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The Very-Many-Questions-Not-Worth-Their-Own-Thread Thread さんじゅうなな

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Samson, Apr 17, 2019.

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  1. hobbsyoyo

    hobbsyoyo Warlord

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    Yes it was considered trash food among coastal communities for a long time. It's also one of the few species that have benefited from global warming though of course this benefit is transient. This is why it's shown up in lots of inexpensive dishes in the states - their populations are booming. As things get worse, their populations will crash like all others.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
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  2. Hrothbern

    Hrothbern Warlord

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    Don't forget to drink medieval
    Besides the beer and wine, the cider and mead.
    (I got for a birthday from my daughters, because of me playing so many RPG, the cow horns and some jugs with mead. You put the pointy end of the cow horn in sand when not drinking)

    Besides the fancy kings food etc, medieval food for big feasts was many pies (and starting from Lorraine, Lotharingen the quiche).

    And ofc deserts:
    Honey was the sweetener. You find that now back in typical Turkish Baklava.
    Sugar was the absolute luxury and used for everything special like marzipan, sugarcoated nuts, jelly like fruit bonbons (Turkish Delight), sugarbread, etc, etc. and became accessible in early modern period.
    Queen Elisabeth I was famous for her bad teeth from her sugar craving:
    https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/royal-food/0/steps/17059

    No reason to not use all kinds of spices: the trade routes from the East to Europe functioned well. Vikings (Constantinople trade) used for example cinnamon in their mead as special taste.

    Here a medieval pie vid:
     
  3. Birdjaguar

    Birdjaguar Entangled Retired Moderator Supporter

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    Remember to only allow knives as the implements for eating. The bigger the better.
     
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  4. haroon

    haroon Chieftain

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    in the context of the medieval theme
     
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  5. haroon

    haroon Chieftain

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    mmm that's interesting, practicality perhaps? table manner is more about gentleness and gesture but not at all about practicality. Maybe back-then they were more concern on cutting their meat with ease than appear to be polite and look less vulgar? I think smaller and duller knife perhaps was evolved from the nobility culture then went top down to the masses, but it is only my guess though.

    Eating with hand actually more practical than eating with utensil.
     
  6. tjs282

    tjs282 Un(a)bashed immigrant

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    Paging @Valka D'Ur...
     
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  7. Takhisis

    Takhisis is it fall yet

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    up yours!
    Remember to try and use recipes from after the Crusades, lest you have to resort to cooking everything in animal fat and/or by mere boiling.
    Get Judy Hindley's book on knights and castles, illustrated by Toni Goffe and John Jamieson.

    And wait for Valka to get here.
     
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  8. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    If you're looking for Medieval beer, you could see if there are any stateside stockists of William Bros. They do a line of beers which are kinda-sorta recreations of Medieval styles, using things like heather, seaweed and pine needles instead of modern hops.
     
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  9. Birdjaguar

    Birdjaguar Entangled Retired Moderator Supporter

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  10. Takhisis

    Takhisis is it fall yet

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    up yours!
    Is there much in the way of game meat up there in Minnesota, Ajidica? Becaise, according to the recipes I've been able to find, you'd better know how to hunt boars, squirrels, bears, pheasants, etc. as well as fish in a nearby stream.
    And
    seriously.
     
  11. Valka D'Ur

    Valka D'Ur Hosting Iron Pen in A&E Retired Moderator

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    Oops, hit 'submit' by mistake before actually saying anything!

    You rang, m'lord? *curtseys* :D

    (in SCA terms, you would have asked a herald to summon me: "Oyez, oyez, my Lords and Ladies, pray attend: Lady Valka D'Ur is summoned to "The Very Many Questions Not Worth Their Own Thread" Thread!")

    First, I have to admit that I don't actually know much about cooking. But I attended 12 years' worth of medieval feasts put on during numerous SCA events (organized a few of them, too), and the emphasis was on making it as period as possible, while keeping modern standards of health and safety and hygiene. So most of what I'm about to say is based on what I learned in the SCA, and I've found some websites that might be helpful to you.

    Lots of medieval-style recipes can be made with modern ingredients. If I were a bit more organized, I could find a couple of the menus we used in my local branch. One year I innocently asked, "So who's going to autocrat the next feast?" and the Seneschale said snarkily (we didn't get along), "Why don't YOU do it?". So I figured, why not - after all, the autocrat is merely the person who organizes everything; the actual work can be delegated to people who are experts at specific tasks. The autocrat does not necessarily have to know how to cook (though it helps, as I found out).

    Since the autocrat is responsible for coming up with the theme of the feast, I thought about the various feasts we'd had over the years - everything from a Viking murder mystery in which our host was poisoned and all the guests were considered suspects (this was my very first event and I had no idea what to expect) to Kublai Khan's court, and decided on a "Fruit festival in Spain" set at a time after Spanish explorers had come and gone from the New World (so we could serve things like bananas and have some chocolate as an ingredient). The feast ended up a good mix of meat dishes (for the fighters who disdained anything with fruits and vegetables), fruit/veg dishes, dishes combining them, sweet, savory, and according to the Order of the Ravening Horde (a household of expert cooks dedicated to the appreciation of food and critiquing feasts), it had the right ratio of meat to non-meat. The typical feast we see depicted on TV and in movies overemphasizes meat, whereas most people ate a mostly non-meat diet (there's a reason for people sometimes being desperate enough to poach the King's deer and ending up mutilated or executed for it).

    As the first video above mentions, a meal is divided into "removes". They're similar to our modern idea of "courses" but each remove can almost be a miniature meal in itself. The trick is to pace yourself, taking a bit of this and a bit of that from each remove, so you won't be full before the final remove (yep, always save room for dessert, as you'll get several over the course of the feast!). A typical SCA feast has at least 3 removes, usually 4, and some of the ones I attended had as many as 6 or 7. Those longer ones tended to be for fancier, more formal occasions such as the feasts accompanying major tournaments at which royalty was likely to be present. At some point - usually after the 2nd remove, an entertainment of some kind is presented (music, reading or recitation, or a dramatic monologue or skit of some sort).

    I can't give you much advice on beverages, as I don't drink and our local feasts were held in church basements so we weren't allowed to serve beer (wine was allowed). But it's always advisable to have a non-alcoholic option available.

    It's nice to have music in the background. We usually had to make do with taped music, although there was one year when someone from a faraway branch decided to travel across Canada and drop in on as many feasts as he could. I don't remember what instrument he played (woodwind of some sort), but it was wonderful to have live music during the feast and dancing afterward. Naturally, he was paid... in food. :D

    Some medieval recipes may sound a bit strange to modern sensibilities. We did an Aztec-themed feast one time (since we had an Aztec member, by the name of Thirteen Eagle Warshirt - don't ask me to spell or pronounce that in Nahuatl, though one of our members figured it out), and one of the main dishes was turkey with chocolate sauce. Keep in mind that the Aztecs didn't use sweet chocolate the way we do; it's a different taste experience, but quite good.

    The video has a good point about saffron. I think we used it only once, since it's insanely expensive. We also went light on the cheese in our local branch, since cheese is also expensive here (the medium to good quality stuff). We also went light on the garlic, but there was a practical reason for that - one of our members was (still is) deathly allergic to it, in the same way that some people are deathly allergic to peanuts.


    Now if you want to go with more of an RPG theme, I can wholeheartedly recommend the recipe section of the Dragonlance book Leaves From the Inn of the Last Home. It's got recipes for everything from soups, bread, Otik's Spiced Potatoes (a famous Krynnish dish), appetizers, main meat courses (beef, venison, chicken, sausage, various fish dishes), vegetables, stews, salads, fruits, cheeses, desserts (several cake and cookie recipes), various kinds of pastries, and beverages such as tea and Kender Celebration Punch (when our science fiction club did a Dragonlance feast for our Christmas party, we did the non-alcoholic version, but of course you can make it any way you prefer).

    (for those unfamiliar with Dragonlance, it was one of the main AD&D settings for the 2nd Edition games, and took RPG gaming into the realm of novels, as well as game modules and sourcebooks)

    Not only food; consider how we don't use linen much nowadays for our clothing. It was as common centuries ago as cotton is to us now. And I got into an argumentdiscussion on a YouTube page with some people over wool allergies, when we were watching videos of a woman demonstrating how to wear the various types of clothing century-by-century. Some of the SCA people here got exasperated with me because my costumes were all made of cotton or poly-cotton or other synthetics (much too modern!). I informed them that I can't afford silk and am so allergic to wool that I can't even touch it with a fingertip without getting a painful, burning rash - actually wearing it is totally out of the question. I would have been absolutely miserable back in those days unless I could afford a non-wool wardrobe.

    Forks for eating were regarded with suspicion; they were weird, pointy things that most people couldn't fathom using. Considering that they saw nothing wrong with using the same knife to scrape stuff, cut stuff, and eat stuff (not to mention occasionally killing and gutting stuff), I'm glad our SCA feasts included modern hygiene standards. Some people made a real effort at period nef kits (dishes, cutlery, candles, holders, tablecloths, etc.), but I went with a wooden trencher, ceramic goblet, and modern cutlery, thankyouverymuch. It was expected that everyone would have an "eating dagger" - or at least the men would. At my first event (the aforementioned Viking murder mystery), I was informed that if I wanted to cut my meat, I would be expected to politely request to use one belonging to one of the lords sitting beside me.

    BTW, depending on the time and place, spoons are acceptable. Not everyone had a handy hunk of bread to sop up the soup.

    @Ajidica, do you know if there's an SCA branch anywhere near you? If so, they'd be a fantastic source of information for you, and they'd be able to steer you to some excellent recipes, themes, and suggest extra touches to make this a very memorable party (ie. use tablecloths, eat by candlelight only - it's amazing how even just that can transport you from the modern era to 600+ years ago, hang some banners around on the walls - no need to get picky about historical accuracy, just have 2 or 3 for the atmosphere).

    Did you want people to make an attempt at period costumes? There are some really quick and easy 'cheats' to this so you wouldn't need to run out and buy much. Most medieval garb for men can be summed up as "an overgrown t-shirt and non-denim trousers and the rest depends on length, decoration, cut, and fabric." Add a leather belt and pouch (leather or fabric; since this is a gaming group, they should already have pouches unless they don't do the tabletop/polyhedral dice type of stuff), and that's a basic outfit. The shirt should be somewhere between the thighs and knees as far as length goes - no need to tuck anything in. If you want to wear jewelry, the stones should not have facets.

    Anyway, I did a brief bit of Googling, and this is some of what I found to get you started (remember that the SCA prides itself on research, so these are about as authentic as possible while using modern ingredients):

    Medieval Cookery (I haven't checked all the links, but those I did are current)

    50 new recipes in honor of the SCA's 50th anniversary (the SCA was founded on July 1, 1966, so it's been around nearly 53 years; there are links to the recipes that were created)

    Gode Cookery: Modern Recipes for Beginners The website is clear about these not being documented period recipes, but are "close enough" for people who want a medieval flavor to a dinner party without being overly concerned about authenticity.

    For some photos of what some of this stuff looks like


    Anyway, I hope some of this helps. There's so much information out there that I just grabbed the first page or so of Google hits. Of course there are other sources of information other than the SCA, but that's what I'm most familiar with and with the very strong emphasis on documentation and authenticity (within modern health and safety standards), it's going to be reasonably accurate. The rest of the experience - setting the stage, so to speak - is up to you. Just be conscious of safety and try to anticipate possible problems if you opt for candles or torches.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2019
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  12. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

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    @Valka D'Ur Thanks for all that, and for everyone else! Its a great place for me to start.
     
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  13. Valka D'Ur

    Valka D'Ur Hosting Iron Pen in A&E Retired Moderator

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    You're welcome! It was a profitable search for me, too, as I found some links to some filk and folk music that might help inspire my current story project (one of my main characters is a musician in his spare time).
     
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  14. Kyriakos

    Kyriakos Alien spiral maker

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    Can you solve this riddle?

    "
    It makes a sound as loathsome as the voice of Satan,
    and you are more exposed when it cannot move behind you.
    "
     
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  15. Snerk

    Snerk Smeghead

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    Is it actually Satan? :devil:
     
  16. rah

    rah Warlord Supporter

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    I was going to say my wife, but probably not a good idea.
     
  17. Hrothbern

    Hrothbern Warlord

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    The second line could indicate that it is your shadow.
    If exposed (by light) from all sides, you have no shadow.
    But that sound ?
    The sound of shadow ?
    no.
     
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  18. Ferocitus

    Ferocitus Warlord

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    A jejune Jesuit?
     
  19. Kyriakos

    Kyriakos Alien spiral maker

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    I actually do know the answer, i wanted to see if it worked as a riddle. So, do you give up? :o

    (the line about walking behind is -also- tied to a phrase about Satan, btw: Vade retro Satanas, ie "go behind me, Satan")
     
  20. Ferocitus

    Ferocitus Warlord

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    It reminded me of my school days. But I give up. :)

    We tend to use the olde Englishe version: Get thee behind me, Satan.
     
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