Entradas populares

Monday, August 27, 2012

CARNE EN ESCABECHE WITH 13TH C RECIPE FOR SIKBĀJ, PICKLED STEW

Preparing Lamb for Pickling
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Per. Ar. sikbāj (vinegar stew), zirbâ, Eng meat in escabeche, pickled meat. Pickling food dates back to Apicius. It is a sweet and sour dish, appearing several times in various forms but always with vinegar. It was consumed like chicken broth for its nutritional value as it was believed to regulate the humors. The Arabs made this with lamb in most cases. In Knights' Hunchback cycle, “The Tale of the Tailor,” it is mentioned as an imaginary dish at the Barmecide feast. When the King of Persia asked his chefs to make the most exquisite dish, they all produced sikbāj. In the 10 C Kitāb Al-Tabīkh, it is a soup with fatty meat and one of the 30 sikbājs offered to the King of Persia. It was taken to Andalusia during the 8th C. The Anon Al-Andalus provides recipes for a meat and vinegar dish, chicken and vinegar stew and a veal and vinegar soup. During Arab domination in Cordova, sikbāj, was frequently served at banquets. Escabeyg appears in Sent Soví for fish. Corminas believes that the Catalans introduced this to the rest of Europe. Nola gives a recipe for sweet and sour rabbit, another for eggplant and another for pandora or dentex. See escabeche. [Anón/Grewe. 1982:CCIII :207:CCIIII:207; Anón/Huici.1966:43-44:36-37; Arjona. 1983:29; ES:Anon/Perry. Sep 5 02:ftn 10 and 11; ES: Nola/Carroll-Mann. Guisados 2-art. Jun 6, 01:ftn 96; Nola. 1989: xli-2 xlix-3: lxv-3; and Perry. “Mistakes.” 2001:40: and Perry. “Thousand.” 2001:490]

A NOTE ABOUT CURED AND FERMENTED DISHES RECIPE FOR VINEGAR STEW RECIPE FOR VINEGAR STEW ADAPTED FROM HUICI’S TRANSLATION OF ANÓN AL-ANDALUZ #43 NOTICIA DE LOS CUAJADOS Y DE LOS FERMENTADOS RECETA DE LA ZÎRBÂŶA[1], pp 36-37

A Dish that Regulates the Humors
Photo by: Lord-Williams

This dish regulates the humors; its nutritious power is praised, it is good for the stomach and the liver; it possesses the advantages of a stew – sikbâŷa[2] – of meat in vinegar and of – salika[3] –sour cream. Sheikhs of Bagdad heard of the praise for this dish through a friend of Hanin ibn Ishak who explained: “One day I was accompaning Hanin, when he saw a man and commented: “Oh you came to me and desribed the case of a sick person in your house; then I did not see you again; what was the cause of your delay, for I have not ceased to be worried about you?” The man answered: “When I came to my lord, I described my mother’s illness; you advised me to give her zîrbâŷa to eat; I did that and she was cured and I do not want to bother you again; God shall reward you.” Hanin replied: “That dish is neutral[4] There are two kinds of sikbâŷa,” and I told you about one of them, which is the ‘camoline[5]’ of the kitchen, as it never goes sour.


THE RECIPE ADAPTED FROM LA RECETA #44 p 37

May its Nutritious Power be Praised
Photo by: Lord-Williams
1  lbs lamb, diced in 1” cubes
¼ c oil
salt to taste
¼ tsp black pepper
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp saffron
1 c vinegar
1 c parsley pureed
1 garlic clove pureed
1 onion pureed
½ c  almonds
½ c  sugar
½ c rosewater

Preparation

Heat oil in a pot. Seal and brown the meat in it. While it is browning, remove the water from the meat sweating and save. Add freshly ground salt to taste, pepper, coriander, cinnamon. After mashing the saffron, dissolve it in some of the liquid from the meat sweating. Return that with the saffron to the pot.  Add the vinegar and continue cooking.

The 'Camoline' of the Kitchen
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Purée the onion with the parsley and garlic. Add this to the pot. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for ½ hr or until the meat is done.

Peel the almonds and chop them.  Mixing them with the sugar, add rosewater. Pour this in the pot without straining and bring it to a boil.

Turn off the heat then leave it on the burner about 10-15 minutes until the fat rises. This dish is recomended for temperamental eaters.

Serve hot or cold as an appetizer with pita bread.
This dish can be made with hens, pigeons or doves.



[1] Huici explains that in the Baghdad Cookery Book there is a recipe on p. 13 of the text and p. 36 of the translation. Rodinson’s Recbercbes arabes relatifs a la cuisine, p 134 and 137, cites two more recipes in the unedited MS Waṣla ila al-ḅabīb. 
[2] As-sikhāŷa, Huici continues, is escabeche in Spanish. The Baghdad Coolery Book reads sikbāŷ and has two recipes for this, pp 9 and 56. Al-Šaqūrī states that in Al-Andalus it was called mujalal, vinaigrette.
[3]  According to Huici, in Siria it simply means boiled vegetables.
[4] Perry explains that it is neutral because it does not stimulate any of the humors.
[5] Sikanŷabīn. Perry states that this is the name of a sweet-sour drink.

No comments:

Post a Comment