As promised I have some 18th century recipes for you to try if you wish. Do remember the 18th century was a time when no one worried about low fat anything and cholesterol was just someone’s nightmare. Feel free to adapt as you wish.
Cinnamon was very popular in this era.
I added this soup as it appears in my story A Gentleman’s Folly.
1 whole head of celery
1 small onion
A good dab of butter
A small spoon of flour
1 and a half pints of good chicken stock
Sprig of parsley thyme marjoram tied together.
Half a pint of milk
Salt and pepper
2 large spoons of cream
Chop up your washed celery leaves and all, save a few leaves for garnish.
Melt butter in a skillet, preferably one with a lid.
Add onion and celery to skillet and sweat them down to translucent. Don’t let them brown.
Stir in flow and cook for one minute. Add stock and herbs, let it boil and then simmer until vegetables are tender. Remove herb bunch.
Push all soup through a sieve. Return to a pan, add milk salt and pepper to taste and gently reheat.
Just before serving stir in the cream and some of the left over celery leaves finely chopped for a garnish.
You need a big pot for this.
1 lb of meat, or half a rabbit half a chicken, 1 cow’s heel to each quart of water you use.
1 medium spoon of barley
1 small leek
1 small onion
Half a turnip
Half a tea-spoon of salt.
Put all the meat in the pot with the water and salt. Slowly bring to the boil and skim the scum from the top of the pot.
Blanch the barley add it to the pot, simmer for one and a half hours.
Slice all the veg small enough to be eaten easily when cooked add them to the pot and continue cooking for another hour.
Strain the mix through a fine sieve. Return the liquid and vegetables to the pot but remove any bones and fatty bits. Cut the meat from the bones as needed and chop into small dice. Return the meat to the pot. Remove any remaining fat from the surface of the broth. You can let this cool if you wish, reheat and season to taste before serving.
If anyone tries this let me know how you get on
Meat was a staple of the wealthy man’s table in the 18th century: these meats appeared a the table sometimes from game hunted by the diners: duckling, duck, goose, pigeon, pheasant, plover, partridge, woodcock, teal, quail, hare, rabbit, chicken, lamb, mutton, veal, beef, suckling pig and pork and venison. There may well have been a few more too.
Roast the joint in a pan until juices run clear and the meat is cooked.
There are also stewed versions for the tougher cuts of meat or for older ducks, geese or mutton.
In the 18th century the trick also lay in presentation.
Here are the suggestions of what to serve with a roast rabbit.
Forcemeat stuffing and stuffing balls with bacon rolls. Bread sauce and a thickened gravy.
Roast the stuffed rabbit until the juices run clear, test with a long prong fork. Take the joint out of the pan place on a serving platter, surround with the stuffing balls and bacon rolls. Carve at the table. Serve gravy separate for people to pour, unless you have staff to do the pouring.
This is a vegetable dish.
Salt and Pepper.
This is a really old recipe as there are no quantities.
Mash together equal quantities of boiled potatoes and turnip. Add chopped chives, a good piece of dripping. (This is the fat and juices saved from your roasted meats) Mix thoroughly and serve piping hot.
A Shropshire Pie. From Hannah Glasse who wrote an excellent and very clear recipe book in the 18th century.
First make a good puff pastry crust and cover the bottom of a dish, then cut up two rabbits with two pounds of fat pork (streaky bacon?) cut up small and season to taste and put them in the the dish.
Parboil the rabbits livers, when cooked mix them in a mortar with the same amount of bacon, a pinch of sweet herbs and some oysters if you have them. Season with salt pepper and nutmeg, add the yolk of an egg and make the mixture into balls lay them in you pie with the rabbit, some artichoke bottoms cut into dice. Grate some nutmeg over the meat pour in half a pint of water and half a pint of red wine, put on the pie lid and bake in a medium hot ( a quick but not too fast) oven.
This site gives some excellent detail about dining in this period. I know someone asked for desserts and they will follow in my next post on th 12th of September. Tomorrow the post will be given to reflection.