[Sca-cooks] My new Crusade

Terry Decker t.d.decker at att.net
Wed Apr 4 21:01:03 PDT 2012

> Here are my questions:
> 1.What are the oldest laws regarding rotten food being served. I started 
> with the Kosher laws. Are there more? Any written down and documented?

There are existing town market regulations from the Middle Ages that require 
meat to be fresh and describe how it is to be maintained until sale.  I've 
referenced some of them on this list, but the bookmarks are not instantly 
available.  Rotten meat could be sold in some markets as rotten meat (not 
for consumption) from a table before the town stocks.

> 2. Any etiquette,cookbooks, or medical books that clearly state "Do not 
> use rotten food."

IIRC, there are some references that meat should be fresh and wholesome.  I 
would need to dig to find them.

> 3. Curing/ Preservation methods especially for meat. There is a myth that 
> Medieval English hung out meat to rot before serving. I believe they 
> misunderstood this as part of a curing/aging technique.

A number of European nations hung wild game for a period to strengthen the 
gamey flavor.  Carcasses can be hung without resorting to the dry aging 
process at a temperature of below 50 degrees F and for a period of 2 to 10 
days.  Of course there is always the Icelandic buried fermented skate, not 
exactly appealing, and the fermenting makes one think the skate is rotting, 
but the bacteria that cause decomposition don't normally survive in an 
active fermentation.

> My goals is to provide samples of meals from Biblical Times through the 
> Renaissance, including Islamic and Asian cuisine.
> I invite all input and suggestions.
> I am taking this very personally, because this "feast" will be directed at 
> future and present teachers.
> Bless Bless
> Aelina Vester-lunder

Be advised that there are recipes for "freshening" "tainted" meat.  They are 
last resort recipes and the meat is slightly off rather than rotten.  Bogdan 
de Braslov and I discussed one of them off list many years ago and came to 
the conclusion that particular recipe used nematodes to do surface cleaning 
of the buried meat.


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