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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

GALLO CRESTA WITH 15TH CENTURY RECIPE FOR HORSERADISH AND COCKSCOMB SAUCE

brillliant cockcombs
Photo from: rosipaw
gallo cresta, gallocresta, salvia verbena, L. Salvia verbenaca, OE clarry, Eng. cockscomb, wild clary, vervain, sage, Christ eyes. The Spanish name does not concur with the various plants to which the name "cockscomb” is given in English. In the summer, the stems of this plant bear red half inch buds in the shape of a cock’s comb that never fully opens. Because of this it is not thought to be as splendid as other members of the mint family. It is a hardy perennial growing up to two feet in height. It is cultivated and grows wild in Spain and from southern Europe to western Asia as it thrives in well-drained soil beside small streams or in the shade.

Eisenkrautblättriger Salbei - 
Salvia verbenaca - 
Blattoberseite, NGIDn1839530223
Photo from: 
naturgucker.de/enjoynature.net
The seed of the wild plant still is applied by country folk to cleanse the eyes and strengthen the sight. The buds are added to salads. The aromatic leaves are candied, fried and added to omelets. After grinding the leaves and steeping them in water, they are added to a fritter mixture of honey, white wine and sifted flour. After beating the mixture, the fritters are fried and served topped with rosemary and sugar. Nola calls for wild clary in a pungent sauce with horseradish. The English thought it good cooked with tansy and eggs. [Curye. 1985:179; Nola. 1989:l-5; Nola/Iranzo. 1982:169; Nola/Pérez. 1992:198; and Villena/Calero. 2002:23a]

HORSERADISH AND COCKSCOMB SAUCE ADAPTED FROM NOLA’S l-4 SALSA DE RABANO VEXISCO Y DE GALLOCRESTA
  
Ingredients

Horseradish and Cockscomb Sauce
Photo by: Lord-Williams
1 tbsp cockscomb leaves[1]
¼ c grated horseradish
1 slice bread
¼ c white vinegar
¼ tsp white pepper
¼ c honey
sea or river pebbles


Preparation

 Strip off the cockscomb leaves and wash them. Grind them in a mortar. Toast the bread, remove the crusts and soak it in vinegar. Grind it with the cockscomb leaves. Add pepper. Mix it well. Then melt the honey. Add the cockscomb leaf mixture and stir constantly in the same direction until it thickens. If it becomes too thick thin it with a little watered down vinegar.

Heat pebbles. When red, remove from heat with tongs and put them in the sauce.

Taste the sauce for flavor to insure that there is a hint of pepper, and insure that the sweet and sour taste is balanced while the cockscomb is clearly present. Adjust at will.

It can be served hot or cold and is good with shrimp, beef and pork.



[1] As cockscomb leaves were not available when the recipe was made using sage leaves.

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