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181 In The Year Of Our Lord 1548


This is an excerpt from Das Kuchbuch der Sabina Welserin
(Germany, 16th century - V. Armstrong, trans.)
The original source can be found at David Friedman's website

181 In the year of our Lord 1548, on the 25th of January the master cook Simon, cook for the counts of Leuchtenberg, instructed me to prepare jellied fish in the following manner. First he took a pike weighing two pounds and skinned it and cut slashed notches into it and divided it into pieces. He had also previously prepared a dish with aspic [with] two trout, each weighing about one pound. He scaled them a little on the back, afterwards shaping them prettily so that the head and tail stood up high and he cooked them. He put water into a pan over he fire, let it boil, also salted it, also poured some vinegar over the trout, after that laid the trout in the broth, so that the broth covered them well, afterwards let them simmer. Do not, however, allow them to cook too quickly or else they will not stay erect. They become entirely blue. And let the trout remain in the broth for three hours and they them afterwards on a pewter plate. After that he put the pike in a pan, put a little salt therein and one quarts of Neckar wine and let it come to a boil. Next he put into it somewhat more than one quart of isinglass water, also saffron, pepper, sugar, as much of each as he felt was right. He let it cook very slowly over a small fire and skimmed the froth with a skimming ladle, after that strained the broth into a pot and laid the pike in a dish and let the broth run three times through a wool or canvas sack, so that it became nice and clear. Following that he poured it on the pike but did not allow the bowl to get too full and let it stand until the following day. After that he took the bowl in which he had put the two trout and poured into it about two fingers high of broth from the jellied fish. Do not over fill it. Also reserve a good part of the broth for the next day. Then prepare white, yellow, brown, black, green as follows. First the white color which is made like so: Pound almonds small and strains them with isinglass water, that is the white color. Then take the white color and color it yellow, then it is yellow. After that take trysolita, which is a brown cloth, and lay the cloth in isinglass water and wring it out, then it becomes brown. The black is made like so: Take rye bread and toast it well on a grill, then pound it into a powder and strain it with isinglass water, then it becomes black. After that take a handful of spinach or chard and pound it in a mortar and strain it with isinglass, then it becomes green. Afterwards send it to a painter and let a bowl in which there is no fish be painted with the five colors, however you would like it, with coats of arms or plants. Everything can be eaten. The aspic should become firm beforehand, before you paint upon it. Afterwards, when that which you want has been painted, also letters, then set the two trout into it and pour the remaining broth over it, until the broth is as full as you would like it. And then let the aspic become firm, then it is ready.

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