stuffing, which will eliminate all the possibilities of serving raw meats or meats that are undercooked and therefore a health hazard.  

In my humble opinion, if Bakus placed raw meats within raw meats within raw meats, even if he should cook them for 36 hours, it is my feeling that either he will still have under cooked meats inside the dish or he will have outside meats that, depending on his method of cooking, will either be so overcooked as to be tough as shoe leather or so overcooked that the meat will literally fall off the bone and be unpresentable in the manner that he wants to present it.  


--- On Wed, 12/9/09, edoard at medievalcookery.com <edoard at medievalcookery.com> wrote:

> From: edoard at medievalcookery.com <edoard at medievalcookery.com>
> Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Hello, Intorducing myself
> To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>
> Date: Wednesday, December 9, 2009, 11:18 AM
> > -------- Original Message --------
> > From: David Herzog <norcaldutchovendave at yahoo.com>
> [...]
> > I hav already been asked to provide the feast at a
> large gathering next
> > may and they want me to bring my competition BBQ to
> recreate a period
> > version of turducken but to continue stuffing up to a
> hog. What I have
> > so far is the hog stuffed with a small lamb stuffed
> with the turkey,
> > duck and chicken. I have calculated cooking time will
> be 36 to 48 hours
> > at 275 modern degrees F. My first questions are: Is
> there record of the
> > recipe for this dish and what is it called.
> Hi Bakus,
> I haven't seen any medieval sources that have a recipe even
> remotely
> similar to what you're describing.  Turkey is of
> course problematic in
> that it's a new-world animal (perhaps swan or goose could
> be used as a
> substitute), but even putting that aside, none of the
> recipes I recall
> used a *whole* animal as a stuffing for another. 
> Chopped or ground meat
> was sometimes used.
> Given that my focus of research is England and France from
> about 1000 to
> 1500, there may be something from other regions or time
> periods.
> A tangential question, with such a long cooking time for
> stuffed meat,
> are there any special steps that must be taken to prevent
> food
> poisoning?
> - Doc
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