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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

PALOMA WITH 13TH C RECIPE FOR PIGEONS AND OTHER SMALL BIRDS

Pigeons
Photo from: Cris Wilson
Leon palomba, L. Columbidæ, Eng. pigeon. It can be wild or domesticated. In Spain and England there were several varieties. Aristocrats kept pigeon lofts for training carrier pigeons and to eat their meat. In Cordova, during the 15th C, there were several lawsuits concerning damages caused by pigeons living in noble’s pigeon lofts within the city.

In Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery Books, there are recipes for pigeons stuffed with herbs and garlic and roasted pigeons. Pigeon pie, still, is considered and exquisite dish in southern Spain and Morocco, where it is claimed that recipes go back to the days of Al-Andalus.

Villena explains that they should be carved in the same way as partridges except that salt is not sprinkled over the pieces. If roasted, they are eaten with a mixture of pepper and vinegar and cut in four parts if small. If large, the appendages are removed before carving.

At Suero de Quiñones’ knightly tournament in 1434, toward the end of one of the banquets, a cake was presented. Quiñones cut it in half with a knife and pigeons flew out. Contrary to “five and twenty black birds,” in England, this party was not thrown into a mass of confusion because falconers were on the spot with goshawks that they released forcing the pigeons to flee the banquet hall.

Browning Small Bird in Frying Pan
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Avenzoar claimed that domestic pigeons are warm, have a humid constitution and by nature but are not as fine as turtle dove meat. Pigeon meat has an extraordinary abundance of humidity, which produces headaches. The necks and heads of pigeons have the same effect. He continued to state that having pigeon cotes in or near the house is a safe guard against numbness of limbs, paralysis, apoplexy and rigidness and numbness. See perdiz.

 [Alonso Luengo. 1994:50; Benavides-Barajas. Nueva-Clásica. 1995:198; Dialecto. 1947:284; Gázquez. 2002:189; Ibn Zuhr/García Sánchez. 1992:51:125; Jutglar. 1999:336; Misc. Reading; Nola. 1989:OXF Eng Dict. 1989:XI:Ow:809-810; and Villena/Calero. 2002:22b:28a]

For pigeon omelet recipes see blog titled "canela de china" published July 17, 2012. 





A DISH OF PIGEONS, DOVES, WOOD PIGEONS OR WHITE-THROATED TRUSHES ADAPTED FROM HUICI'S TRANSLATION OF ANÓN AL ANDALUS #53 HECHURA DEL PLATO DE PICHONES DE PALOMAS O DE TORCASAS O ZORZALES BLANCOS, pp 41-42 

Ingredients 
per person
Roasting Small Bird in Oven
Photo by: Lord-Williams

1 small bird per person
3½ oz sausage[1]
olive oil for frying
¼ c almonds
1 tsp coriander
¼ tsp white pepper
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp lavender
1 tbsp oil
1 egg
1 tbsp chopped cilantro 
1 tsp chopped mint 

optional mixture:
1 tbsp vinegar 
1 tsp murri 
½ tsp cumin
1 garlic clove mashed
½ tsp saffron mashed and dissolved Preparation
Fry bird and sausage in oil until browned.


A Dainty Dish for a Dainty Guest
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Put the almonds in a pan with hot water. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and peel. Add almonds to frying pan with meat and brown.

Make an herb juice by chopping cilantro and mint with 1 c water in the food processor. Remove from food processor, pour into a dish and set aside.

PREHEAT OVEN TO 400ºF/200ºC

Grind the sausage with peeled almonds in a food processor. Mix coriander, pepper, cinnamon, lavender, 1 tbsp olive oil and egg. Add this to the sausage and beat until the meat and almonds are well blended. Temper the sausage mixture with this. If a spicier dish is preferred add optional ingredients to the sausage mixture. 

Put the birds in an oven-proof dish. Pouring the sausage/almond mixture over the birds. Roast in oven uncovered until set.


[1] As a Muslim recipe, the sausage should be made with chicken meat but a pork sausage does provide more flavor.


HUICI'S TRANSLATION OF ANÓN AL ANDALUS #53 


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