Thursday, 7 May 2009

Tudor Research

So, I've pretty much garnered myself a long list of favoured foods for the Tudor time period. And started weeding through them.

Some are impractical. Eels. Just for example. Though I was amused by reading about all the variety of names in use for eels, at the time, depending on their stage of development: "An eel was a Fauser, then a Grigg or Snigg, then a Scaffling, then a Little Eel, an Eel, and when very large, a Conger." [from Tudor Food and Cookery]
It seems almost worthwhile serving eels, just to list griggs, and sniggs and scafflings on the menu!

But fish, and fishy items, although such a major part of any historical diet, can be a food one has to tiptoe around. (I have eaten eel, at a feast. Twice, actually, same group. Same event in two different years.) But there are either a lot of people who don't eat fish for a number of reasons, or a lot of people who are scared by the possibility of eating fish. And I don't want to tie up a large chunk of my budget in a dish that people won't eat. So, I guess I'll try some smaller savoury morsels, some of which will include a little bit of not-too-scary fish.

[Besides, I'm not sure how far afield I'd have to go for eel, and while I wasn't too squeamish to eat it, I'm not sure how intrepidly I'd be facing it in my kitchen! Cooking seal flipper at L'Anse aux Meadows kind of floored me...]