Stuffing? Dressing? Filling? Farce?

They’re all other ways to say:

‘Pudding in the belly’

Which is, as they say in the 17th century,

“Good Belly Cheer”

If it’s any comfort, even in the 1600’s they  sometimes called it stuffing and sometimes called it dressing….and had a few other variations just to cloud the issue even more.

There was not any Stove Top in 1620.

Larry is an actor and not an acual pilgrim - he's far too hipster for the real Pilgrim Crowd - and he's not really hip enough to be hipster, but that's another story

Larry is an actor and not an actual pilgrim – he’s far too hipster for the real Pilgrim Crowd – and he’s not really hip enough to be hipster, but that’s another story

Anyhow –

Om een jonge Henne te vullen.  (A young hen to farce)

Neemt geraspt Witte-broot/ en 3 harde doren wan Eyeren kleyn gewreven/ met wat geroockt Speck/ geroockt Vleesch/ wel kleyn gesneden/ dan gestoten Folie/ Peper/ Gember/ en een weinigh Saffaraen; en alles wel onder een gheroert/ de Hen daer mede gevult/ dan gestooft met Boter/ Wijn/ Water /gaer zijnde/ wat Verjuys en Saffraen in het sop gedaen/ dan opgerecht.

Rose, The Sensible Cook. p. 62-3.

and now in modern English

Take a grated White-bread, and 3 yolks of hard-boiled Eggs, mashed fine, with some (smoked) Bacon, and (smoked) Meat, chopped very finely, then ground Mace, Pepper, Ginger, and a little Saffron; all well stirred together, the Hen is filled with this, then stewed with Butter, Wine, Water.  When done some Verjuice and Saffron is added to the broth, and then it is served

The word “smoked” (geroockt) exists in this context in Dutch in 1627.  English meat, similarly prepared, seems to be referred to as “hung”; the term “smoked” isn’t used until the end of the 17th century.  Although the effect is the same, the intent, at least in England, was not to flavor, so much as dry, the meat. kmw

Sensible Cook in Dutch

The original

Translation by Peter Rose

Translation by Peter Rose

and now perhaps in modern English:

Stuffing recipes are really hard -most stuffing isn’t a recipe…..

6 cups of bread crumbs (I pulsed good bread through the blend, and kept some of it a little chunky, I like some texture)

3 hard boiled egg yolks (snack on the whites because the smells of this coming together may make you a little peeked

1/2 a pound of smoked bacon, diced

14 oz smoked kielbasa or other smoked sausage (14 oz is the size of the package – it’s not a magic number)

Mace – the spice:

Mace

It also comes in powdered form – it’s the outer casing of a nutmeg, so use nutmeg if you don’t have mace.

also Pepper and Ginger. Saffron if you can afford it. Total spice might be about a tablespoon. It should have some smell over the meat. The bread absorbs a lot of flavor, so don’t be afraid.

Because every other stuffing/dressing etc from the 17th century I looked at called for it, I added 3 whole eggs, beaten, a 1/2 stick melted butter and then some broth to moisten it. A little  wine would not be amiss at this point, especially  since I don’t know anyone who is boiling their Thanksgiving turkey….although……

The broth I bought that I’m loving this November

college Inn white wineand this cooking wine was convenient and not too salty

Goya Cookng wine

Put the whole batch in a buttered 9′ casserole and bake, covered for  1/2 hour at 350º and then 1/2 hour uncovered.

The First Thanksgiving probably looked a little more like this then what we're accustomed to seeing

The First Thanksgiving probably looked a little more like this then what we’re accustomed to seeing

This Turkey would taste great with this stuffing. Or Dressing. Or Pudding in it's belly or....

This Turkey would taste great with this stuffing. Or Dressing. Or Pudding in it’s belly or….

 

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Filed under Autumn, Recipe, Thanksgiving, The 17th century

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