[Sca-cooks] Boarshead was Decadence menu

Johnna Holloway johnnae at mac.com
Sat Dec 19 15:49:47 PST 2009

The feasts that I have been at that served a boar's head all used
the head of a pig and faked the tusks. The last one I saw served
was painted gold with spray paint. It had been boiled and was never  
intended to be eaten.

 From the Subtletie list files come these messages:

Susan Fox-Davis wrote:

 > My oft-repeated story about King Guy and the Boar's Head is webbed  
 > http://www.florilegium.org/files/FOOD-MEATS/pig-heads-msg.html

There is a description of an illusion feast that Cindy Renfrow did
several years ago. Check the Florilegium for Feast on illusion foods

Many years ago I prepared a medieval feast dedicated entirely to
illusion foods gleaned from period manuscript cookbooks. Nothing was
what it seemed to be; even the salt-shakers were made of real acorns.
The butter was hidden inside the lemons; emptied chicken skins were
filled with meatloaf and re-shaped to look like chicken, and so forth.
The menu also featured a non-edible boar made of papiér mache, gilded,
and garnished with radish roses. The "boar" was hollow and contained a
haslet of fruits (strung fruits and nuts, dipped in batter and roasted
to resemble entrails). The servers entered in procession, carrying the
"boar" and singing the Boar's Head Canticle. "The Boar's Head, you
understand, is the finest dish in all the land!" There was great
fanfare and the "boar" was cut open with a real sword. Servers grabbed
fistfuls of "entrails" and ran around the room with them before
serving them to the guests. Such fun!


To make a re-dressed boar's head - from And Thus You Have a Lordly Dish:
Fancy and Showpiece Cookery in an Augsburg Patrician Kitchen  Medieval  
and Drink, Acta, Vol. XXI 1995
Marianne Hansen

Take a head, large or small. Boil it in water and wine, and when it is
boiled make sure that the bones all stay together next to one another.  
remove all the meat from the bones of the head. Strip the skin  
the white part from the meat and chop the other meat from the boar's  
very small. Put it in a pan. Spice it well with pepper, ginger, and a  
cloves, nutmeg, saffron, and let it get very hot over the fire in the  
in which the head was boiled. Next take the boiled head and lay it in a
white cloth and lay the skin under it on the cloth. Then spread the  
meat all around on the head and cover it with the flayed skin. And if  
have too little meat from one head, then take it from two and cover  
the head
entirely as if it were whole. Next, pull the snout and the ears out  
the cloth. Also, pull the teeth together again with the cloth, so the  
is held together while it is still warm, and let it lie overnight. In  
morning cut the cloth from around the head. In that way it will stay  
Then serve it with a cold farce made with apples, almonds, raisins.  
Thus you
have a lordly dish.

A Gammon of Bacon Pie -The English Housewife, Gervase Markham 1615
 >From _Eating Shakespeare_ Betty and Sonia Zyvatkauskas

Take a Gammon of Bacon and only wash it cleane, and then boil it on a  
gentle fire till it be boyled as tender as is possible, ever and anon
fleeting it clean, that by all means it may boil white; then take off  
swerd, and ferce it very well with all manner of sweets and pleasant  
herbs; then strow store of pepper over it, and prick it thick with  
then lay it into a coffin made of the same proportion, and lay good  
store of
butter round about it, and upon it, and strew pepper upon the butter,  
as it melts, the pepper may fall upon the Bacon: then cover it, and  
make the
proportion of a pig's head in paste upon it, and then bake it as you  
red deer, or other things of like nature, only the paste would be of  
(my interpretation of this is that the meat is covered in pastry to  
seal in
the juices during cooking, not to be eaten, and the pastry if  
fashioned to
look like a boar's head to identify the contents as being pork - 
however, it
is also possible that this is merely a "coffin" with a decorated lid,  
than a 3 dimensional boar's head, inwhich case it wouldn't really  
qualify as
a subtlety)

Cakewise---  Just last year we had this post--

 > I'm doing a non-pork Boar's Head for Harvest Day (Midrealm). Master
 > Edouard asked if I could do it when he found out the HRH Lutr is
 > allergic to pork. : )
 > My plan currently is for it to be made primarily of period
 > gingerbread, with marzipan teeth, tongue and eyes. It will also have
 > a marzipan apple holding its mouth open. I'm also going to try doing
 > a gilded sugarpaste crown (because, you know, he's King of the  
 > Wulfwen : )

Also Cakewise there's an article on creating a fruitcake one

The Cincinnati Post (Cincinnati, OH)
Article date:
December 28, 1996
Rosencrans, Joyce
One has to pay to view it unless you have access to an academic  
newspaper database.

This article suggests meatloaf--

There are a number of other articles.

The major drawback to creating this is Christmas is less than a week  
off at this point.


On Dec 19, 2009, at 3:43 PM, Liz Wilson wrote:
> However, how does one procure the wild
> boar?  (Not that I have really looked for a source
> but it sounds intriguing).  Also, how are you preparing it?
> And is there anything in the Florilegium on how to do it?
> I am interested in making a wild boar centerpiece for
> Christmas but I haven't decided whether to do a real one,
> a fake one, or a cake one.  snipped
> Christianna inghean Feargus (from Steppes in Ansteorra)

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