[Sca-cooks] medieval capirotada

Sharon Palmer ranvaig at columbus.rr.com
Thu Mar 10 22:35:39 PST 2011

I found this article about capirotata recipes from Scully

The Opera of Bartolomeo Scappi by Terrance Scully

73. To make pottage from the lean meat of a wether's leg with almond 
milk.  Take the leg and half cook it on a spit (which is done so it 
will not loose it's juice).  Take it down and, while it is hot, cut 
away all the meat from the bone, being careful not to take any skin; 
catch the juice that comes out as the meat is cut.  Grind that lean 
meat in a mortar; for every six pounds of the meat grind with it one 
pound of shelled Milanese almonds, moistening all that with a eat 
broth that is not to salty.  Put it all through a strainer, adding in 
a beaker of verjuice along  with the juice came out in the cutting, 
pound of sugar, an ounce of cinnmon and half an ounce of pepper.  Put 
everything into a tinned casserole pot and cook it over a low fire, 
stirring constantly.  When it is done and has thickened a little, 
serve it hot on platters with sugar and cinnamon over it.  If you 
want capon meat with the mixture or boneless rumps of doves roasted 
on a spit, put that meat or those rumps in when the mixture is half 
cooked, then boil everything until it thickens, and serve it in the 
above manner.  You can also grind six ounces of cheese and two ounces 
of parboiled garlic with the meat.  Many people call that composition 
You can do the same with the lean meat of a young wild boar's leg.

Footnote 73  This is a preparation whose provenance appears to be 
Hispanic.  In Cejador y Franca _Vocabulario medieval castellana_ is 
unhelpfully defined as olla podrida "stew" an instance of that word's 
use dating back to 1276.  In his _Banchetti_ (1549) Messisbugo 
interestingly offers a recipe for suppa di capirotta francese - 
French capirotta sops (ed. Faccioli, Arte della cucina,  1, 297 - 
which is similar to Scappi's chees version of this pottaggio but 
without the garlic that Scappi suggests, see Recipe 227 below.

Something of the mystery of this compositions nature remains in 
Scappi's other recipes that make use of this name: Recipes II, 134 
(where it is spelled capirorotta and functions as a garnish), 157 
(where a 'bastard' form of it is made), 158 ('common capirotata'), 
227 ('capirotata sops'), and III, 226.  See also Barbara Santich, 
'Capirattata and capiritada,' Petits Propos Culinaires, 12 (1982) 

134 capirorotta garnish
157 bastard
158 common capirotata
227 To prepare capirotata sops with fat meat broth

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