If you enjoy the occasional cheese platter with trimmings, you are likely familiar with Pan des Higos, the fig wedge stuffed with Marcona almonds.

This is similar, but with raisins instead of almonds. It benefits from access to some equipment, and from patience,

Simmering the figs in wine takes some care. You want them to plump, then begin to burst, but be cautious not to allow any to burn.

Figge (5)

A figge

To mak a figge tak figges and boile them in wyne
then bray them in a mortair put ther to bred and
boile it with wyne cast ther to clowes maces guinger
pynes and hole, raissins and florisshe it withe pongar-
nettes and serue it.
4 lbs figs
1 lbs raisins
1 bottle wine (I used a riesling type, semisec. Pick one that goes well with figs.)

1 tsp cloves
2 tsp ginger
2 tsp mace
1/2 tsp salt

Fig jam for the cheeses

Bowl, spreader.

Simmer figs in wine til they are soft and bursting.
Run through a meat grinder.

Fold in raisins and spices.

Place in a mold or form.

Put in a warm oven or cool area overnight to set, then unmold, wrap in paper, and store for as long as it needs to dry some.

Cut into wedges, wrap and store, serve as an accompaniment to cheeses.

 

We both tasted as we seasoned, in hopes of enhancing the flavors rather than spicing the food. It’s meant to complement other foods rather than to be a centerpiece.

I was dreading braying it in a mortar. This would be outdoor work, with a fair amount of loss, as cooked figs are so juicy. Instead, it went through the meat grinder. That took about 10 minutes and was far less scary than a mortar would have been.

Figge (7)

After adding the raisins and spicing it, the dish is to be served. However, we need a dry consistency, and a dish which will hold, so I put it into pans and dehydrated it.

It is currently wrapped in paper, on a rack, awaiting the day it will be served. I can’t wait.

If you are familiar with Mostardo or Chutney, this dish is pretty approachable.

It’s a mixed pickle of several vegetables, simmered then marinated. It can be canned, and it lasts a fair time.

First, if you don’t have lombard mustard, you might wish to make some.

I like equal proportions of mustard seed, honey, and wine vinegar by weight, and to allow it to age for at least a week in the fridge.

COMPOST. C. Take rote of parsel. pasternak of rasenns. scrape hem waisthe hem clene. take rapes & caboches ypared and icorne. take an erthen panne with clene water & set it on the fire. cast all þise þerinne. whan þey buth boiled cast þerto peeres & parboile hem wel. take þise thynges up & lat it kele on a fair cloth, do þerto salt whan it is colde in a vessel take vineger & powdour & safroun & do þerto. & lat alle þise thinges lye þerin al nyzt oþer al day, take wyne greke and hony clarified togider lumbarde mustard & raisouns corance al hool. & grynde powdour of canel powdour douce. & aneys hole. & fenell seed. take alle þise thynges & cast togyder in a pot of erthe. and take þerof whan þou wilt & serue forth.

Take Parsley root, Carrot (or parsnip), scrape and wash.
Take turnips and cabbages, trimmed appropriately
Put them in a pot, and cook them through.
When they are done, blanch pears.
Blend the items together, and cool overnight.
The next day, when chilled, add salt
then vinegar, “powder” (pepper), and saffron.
The day after that, add “Greek” wine and honey which have been blended together,
and lumbard mustard, as well as currants.
Add cinnamon, poudre douce, and whole anise.
Put it all in a crock, and serve at need.

I keep lumbard mustard and poudre douce in stock, and kept pretty decent records of my garden’s productivity, so I had a good sense of what would have been available.

I am using a moscato as my wine.

I made this a few times. Once, I tried cutting all of the vegetables into different shapes. It wasn’t nice. I ran them through a shredder, a processor, and so on. Eventually I got to cutting them all as close to matchstick as I could, and it worked out nicely.

Also, I don’t recommend those giant storage carrots, they have a watery sweetness that works well in other dishes but not so well in this one.
3 medium carrots, matchstick or rounds

And / Or

2  large parsnips, matchstick

2 larger white turnips, matchstick

1 bunch radishes, about 8-10, matchstick

1/2 medium green cabbage, shredded

4-6 hard pears, chopped

2 TBS -1/2 cup salt

1.5 cup white wine vinegar

1/2 Tbs pepper, ground or 1 TBS whole

a pinch of vinegar

2 c moscato.

1 cup honey

1/4 c lombard mustard

1 cup currants

2 tsp cinnamon (canela)

 

If you like anise, use a teaspoon each. I didn’t because I don’t like it.

Assemble your vegetables, not the pears. Poach them til they are bendy.

Remove them to a colander to cool, use the same water and poach the pears.

Add to the colander.

When fully cooled, add salt.

Once the salt is fully mixed in, add the vinegar, pepper, and saffron.

Then, finally, the next day, add the rest of the ingredients.

Allow it to sit for a week, and taste. If you like it, you can can it now,

or adjust seasonings and flavors first.

If you are low in the canning jars, add more vinegar to top up rather than

wine, in order to boost acidity slightly.

This is 6 canning jars worth. Two didn’t pop their lids, so I am storing them in the fridge and will use them first.

Compost (11)

http://www.medievalcookery.com/search/display.html?forme:99:PSTRNK

Mushroom Sauce

If you want to make a sauce of mushrooms that are boiled, pressed, and fried with oil, make the sauce like this; take onion, parsley, vinegar, and spices, and mix it with vinegar and a little water. Make pieces of the mushrooms, to fry, or serve with a fried mixture, and then put them in their sauce, or serve them grilled with salt and oil.

(part of an ongoing series in which I share recipes presented at The Lay of El Cid hosted by Barony Bhakail)

12 oz mushrooms, cleaned
2 cups water
2 oz olive oil, divided
½ oz (1 Tbs) salt
3 oz onion, minced
3 oz parsley, fresh
4 oz red wine vinegar

(thyme, savory, black pepper, or garlic would all go well with this dish)

Place clean mushrooms in pot with water. Add half of the olive oil and the salt. Simmer until mushrooms are cooked through. If water boils off, add more.

While mushrooms simmer, mince the onions, chop or scissor rinsed parsley. Prepare and measure all spices and seasonings.

Don’t add the seasonings yet

When mushrooms are cooked completely, drain water through strainer into one bowl.

Chop mushrooms very coarsely.
Add remaining oil to pan, return mushrooms, without liquid, to the pan. If needed, add small amounts of oil, but be cautious. They are spongy and can get too oily rather easily.

When mushrooms are fried, remove them to the second bowl.
Place the onions, parsley, ginger, pepper, and vinegar into the pot, and cook them through.
The onions will become transparent.
Add the mushroom broth, to the spices and oil, bit by bit. The goal is to reduce it slightly, but not to deplete it completely, while cooking the seasonings gently through.

When the sauce is reduced, return the mushrooms to the pot. Give them a quick toss, taste for seasoning and adjust if needed.

This is an excellent accompaniment to a red meat dish, filling for a turnover, salad topping, and accompaniment to a plate of cheese.

The type of mushrooms chosen affects the dish. Reducing the cooking liquid affects the density of flavor, so it is better to be parsimonious with the spices.

Serves 4

Santanach, Joan, trans. Robin Vozelgang. The Book of Sent Sovi Medieval Recipes from Catalonia. First Edition. Barcelona, Spain: Barcino-Tamesis, 2008. 76-77. Print.