Antique Recipes from Chefs of the Past -Part I.
Risotto with Saffron – Maestro Martino, Italian, Circa 1477
350 g of Italian rice – 8 dl of either chicken or capon broth – 3 egg yolks – 1 teabag's worth of saffron – powdered cinnamon – grated ginger – salt
Pour the rice into the boiling broth and cook until the liquid is absorbed. Leave to cool for about 10 minutes, then dress with ½ teaspoon of cinnamon and ditto the ginger. Join the saffron with some broth on the side and add it to the rice. Whisk the egg-yolks and add them quickly to the rice, then mix well. When done cooking, add salt to taste and serve.
Salmon Kebabs – Maitre Menon, French, Active 1740-1755
1kg. of app. 2cm thick slices of salmon, 1 ½ cups grated bread, 6 spoons of olive oil, 2 egg-yolks, 2 spoons minced parsley, 2 finely minced baby onions, salt, pepper, 4-8 skewers.
Preparation for this antique recipe:
Skin and bone the salmon, then cut it into cubes of about 1 inch3. To prepare the marinade, whisk the oil and egg-yolks in a large container and add salt, pepper, parsley and baby onions. Add the salmon, mix it well then leave it to marinate for 1-2 hours. Put the salmon cubes onto the skewers and cover them with the grated bread. Cook them on the grill about 10-15cm from the flame until they are browned on all sides, which amounts to about 4 minutes per side.
Mullet with Cameline Sauce – Guillaume Tirel, French, 1312-1395
Mullet or another fish of the same dimensions (even 300-400g trout)
The sauce: ½ cup (1.25 deciliters) wine vinegar, 5 slices of bread (without crust), 1½ teaspoons powdered cinnamon, 1 teaspoon grated ginger, crushed cardamom seeds, ½ teaspoon crushed clove, ½ teaspoon crushed mace, ½ teaspoon black peppers, salt to taste.
Preparation for this antique recipe:
Thoroughly clean the fish and then dry them. Place them in a baking pan and salt them. Pour in enough water to almost submerge the fish. Cover the baking pan with aluminum foil and place it in a pre-heated oven (180? C / 356? F) and bake for 20-25 minutes. Let the fish dry on kitchen paper and serve apart from the sauce. The sauce: soak the bread in the vinegar and let it rest for about 5 minutes or until it is soft. Put the bread in a food processor along with the cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves, mace and pepper and process until the mixture becomes a cream. Add salt to taste.
Stuffed Champignon Mushrooms – M. Antonin Carême, French, 1783-1833
250g chicken breast, 2 spoons finely chopped scallions, 2 egg yolks, 500g large champignon mushroom caps, 45g of mushrooms, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
Finely chop the chicken breast. Add the scallions with abundant salt and pepper and add the egg yolks as a thickener. Mix. Empty out the mushroom caps and fill them with the stuffing. Butter a baking pan and arrange the mushroom caps in it, then place it in a preheated oven (175? C / 347? F) and cook for 25-30 minutes or until the mushrooms are tender and the stuffing browned. Spray with lemon juice and serve warm.
Castilian Pan-Fried Chicken – M. Antonin Carême, French, 1783 -1833
1 ½ spoons butter, 250g cubed speck, 1 whole chicken (approx. 1.5kg) cut to pieces, 2 sliced onions, 250g mushrooms without stems, 2 parsley stems, ½ clove of crushed garlic, 1 bouquet of herbs, salt and pepper, 250g skinned and quartered tomatoes without seeds, 1 cup chicken broth.
Melt the butter in a pan and lightly brown the speck over a medium flame. Add the chicken pieces with the skin to the pan and fry them for about 5 minutes or until the meat becomes firm and white. Add the onions, mushrooms, parsley, garlic, bouquet of herbs and salt and pepper. Continue cooking over a medium flame, stirring and turning the chicken every so often for 20 minutes or until the onions have become soft and the chicken tender. Add the tomatoes, moving the chicken pieces on top of the tomatoes and continue cooking for a further 10 minutes. Place the chicken on a serving plate and keep warm. Salt the sauce to taste, garnish the chicken with it and then serve.