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13 - The Making Of sugar-paste

This is an excerpt from Delights for Ladies
(England, 1609)
The original source can be found at Kirrily Robert's website

13 - The making of sugar-paste, and casting thereof in carved moulds. Take one pound of the whitest refined or double refined sugar, if you can gette it: put thereto three ounces (some comfit-makers put six ounces for more gaine) of the best starch you can buy; and if you dry the Sugar after it is powdered, it wll the sooner paste thorough your Lawne Searce. Then searce it, and lay the same on a heap in the midst of a sheet of clean paper: in the middle of which masse put a pretty lump of the bigness of a walnut of gumme dragagant, first steeped in Rose-water one night; a porenger full of Rose-water is sufficient to dissolve one ounce of gum (which must first be well picked, leaving out the drosse); remember to strain the gumme through a canvas; then, having mixed some of the white of an egge with your strained gumme, temper it with the sugar betwixt your fingers by little and little, till you have wrought up all the Sugar and the Gumme together into a stiffe paste; and in the tempering, let there be alwaies some of the sugar between your fingers and the Gumme; then dust your woodden moulds a little with some of that powdered Sugar thorow a piece of Lawne, or fine linnen cloth, and having driven out with your rowling pinne a sufficient portion of your paste to a convenient thicknesse, cover your mould therewith, pressing the same downe into every hollow part of your mould with your fingers, and when it hath taken the whole impression, knock the mold on the edge against a table, and the paste will issue forth with the impression of the mould upon it; or, if the mould be dep cutte, you may put the point of your knife gently into the deepest parts heer and there, lifting up by little and little the paste out of the mould.

And if, in the making of this paste you happen to put in too much gum, you may put in more sugar thereto, and if too much sugar, then more gum; you must also work this paste into your moulds as speedily as you can, after it is once made, and before it harden: and if it growe so hard that it cracks, mixe more gum therewith: cut away with your knife from the edges of your paste, all those pieces with have no part of the worke upon them, and worke them up with the paste which remaineth; and if you will make sawcers, dishes, bowles, &c. then (having first driven your paste up on paper, first disted over with sugar to a convenient largenesse and thicknesse) put the paste into some sawcer, dihs, or bowle of a good fashion, and with your finger presse it gently down, to the insides thereof, till it resemble the shape of the dish, then paire away the edges iwth a knife, even with the skirt of your dish, or sawcer, and set it agsint the first, till it be dry on the inside: then with a knife get it out, as they use to doe a dish of butter, and dry the backside: then gild it on the edge with the white of egg laid round about the brim of the dish with a pensill, and presse the gold downe with some cotton; and when it is dry, skew or brush off the gold with the foot of a Hare or Cony. And if you would have your paste exceeding smooth, as to make cards and such like conceits thereof, then toule your paste upon a sliced paper with a smooth and polished rowling pin.


Other versions of this recipe:

A most delicate and stiff sugar paste (Delights for Ladies)

A way to make Sugerplate both of colour and taste of any flower (Delights for Ladies)

To make Cinnamon Sticks (Ouverture de Cuisine)

To make sugar paste (Ouverture de Cuisine)

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