[Sca-cooks] crisping birds

Robin Carroll-Mann rcarrollmann at gmail.com
Mon May 4 13:35:35 PDT 2009

On Mon, May 4, 2009 at 3:54 PM, Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius
<adamantius1 at verizon.net> wrote:

> It's not clear what the intent is. As Brighid suggests, it could be singeing
> (to remove hairlike pinfeathers). On the other hand, it could also be to
> warm the outer surface and soften the skin to prepare it for larding.
> Are you quoting a specific recipe? What comes next?

I'll take the liberty of replying, since a quick check shows that it's
from my translation of de Nola.
Recipe #42


You shall take partridges and after they have been well-plucked, put
them between the embers; and when they have been there for the space
of a Paternoster (33), take them out and clean everything off them,
and roast them, and baste them sufficiently with your bacon fat; and
when they are roasted, cut them as if to make portions of them, and
then grate good cheese of Aragon that is fine; and take two whole
heads of garlic roasted between the embers and then peel them very
well and cleanly, and grind them in a mortar; and then put the cheese
in the mortar, and resume grinding it all together; and while you are
grinding them, cast a good spoonful of lard into the mortar, with some
egg yolks, and grind it all together; and when it is all well-ground,
blend it with good mutton broth that is half cooled, because if it
were very hot it would consume the cheese; and then make slices of
bread and toast them, and scrape off the burnt parts, and then scald
or soak these toasted slices of bread with good mutton broth in an
earthenware bowl or a deep plate; and then take them out and put them
on a large plate, all around, in this manner: a layer of bread slices,
and another of partridges, and in this manner fill up the plate with a
platform of bread slices and another of partridges; and when the plate
is full, cast the almodrote on top of it all and then take melted lard
and scatter it over the plate.

And the footnotes for this recipe:

(31) Almodrote is a garlic-cheese sauce.  In the Libre de Sent Sovi,
it is an accompaniment to roast pork, partridges, or chicken.

(32) Mentioned in Arte Cisoria as a dish that can be made with roasted
hens, partridges, or doves, usually layered between slices of bread.
The etymology of the name is a bit uncertain, but may derive from
capirote, "hood", because the sauce covers the dish just as a hood
covers a head.  See also recipe 164 for a version made with truffles.

(33) Pater noster, the opening words of the Lord's Prayer in Latin.
The partridges are to be placed on the coals for the short time that
it takes to recite this prayer.  Similar instructions appear in other
medieval and Renaissance cookbooks.  See also recipes 48 and 130.

The Spanish that I have translated as "baste them... bacon fat" is
"darles su lardo abastadamente".  I don't think I've seen Spanish
recipes that call for larding -- only barding and basting.

Brighid ni Chiarain

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