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Friday, May 27, 2016

MELLINAS WITH 13TH CENTURY RECIPE FOR LAMB WITH TRUFFLES

Fragment of Pair of Lappets
LACMA M-57-8.5 (1 of 2)
Photo from: Ashely Van Haeften 
Malinas, Flem Mechelen, Fr Malines, Eng linen from Mechlin, Belgium. It is located in north central Belgium in the province of Antwerp on the Dijle River.  The city is known also for lace making.

The Archprist of Hita mentions Mechlin cloth. Mark Singleton’s translation of this is:

            “You wretched food in convents eat—sardines immersed in brine.
            You woolen smocks accept, poor things, of plain and coarse design.
            Your lovers’ *cjoclem you reject—you will not eat their trout.
            Chemises pleated spurn you—Mechlin clothes you go without.”

*chicken.
[Singleton. 1975:132]


Henry IV of Castile (1454-1474) tried to prohibit the export of lambs’ wool to Belgium to be made into cloth and establish weaving factories in Castile. He was unsuccessful as nobles controlled the sheep paths in Castile, collecting taxes for passage, and the shipping business. They did not want to loose that income.

Annually, sheep were herded up sheep paths from eastern, western and southern Castile to Burgos where they were sheered. The wool was taken by mules to the Atlantic coast of Castile and shipped to what today is Belgium. Sheep grazed in the northern provinces during the summer and were herded south in the fall. 

Sheep only drink from still water. Shepherds took long breaks on the banks when they reached such ponds on their journeys along the sheep paths. If a lamb had an injured paw or leg, he was killed then and cooked. Many recipes handed down through the ages come from these shepherds.

Cooking Lamb in Onion Juice Enhances the Flavor
Photo by: Lord-Williams
[Enci Espasa. 1996:34:MED:594; Gázquez. Cocina. 2002:236; Ruíz/Saínz. 1986:233:1394d;and Singleton. 1975:132]


DISH OF LAMB WITH TRUFFLES ADAPTED FROM HUICI'S TRANSLATION OF AL-ANDALUS #302 PLATO DE CARNE DE CORDERO CON TRUFAS, p 170

Ingredients

1 lb lamb 
1 onion
½ tsp pepper
salt to taste
½ lb truffles[1]
4 eggs

Absolutely Delicious
With or without Mechlin cloth!
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Garnish:

½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp chopped rue

Preparation

Cut the meat into bite size pieces. Boil with onion juice, pepper, salt and water. In the meantime wash and chop truffles. When the water has evaporated, cook truffles in a separate pot.

When done, add them to the lamb. Break eggs over pot and sprinkle with murri. Remove from heat and place on hearthstone cover and let sit until eggs are cooked.

When ready to serve sprinkle with cinnamon and rue. 


[1] Wild mushrooms were used as truffle prices are prohibitive.

HUICI'S TRANSLATION OF AL-ANDALUS #302


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