Food Suggestions for Artan and Aziza

Intro and summary by AElflaed of Duckford; much practical direction by Kate Holford;
other information will be credited as it comes

NOTE TO POPULACE or to any web surfers who find this page randomly:

Although this was created for a project of a certain length, feel free to mine it for ideas for foods for your own camp, or any purpose. Mistress Kate's recipes and ideas would be good for lots of things, and there's no impediment to people using this page however they want to. The original writings were aimed at the ladies in waiting, so if the tone seems odd that's all--it's been opened up to the public after the fact.


TRM Artan and Aziza will need small snacks and incidental meals during the reign, mostly tourneyside food and snacks to tide them through the days of three meetings in a row.

Those wishing to contribute to the reign by preparing foods for this purpose are asked to read the information below on preferences and allergies, and to contact AElflaed (Sandra @ — a link is below).

Preferences and Aversions

Finger food is the very best. It can be attractive, can sit without being spilled, doesn't need full-sized tables, doesn't need fancy clean-up.

The first choice for drinks is water. Aziza wants bottled water. Artan's fine with anything. Second choice for drinks is Lipton Diet Citrus Green Tea.... [NOTE TO THOSE OUTSIDE THE RETINUE: Ladies in waiting will provide drinks to go with food, so the bit about water is mostly addressed to the retinue.]

Generally, go Atkins-diet direction. More protein and little to no noodle/bread/rice. Fruit and vegetables are good. So our task is creating something that looks medieval, or finding suitable period things.

ARTAN'S ALLERGY: allergic to walnuts, cashews, hazelnuts, piñon. Probably just avoid nuts.

BUT in the case of something that needs nuts, or just nuts as snacks, here's what His Majesty *can* eat: pecans, almonds and pistachios.
In a discussion of what TRH would want if all kinds of food were available, they named quiche, scones, cherry tarts and sausage balls, which goes a bit against the Atkin's request. The sausage balls recipe is here; they're more cheese balls, actually. And green chile would be Aziza's choice ingredient of the season, rather than sweet versions.

Aziza doesn't like to eat beef or pork, but doesn't mind sausage as an ingredient, nor pepperoni. It's not religious or philosophical so much as a texture preference. Chicken and turkey are acceptable. Artan isn't particular about meats in that way, but still—non-messy finger-food when possible, please.

More Ideas from Mistress Katherine Holford

Here's a few more ideas. Hard boiled eggs are good, if TRH like them, and can be be pickled, smokey eggs, or scotch eggs. Quail eggs can be pickled or mini-scotch eggs, and are really bite-sized. They'd probably work as smokey eggs, but I haven't tried them that way. They can be bought in cans, pre-peeled, in oriental markets.

If hard-boiled eggs work, they can be cooked in varous dyes, so you have colored eggs. Saffron and tumeric are yellow, coffee and black tea give browns, cochineal is pink (brilliant pink if you add a splash of vinegar to the cooking water and purple if you add alum), onion skinks give golds and oranges, and if cook the eggs in water with red cabbage, then leave them in the dye liquid overnight (refrigerated), they come out beautiful shades of bright blue. The basic thing is simmer the dye material in water for 15 minutes, add vinegar (or salt) and eggs and hard-boil as usual. Rinse eggs gently in cold water, but don't rub or the dye will come off. The kids might like those!

Mistress Arwen's Mustard Sauce is wonderful with eggs, but also good for sausages, meat balls, etc. The general proportions per egg are 1 T butter, 1 tsp prepared mustard, 1 tsp to 1 T vinegar, 1 pinch salt, pepper to taste. Melt the butter, let cool a bit, then mix in the rest of the ingredients. If using less vinegear, the sauce will need to be kept warm or it will congeal, but with more vinegar, it can be served room temperature. It's delicious either way. Keeps very well in the refrigerator.

There's an old, old Caerthen "Elizabethan Sallat" recipe that can be made ahead, and keeps well without wilting. Shred equal amounts spinach and red cabbage, then toss with your choice of raisins or currants, minced figs, capers, minced pickles, olives (black and/or green), orange segments or canned manderin orange slices, (slivered almonds are usually included, but can be omitted). If using the manderin oranges, pour the juice over the sallat, as it mixes well with the dressing. Dressing: 1/2 cup oil, 1/4 cup each vinegar and lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Toss sallat with enoughd dressing to lightly coat.

A couple of recipes I mentioned earlier are found in many medieval cookbooks, but my favorite versions are:

Bri Tart, "To The King's Taste"

8" uncooked pie shell (could also be made as individual tarts)
1 lb young bri cheese, rind removed and saved
6 egg yolks, beaten
1/8 tsp saffron
3/4 tsp light brown sugar
3/8 tsp powdered ginger
Salt to taste

Bake pie crust at 425 degrees for 10 minutes, let cool.

Mix rest of ingredients together, blending well so mixture is liquid and fairly smooth. Pour into pie shell, and decorate top with pieces of rind (can be cut into decorative shapes).

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes, until set.

Mushroom Pasties "Plein Delit"

Pie crust (2-layer recipe) pressed into small tart pans or muffin tins

3/4 lbs small button mushrooms (or mix white and crimini)
2 oz cheese grated (cheddar or parmesan or both are good)
2 T olive oil
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/4 tsp ginger (or favorite spice powder mix)
fresh ground pepper

Clean mushrooms and trim off bottoms, but leave whole. Parboil for about 3 minutes in salted water. Drain, mix with oil and seasonings, and fill tart shells. If using muffin tins for very small tarts, half or quarter the mushrooms to fit in better. The cheese can be mixed in or sprinkled on top. Bake at 425 degree oven for 15-20 minutes.

Kate's Liverwurst Pate

1 pgk each liverwurst and cream cheese (the 6oz pkg)
2 green onions, minced
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
garlic salt

Mix well and place in crock or make decorative shapes decorated with sliced or slivered almonds, such as a hedgehog with almond spikes, a fish or pine cone with slivered almonds, etc. Keep refrigerated. Serve with wheat thins or other crackers.

Here are a couple more recipes. One is "All About Meat Pies" and the other is a middle-eastern cheese tart, Borek, recommended by Mistress Keridwen. She also seconded the meatpie/tarts idea, as almost anything can be used to fill them.


Mistress Katherine Holford's preliminary recommendations:
Some ideas for reduced-carb finger foods—use fillo dough or rice paper instead of pie crust for pies, etc. Spanakopeta, for instance, has fillo dough (I sometimes spray with Pam, instead of brushing each sheet with butter) and filled with spinach, feta and an egg. The fillings could be a small amount of ground meat (chicken, turkey, beef or whatever), and a variety of vegetables, maybe with a little cheese or an egg to bind. Another way would be making the tart shells very sturdy, but not meant to be eaten, so they are basically just a container.

Roasted vegetables could be served both hot or cold with a drizzle of vinagrette (beets, parsnips, carrots, etc), with a roast cornish game hen instead of a full-sized chicken.

There's a lot of compound sallads, which include all kinds of pickles, olives, orange or lemon slices, sometimes nuts, and can be arranged in circles or in decorative patterns so you pick out what you want to nibble.

Write to [email protected] with questions, more ideas, or to offer to provide foods for the reign of Artan and Aziza.

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