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Blancmange Of Four Colors

This is an excerpt from Du fait de cuisine
(France, 1420 - Elizabeth Cook, trans.)
The original source can be found at David Friedman's website

33. And again, a blancmange divided into four colors all on one dish, that is or, azure, gules, and argent: and to give to understand this potage, he who will make it should take a great deal of almonds and have them blanched cleanly and washed and have them very well brayed and moistened with fair lukewarm water and put in a fair and clean cornue, and make this according to the quantity which you want to make of the said parti-colored blancmange; and put into the said broth which you are making powdered white ginger and grains of paradise; and then draw your almonds from the said lukewarm water and make milk of them, and then divide the said milk among four fair and clear and clean pots, and as much in one as in another, and also a great deal of sugar in each, and put in salt in reason; and then put on a gracious fire to heat.

And then take a great quantity of amydon and then clean and wash it very well and skillfully and then put some in a fair clean dish for each of the said four pots; and then take milk from the pot which you are thickening and strain it with a good strainer and then put it slowly into the said pot while stirring constantly until you see that it is well and firmly thickened so that when one puts one bit next to another on a dish the one does not mix with the other; and do so with all four bowls.

And to give understanding to him who will make these colors for making this blancmange divided into four colors: to make the first color, that is gold, take beaten saffron according to the quantity which you want to make and moisten it with milk from the pot which you have set up for making the gold blancmange; and then put it slowly while stirring with a good spoon into the said pot which you want to have the color of gold.

And for that of azure take your turnsole and put it to soak in milk which you want to make the color azure, and then strain into a fair and clean bowl strongly so that none of the color remains behind, and then put it into the pot which you have set aside for the said color azure; and moisten and strain your amydon in the bowl with the said broth in which you have strained your azure coloring, and then put it in the pot while mixing and stirring constantly with a good spoon until it is well thickened; and when it is well thickened take it off the fire.

To make that of gules take clear and well refined oil and put it in a fair pan to heat well and strongly; and then take your alkanet and throw it in and stir it with a fair slotted spoon and then strain it through a corner of a strainer into a fair dish; and take your amydon and strain it with the broth in which you must make your blancmange of gules; and then mix into your milk while stirring constantly in the pot in which you are making your blancmange of gules; and when it is well thickened take your coloring and put in the said coloring in proper manner so that it is the color gules.

For the argent part of the blancmange take your amydon and dissolve it in [almond] milk and strain it through a strainer and then thicken it strongly and firmly.

And, the four blancmanges thus made separately, to serve them put on each serving dish the said four blancmanges, that is that of or, then that of gules next to it, that of azure below, and afterward that of argent; and when it is thus divided and put on fair serving dishes as is devised, have your sugar-spice pellets and on each color of the said blancmange put the sugar-spice pellets which are appropriate to it.

For the fish supper: and first roasted young pike and palleys, and this is served with green sorrel verjuice and white soup of almonds; and with this the fish jelly, and white fish of the sea and of fresh water; and again, a brown sorengue of eels and a fair boiled-larded of tenches, and fried fish with fair sauce piquant.


Other versions of this recipe:

Parti-coloured white dish (Le Viandier de Taillevent)

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