[Spit-project] Long Member Introduction & Questions

Kathleen Madsen kathleenmadsen at gmail.com
Tue May 29 13:24:19 PDT 2007

Hi, Urtatim!

Timothy and I will be attending that same week, we should be driving up on
Friday, August 3rd.  If you'd like I could bring up any fresh herbs you may
need.  I'll be shopping Thursday and Friday as it is and tossing additional
items in the basket would be no difficulty.  I can't get you any kid this
year as I don't have my meat contacts established yet.  Have you thought of
a suckling pig?  That should be relatively easy to find.

We aren't camping with the West but should be visiting there with some
regularity, let us know if you need any prep or cooking help.


On 5/29/07, Lilinah <lilinah at earthlink.net> wrote:
> Hi, all:
> I joined the list a while ago, but had a problem with my subscription
> and never received any messages. Our gallant and gracious host,
> Gunthar has kindly remedied that. Today i downloaded the archives,
> and will be reading through them in the next day or so. In the mean
> time...
> Gunthar asked me to introduce myself, so...
> I am probably known to most if not all other listees. I am al-Sayyida
> Urtatim al-Qurtubiyya bint 'abd al-Karim al-hakam al-Fassi. I live in
> The Kingdom of the West, near the inimitable San Francisco Bay
> (Exploding Gasoline Tanker Trucks! Wayward Humpback Whales!).
> This summer, after 8 years in the SCA, i will be going to Pennsic for
> my very first time (just for the second week). I'm sooooo excited!!!
> Additionally while i'm there, the Queen of the West has asked me to
> cook a meal for Her and the King and Their guests.
> Friends of mine who may not be on this list - the lovely Vittoria and
> the dashing Vyncent - will be cooking a 1 or 2 meal-a-day food plan
> in the West camp. They have a period set up, with a spit over a
> trough for a wood/charcoal fire. (i gather there's more to the set
> up, but i haven't seen it yet). They've kindly given me permission to
> use it, and depending on their schedule, may be able to assist me.
> However, i don't have the opportunity to cook over wood or charcoal
> when not at events because I live in an upstairs flat. And i don't
> own a "standard" West Kingdom elevated fire pit, because, while i
> often camp with others, i arrive at most events by myself (my consort
> works Saturdays, so only gets off for a few events), and i am
> developing arthritis, so i can't really manage my own heavy
> wood/charcoal fire set up.
> Since i have so little experience cooking over a wood or charcoal
> fire, i'm hoping this list can help me learn a few things.
> (ooo, ooo, i just discovered an hibachi i never used lurking in a
> back room - i've got 2 months to start practicing with cooking over
> charcoal...)
> Queen Kaaren is doing "Persian" for Her reign, so i will be cooking
> period recipes mostly of Persian origin. I'm in the meal planning
> process. Right now i'm leaning toward :
> - kababs of spiced ground lamb (many recipes in period sources)
> - a "stew" of chicken with spices, nuts, and peaches (from a 9th C.
> recipe)
> - a Central Asian dish, manti, that involves pasta filled with greens
> in a yogurt sauce (from a 15th C. Ottoman recipe).
> Given there there is a spit, and that V&V roasted a kid at a West
> Kingdom event last year, with the assistance of me and several others
> (and in 112 degree F. weather, whew!), maybe i should try roasting a
> whole lamb or kid, although it may be too late in the year for a
> young animal. If so, what else is good to roast on a spit? (not pork,
> of course)
> I'm still looking for a vegetable dish or two (i'm not asking for
> help, just explaining where i am in my process). I intend to make
> saffron rice. I'm steering away from lentils, much as i love them,
> since they can sit a bit heavy in a hot humid summer. And i'm trying
> to figure out if i can bring modern Persian flat bread, sangak, with
> me from the West coast, since i've no experience cooking bread. (this
> is a question: could this work? I don't know when the Royal meal
> would be..)
> For the end of the meal, I figure fresh fruit would be a good dessert
> on a hot humid summer evening. I have read that fresh fruit was eaten
> in SCA-period Persia, but i wonder if there was a particular protocol
> around it, so i need to study up on fresh fruit in SCA-period Persia.
> I am toying with the idea of bringing some ice cream with me, 'cuz
> around here i can get things like: curry coconut ice cream,
> saffron-rosewater ice cream, orange flower ice cream with pistachios,
> pomegranate sorbet, etc.
> I don't really know about the availability in the nearby town of
> things like: fresh cilantro, fresh mint, flat-leaf parsley, fresh
> dill (used in Persian cuisine), fresh or frozen fava beans, Chinese
> won ton or spring roll wrappers (for the manti), etc. Anyone have any
> idea?
> Things i need help with regarding cooking over a wood/charcoal fire
> (bearing in mind that the "bed" for the fire is relatively long and
> narrow) are:
> - how long ahead of time to start the fire before i can bring to a
> boil a pot of water on it?
> - how to judge when the fire is ready (down enough) to cook skewered
> meat? (yes, i don't do standard American barbecues)
> - does one move the coals around to create a hot spot and a medium
> spot and a warm spot to cook different dishes?
> - should i be hanging pots over the fire or is setting them on a
> grill as good or better?
> Thanks for any ideas, help, hints, etc.
> --
> Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)
> the persona formerly known as Anahita
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