A Matelote of Chicken and Mushroom
A small innovation: food related posts will be in English from now on, to please my international readers. And this one really is about food.
Looking for 18th Century recipes I of course inspected the file of recipes we used for Mozarts Menu. The 18th Century is an age of kitchenrevolution and new inventions like fricassee and buttercreamflourbased sauces. New in the cookerybooks were also meringue, icecreams and lots of sweet nibbles to go with the new beverages cocoa, coffee and tea (the picture is a Marcellus Laroon, Musical Tea Party).
Coming Sunday the Slow Food Werkgroep Culinaire Wortels will try its hand at some deft 18th Century cooking. I’ll go for a recipe from William Verrals Cookery Book, 1759. He was apprenticed to a French Cook. He was very proud of it and when he opened his Tavern, he was sure to use it to good value.
A matelotte of chickens with mushrooms
Une matelotte des petis poulet aux champignons
Cut your chickens as for a fricasee, the legs and wings, pinions, breast and back in two, blanch them in water for two or three minutes, put ‘em into a stewpan, with a bit or two of ham, a laddle of gravy and cullis mixt, season with a bunch of onions ansd parsley, a little sweet basil, a morsel of shallot, pepper, salt, a blade of mace, stew all togheter gently for an hour.
N.B. This sauce may serve for several good uses; but for your matelotte prepare it with a ladle or two of your cullis, with a few nice button mushrooms, put in your chickens, and stew all together, with a little pepper, salt and nutmeg; add the juice of a lemon or orange, and serve it up. The reason of changing the sauce is, that your dish may have a decent appearance; your mushrooms would be broke and your herbs etc., by so long stewing be crumbled, and spoil the beauty of the most favourite dish of all.
More about William Verrall: http://www.equinoxpub.com/books/browse.asp?auth=379