[Sca-cooks] cooking as art or service

Ginny Beatty ginbeatty at gmail.com
Mon Jun 27 13:03:59 PDT 2011

I had this discussion when I attended West Kingdom Crown 2 weeks ago.
According to people I spoke to out there, they consider it a Service,
thus Cooking Pelicans are more recognized in the West.

In the Midrealm, we have recognized cooking with arts awards (laurels,
Willows (AoA level), Evergreens (grant-level) because
research/presentation/teaching/competition of cooking is Art to us. I
teach a lot of classes on historical food practices.

Now, the logistics of doing large-scale food service like feasts,
sideboards, lunches, war commissaries, and other activities associated
with it (cleanup, dishwashing, serving, hall stewardship), that to me
is Service. The work involved in feast production has been noted with
our kingdom's service awards.

I also teach a 2 hour class on the logistics involved with pulling off
a feast. For activities associated with a feast, for me there is about
20% historical research involved and about 80% project management,
budget, and resource planning. Its much more than running down to the
grocery store to get a household lunch together for next weekend's
event. I have spreadsheets to prove it. :)

Now...I know many great cooks who are incredible researchers and
historians who can create a but once the number gets bigger than about
25, more planning skills are involved and so they generally rely on
others to help implement their vision on a bigger scale. I also know
others who would prefer to not research a whole lot and gain their
reknown by making tasty food.

Only recently we have recognized service related to food at the
Peerage level. Myself, Iasmin, and Helewyse were recognized for
cooking first. Our Pelicans came later.
While some of our service involved activities not food related, such
as royal service, scribal work, local/regional leadership (Ias and
Helewyse were landed baronesses), etc., we still could not abandon our
passion for cooking and training others to do likewise.

Gwyneth Banfhidhleir

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