Thursday, October 6, 2016

New Project Idea

A friend from Amtgard came over and taught Morcant how to make these, so we are going to give it a shot. It only took him one afternoon, even with the woodburning!



Sunday, July 3, 2016

Archery Practice

We picked up our own target after the last time we went out to JCA range because their targets left a bit to be desired, so now we are a little more mobile in where we practice. This is set up out at my sister's house in Mechanicsville.

Brower is ready for his own bow, too. 

Monday, May 30, 2016

Archery Practice

Honestly, one of the reasons I don't think it would be a good idea for us to join the regular archery practice is that we are quite the crew on our own these days.  I think we would cut into everyone else's practice time.



  I think that I forgot to mention that the oldest son got his recurve. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

Syrup of Lemon

Take lemon, after peeling off the skin, press it [to a pulp] and take a ratl [1 ratl=468g/1lb] of juice, and add as much of sugar. Cook it until it takes the form of a syrup. Its advantages are for the heat of bile; it cuts the thirst and binds the bowels. [i]

Some translators take this recipe to mean that one should press the oil from the skin for flavoring. I have a slightly different take on it though.  I know that the pith of the lemon contains a good deal of a nutrient known as rutin.  I also know that including the pith in remedies for the flux was practiced in later years.  My guess is that it is at least somewhat likely that the author meant for the pith to be ground and included in the recipe. 

If I want to make this as a period medicinal recipe, I zest one lemon and save the zest because I am frugal like that.  Then I use my pastry blender to mash the rest of the lemon into one pound of sugar before adding an equal amount of juice.  For what it is worth a pound of water isn't quite 16 fl. ounces, it is about 15.34 ounces, so you might leave your last cup of juice a bit scant.  I don't find that it matters.

Then simmer this for about five-seven minutes.  This is not going to set up like a thick modern syrup with added emulsifiers. Think of a simple syrup used for flavoring coffee.

If you cook it longer, you destroy some of the flavor and you run the risk of something that goes to soft crack stage and won't dissolve again.  (If you ever do that by accident, all is not lost.  Pour the syrup in little dollops on parchment and let it harden to lemon hard candy.)   


This is meant to be a medicinal recipe for liver heat and what the Greeks called bilious fevers, which is an illness that involves a fever accompanied by a lot of nausea and vomiting.


Additional aside,  this doesn't make great sour mix.  Cooking the juice detracts from the flavor. If you want a good recipe for that check out my mundane blog.

  



[i] Anon. The Book of Cooking in Maghreb and Andalus in the Era of Almohads. Translated by Martinelli, Candida. 2012 translation. Al-Andulus, Spain: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, ca. 1400.