[Sca-cooks] serving unusual foods

Bill Fisher liamfisher at gmail.com
Mon May 11 09:02:09 PDT 2009

When I did feasts, I did my best to present the food in a ready state to try
to minimize the waste.
I had already seen people stare blankly at uncut pies, uncarved hunks of
meat, etc at other feasts
I had worked on, so I tend to try to make my presentations as "user
friendly" as possible, when I can.

But, all that being said, you have to work with what you have on hand.   If
you don't have the serving vessels
to do a pre-prepped delivery, then maybe you can set up some servers with
roaming or regional carving stations.

Even do the dreaded buffet style feast...

I've already wheeled a vat of soup around a feast hall on a kitchen cart and
served people that way.  (it was a
lot of fun too, well, only if the cart has good wheels...wasn't my feast, I
was just helping)


On Mon, May 11, 2009 at 7:59 AM, Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius <
adamantius1 at verizon.net> wrote:

> I'm not sure if there's a guaranteed solution, but I've been rather
> sensitive to this problem for many years; it's one of the reasons, along
> with the frequently inherent food waste that sometimes comes with improper
> carving and service, I'll occasionally go for the Less Period Option, all
> other things being equal: which is more grating for the period ambience; the
> [for example] square block of ham or the bone-in ham nobody knows how to
> carve? I'd posit the latter. Not that there's a whole lot of baked ham
> presentations in the SCA (or are there? there probably shouldn't be...)
> But in general, I try to teach a very basic carving class when I can, using
> both modern culinary-standard techniques and any of several period sources
> on carving and service. The hope is that eventually there'll be fewer feast
> tables with nobody present at them who knows how to deal with a whole fish,
> say, or get eight small servings out of a whole roast duck. If you're one of
> those people who can deal with it, it's always nice to take at look at the
> next table to see how they're doing, and offer assistance if needed, or even
> the loan of a better knife. And yes, carrying a decent knife for carving is
> a good thing, too.
> As head cooks, taking a minute to discuss course details with servers can
> be helpful in preventing the kind of problems Stefan mentions. And then, of
> course,  presenting food in as close to a plate-ready state, in portions
> with sauces and garnishes as much in place as is practicable, is also
> helpful.
> Adamantius
> "Most men worry about their own bellies, and other people's souls, when we
> all ought to worry about our own souls, and other people's bellies."
>                        -- Rabbi Israel Salanter
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