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Monday, January 30, 2017

PALOMA ZURITA, A POPULAR MEMBER OF THE DOVE FAMILY IN SPAIN

Paloma Zurita
Photo from: José María Paraíso Hernández
Cat xixell, L.Columba oenasEng stock dove. It is the smallest of the most common members of the pigeon family found on the Iberian Peninsula. Avenzoar described the meat as hot and dry with a gentle consistency. It is gentler, he maintained, than that of the sand grouse and the rock pigeon. The meat, he continued, is abundant in humid climates but it possesses the peculiarity of producing headaches. The necks and heads of pigeons cause the same. Sent Soví explains they should be cooked over a hot fire or coal. [Anón/Grewe. 1982: XVIIII:73: Apè III:240; and Ibn Zuhr/García Sánchez. 1992:51]

For the Medieval Spanish Chef’s recipes including doves see blogs titled: Ánade published September 26, 2011; Paloma published December 7, 2016; Choca perdiz published December 28, 2012 and Paloma torcaz published December 9, 2016. 

Friday, January 27, 2017

PALOMA TORCAZ WITH 13TH C RECIPE FOR A DISH OF YOUNG CARAMELIZED PIGEONS

PALOMA TORCAZ -
Columba Palumbus - 
Bargas -
Los Cantos - 12.03.2015
OCast torcaza (Note: this has nothing to do with the Columba araucana, the Chilean pigeon today), Cat. tudó, tudon, Gal, Port. pomba, L. Columba palumbus, Eng. woodpigeon. Both the males and the females are gray on top with a green and white patch on the neck. Underneath they are pinkish. They are 40-42 cm (16”) long, has a wing span of 75-80 cm (30-32”) and weighs 450-550 g (about 1 lb). The eyes are bright yellow. They are the biggest pigeons in Europe.

Villanova reasserts this calling them tudones (big wood pigeons). They do not walk but waddle. This is due to overweight. Their feathers weigh more than their bones. They eat any kind of grains, seeds, berries, pine kernels and acorns. They live in the forests and go to the fields to feed.

They are migratory birds.  In the spring, they found all over Europe, except northern Scandinavia,. In the fall, they fly to the Middle East and Morocco. In the 15th C, Juan Pacheco, the Marquis of Villena and favorite of King Henry IV, owned villages and large landholdings in Albacete, Alicante and Murcia where wood pigeons are so abundant that no question as to what the marquis and his retinue ate when residing on his properties in eastern Spain.

Browning a Small Bird
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Normally, they are caught in nets. When roasted, they were carved in the same way as partridges. Wood pigeons are a major ingredient for gazpacho manchego, with quail, chicken and rabbit and other traditional dishes carried down from one generation to the next from time immemorial.

Avenzoar claimed wood pigeons cause melancholy and are coarse. Further, the woodpigeon is a symbol of love, independence and a vagabond’s life as they come go as they please. Reputedly, the Marquis of Villena was a great lover, independent and roamed as he pleased, as seen by the number of bastards he fathered. See tórtola.

[ES: “European Wood Pigeon.” Jul 26, 03; ES: Gains. Oct 5, 03; ES: “Paloma torcaz.” n/d; ES: Plana. <1998-2003>; <1998-2003>Gázquez. Cocina. 2002:138:189; Ibn Zuhr/García Sánchez. 1992:51; and Villena/Calero. 2002:22b:28a]

For other pigeon recipes see blogs: Ánade published September 26, 2011; Canelade China published July 17, 2012; and Paloma published December 7, 2016.


YOUNG CARAMELIZED PIGEONS ADAPTED FROM HUICI’S TRANSLATION OF ANÓN
AL ANDALUS, #54 PLATO DE PICHONES DE PALOMA, p 42 
Pouring Egg Mixture Over Small Bird
Photo by: Lord-Williams

Ingredients

1 pigeon per person[1]
¼ tsp white pepper
1 tsp coriander oil for frying
¼ lb sugar
4 eggs
½ tsp saffron mashed and dissolved
½ tsp cloves
1 egg yolk per person



Garnish

½ tbsp sugar
1 tbsp chopped lavender
¼ tsp cloves


Preparation


Select fat pigeons. Clean them. Put enough oil in a pot to fry the pigeons. Add salt, pepper and coriander. When the oil is hot add the pigeons and fry until browned. 

Cover with water. Add sugar and cook until done.
Best four eggs with saffron and cinnamon and cover the contents of the pot with this.  Dot the dish with one egg yolk per person. Remove from heat and let sit 15-20 minutes.

Transfer the dish to a serving platter. Sprinkle with sugar, lavender and cinnamon before serving.

[1] Quail was used as pigeons were not available.

HUICI’S TRANSLATION OF ANÓN AL ANDALUS, #54
 






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 


Monday, January 23, 2017

PALO WITH A 15TH C PINE KERNEL CUSTARD DESSERT


Bamboo sticks
Photo from: Kristen Cabaida
(perhaps "palos" were
somewhat like this but fluted)
Perez explains this is not just an ordinary stick but a polished fluted rod or stick used for stirring food. It is not a beater or a whisk as these were not used in the kitchen until chocolate came into use. [Nola. 1989:xiiii-2:xix-4:xxi-2 etc; and Nola/Pérez. 1992:204]

For recipes requiring a fluted stick for stirring see blogs: adarme, published October 23, 2010, with a blancmange/chicken recipe; chivo with a “broom flower” recipe published December 12, 2012; and nogat, published September 11, 2016 with a lamb sopes recipe. 

A POTTAGE CALLED A PINE KERNEL DISH ADAPTED FROM NOLA’S xx-6 POTAJE QUE SE DIZE PIÑONADA[1]


Ingredients

Good Warm or Cold
Photo by: Lord-Williams
½ c/80 gr pine kernels
½ c peeled and blanched almonds
2 c  chicken broth
1 tbsp sugar

Garnish
1 tsp brown sugar
a few toasted nuts

Preparation

Grind pine nuts with almonds in a food processor. Add broth and grind again. Strain all through a cheese cloth into a pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and gently boil. Add sugar, stirring constantly with  stick.

When done, remove from heat. Cover with a cloth and let sit 15-20 minutes. Sprinkle with brown sugar and decorate with a few toasted nuts.


[1] This is a runny pudding like natillas but it can be served warm or cold. This can also be a sauce over fresh fruit.

NOLA’S xx-6 



Friday, January 20, 2017

PALMETTO WITH RECIPE FOR HEARTS OF PALM AND SHRIMP SALAD

Sliced and Canned Heart of Palms
Photo by: Lord-Williams
palmito, L. Chamaerops humilis, Fr. Palmer nain, Eng. 1. dwarf fan palm; palm cabbage, heart of palm. It grows in Spain and Portugal. It is abundant in Morocco.

2.  palm sprout; tender palm from trees of the palm family. The best is the coconut for the taste is slightly sweet and it is crunchy and firm. By the 15th C nobles were eating them. Villena advised to skin them on the chopping block for the powder that comes out of them. Then stripe them lengthwise until the tender part is reached. Slice the ends to the tender part. Remove the palm seed and white membrane until the piece is completely tender. Today they are bought canned and added to salads.

[Benavides-Barajas. Nueva-Clásica, 1995:129; Castro. Alimentación. 1996:154; and Villena/Calero. 2002:40b:41a] 

PEDRO PABLO MONTERO’S RECIPE FOR HEARTS OF PALM AND SHRIMP SALAD
Delicious Any Time of Year!
Photo by: Lord-Williams

Ingredients

½ lb can of sliced hearts of palm drained
1 lb shelled shrimp
2 tbsp olive oil
juice from ½ lemon
½ small onion chopped
1 tbsp chopped cilantro
1 tbsp chopped mint
salt to taste
¼ tsp white pepper a bed of chopped lettuce to cover platter

Preparation

Mix all ingredients except: salt, pepper and lettuce. Let sit 15-20 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss well and put the mixture into a round bowl. Press down on it and then turn it out on the bed of lettuce.