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63 How One Should Prepare zerena


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

63 How one should prepare Zerena. Pound two pounds of almonds. The almonds should be soaked in cold spring water and then removed, they will become very white, and wash them with spring water, after which they should be dried with a good white cloth. Next pound them as small as possible, and when they begin to become oily, put in rose water until they are no longer oily. After that, when they are very well pounded, put them in a bowl. Take before that two quarts of water, spring water, put it in a pot, put four ounces of good isinglass in with it, let it boil down to not quite one third of a quart, then you will see whether it is sufficiently thickened. You could put more or less into it, depending upon how good the isinglass is. Take a clean coarsely-woven cloth, put the almonds in it and strain it through with the water. After that take the wax mold and lay it for a while in cold water and wash it clean with a soft white cloth. After that dry it well with a clean cloth, so that it is no longer wet. Take after that sweet almond oil, take a small feather and spread the oil very carefully in all the little corners, so that the mold releases all the better, afterwards put the Blechding in the mold and pay attention that it comes in the middle. Close the mold and stick it together well on the edges with almond paste, so that it does not run out when something is poured in. Next take thick string and tie the mold firmly closed. Set it afterwards into about three quarts of flour, so that the top is at the bottom, set it directly into the flour. Next put the strained almonds in a brass pan over the fire and let it cook about as long as to cook an egg, afterwards take it from the fire and let it cool, so that it is lukewarm. One should not pour it in when it is too hot, also not too cold, but just so that it is exactly right. Let it set overnight and in the morning take it out. Do it carefully so that it does not break into pieces. Afterwards let a wood carver or painter gild it and prepare it for you. After that set it in a dish and pour almond milk on it, then you have a Shauessen.

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