Perys in Confyte
PERIOD: England, 15th century | SOURCE: An Ordinance of Pottage | CLASS: Authentic
DESCRIPTION: Pears cooked in honey and wine
86. Perys in confyte. Take hony; boyle hit a lytill. Do theryn sigure, poudyr of galentyn & clovis, brucet anneyce, safron, & saundris, & cast theryn the peris, sodyn & paryd & cutt in pecys, & wyn & venyger. Sesyn hit up with poudyr of canell so that hit be broun ynow.
- Hieatt, Constance B. An Ordinance of Pottage. An Edition of the Fifteenth Century Culinary Recipes in Yale University's MS Beinecke 163. London: Prospect Books Ltd, 1988.
GODE COOKERY TRANSLATION:
Pears in Syrup. Take honey; boil it a little. Add sugar, spices, cloves, anise sauce, saffron, & sandalwood, & add the pears, boiled & pared & cut in pieces, & wine & vinegar. Season it with enough cinnamon powder that it is brown.
Saffron, the stigmas of a certain type of crocus, was used extensively in Medieval cooking primarily for coloring, and was prized for the shade of orangish-yellow it imparted to food. Saffron today is very expensive, and since in small amounts it adds no discernible flavor in cooking, a yellow or orange food dye is a financially-wise substitute.
Saundris, or sandalwood, was used primarily by Medieval cooks as a red food dye. It can taste rather nasty if not used properly, and is only recommend for authenticity's sake. Red food coloring is much cheaper and easier to find.
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Perys in Confyte © 2000 James L. Matterer
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