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Food Timeline FAQs: puddings, custards, & creams .....Have questions? Ask!

  • cabinet pudding
  • chiboust
  • chocolate pudding
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  • cold shape
  • creme Anglaise
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  • custard
  • diplomat pudding
  • flan
  • frumenty
  • The Haggis
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  • instant pudding
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  • Yorkshire pudding
  • zabaglione
  • What is pudding?
    The history of pudding is a complicated topic. Why? Though time, many different kinds of foods have been known by this name. The creamy, rich pudding dessert we (Americans) think of today is more closely related to custard. The history of custard is likewise ancient. This food followed a separate, though parallel, path that managed to converge with pudding in 19th century America.

    Food historians generally agree the first puddings made by ancient cooks produced foods similar to sausages. The British claim pudding as part of their culinary heritage. Medieval puddings (black and white) were still mostly meat-based. 17th century English puddings were either savory (meat-based) or sweet (flour, nuts & sugar) and were typically boiled in special pudding bags. The "pease porridge" most of us know from the old nursery rhyme was most likely a simple boiled pudding of pease meal. By the latter half 18th century traditional English puddings no longer included meat. 19th century puddings were still boiled but the finished product was more like cake. These puddings are still traditionally served at Christmas time. Plum pudding (aka Christmas pudding)is a prime example. Modern steamed puddings decend from this tradition.

    About custard? Ancient Roman cooks recognized the binding properties of eggs. They were experts at creating several egg-based dishes, most notably patinae, crustades and omlettes. These foods were either savory (made with cheese, meat, pepper etc.) or sweet (flavored with honey, nuts, cinnamon etc.). Food historians generally agree that custard, the sweet almost pudding-like substance we Americans know today, dates to the Middle ages. At that time custard was eaten alone or used as fillings for pies, tarts, pastry, etc. Flan is probably the the most famous and widely adapted custard dessert in the world. It is important to note that custard was not unique to Europe. Similar recipes flourished in Asia.

    The distinction between European custard and American pudding became muddled sometime in the 1840s. At that time in America, traditional boiled puddings were no longer necessary to feed the average family. There was plenty of food. This also happened to be the same time when Alfred Bird, an English chemist, introduced custard powder as an alternative to egg thickeners. It wasn't long before Americans began using custard powder and other cornstarch derivatives as thickeners for custard-type desserts. This proved quite useful for overlander (conestoga wagon) cooks who did not have ready access to a reliable supply of fresh eggs.

    Chocolate pudding & custard
    The earliest print reference we find for chocolate pudding is
    1730. Chocolate custard, a thick creamy cousin, dates to the 19th century. These sweets were enjoyed by wealthy people. In the last decades of the 19th century some American social reformers and food companies endeavored to promote these products as health food. American custards and puddings converged and were thusly marketed for their nutritional benevolence with special emphasis on invalids and children.

    Some pudding-type foods have been considered healthy since ancient times. Case in point: rice pudding. This ancient recipe was traditionally prescribed for the young and infirm. The formulae were inscribed in medical texts before the showed up in cookbooks. Tapioca, arrowroot, and cornstarch puddings (made from new world thickeners) were also recommended as restoratives.

    [1730]
    "Chocolate Puddings.
    To a Pint of Cream take eight Eggs, the Whites of four, beat them well together, and mingle with your Cream; put in some Nutmeg, Cinnamon, and Ginger, a quarter of a Pound of Naples Bisket, and a quarter of a Pound of Chocolate grated very fine, put in a little Orange-Flower Water, and a little Citron minc'd; mingle it mighty well together, and if you bake it, put a Sheet of Puff-paste in your Dish, and raise a little Border in the Rim, put in your Pudding and cross-bar it, and ice it with thick Butter and Sugar, and bake it in a gentle Oven, and when bak'd serve it away, or you may boil it if you please."
    ---The Complete Practical Cook, Charles Carter, facsimile 1730 edition [Gale Ecco Print Edition:Detroit] (p. 106)

    The origin & evolution of British puddings:
    "To focus attention on British usage (of the word pudding) is legitimate, since pudding may be claimed as a British invention, and is certainly a characteristic dish of British cuisine...It seems that the ancestor of the term was the Latin word botellus, meaning sausage, from which came boudin and also pudding. Puddings in all their variety and glory may be seen as the multiple descendants of a Roman sausage. The Haggis, by its nature and the ways it is prepared, illuminates the connection. In the Middle Ages the black pudding (blood sausages) was joined by the white pudding, which was also made in a sausage skin, or sometimes a stomach lining...White pudding was almost completely cereal in composition, usually containing a suet and breadcrumb mixture. It was variously enriched and flavoured, and there were sweet versions. In diverging from these origins English cooks found two paths which could be taken to advance pudding cookery. The first was to take advantage of th fact that by the 16th century many ordinary houses had small ovens built into the chimney breast, or at the side of the main bread oven where there was one. These ovens were not very hot. It was possible to bake a white pudding mixture or a cereal pottage slowly enough to suit it. Often, it was enclosed in pastry...this path led to baked puddings. The second path involved finding a different container to replace the gut used for sausages...The breakthrough came when the pudding-cloth was invented, around the beginning of the 17th century...During the 18th century, suet mixtures were joined by the first sponge puddings, and boiled and baked batters became common. Sweet puddings included all kinds of fruits, jam, spices, meringue, and other delicacies. Plain puddings remained important. Among savoury types, the first beef steak and mutton puddings appeared. Sweet milk pottages made with cereals such as rice or barley persisted. As new kinds of starchy product began to be imported...these were also adopted for that purpse...The disappearance of domestic servants in the 20th century brought further changes. The pudding-cloth was found to be difficult for housewives...boiled pudding were now almost made in basins covered with greased paper and foil and steamed partly immersed in water. Thus did the British steamed pudding come fully into its own. Roll-shaped puddings were either converted to basin format or baked in specially made tubular tins."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2006, 2nd edition (p. 638-9)
    [NOTE: this source has much more information than can be paraphrased here. Ask your librarian to help you find a copy]

    Recommended reading: (your librarian will help you find these books)

    Bakewell pudding
    19th century Bakewell pudding (sometimes called Bakewell tart) descends from Medieval egg enriched custards which, in turn, descend from Ancient Roman
    Flan. Prehistory here. Bakewell is named for a place in Derbyshire England, not a description of the product. Or is it?

    "Bakewell Tart, or Bakewell pudding, as it was originally called (tart seems to be an early twentieth-century alteration), appeared on the scene in the mid-nineteenth century. The first recorded reference to is was made by Eliza Acton (in her Modern Cookery, 1845)...Its basic concept...of a layer of jam beneath a main filling, was far from new then; it is part of a long tradition of so-called transparent' puddings, in which a layer of jam, preserved fruit, or candied peel was overlaid with a sugar, egg, and butter mixture and baked. They were made with or without a pastry case--and indeed Eliza Acton's recipe for Bakewell pudding makes no mention of pastry...The characteristic feature of Bakewell puddings, as opposed to all other puddings, was and is almonds. Originally they were introduced in the form of a few drips of almond essence in the overlaying sugar, egg, and butter mixture, but gradually it became the custom to use ground almonds, thereby radically altering the nature and consistency of the topping. The dish is of course named after Bakewell, a town in Derbyshire, but how this came about it not known. Legend (and probably no more than that) has it that the pudding was created by accident in the kitchens of the Rutland Arms in the centre of town."
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 16-7)

    "Bakewell tart...was always known as a pudding until the 20th century...Medieval precursors date back to the 15th cnetury and were called flathons'...There were two main kinds. One was filled with a sweet, rich egg custard over a layer of candied fruit on the pastry shell. A second version was originally made without eggs, butter, or milk, and was a Lenten flathon; the filling was of ground almonds and sugar made into a liquid paste and flavoured with spices. In the succeeding centuries names such as 'egg tart' and 'almond tart' came into use. The name Bakewell pudding' first occurs in Meg Dods (1826), referring to the custard version; but thereafter the name was used for both. The recipe for Bakewell Pudding given by Eliza Acton (1845) was essentially a rich custard of egg yolks, butter, sugar, and flavouring...poured over a layer of mixed jams an inch...thick and baked...During the latter part of the 19th century the custard version fell into disuse, and the recipe evolved towards its modern forms....There are now two principal versions. One is the pudding' recognized by the inhabitants of Bakewell...The other current version is a shortcrust case with a filling of something like almond sponge cake over a layer of jam."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 50)

    "Bakewell Pudding. One should not apparently refer to Bakewell tart, but to Bakewell pudding, according to local pastry cooks and restaurateurs. I had always understood, from Good Things in England, that first bible of our regional cookery, that the original Bakewell tart/pudding did not contain ground almonds at all, but was closer to the rich custard of butter and eggs still favoured in Rouen for mirliton tarts. Such things are a warning to the dogmatic: food changes with time to suit different tastes., and where they are an improvement we should be receptive to the differences. I must confess that I do prefer Bakewell pudding with ground almonds, but you may leave them out if you wish to be more authentic and make the kind of thing Jane Austen may have tasted when she stayed in the inn at Bakewell."
    ---English Food, Jane Grigson [Penguin Books:London] 1974, revised edition 1992 (p. 274-275)
    [NOTES: Recipe follows.]

    [1845]
    "Bakewell Pudding.

    This pudding is famous not only in Derbyshire, but in several of our northern counties, where it is usually served on all holiday-occasions. Line a shallow tart-dish with quite an inch-deep layer of several kinds of good preserve mixed together, and intermingle with them from two to three ounces of candied citron or orange-rind. Beat well the yolks of ten eggs, and add to them gradually half a pound of sifted sugar; when they are well mixed, pour in by degrees half a pound of good clarified butter, and a little ratafia or any other flavour that may be preferred; fill the dish two-thirds full with this mixture, and bake the pudding for nearly an hour in a moderate oven. Half the quantity will be sufficient for a small dish. Mixed preserves, 1 1/2 to 2 lbs.; yolks of eggs, 10; sugar, 1/2 lb.; butter, 1/2 lb.; ratafia, lemon-brandy, or other flavouring, to the taste, baked, moderate oven, 2/4 to 1 hour. Obs.--This is a rich and expensive, but not very refined pudding. A variation of it, known in the south as Alderman's Pudding, is we think, superior to it. It is made without the candied peel, and with a layer of apricot-jam only, six ounces of butter, six of sugar, the yolks of siz, and the whites of two eggs."
    ---Modern Cookery for Private Families, Eliza Acton, facsimile 1845 reprint with an Introduction by Elizabeth Ray [Southover Press:East Sussex] 1993 (p. 358)

    [1861]
    "Bakewell Pudding.

    (Very Rich)
    Ingredients.--1/4 lb. Of puff-paste, 5 eggs, 6 oz. of sugar, 1/4 lb. of butter, 1 oz of almonds, jam.
    Mode.--Cover a dish with thin paste, and put over this a layer of any kind of jam, 1/2 inch thick; put the yolks of 5 eggs into a basin with the white of 1, and beat these well; add the sifted sugar, the butter, which should be melted, and the almonds, which should be well pounded; beat all together until well mixed, then pour it into the dish over the jam, and bake for an hour in a moderate oven.
    Time.--1 hour. Average cost, 1s, 6d.
    Sufficient for 4 or 5 persons. Seasonable at any time."
    ---Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management, Isabella Beeton, reprint of 1861 edition [Oxford University Press:London] 2000 (p. 265-6)

    [1875]
    "Bakewell Pudding. Mix a pint of milk with the yolks and whites of four eggs beaten separately. Add three ounces of finely-sifted sugar, thre ounces of butter, which should be first melted, and one ounce of well-pounded almonds. Lay three-quarters of a pint of breadcrumbs in a dish with a little preserved fruit over, and fill up with the mixture. Bake one hour in a moderate oven. Probable cost, about 1s 6d. Sufficient for four or five persons."
    ---Cassell's Dictionary of Cookery with Numerous Illustrations, [Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co.:London] 1875 (p. 42-43)
    [NOTE: This book also offers Bakewell Pudding (another way)...including nutmeg and Rich Bakewell Pudding...with more eggs.]

    [1877]
    "Bakewell Pudding is the glory of Derbyshire. One might have expected some miracle of excellence for the palate form the ducal residence of Chatsworth, with all its fame and its splendor, and the highest fountain jet in the world. But, although a Duchess of Devonshire once kissed a butcher, the great house of Cavendish has done nothing for our tables which can compare with the humble achievement of some unknown genius in teh small town of Bakewell, nigh to the prodigious Chatsworth. Line a pie-dish with a light paste. Place on this a thickish layer of any preserved fruit from the most common to the most refined--let us say peaches or apricots. The Bakewellians are in the habit of intermingling this with candied citron or orange-peel, cut into thin stripes-- a part of the ceremony which may be omitted. make a custard of six yolks and three whites of eggs, from four to five ounces of clarified butter, six ounces of sifted sugar, and three spoonfuls of what the Bakewellians call lemon brandy--that is, brand which has been flavoured by long maceration with the zest of lemons. A little of the zest of a lemon may be used instead, or any other flavour that may be preferred. Pour the custard over and among the apricot jam, and bake the pudding in a moderate oven for thee-quarters of an hour."
    ---Kettner's Book of the Table, E.S. Dallas, facsimile 1877 edition prefaced by Derek Hudson [Centaur Press Ltd.:London] 1877 (p. 52-53)

    [1932]
    "Bakewell Tarts

    An early nineteenth century recipe still used in Derbyshire.
    Ingredients: Eggs (4 yoks and 3 whites); casto shugar 1/4 lb; butter 1/4 lb.; some rich pastry.
    Method
    1. Line some patty pans with rich pastry.
    2. Cover the bottom with a thin layer of strawberry jam; now make the following mixture.
    3. Put the butter into a brass or aluminum pan.
    4. Let it boil up.
    5. Skim it carefully.
    6. While boiling stir into the eggs and sugar beaten up together; again beat all well together.
    7. Place a thick layer of this mixture on the strawberry jam.
    8. And bake until it is delicately brown."
    ---Good Things in England, Florence White editor [Jonathan Cape:London] 1932, 1951 (p. 324)

    [1936]
    "Bakewell Tart.

    Puff Pastry.
    4 oz Butter.
    3 drops Almond Essence.
    2 Egg Whites.
    Apricot or Greengage Jam.
    6 oz. Castor Sugar.
    5 Egg Yolks.
    Utensils--Pie-dish, saucepan, wooden spoon, 3 basins, metal spoon, egg-beater. Line a pie-dish with puff pastry. Spread a layer of jam, about 1/2 an inch thick, on the bottom. Melt the butter, and mix it in a basin with the sugar, almond essence, and the well-beaten yolk and whites of eggs. Mix well and pour over the jam, then bake first in a sharp oven, and then in reduced heat, till ready. The mixture can be flavoured with brandy before pouring over the jam."
    ---Cookery Illustrated and Household Management, Elizabeth Craig editor [Odams Press:London] 1936 (p. 594)

    [1954]
    "Bakewell Pudding

    This is named after a small town in Derbyshire; they are sometimes called Bakewell tarts. Line a deep earthenware piedish with short crust, cover the bottom with mixed preserved fruit and sugar and moisten with cider or wine. Melt 1/4 lb. of butter with 1 oz. of ground almonds and 6 oz. of fine sugar, best in the yolks of 3 eggs with a little milk and fold in the stiff whites--use this to fill the pastry-lined piedish over the fruit. The whole art is in getting this mixture the right soft consistency. More milk may be added to make the custard softer, or a few fine white breadcrumbs to make it set more steadily, but the result, when carefully baked, should be set, but must be quite soft and creamy."Food in England: A Complete Guide to the Food that Makes Us Who We Are, Dorothy Hartley, facsimile 1954 edition [Piattkus:London] 2012 (p. 628)

    The Haggis
    Culinary historians generally agree that the recipe/method for making haggis can be traced to the ancient Greeks and Romans. These recipes were likely brought to the British Isles by the Romans and adapted to local ingredients. The earliest Scottish recipes for haggis were printed in the early 15th century. There are also many conflicting theories regarding the naming of haggis (see notes below).
    Gie her a Haggis!, Robert Burns Ode to Haggis is the bard's traditional birthday food on January 25th.

    "Haggis
    often regarded as the national dish and exclusive property of Scotland, is the archtype of a group of dishes which have an ancient history and a wide distribution. All of them are relatively large parcels of offal mixed with cereal and enclosed in some suitable wrapping from an animal's entrails, usually the stomach. The concept of haggis is based on preservation. When the animal was slaughtered, the perishable offal had to be eaten at once or preserved in some way. Salted, packed into a stomach, and boiled, its keeping time was extended to a couple of weeks...The first people known to have made products of the haggis type were the Romans, who were notably interested in foods of the sausage family...The Scottish haggis may be an entirely indignenous invention, but in the absense of written records there is now way of knowing; it could be an adaptation of a Roman recipe to the local mutton and oats. The classic recipe, which has remained almost unaltered since a very early date, uses the large stomach of a sheep filled with the minced lungs, liver, and heart, plus fat, oatmeal, stock, salt, and pepper."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 365)

    "...mesolithic Britons had neither pottery nor metal vessels in which to cook their meat...The flesh would have to be cooked warm from the kill, as was the practice among German tribes of the first century AD. When this was not possible, long hanging would have been necessary to break down the connective tissue and tenderize the meat, and it would have been eaten high, as is still the case with game. Animal heads, offal and blood would not have been wasted. The gut, used as a container for liver, [lungs] and brains, cut up and mixed with fat, could be roasted slowly in the embers. Homer described this type of cookery in the Odyssey, and it is found almost universally among primitive peoples. In Britain the haggis was still a regular food in the Middle Ages; and in remote highland areas it survived until modern times."
    ---Food and Drink in Britain: From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago:Chicago] 1991 (p. 61)

    "Made of suet, spices, onions, oatmeal and a sheep's pluck - heart, liver and lights -boiled in a sheep's stomach, haggis is a form of sausage that seems to generate violent passions and arouses both reverence and mirth among the Scots, who have been eating it for at least 400 years. ...The origin of haggis, as with many other national dishes, is obscure. A similar dish was known to the ancient Greeks and Romans and is mentioned in some 14th-century Scottish chronicles. Dr. Michael Krause, a physician from Hamburg who recently tasted it for the first time, reported that it was much like a Silesian dish he called ''derma.'' And although haggis includes pork fat or suet, its taste and texture also resemble the Jewish dish made of chicken fat, flour, spices and onions baked in a steer's intestines that is also called derma....The French honor its Scottish connections by calling it ''Pudding de St. Andre'' although, in fact, the word haggis is probably French in origin and comes from the verb hacher - to chop up or mangle. Though unproven, the French origin seems likely as French influence was strong in Scotland until 1603 and other traces of that tongue remain in the Scottish lexicon. A leg of lamb is called gigot and a serving dish is an ashet - assiette in French."
    ---Fare of the Country: Haggis History and Humor, New York Times, January 5, 1986 (section 10, p. 12)

    THE NAMING OF HAGGIS

    "Haggis...The analogy of most terms of cookery suggests a French source; but not corresponding French word or form has been found. The conjecture that is represents French hachis 'hash'. with assimilation to hag, hack, to chop, has apparmently no basis of fact; French hachis is not known so early, and the earlier forms of the English word are more remote from it. Whether the word is connected with have vb., evidence does not show."
    ---Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, Volume IV (p. 1013-4)
    [NOTE: the OED traces the first use of this word in print to 1420]

    "Haggis...The name probably comes from the verb haggen (to hack), although some authorities suggest that it is derived from the words au gui l'an neuf (mistletoe for the New Year), the cry of the mistletoe sellers in the Middle Ages, possibly by a vague memory of ancient Druidic ceremonies."
    ---Larousse Gastronomique, Completely Revivised and Updated [Clarkson Potter:New York] 2001(p. 592)

    "Haggis...It is considered peculiarly a Scottish dish, but was common in England till the 18th century. The derivation of the word is obscure. The French hachis, English "hash," is of later appearance than "haggis." It may be connected with a verb "to hag," meaning to cut in small pieces, and would then be cognate ultimately with "hash."
    ---Encyclopedia Britannica, 11th edition, volume 12 [1911] (p. 816)

    "Haggess [from hog or hack]"
    ---Dictionary of the English Language, Samuel Johnson, volume 1 [1753]

    "Haggis. This is perhaps the most traditional of all foods eaten in Scotland at Hogmanay (New Year's Eve)....The name Hogmanay is thought by some to have come from the Old French "aguil' anneuf" through Norman-French hoguigane--to the New Year. Haggis probably derives from the French hachis, to chop.
    ---A Taste of Scotland, Theodora Fitzgibbon [Houghton-Mifflin:Boston] 1971 (p. 59)

    Traditional Scottish Haggis recipe

    [1856]
    "Recipe from Lady Login

    1 cleaned sheep or lamb's paunch
    2 lb (900g.) dry oatmeal
    1 lb (450 g.) Lamb's liver, boiled and minced
    1 lamb's heart, boiled and minced
    1 lamb's lights boiled and minced
    1 large finely chopped onion
    1/2 teaspoon each: cayenne pepper, ground allspice, salt and pepper
    1 pint (600 ml.) Stock
    See that the paunch is well cleaned, then soak it in salt and water for about 2 hours, take out and let it dry. Put the oatmeal on a baking tray in a low oven and let it dry out and crisp up a little. Then cook the liver, heart (trimmed) and lights in salted water to cover and cook for about 1/2 hour. Strain, but reserve the stock, and chop the meats up finely, or mince. Mix all ingredients (except the paunch) together and season well. Then add the stock. Put into the cleaned paunch (fill to about half) and sew up loosely, but securely. Have ready a large pot of boiling water mixed with the rest of the liver stock, prick the haggis all oaver wirh a small knitting needle to prevent bursting, then cook in the water and stock, at a slow simmer uncovered, but keep up water level, for about 3 hours. Serves about 16."
    ---Traditional Scottish Cookery, Theodora Fitzgibbon [Fontana Paperbacks:Bungay] 1980 (p. 140-1)

    Related food? Black pudding.


    Black puddings
    Black pudding (also known as blood pudding, boudin noir, kiszka) traces its roots to ancient fresh sausages composed of pig's blood mixed with thickeners. Recipes evolved according to culture and cuisine. Where and when were the first blood puddings made? Jean-Francois Revel credits Ancient Greece: "Aphtonitas, the inventor of blood sausage." in Culture and Cuisine: A Journey Through the History of Food (p. 29). About blood as human food.

    What is black pudding?
    "Black pudding is a sausage...made from pig's blood with some thickening agent, such as cereal, and spices. Its name--a reference to the darkened colour of the cooked blood--is of long standing...The synonymous blood pudding is equally ancient, but nowadays much less usual. In England, the Midlands and the North are the great areas of black pudding appreciation; Bury in Lancashire is often claimed as the black pudding capital. But black puddings form an essential part of the basic peasant cuisine of many other European countries...Elsewhere in Europe a black pudding is a blutwurst (Germany) or a kashanka (Poland)."
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 31)

    "Blood sausages, sausages filled with blood, with cereal or other vegetable matter to absorb this, and fat. The most familiar type is the black pudding or boudin noir, English and French terms for much the same thing. It is pudding in the old sense of something enclosed in a sausage skin. The black pudding is probably the most ancient of sausages or puddings. Some would claim this distinction for haggis, but the earliest mention in literature is of something tending more towards black pudding, at least in its filling. Book 18 of Homer's Odyssey, around 1000 BC, refers to a stomach filled with blood and fat and roasted over a fire. The reason of such dishes is clear enough. Whe a pig is killed it is bled, and a large amount of blood becomes available. This has a very short keeping time if not preserved. Putting it into one of the vessels which the entrails of animals conveniently furnish, along with other offal with a limited keeping time, is an obvious solution. The oldest detailed recipe for black pudding, in the compilation attributed to Apicus (material of the first few centuries AD), calls for lengths of intestine, rather than a stomach, as the container. It is a rich recipe with no cereal, but chopped hard-boiled egg yolks, pine kernels, onions, and leeks. Common black puddings of the time were probably made with cereal. In medieval Europe it was not unusual for even relatively poor families to own a pig, which was slaughtered in the autumn. Black puddings were therefore made everywhere."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxfod] 1999 (p. 82)
    [NOTE: This book generally describes several methods for making blood sausage/pudding.]

    "Sausages were also a great favourite; indeed from Greek times they appeared to have been a staple of the kitchen in all coutnries. Perhaps the reason lies in their economical way of using all the odd bits of the carcass and once well seasoned, moistend with tasty fat, the smoking and drying intensifying the flavour; they become an addiction in a country's food, reflecting the tastes of a region in their use of particular flavourings. Some aspects of the Roman Lucanian sausage had remained with the Anglo-Saxons...This is a highly seasoned sausage with pepper, cumin, savory, rue and mixed herbs packed into the cleaned intestine and then smoked...Late autumn was the time to make black puddings, which became a delicacy to be eaten on feast days. There could be puddings of porpoise, mixed with oatmeal, seasoning and blood, or of capon's neck where the stuffing was forced into the neck then roasted with the bird...How much spice was used in recipes must have been a personal choice partly dictated by economics."
    ---British Food: An Extraordinary Thousand Years of History, Colin Spencer [Columbia University Press:New York] 2002 (p. 90)

    "When the pig was killed black puddings were...a great mainstay of the [Medieval] peasant kitchen and would remain so for the next 600 years. Out of the annual pig killing came such dishes as brawn, souse--the ears, cheeks, snout and trotters a pickled in brine or ale--as well as the puddings, enjoyed as festive food around Christmastide."
    ---ibid (p. 94)

    "Much of Roman cookery was highly spiced; and nowhere were the spices more prominent than in the sausages and black puddings of the period. Made usually in the cleaned intestine or caul (omentum) of pig, sheept or goat, they were a sophisticated development of the more primitive haggis. Some were produced for immediate eating, but others were smoked a long while above the hearth before they came to table...The tradition of sausage making lingered on in northern Europe after the end of the western Roman empire. The Anglo-Saxons developed their own versions. Although their recipes have not survived Lucanian sausages appear in a Latin and Anglo-Saxon vocabulary as part of a list of pig products...The Norman Conquest brought the sausage varieties of Norman-French cookery into English cuisine...Sausages were made from the lean pork; and black puddings from the animal's blood. The town cookshops often sold sausages and black puddings, and at least sometimes tainted meat was used in their manufacture. The best and also the safest were those made at home...Black puddings were also made at pig-killing time and the favourite season for this was late autumn. The animal's blood was blended with minced onions and diced fat, spiced with ginger, cloves and a little pepper, and stuffed into lengths of intestine. The puddings could be kept for up to three days, and were boiled in water before being eaten. In Britain puddings, rich with blood, fat and spcies, became quite a delicacy, to be eaten on high days and holidays. The word pudding, morever, soon took on a wider meaning than that of blood-sausage, and came to be associated with the idea of stuffing of any kind...The puccing of porpoise was a dish for the nobility. The pig was the source of puddings for common folk. Take the blood of the swine, and swing it, then put thereto minced onions largely with salt, and the suet of the god minced', begins an Elizabethan recipe...[Early modern period] Both black blood-puddings and sausages continued to be made from the traditional ingredients...Both black and white puddings were well liked in Tudor and Stuart times..."
    ---Food and Drink in Britain From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago:Chicago] 1991 (p. 308-315)

    Brid Mahon's Land of Milk and Honey: The Story of Traditional Irish Food and Drink offers these notes on Celtic traditions:

    "Most households killed a pig at certain times of the year, and in the more substantial farms seeral pigs were usually killed on the same day. Certain superstitions were once observed regarding the time of killing. A pig should never be killed unless there was a letter R in the month, which meant in effect that pigs were seldom slaughtered during the summer months. In the counties of Mayo and Galway it was believed that killing should take place under a full moon. If the animal was killed when the moon was waning the meat would reduce in size, while if the killing was doen when the moon was waxing or full the meat would increase. Killing the pig was an important social occasion, for it meant full and plenty for all. Each neighbour who came to help with the pig killing brought a handful of salt for the curing, and when the work eas done each would get a share of the puddings and the fresh pork. The slaughtering was done by the men, but it was the women who were responsible for curing and smoking the hams and bacons...Whe the pig was killed the blood was collevted in a vessel and used to make black puddings. In Ring, Co Waterford, they described the old method used:

    Long ago when they killed pigs they kept the intestines to make puddings. They washed them clear in a running stream and they were left to soak in spring water overnight. The casings were cut into fifteen inch lengths, tied at one end. Salt, lard, oatmeal, finely chopped onions, spices, peppers and cloves, together with a cup of flour were mixed with the pig's blood which had been collected in a bucket. Each pudding was three-quarters filled and tied at the end. It was dropped into a pot half-filled with water which had been brought to simmering point, cooked for about an hour, then taken up, allowed to cool, and divided amongst the neighbours. This was always done. When needed for use puddings were fried in a pan."
    ---Land of Milk and Honey: The Story of Traditional Irish Food and Drink, Brid Mahon [Mercier Press:Cork] 1998 (p. 58-9)

    Kiszka: Polish Blood Pudding
    Blood sausages and puddings such as Polish kiszka have ancient roots. According to the food historians, pork products of various sorts were very popular in medieval Poland:

    "In medieval Poland, two distinct types of pigs were raised for general consumption and there were doubtless a number of gradations between the two extremes. The first was called the "great swine," a healf-wild, half-domesticated razorback often illustrated in medieval manuscripts. The other--small, mean, and not easily domesticated--was known in Polish as "swamp hog"...Archaeological evidence confirms the high proportion of pork in the Polish diet at this time [1380]...Specific pork products mentioned in period texts include scoldre or soldre (ham), salsucia (sausage), and farcimina (blood pudding or blood sausage--called kiszka in modern Polish). Blood sausage was introduced to Poland before A.D. 1000 from German-speaking areas. It is known that beer was supplied to the royal kitchens for the purpose of preparing a blood soup called czernina or juszka in old Polish and referred to as iusculum in Latin. Blood from ducks, geese, and pigs was used...The farcimina, according to Szymon Syrennius's discussion in connection with millet kaska, "are used for stuffing blood sausages of pork and beef, having first been cooked in the fat. Farcimina appears in much earliers sources in a similar context, so there is little doubt as to what is meant by it. Similar sausages using various tupes of grain stuffings are still made in Poland today...Regarding methods of preparation, fried pork mush have been popular because Polish texts often mention frying pans."
    ---Food and Drink in Medieval Poland: Rediscovering a Cuisine of the Past, Maria Dembinska, translated by Magdalena Thomas, Revised and Adapted by William Woys Weaver [University of Pennsylvania Press:Philadelphia] 1999 (p. 88-90)

    Survey of black pudding recipes through time

    [Ancient Rome: Apicius]
    "Black Pudding

    Botellum sic facies: sex ovi vitellis coctis, nucleis pineis concisei cepam, porrum concisum, ius crudum misces, piper minutum et sic intestinum farcies. Adidies liquamen et vinum et sic coques.

    "Blood sausage is made as follows: 6 hard-boiled egg yolks, finely chopped pine kernels mixed with onion, finely sliced leek. Mix raw blood with finely ground pepper and fill a pig's intestine with this. Add wine and liquamen and cook. (Ap. 55)

    "Take 1 litre of blood, 6 hard-boiled egg yolks, 1 small leeek, 1 onion, 200 g pine kernels and 3 teaspoons of finely ground pepper. Season the blood with salt. Chop the onion and the leek finely in a food-processor. Add the mashed egg yolks, then the blood, and mix thorougly. Funnel the mixture with the coarsely chopped pine kernels into a pig's intestine, then twist in into sausages. Put the sausages into cold white wine with garum and bring it slowly to the bpil. Simmer until they are cooked."
    ---Around the Roman Table: Food and Feasting in Ancient Rome, Patrick Faas [Palgrave Macmillan:New York] 1994, 2003 (p. 260-261)

    [1393]
    "Item, pour faire boudins, aiez le sang du porc recueilli en un bel bacin ou paelle, et quant vous aurez entendu à vostre pourcel veoir deffaire, et fait laver très bien et mis cuire vostre froissure, et tandis qu'elle cuira, ostez du fons du bacin les coles du sang et gettez hors; et après, aiez oignons pelés et mincés jusques à la montance de la moitié du sang, avec la montance de la moitié de la gresse qui est entre les boyaulx, que l'on appelle l'entrecerelle5 des boyaulx, mincée menue comme dés, ensemble un petit de sel broyé, et gettez ou sang. Puis, aiez gingembre, clou, et pou de poivre, et broiez tout ensemble. Puis, aiez les menus boyaulx bien lavés, renversés et essangés6 en rivière courant, et pour oster la freschumée,7 aiez-les mis en une paelle sur le feu, et remuez; puis, mettez sel avec; et faites seconde fois, et encores troisième fois: et puis lavez, et après renversez et les lavez, puis mettez essuier sur une touaille; et les pousser et estraindre8 pour seicher. (L'en dit l'entrecerele et sont les gras boiaulx qui ont gresse dedens que l'en arrache à un coustel). Après ce que vous aurez mis et adjousté par esgales portions et quantités, pour autant de sang [p. 126] moitié d'oignons, et pour autant de sang, au quart de gresse, et puis quant vos boudins seront de ce emplis, faites-les cuire en une paelle en l'eaue de froissure, et picquiez d'une espingle quant ils s'enflent, ou autrement ils crèveroient. Nota que le sang se garde bien deux jours, voire trois, puis que les espices sont dedens. Et aucuns pour espices, ont poulieul,9 grant sarriette, ysope, marjolaine, queullis10 quant ils sont en fleur et puis séchés, pilés, pour espices. Et quant à la froissure, mettez-la en un pot de cuivre pour cuire au feu, tout entière et sans sel, et mettez le long de la gorge dehors le pot, car par la froissure s'escumera; et quant elle sera cuite, si l'ostez et pour faire le potage la regardez. Pour faire boudins de foie, prenez deux morceaulx de foie, deux morceaulx de mol, un morcel de gresse, et mettez en un bouel11 avecques du sang: et au surplus comme dessus. Nota que l'en fait bien boudins du sang d'une oé,12 mais qu'elle soit maigre, car de la maigre les boyaulx sont plus larges que de la grasse."
    ---
    Le Menagier De Paris

    English translation of above recipe:
    "Item, to make black pudding, have the pig blood collected in a fair basin or pan, and when you intend to see your pig destroyed, have the lights washed very well and put on to cook, and as soon as it is cooked, take from the bottom of the pan the sticky lumps of blood and take them out; and then, have onions peeled and chopped to the amount of half the blood, with the amount of half the suet which is among the guts, which is called the "entrecercle" of the guts, chopped as small as dice, together with a little ground salt, and throw it in the blood. Then, have ginger, clove, and a little pepper, and grind it all together. Then, have the small guts well washed, turned inside out and all blood removed in a running river, and to remove the dampness, have them placed in a pan on the fire, and stir; then, add salt; and do this a second time, and yet a third time: and then wash, and turn inside out and wash them, then place to dry on a towel; and squeeze and wring them to dry. (They say the "entrecercle" and these are the large guts which have suet inside which you get out with a knife). After you have added and adjusted by the right amounts and quantities, so that you have half as much onions as blood, and a quarter as much suet as blood, and then when your black puddings are filled with this, put them to cook in a pan in the water from the lights, and prick with a pin when they swell, or otherwise they will burst. Note that the blood keeps well for two days, in truth for three, since the spices are inside. And some for spices, have pennyroyal, great savory, hyssop, marjoram, gathered when they are in flower and then dried, ground, for spices. And as for the lights, put in a copper pot to cook on the fire, complete and without salt, and put the length of the groove (throat) outside the pot, so that the liquid may be skimmed; and when it is cooked, take it out and consider it for making soup. To make black puddings with liver, take two pieces of liver, two pieces of lung, a piece of suet, and place in a gut with blood: and with the remainder as above. Note that you can make nice black puddings from a goose, but it will be thin, and because of the thinness the guts are bigger than the suet."
    ---Source.

    [1575]
    "To Make Black Pudding.

    Take great oatmeal and lay it in milk to steep. Then take sheep's blood and put to it, and take ox white and mince into it. Then take a few sweet herbs and two or three leek blades and chop tjem [them] very small. Then put into it the yolks of some eggs, and season it with cinnamon, ginger, cloves, mace, pepper and salt. And so fill them."
    ---The Good Housewife's Jewel, Thomas Dawson, with an introduction by Maggie Black [Southover Press:East Sussex] 1996 (p. 44)

    [1615]
    "A blood pudding.

    Take the blood of a whole hog whilst it is warm, and steep it in a quart, or more, or great oatmeal grits, and at the end of three days with your hands take the grits out of the blood, and drain them clean; then put to those grits more than a quart of the best cream warmed on the fire; then take mother of thyme, parsley, spinach, succory, endive, sorrel, and strawberry leaves, of each a few chopped exceeding small, and mix them with the grits, and also a little fennel seed finely beaten; then add a little pepper, cloves and mace, salt, and great store of suet finely shred, and well beaten; then therewith fill your farmes, and foil them, as hath been before described."
    ---The English Housewife, Gervase Markham, edited by Michael R. Best [McGill-Queen's University Press:Montreal] 1986, 1994 (p. 73)

    [1747]
    "To make Black Puddings.

    First before you kill your Hog, get a Peck of Gruts, and boil them half an Hour in Water, then drain them, and put them into a clean Tub or large Pan, and kill your Hog, and save two Quarts of the Blood of the Hog, and keep stirring it till the Blood is quite cold; then mix it with your Gruts, and stir them well together. Season with a large Spoonful of Salt, a quarter of an Ounce of Cloves, Mace and Nutmeg together, an equal Quantity of each; dry it, and beat it well, and mix in. Take a little Winter-savory, Sweet Marjoram, and Thyme, and Pennyroyal stripped of Stalks, and chopped very fine, just enough to season them, and give them a Flavour, but no more. The next Day, take the Leaf off the Hog, and cut into Dice, scrape and wash the Guts very clean, then tye one End, and begin to fill them; mix in the Fat as you fill them, and be sure to put in a good deal of Fat, fill the Skins three Parts full, tye the other End, and make your Puddings what Length you please; then prick them with a Pin, and put them into a Kettle of boiling Water. Boil them very softly an Hour, then take them out and lay them on clean Straw. In Scotland they make a pudding with the Blood of a Goose, chop off the Head, and save the Blood; stir it till it is cold, then mix it with Gruts, and Spice, Salt, and Sweet Herbs according to their fancy, and some Beef- suet chopped. Take the Skin of the Neck, pull out the Wind-pipe and Fat, and fill the Skin. Tye it at both Ends; to make a Pye of the Giblets, and lay the Pudding in the Middle."
    ---Art of Cooking Made Plain & Easy, Hannah Glasse, facsimile 1747 edition with glossary and notes [Prospect Books:Devon] 1995 (p. 126) [NOTE: "Gruts" are oats; "leaf" is lard.

    Jane Grigson's Charcuterie and French Pork Cookery (p. 326-336) describes in detail the differences between French and English blood puddings. She offers several classic French recipes including some with fruit: Basic Method, Boudin de Pouitou (aux Epinards), Boudin de Lyon, Boudin d'Auergne, Boudin du Languedoc. Boudin aux Pommes, Boudin a la Creme, Boudin aux Marrons, English Black Pudding & Gogue. Your librarian can help you obtain a copy of this book.

    In English Food, Grigson instructs us how to select eat black puddings: "Black Puddings have to be chosen carefully unless you are lucky enough to live in Bury, Lancashire, where the best ones are made. Many manufacturers put far too much barley and oatmeal with the blood and pork fat, which makes them stodgy by comparison, say, with the delicious black puddings of France. To my way of thinking, the inside should remain soft and spicy when cooked; it should never be dry or hard. The usual way is to slice black puddings and fry or grill them with bacon. I think they taste better when cut into lengths, and fried with chopped bacon and chopped apple. Serve with mashed potato and mustard. Then they are really delcious." (p. 169-170).

    Related food? The Haggis.


    Batter puddings: Yorkshire and popovers
    Batter puddings, quick baked in specially designed pans, yield steamy chewy puffed deliciousness. Fat (meat drippings, butter) is the flavor key. Compare and contrast: Yorkshire Pudding and American Popovers.

    What is Yorkshire Pudding?
    "Yorkshire pudding is made from an egg, flour, and milk batter cooked in a very large shallow tin containing a layer of very hot beef dripping. It is a popular accompaniment to roast beef in Britain, and the two together compose the 'traditional' Sunday lunch. Sometimes the batter is poured into smaller, round tins to make individual pudings but this is not the authentic Yorkshire method. Strictly speaking, the pudding, cut in squares, should be served with gravy before the meat, to take the edge off the appetite. Batter puddings have a long history and exist in many forms, mostly sweet....Jennifer Stead...discusses the origin and development of the dish. Commenting on the localized attribtution of 'Yorkshire' attached to it, she notes that batter puddings were also known in the south of England; Yorkshire batter puddings appear to have been distinguished by their lightness and crispness. ..Such details had not escaped Hannah Glasse, she herself came from the North of England and who said that the dripping must boil before the batter is added....Yorkshire pudding was never eaten exlcusively with beef. The early recipe for batter pudding mentions mutton; indeed, it could be served with any roast meat..."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 859-860)

    "When wheat flour had come into common use for cakes and puddings, some economically minded cooks in the north of England devised a means of utilizing the fat that dropped into the dripping pan to cook a batter pudding while the meat roasted. In 1737 the recipe for 'A dripping pudding' was published in The Whole Duty of a Woman. 'Make a good batter as for pancakes; put in a hot toss-pan over the fire with a bit of butter to fry the bottom a little then put the pan and butter under a shoulder of mutton, instead of a dripping pan, keeping frequently shaking it by the handle and it will be light and savoury, and fit to take up when your mutton is enough; then turn it in a dish and serve it hot.' Similar instructions were reproduced by Hannah Glasse eight years later under the title of 'Yorkshire pudding'."
    ---Food and Drink in Britain: From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago:Chicago] 1991 (p. 99-100)

    "Yorkshire pudding. A puffy, breadlike side dish made by cooking an egg-and-milk batter in the hot fat and pan drippings from a roast beef. It is a traditional English dish named after a northern county in England. The first recipe for Yorkshire pudding appears in Mrs. Hannah Glasse's Art of Cookery, printed in England... and widely circulated in America. The dish is now a traditional accompaniment to roast beef in this country as well."
    ---Encyclopedia of American Food and Drink, John F. Mariani [Lebhar-Freidman:New York] 1999 (p. 356)

    Hannah Glasse's recipe [1747]

    "A Yorkshire Pudding.
    Take a quart of milk, four eggs, and a little salt, make it up into a thick batter with flour, like pancake batter. You must have a good piece of meat at the fire; take a stew-pan and put some dripping in, set it on the fire; when it boils, pour in your pudding; let it bake on the fire till you think it is nigh enough, then turn a plate upside down in the dripping-pan, that the dripping may not be blacked; set your stew-pan on it under your meat, and let the dripping drop on the pudding, and the heat of the fire come to it, to make it of a fine brown. When your meat is done and sent to table, drain all the fat from your pudding, and set it on the fire again to dry a little; then slide it as dry as you can into a dish; melt some butter, and pour it into a cup, and set it in the middle of the pudding. It is an excellent good pudding; the gravy of athe meat eats well with it."
    ---The Art of Cookery made Plain and Easy, Mrs. Glasse, facsimile 1805 edition, introduced by Karen Hess [Applewood Books:Massachusetts] 1997 (p. 101-2)

    How did Roast Beef with Yorkshire Pudding make its way across America?

    Generally, roast beef, Yorkshire pudding and the whole buffet of traditional European foods made its way across America with pioneers and settlers. People cook what they know. The first wave of explorers (and other portable groups such as Conestoga wagons groups, cowboys, and soldiers) adapated these recipes best they could to suit rudimentary cooking facilities. The second wave of settlers (and other stationary groups such as homesteaders, hotel keepers, boarding houses, etc.) enjoyed more elaborate cooking facilities and could do proper justice to these recipes. As with all times and places, the more money you had, the better you ate. Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding would have been fare for the middle classes and wealthy.

    These full-text cookbooks are worth their weight in gold:

    [1851]
    Collins, Anna Maria. The Great Western Cook Book, Or Table Receipts, Adapted to Western Housewifery. New York, A.S. Barnes & Company, 1857, c1851.
    Table of contents (no mention of roast beef or Yorkshire pudding, good for cooking methods)

    [1877]
    Wilcox, Estelle Woods. Buckeye Cookery, and Practical Housekeeping: Compiled from Original Recipes. Minneapolis, Minn.: Buckeye Pub. Co., 1877.
    Index
    Meat cookery (general)
    Roast meat with pudding (beef & Yorkshire combination)

    [1896]
    Farmer, Fannie Merrit. Boston Cooking-School Cook Book, Boston:Little, Brown, and Company, 1896. Yorkshire pudding

    ABOUT POPOVERS
    Food historians generally agree popovers are an American recipe. They descended from 17th century batter puddings made in England.
    Yorkshire pudding is the most famous example of these.

    "Popover. A light, hollow muffin made from an egg batter similar to that used in making Yorkshire pudding. The name comes from the fact that the batter rises and swells of the muffin tin while baking...In American Food (1974), Evan Jones writes: Settlers from Maine who founded Portland, Oregon, Americanized the pudding from Yorkshire by cooking the batter in custard cups lubricated with drippings from the roasting beef (or sometimes pork); another modification was the use of garlic, and, frequently, herbs. The result is called Portland popover pudding, individual balloons of crusty meat-flavored pastry." Most popovers, however, are not flavored but merely set in buttered muffin tins. They are served a breakfast or with meats at lunch and dinner."
    ---Encyclopedia of American Food and Drink, John F. Mariani [Lebhar-Friedman:New York] 1999 (p. 249)

    "Popover. An American favourite for breakfast and to accompany meat dishes, closely resembles a small Yorkshire pudding and is made with a similar batter (similar also to that used for pancakes). Popovers are baked in patty tins or custard cups in a hot oven. They earn their name (which first appeared in print in 1876) by a tendency to swell over the sides of the tins or cups while they are being baked."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 622)
    [NOTE: The 1876 source referenced above is from the Oxford English Dictionary: Practical Cooking, M. N. Henderson (p. 71) "Breakfast Puffs, or Pop-overs."

    Henderson's Popover recipe [1876]
    Popover recipe from 1877:

    Related food? Pancakes.


    Custard
    The history of custard is long and complicated. Ancient Roman cooks were the first to recognize the binding properties of eggs. They were experts at creating several egg-based dishes, most notably patinae, crustades and omlettes. These foods were either savory (made with cheese, meat, pepper etc.) or sweet (flavored with honey, nuts, cinnamon etc.).

    Food historians generally agree that custard, the sweet almost pudding-like substance we Americans know today, dates to the Middle ages. At that time custard was eaten alone or used as fillings for pies, tarts, pastry, etc. Flan is probably the the most famous and widely adapted custard dessert in the world. It is important to note that custard was not unique to Europe. Similar recipes flourished in Asia.

    Classic recipes for sweet custards were introduced to America by European cooks. Culinary evidence confirms American cooks readily embraced these recipes. Europeans also brought with them pudding recipes, which were a very different kind of food at that time. 18th century European puddings were typically boiled compositions of legumes, sometimes infused with meat products.

    The distinction between European custard and American pudding got muddled sometime in the 1840s. At that time in America, traditional boiled puddings were no longer necessary to feed the average family. There was plenty of food. This also happened to be the same time when Alfred Bird, an English chemist, introduced custard powder as an alternative to egg thickeners. It wasn't long before Americans began using custard powder and other cornstarch derivatives as thickeners for custard-type desserts. This proved quite useful for overlander (conestoga wagon) cooks who did not have ready access to a reliable supply of fresh eggs.

    In the last decades of the 19th century some American social reformers and food companies endeavored to tranform custard/pudding from dessert to health food. American custards and puddings were thusly marketed for their nutritional benevolence with special respect to invalids and children. Yes, this means chocolate pudding was perceived by some as a health food. Late 19th century cookbooks and company brochures (Jell-0, Royal) were replete with "quick" custard and pudding recipes, often touting arrowroot and tapicoca as the healthy ingredients. By the 1930s instant custard & pudding mixes were readily available to the American public.

    This is what the food historians tell us about custard
    "Custard. A mixture of milk and eggs thickened by gentle heating, is a basic item of western cooking and occurs in many dishes in either dominant or subsidiary role. In the vocabulary of the French kitchen, there is no word for custard, and thus it is easy to forget the role that custard mixtures play in things as diverse as quiche Lorraine and eclairs. The word used is creme, which...[has] other meanings; but see Creme caramel and creme brulee for connected subjects. Custard was much used in the Middle Ages as a filling and a binder for other fillings in the flans and tarts which were highly popular at the time and for long afterwards. That is how it got its name; custard is derived from crustade, a tart wtih a crust...Two other medieval preparations, caudle and posset, have a history linked with that of custard, and in some instances have virtually been custards. Although in their plainest for they were drinks, they were often thickened to a fair degree of solidity...In the 16th century fruit creams' became popular. These were sweet made with cream, and pureed fruit. Early types of fool were similar. During this time it became usually to make custards in dishes or individual cups rather than in a pastry case.
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2nd edition, 2007 (p. 237-8)

    What is custard powder?

    "What is abundantly clear is the importance of...the invention of custard powder. This product is not a dried form of real custard. It consists mainly of cornflour and sugar, coloured and flavoured, to which hot milk is added to make a sauce. It was invented by Alfred Bird, who opened a shop in Birmingham in 1837...Demand for Bird's product increased steadily during the second half of the 19th century. Competitors, using formulae whose ingredients included arrowroot, sago flour, or potato starch, coloured with turmeric or chrome yellow, and flavoured with cassia or bitter almonds, also entered the market. Bird's, however, promoted their product with skilful salesmanship, and become so closely identified with custard powder that few competitors survived. A principal factor in the success of custard powder was that, as it did not contain eggs, there was no longer any risk of the sauce curdling..."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2nd edition 2007 (p. 237-8)

    "...Alfred Bird experimented with a custard based on cornflour rather than eggs, to which his wife was allergic. And astute businessman, he marketed the result, and in the ensuing century bright yellow custard made from custard pwoder colonized the tables of Britian."
    ---An A-Z of Food & Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxfod] 2002 (p. 105)

    It is interesting to note that William Kitchiner references powders for making custard in 1830.

    Related food? Corn starch.

    A sampling of custard recipes through time:

    [Medieval Italy]
    "Dariole, or Custard Tart
    Form the dough into the shape of a deep pie and fill it completely with flour so it will keep its shape; cook it in a pan until it is somewhat dry. And when this is done, remove the flour and take some egg yolk, milk, sugar, and cinnamon. When these things are made into a mixture, put it into the pastry, cooking it like a tart, moving it frim time to time and stirring with a spoon. And when you can see it starting to set, pour some rose water and stir well with a spoon. And when it has set completely it is cooked. Note that is should not cook too much, and that is should quiver like a junket."
    (Translated from Libro de arte coquinaria, Maestro Martino [15th century])
    ---The Medieval Kitchen: Recipes from France and Italy, Odile Redon et al (p. 159--recipe adapted for modern kitchens follows on p. 160)

    [1747]
    "Baked custards

    One Pint of Cream, boil with Mace and Cinnamon, when cold take four Eggs, two Whites left out, a little Rose and Orange-flower Water and Sack, Nutmeg and Sugar to your Pallate, mix them well together, and bake them in China Cups."
    ---The Art of Cookery Made Plain & Easy, Hannah Glasse [1747] (p. 142)

    [1769]
    "An orange pudding.

    Boil the rind of a Seville orange very soft, beat it in a marble mortar with the juice. Put ot it two Naples biscuits grated very fine, half a pound of butter, a quarter of a pound of sugar, and the yolks of six eggs. Mix them well together, lay a good puff paste round the edge of your china dish, bake in a gentle oven half an hour. You may make a lemon pudding the same way but putting in a lemon instead of the orange."
    ---The Experienced English Housekeeper, Elizabeth Raffald, facsimile 1769 edition with an introduction by Roy Shipperbottom [Southover Press:East Sussex] 1997 (p. 82)
    [NOTE: this recipe would have produced a tart; not uncommon in 18th century English and American cookbooks.]

    [1830]
    "Custard Pudding.

    Boil a pint of milk, and a quarter of a pint of good cream; thicken with flour and water made perfectly smooth, till it is stiff enough to bear an egg on it; break the yelks of five eggs; sweeten with powdered loaf sugar; grate in a little nutmeg and the peel of a lemon: add half a glass of good brandy; then whip the whites of the five eggs till quite stiff, and mix gently all together: line a pie-dish with good puff paste, and bake half an hour. N.B. Ground rice, potato flour, panada, and all puddings made from powders, are, or may be, prepared in the same way."
    ---The Cook's Oracle, William Kitchiner, 1830 facsimile reprint [Applewood Books:Bedford MA] 2010 (p. 347)

    [1849]
    "Lemon custard

    Take four large ripe lemons, and roll them under your hand on the table to increase the juice. Then squeeze them into a bowl, and mix with the juice a very small tea-cup full of cold water. Use none of the peel. Add gradually sufficient sugar to make it very sweet. Beat twelve eggs til quite light, and then stir the lemon juice gradually into them, beating very hard at the last. Put the mixture into cups, and bake it ten minutes. When done, grate nutmeg over the top of each, and set them among ice, or in a very cold place. These custards being made without milk, can be prepared at a short notice; they will be found very fine. Orange custards may be made in the same manner."
    ---Directions for Cookery in its Various Branches, Eliza Leslie [Carey & Hart:Philadelphia PA] 1849 (p. 315-6)

    [1946]
    "Cup custard

    (5 Servings)
    Scald:
    2 cups milk
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    Pour these ingredients slowly over:
    3 beaten egg yolks or 2 whole eggs
    Add:
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1/8 teaspoon nutmeg (optional)
    Beat the custard until it is well blended. Pour it into a baking dish or into individual molds. Place the molds in a pan of hot water in a moderate oven 325 degrees for about 3/4 hour or until the custard is set. To test, insert a silver knife of spoon. If the custard does not adhere to the spoon it is ready to be removed from the oven. Chill and serve it with Caramel sirup or fruit juice."
    ---The Joy of Cooking, Irma S. Rombauer [1946] (p. 62)


    Clafoutis
    "Clafoutis is a French batter pudding generously dotted with black cherries (or, in non-classic versions of the dish, other fruits). It is a particular specialty of the Limousin region of central France. The word is a derivative of the dialect verb clafir, fill'."
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 79)

    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 188)

    "Clafouti. This is a home-style recipe, even a rustic one, from the Limousin: it is a kind of flan or thick fruit crepe. In principle, clafouti is made with black cherries; but you can also use other fruits: black plumbs, mirabelles, greengage plums, etc. It is generally served warm, or rather lukewarm; but it is equally good cold. It is usually cooked in a tart pan made of thick metal and with serrated sides, which is one of the basic utensils of classic provincial kitchens. If you do not have a tart pan, you can use an ovenproof porcelain plate, in which the clafouti is served, cut into slices."
    ---La Bonne Cuisine de Madame E. Saint-Ange, 1927 edition translated by and with an introduction by Paul Aratow [Ten Speed Press:Berkeley CA] 2005 (p. 598)

    Escoffier [Le Guide Culinaire 1903] does not include a recipe for clafoutis. The oldest recipe for this item we have on hand is from 1913:

    [1913] "Le clafoutis.
    C'est le plat populaire limousin, avec la bregaude...Pour le clafoutis, prenez trois oeufs,--et pour ces trois oeufs trois cuillerees de farine at autant de sucre en poudre. Une pincee de sel, trois quarts de litre de lait. Mettez la farine dans une terrine, puis le sel et, un a un, cassez les oeufs dans cette farine. Lorsque vous aurex remue, fait une pate a l'aide d'une cuiller, versez le lait. Peu a la fois tout d'abord, pusi le sucre. Et delayez le melange. Prenz alors un plat allant au four, et, dans ce plat, mettex environ une livre et demie de cerises. Plus elles seront noires, meilleurs elles seront. Les bigarreaux chantes par Victor Hugo ne sont pas de bonnes cerises de calfoutis. Ces cerises noires mises au fond du plat, versez dessus l'espece de cause formee par la farine delayee dans les oeufs et le lait; et protez le plat au four. Quand il sort du four on le saupoudre de sucre. Ce n'est past un plat aristocratique, mais lorsqu'il est reussi (j'en au fait parfois) it let delicieux. Et puis c'est le mets de l'enfance, celui du pay! Cela semble, et cela est toujours bon."
    ---L'Art du Bien Manger, Edmond Richardin, Paris 1913 (p. 14-5)

    [1927]
    "Clafouti...

    Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes. Serves 6. 400 grams (14 1/8 ounces) of cherries or of any other fruit; 125 grams (4 1/2 ounces) of flour; 2 eggs; 100 grams (3 1/2 ounces) of superfine sugar; a pinch of salt; 2 deciliters (6 3/4 fluid ounces, 7/8 cup) f milk that has been boiled and cooled; 20 grams (2/3 ounce, 1 heaping tablespoon) of butter to grease the tart pan or dish. A tart pan aboutr 24 centimeters (9 1/2 inches) in diameter and with sides at least 2 1/2 centimeters (1 inch) high. Note that the quantities of the ingredients above can be modified depending on the size of the utensil used, because unlike other recipes, the details do not have to [be] strictly observed. You must also increase the amount of sugar when you use acid cherries, and reduce it for the plums, depending on the type you use. Procedure: Into a small terrine or salad bowl, sift the flour, then add the salt, only half the sugar, and the eggs. Mix it with a small wooden spoon, to make a batter. Then add the milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, always mixing with the wooden spoon. Always add the milk gradually, to avoid lumps forming in the batter. Take out the pits from the fruit. If they are cherries, take the necessary precautikons to avoid losing the juice. Put the pitted fruits on a plate. Spread the butter in the tart pan with the tips of your fingers, making sure that every part of it is completely covered; if not, unmolding the clafouti will be difficult. If you use a baking dish, be sure to butter the sides as well as the bottom. At the bottom of the utensil, pour a few tablespoons of batter, spreading it out with the back of teh spoon to form a layer of batter 1/2 centimeter (3/16 inch) thick. Put it on the top shelf of the oven, leaving the door open, or in some other place that is warm enough so that the layer of batter will set in a few minutes. Then take out the utensil to rapidly arrange the fruits on the layer of dough or batter, as for a flan. Sprinkle them with the reserved sugar. Pour over the rest of the batter and spread it out with the back of a spoon to cover the fuits evenly. Immediately put it in a good strong medium oven, placing the tart pan or the bakingdish toward the bottom of the oven, as for all cakes. Allow at least 40 minutes of cooking. If the clafouti has been cooked in a tart pan, allow it to rest for about 10 minutes before unmolding it on a round plate. just before serving, sprinkle the survace with fine powdered sugar--that is, glaze sugar or confectiners' sugar."
    ---La Bonne Cuisine de Madame E. Saint-Ange, 1927 edition translated by and with an introduction by Paul Aratow [Ten Speed Press:Berkeley CA] 2005 (p. 598-599)
    [NOTE: We have a copy of the original French text. If you would like us to scan/send let us know.]

    [1961]
    "Clafouti.

    A homely preparation in Limousin, that is a kind of fruit pastry or thick fruit pancake, made usually with black cherries. Ingredients: 1 cup (125 grams) of flour, 2 eggs, 3/4 cup (100 grams) of powdered sugar, half of which is reserved to sprinkle over the furit, 1 cup (2 deciliters) of boiled milk, a pinck of salt, and 2 cups (400 grams) of cherries. Put the pastry and then the sonted cherries in a buttered flan case and cook in the oven."
    ---Larousse Gastronomique, Prosper Montagne, edited by Charlotte Turgeon and Nina Froud [Crown Publishers:New York] 1961 (p. 274)


    Where to
    cherries come from?


    Cold shape
    Cold Shape appears to be a dessert too horrible to mention. It is omitted from most cookbooks and shunned by the editors of the venerable Oxford English Dictionary. This passage explains why:

    "In 'Domestic Manners of the English,' Margaret Farrand Thorp gives, via Atlantic Monthly, a picture of English cookery that must daunt the stoutest appetite. Fancy smacking one's lips over a dessert, for example, named Treacle Sponge or (horror of horrors) Cold Shape!...if an American bill of fare can offer anything more repellent and reminiscent of the grave than Cold Shape, one cannot remember it at the moment."
    ---"Armchair Gossip," Music Educators Journal, February 1935 (p. 60)

    The Atlantic Monthly article reference was published September 1934 (p. 371-373). It mentions, but not does not specifically describe, Cold Shape:
    "The same countenance with she approaches the sink the housewife turns toward food. Meat and vegetables are axiomatic, given, not to be altered, merely encompassed as part of the essential duty of keeping fit...When she does dare to compose a mixture,--to construct, for instance a 'sweet,'--the English cook goes quite mad. The things which she combines in her panic have no conceivable real relationship. It never occurs to her to consider how they will taste. (You cannot persuade her to taste a dish, anyhow; she boils the fish for the proper length of time, and if it is no done then that is its own fault.) So she produces for your delight such anomalies as tinned apricots arranged with whipped cream to resemble poached eggs couched on pieces of cake-toast; assorted chips of fruit crowded into a glass and smothered with a glue-like custard; gingerbread and treacle; puddings of spaghetti and sugar flavored with vanilla. Neither will she stoop to enlist the suggestive power of pretty names. A French cookbook instructs you to bake a crust till it is as golden as a sunset sky, to beat the eggs to a snow, to introduce a bouquet of savory herbs--the meanest action is bathed in a poetic glow. The British manual talks flatly of suet and drippings, of stale bread crumbs and of grease, while British menus bear such realistic titles as Brown Gravy Soup, Gooseberry Fool, Treacle Sponge, Cold Shape."

    Historic recipes confirm similarities between cold Cornflour Pudding and Cold Shape. The connecting ingredient is cornflour, the primary agent in custard powder. This substance was generally regarded as easily digested, rendering it suitable for children, infirm, and aged diners.

    [1909]
    "Cornflour Pudding

    Ingredients.--1 pint of milk, 2 tablesooonfuls of cornflour, 1 tablespoonful of castor sugar, 2 eggs, a pinch of salt, the grated rind of 1/2 a lemon.
    Method.--Mix the cornflour smoothly with a little milk, boil the remainder, and add to it the cornflour, stirring all the time. Return to the saucepan, and boil gently until it thickens, then cool slightly. Add the sugar, yolks of eggs, salt and lemon-rind, and stir for 2 or 3 minutes by the side of the fire. Whisk the whites to a stiff froth, lightly add them to the rest of the ingredients, pour into a buttered piedish, and bake slowly for 1/2 hour.
    Time.--About 40 minuites. Average Cost. 5d. to 6d. Sufficient for 4 or 5 persons."
    ---Mrs. Beeton's Every Day Cookery, Isabella Beeton [Ward, Lock & Co.:London] new edition, 1909(p. 309-310)

    [1928]
    "Chocolate Custard Shape.

    Two ozs. cornflour, 2 ozs. grated chocolate, 1 1/2 pints milk, 2 ozs sugar, yolks of 2 eggs, essence of vanilla. Dissolve the grated chocolate in a 1/2 pint of the milk. Blend the cornflour with a little cold milk. Put on the remainder of the milk to boil. When almost boiling add the mixed cornflour. Stir well till quite smooth, and add the dissolved chocolate and the sugar. Boil or 5 minutes, stirring all the time. Remove the saucepan from the fire, and add the yolks of eggs. Cook gently for a minute, flavour with vanilla and pour into a glass dish rinsed out with cold water. When cold, serve with whipped cream or custard."
    ---The Schauer Improved Cookery Book, Australian and Sixth Edition [W.R. Smith & Paterson:Brisbane Australia] 1928 (p. 352)

    "Cold Custard Shape.
    Two ounces cornflour, 1 pint of milk, 2 yolks of eggs, 1 oz. of sugar, vanilla. Boil the milk and strain in the cornflour, blended with a little cold milk. Boil for 8 minutes, add vanilla, stirring all the time. Add the sugar and yolks of eggs. Cook for one moment. Set in a mould rinsed out with cold water. Turn out when cold. Serve with stewed fruit."
    ---ibid (p. 353)

    [1936]
    "Prune Shape

    1 lb Prunes (weighed without the stones).
    2 oz Sugar.
    1 pint Water.
    Rind of 1/2 Lemon.
    1/2 oz. Gelatine.
    2 oz. Almonds.
    Custard, as described.
    Utensils: Stewpan, knife, basin, kitchen spoon, pint measure, mould. Enough for 6 persons.
    Put the prunes into a stewpan with the water, the lemon rind, pared very thinly, and the sugar. Simmer till tender, stirring occasionally, to prevent the fruit from sticking. Dissolve the the gelatine in some of the liquid, and mix it thoroughly with the prunes. Brink the mixture just to the boil, and add a few of the almonds, blanched and shredded, then pour into a wet mould, and when set turn out into a glass dish. Shred the remainder of the almonds finely, and stick them all over the shape, to represent a hedgehog. Pour custard round the base of the shape, and serve.

    The Custard
    1/2 pint new Milk.
    2 Yolks of Eggs.
    A small piece of Lemon Rind.
    Sugar to taste.
    Utensils--Saucepan, double boiler, tablespoon, wooden spoon, basin, egg-beater.
    Boil the lemon rind in the milk. As soon as the milk boils, reduce the heat and let the lemon infuse for 15 minutes. Beat the yolks of eggs well in a basin. Add one tablespoonful of sugar to the eggs, and mix thoroughly. Strain the boiling milk on to the eggs and sugar, stirring briskly all the time. The pour all into a double boiler, and stir the mixture until it thickens, but on no account let it boil. Pour it out at once, and stir again for a few minutes, to prevent the eggs from cooking too much and curdling."
    ---Cookery Illustrated and Household Management, Elizabeth Craig [Odhams Press:London] 1936 (p. 358)

    Related food? Blancmanger & Custard.

    French cremes:

    Anglaise...Bavarian...brulee...
    caramel...Chiboust & chocolate

    What is creme? (cream)
    "Creme...In the French kitchen, there is no word to match the English kitchen, there is no word to match the English term custard', and creme has to fill the gap. The thin pouring-sauce type of custard is creme Anglaise. Creme patissiere is the equivalent of confectioner's custard, though the English term trends to denote a less rich kind than the French mixture. Creme patissiere is made from egg yolks, milk, sugar, and a little flour, with vanilla or some other flavouring; the light version used in eclair fillings and Saint Honore also contains beaten egg whites."
    ----Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 225)

    Creme Anglaise
    "Creme" is the french word for cream, the rich dairy product that separates itself from milk. "Anglaise" is the French adjective for "English." Food historians do not attribute "Creme Anglaise" to a specific person, place or time. Primary documents do not confirm a unique recipe. Creme Anglaise is historically subtitled "English custard" in cookbooks. Not all recipes for Creme Anglaise are titled such.

    The idea behind this concoction evolved from Ancient Roman cooks who used eggs as thickeners to create sweet custards and creams. The English have a long history of custards and creams. So do the French. These creams have been consumed alone and used to compose a wide range of classic desserts.

    Creme Anglaise recipes through time:

    [Escoffier:1903]
    4337. Creme a l'Anglaise--English Egg Custard.

    Ingredients: 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) caster sugar, 16 egg yolks, 1 litre (1 3/4 pt or 4 « U.S. cups) boiling milk and flavouring to choice, e.g. vanilla pod or orange or lemon zest infused in the milk or « dl (2 fl oz or 1/4 U.S. sup) of a liqueur which would be added when the custard has cooled. Method: Place the sugar and yolks in a basin and whisk together until they reach the ribbon stage. Add the boiling milk--with or without the infusion--a little at a time. Place on the stove and stir with a wooden spoon until the yolks thicken the mixture and coats the back of the spoon. Do not allow the custard to come to the boil as this will cause it to separate. As soon as it is cooked, pass through a fine strainer or cloth and keep in a Bain-marie if for immediate use hot, or in a basin if it is to be used cold; in this case it should be stirred until it becomes completely cold. NOTE: When mixing the sugar and yolks, 1 tsp of arrowroot may be added; this not only helps in obtaining a perfectly smooth blend but prevents the custard from separating if it gets too near boiling point."

    4338. Creme a l'Angalise colee--Jellied Egg Custard for Cold Sweets
    Make the custard in thse same way as for Creme Anglaise and when it is almost cooked, add 20-25 g (3/4-1 oz) or 8-10 leaves of gelatine previously soaked in cold water. Pass through a fine strainer into a basin and stir until it is completely cold. The soaked and well drained gelatine may be added to the mixture when it is first placed to cook."
    ---The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery, Escoffier, translated into English by H.L. Cracknell and R.J. Kaufmann of Le Guide Culinare in its entirety [John Wiley"New York] 1979 (p. 518)

    [Diat:1946]
    "English Custard (Creme a l'Anglaise)

    1/3 cup sugar
    2-3 egg yolks
    1 teaspoon flour
    1 1/2 cups milk
    1 piece vanilla bean
    Work up sugar and egg yolks with a wooden spoon until smooth and creamy. Add flour. Scald milk and vanilla bean together and then add egg yolk mixture to it, little by little. Return to saucepan and cook slowly, stirring constantly until it comes to the boiling point. Do not allow to boil. Remove vanilla bean. Cool, stirring vigorously at first and then from time to time to prevent crust from forming on top. Serve cold or a little warm. Other flavoring may be used. For coffee flavor use 1/2top milk and 1/2 strong coffee, for chocolate flavor add grated chocolate to taste to hot milk. Serves to to 3."
    ---Louis Diat's Home Cookbook: French Cooking for Americans, Louis Diat [J.B. Lippincott Company:Philadelphia] 1946 (p. 255)

    Compare with:
    [Diat:1941]
    "Vanilla Sauce.

    1 cup milk
    1 cup sweet cream
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    4 egg yolks
    1/2 vanilla bean or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    Scald the milk and cream with the vanilla. Beat egg yolks light, add the sugar, then combine with the hot milk and cream and stir with a whip. Cook in top of double boiler stirring contantly until like a custard. StrAIn through a muslin cloth or fine sieve and let cool. For a thicker sauce, add 1 tablespoon of flour mixing it with the sugar and egg yolks."
    ---Cooking a la Ritz, Louis Diat [J.B. Lippincott:Philadelphia] 1941 (p. 460)

    [Child:1972]
    "Creme Anglaise.

    (French Custard Sauce) For about 1 1/2 cups A 1 1/2-quart stainless-steel or enameled saucepan
    1/3 cup granulated sugar
    1 1/4 cups hot milk
    2 tsp vanilla extract
    Optional: 1 Tb rum
    1 Tb softened butter
    Beat the egg yolks in the saucepan until thick and sticky (1 minute), gradually beat in the sugar, then beat in the hot milk by droplets. Stir over moderately low heat with a wooden spoon until sauce thickens enough to coat the spoon--do not let sauce come near the simmer or the egg yolks will curdle from heat and stir in vanilla, then the optional rum, and the butter. Serve warm or cool."
    ---The French Chef Cook Book, Julia Child, [Alfred A. Knopf:New York] 1972 (p. 123-4)

    Bavarian cream (Bavarois)
    Food historians tell us Bavarian cream (aka bavarois) is a cold molded gelatin-based dessert originating in France in the early 19th century. Careme is generally credited for the invention. The connection with Bavaria is obscure. A survey of historic cookbooks reveals American recipes titled "Bavarian cream" first appeared in the the 1880s. Some of these recipes employed eggs; others did not. Original recipes were fancy, cold, molded desserts similar to
    ice cream bombes. Today, most Americans think of Bavarian cream in the context of doughnut fillings.

    "Bavarian cream. Bavarois. A cold dessert made from an egg custard with a gelatine, mixed with whipped cream and sometimes fruit puree or other flavours, then set in a mould. It is not known whether there is a connection between this dessert and Bavaria, where many French chefs used their talents at the court of the Wittlesbach princes. Careme gives various recipes under the name fromage bavarois (Bavarian cheese). Many cookery books confuse Bavaian cream with a similar dish, the moscovite, which was perhaps invented by a French chef in the service of a great Russian family."
    ---Larousse Gastronomique, completely revised and updated [Clarkson Potter:New Yok] 2001 (p. 86)

    "Bavarois is a creamy cold dessert made with an egg-custard base into which are mixed cream, beaten egg whites, a flavouring (such as chocolate or orange), and gelatine. It is then set in a mould. The Bavarois, or bavaroise (the gender seems to be interchangeable: the masculine form derives from French fromage bavarois, the feminine from creme bavaroise), has been popular in Britain since the mid-nineteenth century, frequently under the anglicized name Bavarian cream. The 1868 edition of Modern Cookery for Private families, for instance, includes directions for making it, although it did not appear in Eliza Acton's original 1845 version. It is not known what the original connection with Bavaria is."
    ---An A-Z of Food & Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 22)

    "The dessert called bavarois...usually consists in an egg custard...mixed with whipped cream and set with gelatin in a mould. It first appeared in print in the early 19th century, when Careme gave a recipe. Although the English name is sometimes Bavarian cream' and some French authorities believe that it was brought to France by a French chef who had been working in Bavaria, the connection is not clearly established. However, the great chef Escoffier, when he declared the title Bavarois' to be illogical and suggested that Moscovite' would be more appropriate, may be taken to endorse by implication the topographical derivation."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 63)

    [1828]
    "Cream a la Vanille.

    Take one or two sticks of vanilla, which infuse in some boiling cream; next put in the eggs as you do for other creams. If you are making a fromage a la glace [sometimes erroneously called fromage bavarois] you must put a smaller quantity of eggs, as isinglass is to be put to stiffen it; and keep constantly stirring the cream on the fire, while the eggs are doing. Mind that the eggs are not overdone. When you perceive the cream is getting thick, put the melted isinglass in, and rub it through a tammy, then put it into a mould, and into ice. When you wish to make the cream more delicate, let it get cold; then put it into a vessel over ice, before you put any isinglass into it, and whip it; when quite frozen, put it cold melted isinglass; this method requires less isinglass, and the jelly is much lighter."
    ---The French Cook, Louis Eustache Ude, Englished facimile reprint of 1828 edition [Arco Publishing:New York] 1978 (p. 360-1)

    "Fromage au Cafe.
    See Creams, for the mode of infusing coffee; only use one half of the cream for the infusion, which, when cold, mix with the other half. Beat the whole on ice, add isinglass, and then fill the mould, &c. &c. Observations.--The fromages Bavarois, made of fruit, deserve the preference over those made with infusions. But in the winter season, for a grand dinner or supper, when a great variety is required, infusions may be recurred to; but in that case, use preserved fruit and sweetmeats of all kinds."
    ---ibid (p. 382-383)

    [1869]
    "Cocoa Bavaroise a la Moderne

    Melt 3/4 oz. of gelatine, in a stewpan, over the fire; with:
    10 oz. of lump sugar;
    1 pint of water;
    1 stick of vanilla;
    Strain the jelly, through a silk sieve, into a basin, to cool; Take 1/2 lb. Of cocoa-nibs; roast them in a copper sugar-boiler, over a slow fire; and put them, hot, in 1 1/2 pint of boiling milk, and let them steep for an hour; Put 8 yolks of egg in a stewpan, with 10 oz. Of sugar and the mlk and cocoa-nibs; stir over the fire, without boiling; add 1 1/2 oz. Of gelatine, previously steeped in water; and press the whole thorugh a tammy cloth; Stir the above custard on the ice, till it begins to set; and add 1 1/2 pint of whipped cream; Put a cylinder-mould in the ice; and take it out, and coat it with the vanilla jelly; put it back in the ice; and, when the jelly is set, fill the mould with the cocoa cream; let it remain in the ice for two hours; turn the Bavarois out of the mould; and serve."
    ---The Royal Cookery Book, Jules Gouffe, tranlsated from the French and adapted for English use by Alphonse Gouffe [Sampson Low, Son, and Marston:London] 1869 (p. 525-6)

    Compare with:

    "Apricot Cream a la Muscovite
    Observation.--This cream can only be prepared in a hermetically closing ice-mould. Rub sufficient apricots through a hair sieve to make 1 quart of puree; put it in a basin, and add 10 oz. Of pounded sugar; and 3/4 oz. Of gelatine, dissolved in 1/2 pint of water; put the basin on the ice, and work the contents as directed for Vanilla Cream...adding 1 pint of whipped double cream; When the apricot cream begins to thicken, put it in an ice mould; close the mould, and spread some butter over the opneing, so that no water may penetrate inside; embed it in some pounded ice and saltpetre, or bay salt, so that it be surrounded by, at least, a 3-inch thickness of ice; At the end of two hours and a half, turn the cream out of the mould; and serve. All creams a la Muscovie should be thoroughly iced."
    ---ibid (p. 526-7)
    [NOTE: Gouffe also offers recipes for Coffee Bavaroais a la Moderne, Orange Bavarois a la Modern, and strawberry, peach, pineapple and raspberrry cream a al Muscovite.]

    [1884]
    Boston Cooking School Cook Book/Mrs. D. A. Lincoln

    Plain Bavarian Cream & Bavarian Cream (with eggs)

    [1896]
    Boston Cooking School Cook Book/Fannie Merritt Farmer Bavarian Cream (Quick)

    [1903]
    "Bavarois.

    The chilled cream referred to under the name Bavarois in various books on cookery used to be described as Fromage Bavarois on menus. It was subsequently shortened by elimating the word Fromage since this was considered slightly coarse and unnecessary, but it still remains understood though not included. The title Bavarois, although sanctioned by usage seems illogical; the title Moscovite appears more logical and suitable. As a result of this, instead of writing Bavarois au Cafe etc. on the menu, but could be Muscovite a la Vanille, Moscovite au Cafe etc., Bavarois are made in two ways: 1) by using a cream mixture; 2) by using a fruit mixture....[items 4572 and 4573 are for these mixtures]...4574. The Moulding and Presentation of Bavarois. Bavarois are usually moulded in funnel moulds which have been lightly coated inside with almond oil. When full they should be covered with a round piece of paper and allow to set either in crushed ice or in a refrigerator. Whe required for serving the mould is plunged quickly into lukeward water, dried, then turned out on to the serving dish. Instead of oiling the mould a thick coating of light-coloured caramel can be used to line it; this give an excellent appearance and taste to the Bavarois. There is another way of presenting a Bavarois which can be recommended, this is to mould it in a timbale or deep silver dish which is then surrounded with crushed ice. In this case the Bavarois is not demoulded for serving thus the mixture can be made with less gelatine and therefore it becomes more delicate. When made by this last method it is sometimes served accompanied with a dish of stewed fruit or fresh fruit salad. However, these accompaniments are more suitable for servivng with certain cold puddings which have much the same appearance as a Bavarois. Finally, whether the Bavarois is made in a mould or not it can be finished by decorating it with white or pink Creme Chantilly using a piping bag and cup or a paper cornet."
    ---Escoffier: The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery [1903], the first translation into English by H.L. Cracknell and R.J. Kaufmann of Le Guide Culinaire in its entirety [John Wiley:New York] 1999 (p. 544)

    Chiboust (Creme St. Honore)
    Chiboust is essentially a pastry creme mixed with egg whites (meringue). This creme takes its name from its creator, Chiboust, who used it to accompany Gateau St. Honore. It is found under a variety of names in cookbooks, most notably Creme St. Honore. Today, chiboust comes in many flavors and may be found on the dessert menus of inspired chefs. While food historians and historic texts confirm lemon creams have been popular since Medieval times, we find no print evidence confirming Chiboust/Creme St. Honore traditionally flavored with this ingredient. Perhaps this indicates this practice is a recent phenomenon?

    "Chiboust. A 19th-century pastrycook, whon in 1846 created the Saint-Honore, a cake named in honor of the Paris district in which he workd, and also in honor of Saint-Honore, the patron saint of bakers and pastrycooks. Chiboust cream, which traditionally accompanies the Saint-Honore, is a confectioner's custard (pastry cream), usually flavored with vanilla, and blended when still warm with stiffly whisked egg whites."
    ---Larousse Gastronomique, completely revised and updated edition [Clarkson Potter:New York] 2001 (p. 271)

    About Gateau St. Honore

    [1903]
    "4345. Creme a Saint-Honore.

    Prepare the Pastry Cream as in the preceding recipe and whilst still boiling fold in 15 stiffly beaten egg whites. NOTE: If this cream is not going to be used immediately it is advisable to add 4 leaves of gelatine (12 g or 1/2 oz) per 1 litre ( 1 3/4pt or 4 « U.S. cups) milk; this also applies in warm weather."
    ---The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery, Escoffier, c. 1903, The first translation into English by H.L. Cracknell and R.J. Kaufmann [John Wiley:New York] 1979 (p. 518)

    [1946]
    "Creme St. Honore.

    This pastry cream is often called "Choux a la Creme" because it is the special cream that is used as a filling for Cream Puffs, as well as in making the famous Gateau St. Honore. Combine Creme Patissiere...and stiffly beaten egg whites, using twice as many whites as there are egg yolks in the Creme Patissiere and folding them in when the creme is cold."
    ---Louis Diat's Home Cookbook: French Cooking for Americans, Louis Diat [J.B. Lippincott:Philadelphia] 1946 (p. 232-3)

    [2005]
    Recipe for Lemon Chiboust

    Creme brulee

    The name is French, but the origins are not perfectly clear. Escoffier and the other major French culinary experts do not include recipes for this item in their classic cookbooks. Culinary experts generally agree that Creme Brulee originated in England. They also agree recipes for this dessert vary accoring to time and place.

    "One of the greatest desserts in the realm of cooking is Creme Brulee and despite its name it is not French but a very old English one. No one seems quite to know when or how it became Gallicized, for over a long period of time it was known simply as burnt cream. The earliest recipe I have been able to find was printed in a 17th-century cookbook from Dorsetshire. After that it had a rather interesting history and gained considerable renown. Originally, this was a rich custard, a mixture of sugar, egg yolks and cream cooked over heat, then poured into a dish and cooled. The top was then sprinkled with sugar and the sugar caramelized to a brown glaze with a red-hot salamander, and old type of heavy metal tool which was lowered to the surface of the sugar and moved over it until the intense heat melted and browned the sugar, hence the name burnt cream. Creme Brulee became a standard dessert at Cambridge University, especially Christ College where it was made in a special dish designed by the Copeland-Spode Co. It's amusing to read old cookbooks and to discover the many versions of Creme Brulee--sometimes it was made with gooseberry or raspberry fool instead of custard...You still are more apt to find it served in England, although in America we went through a great Creme Brulee period a number of years ago and I wish we would again, for to my mind it is without peer--few desserts are more delicious to eat and to look at...In the years during which the recipe has been used in America, the original recipe has been considerably changed, and I'm not sure it was for the better. Many U.S. recipes call for a topping of brown sugared, and although I have used this from time to time, I've never felt the result was all it should be..."
    ---"Creme Brulee: Dessert One of the Greatest," James A. Beard, Los Angeles Times, November 5, 1970 (p. K3)
    [NOTE: This article contains a typical 1970s American recipe.]

    "Creme brulee is a French term for a rich baked custard made with cream, rather than with milk. The Custard is topped with a layer of sugar (usually brown) which is then caramelized by use of a salamander or under a grill. Creme, meaning cream, is derived from the Latin "Chrisma" through the old French creme. The term brulee is applied to dishes such as cream custards with are finished off with a caramelized sugar glaze. In English, the dish is Burnt cream. This term was in use as long ago as the beginning of the 18th century, but the French term had already been used by Massailot in 1691 and has priority, although it fell into disuse in France for a while in the 19th century...Creme brulee is also sometimes known as Trinity cream because of its association with Trinity College, Cambridge, where the college crest was impressed on top of the cream with a branding iron."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 226)

    "Although many people think of [Creme Brulee] as a French dessert, creme brulee is actually Creole. Make the basic cream exactly like the preceding creme anglaise, but use half the amount of sugar, and whipping cream instead of milk."
    ---Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Simone Beck, Louisette Bertholle & Julia Child [Alfred A. Knopf:New York] 1963 (p. 589)

    "Creme brulee...The Random House Dictionary of the English Language traces the first appearance in print of creme brulee to 1885, from the French, meaning 'burnt cream,' which it is often called in England. But the dish is probably not of French oridings. Escoffier does not mention such a dish; Larousse Gastronomique refers to a similar dish under the name Creme Anglaise au Miroir...as 'burnt cream' the dish originated in England, where, according to English food authority Jane Grigson recipes for the dish appeared in seventeenth- century cookbooks. By the turn of the twentieth century it had become a favorite dessert at Trinity College, Cambridge, and, according to Jane Garmen in Great British Cooking (1981), it is often referred to as 'Trinity Cream.'Recipes for 'burnt cream' have been included in Creole cookbooks since the nineteenth century, though the Picayune Creole Cook Book (1901) indicates that the confection is made merely by adding caramel to a custard base that is then reduced, strained, garished with fruits, and served cool...The classic American cookbook Joy of Cooking calls it 'A rich French custard--famous for its hard, caramelized sugar glaze.'...the popularity of the dish in the United States soared after it was made fashionable when chef Alain Sailhac brought the idea back from a trip to Spain (where the dish is known as an old Catalan dessert called crema quemada a la catalana) in 1982 and began making it at the restaurant Le Cirque in New York City. After that it became a standard dish in American fine-dining restaurants, as well, ironically, as in France."
    ---Encyclopedia of American Food & Drink, John F. Mariani [Lebhar-Friedman:New York] 1999 (p. 106-7)

    Creme caramel
    This
    flan derivative is France's answer to baked custard. "Creme caramel. A light egg custard that is baked in a caramel-lined mould in a water bath. After the custard is baked, it is chilled and then turned out of the mold....In Spain, it is called flan and in Italy, crema caramella."
    ---The International Dictionary of Desserts, Pastries, and Confections, Carole Bloom [Hearst Books:New York] 1995 (p. 84)

    "Creme caramel. A sweet dish which is essentially a custard but, because it is seen as something originally French, is known as a creme. The entry for that term explains that a boiled custard is often served in France in little individual containers. If some caramel syrup is poured into the container before the custard is put in, and the custard is subsequently turned out when served, it will have a more interesting appeareance and flavour; and will qualify as a creme caramel. In the later part of the 20th century creme caramel occupied an excessively large amount of territory in European restaurant dessert menus. This was probably due to the convenience, for restauranteurs, of being able to prepare a lot in advance and keep them until needed. Latterly, however, it seems to have been losing ground. A kindred dish...is creme brulee."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 236)

    "Creme caramel is one of a species of French custard desserts known as cremes renversees, literally creams turned upside down'...Creme caramel should not be confused with creme au caramel, which is a caramel-flavoured cream dessert."
    ---An A to Z of Food & Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2003 (p. 96)

    [1803]
    Of Syllabubs, Creams and Flummery, The Frugal Houswife, Susannah Carter [New York]

    Related foods: Flan & Caramel cake.

    Chocolate cream
    Recipes for chocolate cream (creme) first surface in 18th century European cook books. They are the halfway point between
    hot chocolate and custard. Frozen versions (think: ice cream) followed soon thereafter.

    [1758]
    "To make Chocolate Cream. Creme Chocolate.

    Boil a quart of Milk and Cream, mix'd and sweeten'd to your Taste; then scrape as much Chocolate as will give it the Colour, then boil it, keeping stirring it with a Whisk, but first put in three or four Yolks of Eggs beaten; strain it, and put it into Glasses or a Glass Bowl."
    ---The Art of Cookery, John Thacker, facsimile 1758 edition with an introduction by Ivan Day [Southover Press:East Sussex] 2004 (p. 123)

    [1769]
    "To make Chocolate Cream.

    Scrape fine a quarter of a pound of the best chocolate, put to it as much water as will dissolve it. Put it in a marble mortar, beat it half an hour. Put in as much fine sugar as will sweeten it and a pint and a half of cream. Mill it, and as the froth rises lay it on a sieve. Put the remainder part of your cream in posset glasses and lay the frothed cream upon them. It makes a pretty mixture upon a set of salvers."
    ---The Experienced English Housekeeper, Elizabeth Raffald, facsimile 1769 edition with an introduction by Roy Shipperbottom [Southover Press:East Sussex] 1997 (p. 125)
    [NOTE: The Oxford English Dictionary defines "salver" thusly: "A tray, used for handing refreshments or for presenting letters, visiting-cards, etc."]

    [1832]
    "Cream, Chocolate.
    (1) Take a pint of milk, a gill of cream, the yolks of three eggs, and five ounces of powder sugar, mix these ingredients together, set them on the fire, stir it constantly, and let it boil till reduced to a quarter; then add two ounces of grated chocolate; and having boiled a little longer, strain it, and let it cool Serve it cold." ---The Cook's Own Book: Being a Culinary Encyclopedia, Mrs. N.K.M. Lee, facsimile 1823 edition [Arno Press:New York] 1972 (p. 56-57) "Cream, Chocolate. (2) Take about half a cake of chocolate, bruise it to pieces, put it in a stewpan with a little milk, and stir it over a gentle fire till it looks smooth and thick; then add a little more milk, and stir it again over the fire; continue this till it takes the thickness of cream; sweeten it to your palate with clarified sugar; stir in a little thick cream with a very little isinglass, bur it through the tammy, and set it in the mould."
    ---The Cook's Own Book: Being a Culinary Encyclopedia, Mrs. N.K.M. Lee, facsimile 1832 edition [Arno Press:New York] 1972 (p. 56-57)

    Related foods? Ice cream & chocolate mousse.


    Cabinet & Diplomat puddings
    Puddings recollecting governmental officials (cabinets,
    diplomats, chancellors) feature prominently in 19th century French/English culinary texts. Recipes and ingredients vary through time and place.

    "Cabinet pudding. There are many variants of cabinet pudding, hot, cold, and even made with ice cream. The political link, though unexplained, is constants. Ude (1828) gives, as an alternative name, poudin a la chanceliere. Another name is Diplomat pudding, which may just be a translation of the French Pouding a la diplomat. Only the names differ; the puddings are all alike. The general method is to grease a pudding basin; stick currants or glace fruit to the grease; line it with sponge fingers or soaked macaroons; and then fill this lining with layers of dried fruit, sponge fingers, and custard (in cold versions including gelatin). Most versions include some spirit or liqueur as a flavouring. Hot ones are boiled; cold ones are made with custard or cream that needs no further cooking."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2nd edition, 2007 (p. 122-123)

    Cabinet Pudding
    "Cabinet pudding is redolent of a bygone age. In its most highly evolved and luxurious form, impregnated with liqueurs and decorated with crystallized fruits, it graced many a Victorian dinner table. The basic recipe called for sponge cakes crumbled up, to which was added a custard of eggs and milk, the whole being poached, steamed, or boiled in a mould (the ever economical Mrs Beeton suggested substituting bread and butter for the cake, and in fact that is the central ingredient in the first recorded recipe for cabinet pudding in Kitchener's Cooks Oracle, 1821). The name seems to derive from the political sort of cabinet, a supposition supported by an early synonym, chancellor's pudding, and by the practical identity of diplomat pudding."
    ---An A-Z of Food & Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 51)

    [1828]
    "No, 14.--Cabinet Pudding, or Chancellor's Pudding.

    Boil a pint of cream in which put to infuse a little lemon peel, and a little salt. Pour the cream while boiling over a pound of biscuits a la cuilliere, and let them soak. Next add the yolks of eight eggs. Then beat the whites of six eggs only; some persons add a little brandy, but that I disapprove of. Butter over a mould, and decorate it with preserved cherries. When you send up the first course, pour the above preparation into a mould, and put it au bain marie. Observe, that if the mould is large, you must use more eggs. Make a sauce as for the eggs a la neige, into which squeeze the juice of a lemon: or make a sauce with arrow-root as follows; dilute a spoonful of arrow-root with white wine and sugar, and lay it on the fire to boil; keep it liquid enough to mask the mould, and let the dried cherries that are around be full in sight. N.B.--This pudding can be made of remnants of Savoy biscuits, or brioche, or the crumb of a penny loaf."
    ---The French Cook, Louis Eustache Ude, Englished 1828 facsimile edition [Arco Publishing:New York] 1978 (p. 365-366)

    [1830]
    "Newcastle, or Cabinet Pudding.

    Butter half a melon mould, or quart basin, ands tick all round with dried cherries, or fine raisins, and fill up with bread and butter, &c. as in the above [Newmarket Pudding]; and steam it an hour and a half."
    ---The Cook's Oracle and House Keeper's Manual, William Kitchener, facsimile 1830 edition [Applewood Books:Bedford MA] (p. 346)

    [1861]
    "Cabinet or Chancellor’s Pudding.

    1256. INGREDIENTS.—1–1/2 oz. of candied peel, 4 oz. of currants, 4 dozen sultanas, a few slices of Savoy cake, sponge cake, a French roll, 4 eggs, 1 pint of milk, grated lemon-rind, 1/4 nutmeg, 3 table-spoonfuls of sugar. [Illustration: CABINET PUDDING.] Mode.—Melt some butter to a paste, and with it, well grease the mould or basin in which the pudding is to be boiled, taking care that it is buttered in every part. Cut the peel into thin slices, and place these in a fanciful device at the bottom of the mould, and fill in the spaces between with currants and sultanas; then add a few slices of sponge cake or French roll; drop a few drops of melted butter on these, and between each layer sprinkle a few currants. Proceed in this manner until the mould is nearly full; then flavour the milk with nutmeg and grated lemon-rind; add the sugar, and stir to this the eggs, which should be well beaten. Beat this mixture for a few minutes; then strain it into the mould, which should be quite full; tie a piece of buttered paper over it, and let it stand for 2 hours; then tie it down with a cloth, put it into boiling water, and let it boil slowly for 1 hour. In taking it up, let it stand for a minute or two before the cloth is removed; then quickly turn it out of the mould or basin, and serve with sweet sauce separately. The flavouring of this pudding may be varied by substituting for the lemon-rind essence of vanilla or bitter almonds; and it may be made much richer by using cream; but this is not at all necessary. Time.—1 hour. Average cost, 1s. 3d. Sufficient for 5 or 6 persons. Seasonable at any time. A PLAIN CABINET or BOILED BREAD-AND-BUTTER PUDDING. 1257. INGREDIENTS.—2 oz. of raisins, a few thin slices of bread and butter, 3 eggs, 1 pint of milk, sugar to taste, 1/4 nutmeg. Mode.—Butter a pudding-basin, and line the inside with a layer of raisins that have been previously stoned; then nearly fill the basin with slices of bread and butter with the crust cut off, and, in another basin, beat the eggs; add to them the milk, sugar, and grated nutmeg; mix all well together, and pour the whole on to the bread and butter; let it stand 1/2 hour, then tie a floured cloth over it; boil for 1 hour, and serve with sweet sauce. Care must be taken that the basin is quite full before the cloth is tied over. Time.—1 hour. Average cost, 9d. Sufficient for 5 or 6 persons. Seasonable at any time."
    ---Source online.

    [1882]
    Miss Parloa's Cabinet Pudding

    [1936]
    "Plain Cabinet Pudding

    1/4 lb. Bread-crusts.
    2 Eggs.
    1/2 pint Milk.
    Sugar.
    A few Raisins.
    A few drops of Vanilla
    Sauce, as described.
    Utensils--Pudding basin, 2 small basins, egg-beater, knife, 2 saucepans, wooden spoon, pint measure, measuring spoons, strainer. Enough for 3 or 4 persons. Butter a basin well. Stone the raisins, and ornament the basin with them. Cut the bread-crusts into dice, and put them in the basin. Beat the eggs, and add to them the milk, sugar and flavouring. Pour this over the bread in the basin, and let it soak some time before cooking, then lay a fold of buttered paper over top. Stand the basin on a fold of paper in a saucepan with boiling water, enough to come half-way up the basin or mould. Put on the lid, and steam for 1 1/4 hours. The fold of paper in the bottom of the saucepan prevents the basin from moving about in the boiling. Serve, with sauce poured over.
    "The Sweet Sauce
    Simmer half a pint of water with two cloves, a strip of lemon peel and a small piece of a stick of cinnamon. When the water is well flavoured, strain, and put it back into the saucepan. Add a tablespoonful of sugar and a teaspoonful of lemon juice. Mix one dessertspoonful of arrowroot with a little cold water, and stir it into the syrup when boiling. Colour with a few drops of cochineal, and pour over the pudding."
    ---Cookery Illustrated and Household Management, Elizabeth Craig [Odhams Press:London] (p. 347-348)

    Diplomat pudding
    "A cold desert prepared in a mould by one or two different methods. The more common version consists of sponge fingers (ladyfingers) soaked in syrup flavored with rum or kirsch, layered with crystallized (candied) fruits, apricot jam and cooked egg custard or a Bavarian cream. After chilling and and setting, the pudding is unmoulded and coated with fruit sauce or custard cream. In the second version, the sponge fingers are replaced by layers of brioche. The pudding is soaked with a custard mixture and baked in a bain marie. It is then chilled and unmoulded. Individual diplomats are barquettes filled with a cream containing crystallized fruits, glazed with apricot jam, covered with fondant icing (frosting) and decorated with a crystallized cherry. Bombe diplomate is made with ice cream and crystallized fruits." ---Larousse Gastronomique, completely revised and updated [Clarkson Potter:New York] 2001 (p. 419)
    [NOTE: the 1961 edition offers Diplomat sauce for fish, Normande and lobster butter, for fish).] Which cream to use? The Encyclopedia of Classic French Pastries/Susan Whatley suggests any one of these: creme chantilly, or creme anglaise. Larousse Gastronomique (1961 edition) specified Bavarian cream. La Bonne Cuisine/Madame St. Ange (1927) uses Creme anglaise. She describes Diplomat pudding as "a Bavarian cream with a decoration of candied fruits..." Heritage's Diplomate [England: 1894]

    "Diplomatist's Own Pudding.
    --Required: jelly, custard, sponge cake, preserved ginger, and other fruit as below. Cost, about 2s. 6d. For a pudding made in a quart mould. Take enough lemon jelly, which had been tinted green, to line the mould, then half fill up very lightly with sliced sponge cake, sprinkled with chopped preserved ginger between the layers. The top of the mould should be garnished with any green fruits, and some of the ginger. Then take a point of rich moulded custard given in Sweets, [a section of this book] and flavour well with ginger syrup and pale brandy, with just a dash of vanilla. The cake should be moistened with a little of the ginger syrup. The custard should be strained over the cake to fill the mould when on the point of setting, and when the custard is firm more jelly should be poured over it. This should be put in a very cold place, on ice, if possible, until it will turn out. The sauce of the same name...should be poured round. This is also very nice with an accompaniment of whipped jelly of a contrasting colour."
    ---Cassell's New Universal Cookery Book, Lizzie Heritage [Cassell and Company:London] 1894 (p. 841)

    [1903]
    "4699. Diplomate au Fruits.

    Prepare 1) a round base of Genoise made with the addition of some mixed dried fruit; glaze the top surface with Apricot Sauce cooked to the small ball stage, 2) a Fruit Bavarois, moulded in a Charlotte mould.
    To serve: demould the Bavarouis on to the Genoise base and surround it with some of the same fruit poached in syrup, as sued for the Bavarois mixture."
    ---The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery, Escoffier [1903], first translation into English by H.K. Cracknell and R.J. Kaufmann [John Wiley:New York] 1979 (p. 559)

    Diplomat Pudding, Hollywood California
    Chantilly cream is nothing more than lightly whipped unsweetened whipping cream. A strawberry sauce would also be good with this: Simply puree 1 pint hulled strawberries with sugar to taste.
    4 eggs
    1/2 cup sugar
    3 cups milk
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3 slices white bread, cubed
    6 tablespoons raisins
    2 tablespoons butter
    1/4 cup whipping cream, whipped to soft peaks
    Beat eggs and sugar until light and creamy. Continue beating, adding milk and vanilla. In each of 6 (7-ounce) baking cups, place bread cubes, 1 tablespoon raisins and 1 teaspoon butter. Add milk mixture, filling 2/3 full. Place cups in baking pan on middle rack of oven. Add boiling water to baking pan, halfway up sides of cups. Bake at 350 degrees until set or until clean knife inserted near center of pudding comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Invert pudding onto serving plate. Serve with whipped cream or other desired sauce. Makes 6 servings."
    ---"Musso's the Great," Rose Dosti, Los Angles Times, April 4, 1996 (p. 14)


    Flan
    The history of flan, and
    custard, a closely related recipe, begins with the Ancient Romans. Eggs figured prominently in many Roman recipes. The flan prepared by the Ancient Romans was quite different from the food we eat today. Their flan was often served as a savory dish, as in "eel flan," although sweet flans, made with honey and pepper, were also enjoyed. When the Romans conquered Europe, they brought their culinary traditions with them. One of these was flan. Both sweet and savory flans (almonds, cinnamon & sugar; cheese, curd, spinach, fish) were very popular in Europe during the Middle Ages, especially during Lent, when meat was forbidden. According to Platina's De Honesta Voluptate[On Right Pleasure and Good Health], an Italian cookery text published approximately 1475, custard-type dishes were considered health food. In addition to being nourishing they were thought to soothe the chest, aid the kidneys and liver, increase fertility and eliminate certain urinary tract problems. caramel evolved in France.

    "[English] Roman period...eggs took on a much greater importance in Roman times, when domestic fowl first became common. With eggs for the first time available on such a scale, it was now possible to consider them seriously in cookery..[the Romans] exploited eggs as a thickening or binding agent for other foods. They borrowed from the Greeks the idea of combining eggs with milk to form a custard mixture, which was either cooked very slowly in an earthenware pot, or fried in oil...Another kind of egg confection was made of fruit or vegetables, or fish or shredded meat, bound with eggs and lightly cooked in the open dish called a "patina." ...The "flathons" (flans), "crustards" and other open tarts of medieval cookery again recall the old "patinae," with the shallow open dish of the Romans replaced by an open pastry crust, and the filling once more mixed and bound with eggs."
    ---Food and Drink in Britain: From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago Publishers:Chicago] 1991 (p. 138, p.142)
    NOTE: This book has an excellent chapter on the histoy of eggs in English cookery (pages 137-148)

    "Flan is an open tart filled with fruit, a cream, or a savoury mixture. A flan may be served as a hot entree or as a dessert. The word comes from the Old French "flaon," from the Latin "flado," [meaning] a flat cake. Flans have been in existence for centuries. They are mentioned in the works of the Latin poet Fortunatus (530-609AD), and featured in medieval cookery--Taillevent gave numerous recipes for flans. The word flan in France and Spain is also used for an egg custard, often carmel-flavoured, that is made in a mould and then turned out and served cold."
    ---Larousse Gastronomique, edited by Jenifer Harvey Lang [Crown:New York] 1989 (page 445):

    "Flan is a term with two meanings. The one most familiar in Britain...is An open pastry or sponge case containing a (sweet or savoury) filling. A typical flan of this sort is round, with shortcrust pastry. It is either baked blind before the hot or cold filling is added, or baked with the filling. The filling, especially if it is a sweet one, may incorporate custard. In France, the term "flan" carries the first meaning as described above, but often has the second meaning: a sweet custard which is baked in a mould in the oven until set, when it may be served in the mould or turned out. The second meaning is the one which is used in Spain and Portugal, where flan is a standard dessert, and in many countries, e.g. Mexico, where either language is used. The second and very widespread meaning is the one which corresponds to the etymology of the term. The Old French "flaon" derived from the Latin "flado" had as its principal meaning a "custard." From the same Latin root came the Middle English word "flaton" and "flawn" from which much later came flan."
    ---The Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 305)

    About flan in Spain
    "Both Spain and Portugal also have a Moorish inheritance of very sweet egg-rich desserts, some ingeniously using up the egg whites left over from a pudding using only egg yolks--Pudim Molotoff (Molotoff Pudding), for example. Flan, caramel custard, the Creme Renversee au Caramel of the French, is universally popular. It may be flavoured with orange, if liked, but it is the traditional caramel custard that enjoys such popularity and is an equal favorite throughout Latin America...Quite literally everyone loves flan."
    ---The Food of Spain and Portugal: The Complete Iberian Cuisine, Elisabeth Lambert Ortiz [Atheneum:New York] 1989 (p. 264)

    "...the Spanish sweet tooth is gratified by a range of dessert wines and liqueurs and special-occasion candies, some of almost Oriental sugariness. Almonds and honey are included in many of them Turron, or nougat, white or dark, soft or brittle, is exceedingly more-ish and is now a big industry in Jijona. The Arabic influences in candy-making are pronounced and candies such as amarguillos date from Moorish times...In the Spanish kitchen, milk and cream are commandeered for desserts, particularly in the north...The national dessert...is caramel custard, called flan."
    ---Recipes from a Spanish Village, Pepita Aris [Simon & Schuster:New York] 1990 (p. 124)

    "...in looking for the roots of Spanish food traditions one must go back to the Phoenicians, who founded the city now called Cadiz in 1100BC; the ancient Greeks, and the Carthaginians...and more important, the Romans who used Spain as a major source of food, especially wheat and olive oil...Introductions by the Arabs were also of fundamental importance for Spain's future. They are particularly associated with the use of almonds (the essential ingredient for so many Spanish desserts, baked goods, and confectionery items); with the introduction of citrus fruits (including the lemon and the bitter (Seville) orange, without which British marmalade would never have been born); sugar cane and the process of refining sugar from its juice..."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 741)
    [NOTE: this book has plenty of information on the history of almonds, citrus, sugar cane etc. Ask your librarian to help you find a copy.]

    How to pronounce the word flan? That depends upon which language you speak. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the English pronunciation is expressed as "flaen," which would rhyme with "man." According to the Food Lover's Companion, Sharon Tyler Herbst, 3rd edition (p. 237) the correct pronunciation is "flahn," which would rhyme with "balm." More pronunciations here.

    Historic recipes for flan (adapted for modern kitchens):

    Compare with: Clafoutis.


    Hasty pudding
    Food historians trace the genesis of hasty pudding to medieval grain pottages. These simple, filling, and quickly prepared dishes filled the bellies of rich and poor alike. The Oxford English Dictionary traces the first print evidence of this term to 1599. Recipes vary considerably, according to period and place. British Isle recipes generally employ oatmeal. Regional variations are noted. Early American versions were made, quite predictably, with maize. Think:
    cornmeal mush.

    "As its name suggests, hasty pudding is a pudding that can be assembled at very short notice. Its exact ingredients vary from place to place, but in essence it is a sort of porridge made from crushed or ground cereal grains and milk. In Britain, where the term originated in the late sixteenth century, it traditionally refers to a sweet milk pudding made with flour, semolina, or tapioca. In the USA it is made with the main indigenous cereal, maize, which is often sweetened with maple syrup or brown sugar."
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 158)

    "Hasty pudding, the simplest of all puddings, if it can be called a pudding at all, for it is no more than a porridge of flour and milk. Such a pudding should be made in little more time than it took to boil the milk, and it has no doubt been a popular emergency dish since the Middle Ages, if not earlier. Sweetened, flavoured with spice or rosewater, and dotted with butter, hasty pudding can be quite palatable; and in fact in the 18th and 19th centuries in England it was esteemed as a delicacy. Before 1800, an egg was often added to the mixture, though after this time mixtures with egg were given othes names...In the far north of England, and in Scotland, at least as early as the 18th century, the name came to be applied to a plain porridge of oats and barley, made with water as often as milk. In Victorian England...Hasty pudding was sometimes made with oatmeal, or with sago or with tapioca. Milk was always used."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson, 2nd edition, Tom Jaine editor [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2006 (p. 373)

    "Oatmeal went into milk porridige and water gruel. The later at its simplest contained no more than oatmeal and water, but it was often flavoured with shredded onions or leeks, and enriched with butter or dripping...Later in that [18th century] 'hasty pudding', 'crowdie' and 'boiled milk', all oatmeal pottages, became more and more confined to northern and western Britian. In the north hasty pudding was a constant part of the diet. Thirteen ounces of oatmeal and a quart of water, boiled together with salt, was said to be 'sufficent for a meal for two labourers. It is eaten with a little milk or beer poured upon it, or with a little cold butter put into the midde, or with a little treacle.' Crowdie was made by pouring boiling water on to oatmeal and stirring it: a piece of fat taken from meat broth was put to it as seasoning. It was 'a very common dish in the north among labourers of all descriptions, particularly miners'.
    ---Food and Drink in Britain: From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago:Chicago] 1981 (p. 213)

    "A wide range of successors to the cereal pottages of medieval times still existed in the form of sweetened cereal preparations such as frumenty, gruel, pap, and milk pottage of crumbled bread, barley, rice or sago. In their ingredients these closely resembled puddings (except for the absense of suet), but they were of a runnier consistency, and were cooked directly over the fire. Until the later seventeenth century milk pottages were eaten on fasting days...The only named pudding to be made by the pottage method was the 'pudding in haste' or 'hasty pudding' of southern and midland Britain. It was in effect a thicker form of bread and milk pottage. It was prepared by boiling milk or cream, adding breadcrumbs and some flour, with such enrichments as butter, eggs, raisins, currants, spices and sugar. The mixture was then brought again to the boil. It had to be stirred constantly as it cooked, but was soon ready: hence its name. The hasty pudding of northern England, Scotland and Wales, was however, quite a different matter, for it was simply the traditional oatmeal pottage and only in name resembled the newfangled puddings of southern Britain."
    ---ibid (p. 320)

    "One of the earliest American desserts was a quickly thrown-together mixture of cornmeal, milk, and molasses called "cornmeal mush" or "hasty puddding," known at least since 1691. (Harvard's literary society has been called the "Hasty Pudding Club" since 1795.)"
    ---Encyclopedia of American Food and Drink, John F. Mariani [Lebhar-Friedman:New York] 1999 (p. 258)

    "Acquiring its name from the speed with which it supposedly could be prepared, hasty pudding was also called stirabout pudding. In Britain, hasty pudding had been made from such things as grated bread and oatmeal, although as time went on, the oatmeal version tended to be confined to the north and west. Recipes utilizing a wheat flour base were common in eighteenth-century cookbooks. In New England, of course, cornmeal rapidly became the key ingredient. Simple as it was, hasty pudding still admitted a degree of variation in methods of preparation. In the earliest Yankee cookbook recipe, in Child's American Frugal Housewife , spoonfuls of sifted cornmeal were dissolved in a bowl of water, and then the solution was poured into boiling water, the amount varying "according to the size of your family." Salt and handfuls of additional meal were thrown into the kettle, while the mixtutr was being constantly stirred. "When it is so thick that you stir it with great difficulty, it is about right." According to Child, that would have been after half an hour, which was perhaps just in time to prevent the name from becoming a misnomer. The dish was to be eaten with milk or molasses. Rye meal was preferable to corn "if the system is in a restricted state." Regarding the requisite cooking time, Catharine Beecher had quite a different idea, abandoning all pretense of connection between name and thing, by stating that two or three hours was needed...hasty pudding as fried mush remained prominent in most subsequent recipes...Possibly the plainest preparation in a culinary repertoire that was nothing if not plain, hasty pudding nevertheless provided the inspiration for one of the eariest instances of the use of Yankee food for cultural mythmaking about New England. We refer to "The Hasty Pudding," a poem written by the Revolutionary-era "Connecticut wit" Joel Barlow while he was living in France in 1793...The poem actually provided the first New England recipe for hasty pudding, depicting a housewife who "strews" the cornmeal into a kettle of boiling water until it "thickens all the flood."...In Barlow's view, the knowledge required for eating hasty pudding in the proper fashion was more complex and hard-won than that for cooking it...Those familiar with the Italian dish polenta...may not realize that it essentially hasty pudding under the name given to it by "the soft nations round the warm Levant."
    ---America's Founding Food: The Story of New England Cooking, Keith Stavely & Kathleen Fitzgerald [University Of North Carolina Press:Chapel Hill NC] 2004(p. 19-21)

    Here is Mrs. Child's recipe, circa 1833:

    "Hasty Pudding.
    Boil. water, a quart , three pints, or two quarts, according to the size of your family; sift your meal, stir five or six spoonfuls of it thorougly into a bowl of water; when the water in the kettle boils, pour into it the contents of the bowl; stir it well, and let it boil up thick; put in salt to suit your own taste, then stand over the kettle, and sprinkle in meal, handful after handful, stirring it very thoroughly all the time and letting it boil between whiles. When it is so thick that you stir it with great difficulty, it is about right. It takes about half an hour's cooking. Eat it with milk or molasses. Either Indian meal or rye meal may be used. If the system is in a restricted state, nothing can be better than rye hasty pudding and West India molasses. This diet would save many a one the horrors of dyspepsia."
    ---American Frugal Housewife, Mrs. Child, facsimile 12th edition, originally published in Boston [Applewood Books:Boston] (p. 65)

    Want to examine more historic American recipes?
    You will find several online, courtesy of the Digital Cookbook collection uploaded by Michigan State University: Search recipe name: hasty pudding

    John Barlow's Hasty Pudding.

    Hasty Pudding & pudding sticks, Alice Ross, Journal of Antiques.

    Related foods? Polenta & Pease porridge.


    Kaiser pudding
    One of the recently recovered episodes of Dr. Who references Kaiser Pudding. Which Kaiser was this dish named for & what was the original recipe? Excellent questions with fuzzy answers. Our survey of UK cook books, culinary history texts and print media returned only one recipe titled Kaiser Pudding. It was published by Mrs. Beeton in 1909.
    Kaiser Wilhelm II was ruling in Germany 1909, but that does not automatically mean this dish was named for him. Curiously? In our copy of this book this recipe is crossed out in pencil. We do not know who did this or when. No other recipes are crossed out, including the ones with "German" in the title.
    [1909]
    "Kaiser Pudding.

    Ingredients.--2 ozs. of ground almonds, sugar to taste, 3 eggs, 1/2 pint of cream, 1 dessertspoonful of orange-juice, blanched almonds, shredded candied peel.
    Method.--Separate and beat the yolks of the eggs, add 1 tablespoonful of castor sugar, the ground almonds and the cream gradually. Whisk the whites stiffly, stir them lightly in, and add more sugar if necessary. Have ready a mould well buttered and lightly covered with shredded almonds and candied peel, then pour in the mixture. Steam gently for 1 1/2 hours, and serve with a suitable sauce.
    Time.--2 hours. Average Cost. 1s. 9d. Sufficient for 4 or 5 persons."
    ---Mrs. Beeton's Every-Day Cookery, Mrs. Beeton, New Edition, [Ward, Lock & Co.:London] 1909 (p. 430)


    Pease porridge
    "Pease porridge hot. Pease porridge cold. Pease porridge in the pot nine days old." What was Mother Goose feeding her children? Pease porridge descends from pease pottage, an ancient dish of boiled legumes. Economical, ubiquitous, filling, nutritious. And for some? The only food available for days on end.
    Peas have been consumed from prehistory to present.

    What is pottage/porridge?
    > "Pottage. The medieval term for a semi-liquid cooked dish, typically based on cereal, which in various forms was a mainstay of diet for many centuries. The world comes from the French potage meaning something cooked in a pot. It thus was a very wide application. It is no longer in use in English, its function having been taken over by porridge, which is the same word, slightly changed and now having a more restricted meaning. Pottages were a universal feature of primitive kinds of cookery, but they developed at an early stage into quite sophisticated preparations. In Roman times, Apicius gave a recipe for a pottage (tisana was the name he used) made of barley with three kinds of pulses, eight kinds of leafy vegetables, four flavouring herbs, liquamen (fish sauce), and a garnish of chopped cabbage leaves. In the Middle Ages, and especially in Britain, pottages were eaten by all, from the poorest to the richest. The simplest kinds were cereal pottages: oatmeal in the north, barley, rye or wheat frumenty in the south. To the rich these dishes were an accompaniement to meat; to the poor they were complete meals. Pease pottage, made from dried peas, and other pulses pottages were equally important. These dishes might be quite plain or contain herbs or other additions...Indeed, because the term pottage had such a wide meaning it could embrace many subcategories of dishes."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] (p. 629-30)

    "Porridge. Originally porridge was the same word as pottage 'boiled dish of vegetables, cereals, meat, etc..' Not until the early sixteenth century did the two begin to go their separate ways phonetically...and they remained semantically linked for some time after that--Dr. Johnson, for example, in his Dictionary (1755) defined porridge as 'food made by boiling meat in water; broth'. A particular sort of pottage was that made with cereals, which in Scotland sould generally by oats, and it was this that eventually inherited the name porridge, but as late as the end of the eighteenth century pottage was still being used for this, too."
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 264)

    Peas pudding
    "Pease pudding (alternatively known as pease porridge) is a peculiarly British dish, on account of the long-standing perference in Britain for pease over other pulses. It began its career in remote antiquity as pease pottage, a thick porridge made from the dried mealy pease that were a staple food; this was the most usual way of preparing them. Pease pottage and, when available, bacon went together in the diet of simple country people. The bacon was heavily salted and the pease pottage, made without salt, balanced the flavour. At the beginning of the 17th century the introduction of the pudding cloth allowed pease pudding, a more solid product, to be made. Usually the ingredients consisted only of pease (previouly soaked, if dried pease are used), and a little flavouring: sugar and pepper, and sometimes mint, were commonly used. The ingredients were mixed and simply cooked in a pudding cloth in simmering liquid, perhaps alongside a piece of bacon, and for which the pudding would be a fine accompaniement. ..Pease pudding has now lost its importance in the British diet, but remains popular in the north... It has been suggested that the old nursery rhyme: Pease pudding hot...referenced not to the inevitable appearance of the dish at all meals but to the making of a fermented product like a semi-solid version of Indonesian tempe, or a primitive form of Japanses miso. Certainly, if the procedure in the rhyme were followed, boiling, cooling, and leaving for nine days, micro-organisms naturally present would have caused some kind of fermentation to take place, but unless some kind of starter had been used, the most likely result would have been spoilage."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 591)
    [NOTE: related foods are peasemeal (ground pease) and Scottish brose (pease meal mixed with oatmeal)]

    "Young green pease were cooked in good beef broth flavoured with parsley, sage, savory and hyssop; while old dried pease were poiled in bacon stock and eaten afterwards with the bacon meat...The labourer's family often had to make do this a miniscule lump of bacon, or perhaps none at all, in which case the pottage was thickened with oatmeal, flour or breadcrumbs to give it more substance. This thick pease pottage remained a basic country dish for several hundred years. For Lenten pottages, white pease were recommended. They were usually flavoured with minced onions and sugar or honey and often coloured with saffron. (p. 203) ...the traditional, pease porridge was a national dish of Tudor and Stuar England, referred to in French recipe books as 'pottage in the English style'. It was eaten at most levels of society, but more particularly amoung labourers' families, when it was often made very thick with flour or breadcrumbs and was called pease porridge. With the advent of the pudding boiled in a cloth, pease were given similar treatment, being packed into a pudding-cloth or bag, simmered in water or broth, and turned out as a solid mass that was sliced and eaten with bacon or pickled pork. But in the course of the eighteenth century pease pottage lost much of its importance. Per Kalm reported that people of the middling sort, although they ate green pease avidly in the summer season, had little use for dried pease or beans. Later pease soup, like all other soups, ceased to be labourers' fare in the south; and even in the pottage-eating north of England it was not very popular. It remained an occasional item of diet in most parts of the country, but it could no longer claim to be one of England's national dishes.. (p. 216-7)
    ---Food and Drink in Britain From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago:Chicago] 1991

    Related recipe: Pea soup.

    Frumenty
    This wheat-based pottage graces French and English cooking texts from Medieval times to the late 19th century. Generally served as a sweet course, this creamy porridge was consumed by people of all social classes. Early spelling variations make researching this dish a special treat. Think: frumenty, fermenty, fourmentee, &c.

    "Frumenty, a 'porridge' made from wheat. The name is derived from the classical Latin frumentum meaning corn (in the general sense of the word). In the Middle Ages it seems to have been a staple food but as time progressed the dish appeared only on special occasions and with slight regional differences. In the preparation of frumenty, new wheat is shelled, cooked slowly in milk, and flavoured and sweetened. This glutinous mass, which is known as creed...wheat, used to be available ready dressed. Modern recipes which include butter, cream, sugar, rum, or brandy to produce something like a liquid Christmas pudding have little in common with the traditional forms of frumenty. Frumenty appears to have been used formerly as an accompaniment to animal food, as 'venison with frumenty' formed part of the second course served at the royal banquet given to Henry IV at Winchester on his marriage to Joan of Navarre. At the present day it is usually boiled with new milk and sugar, to which spices, currants, yolks of eggs, etc. are sometimes added, and is occasionally eaten as a dinner sweet at various times of the year--at mid-Lent, Easter, and Christmas. In the north of England, however, it is always exclusively a part of the Christmas fare, and is eaten hot. There is evidence that in the past, frumenty was eaten at secular feasts, in celebration of harvest home, for instance. Before the 1860s it seems unlikely that frumenty was an everyday food for the rural time. In the Victorian age, however, records show that it was common workhouse fare. There are many regional variations. In Somerset, it is known as furmenty or furminty."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 323)

    "In Britain pottage remained in favor at every level of society. Bread, pottage and ale were the three great staples of diet... The materials of pottage were...many and varied. The only object was to product a semi-liquid spoonmeat, often of very thick consistency...Early recipes for frumenty describe the process. 'Take clean wheat, and beat it small in mortar, and fan out clean the dust; then wash it clean, ane boil it till it be tender and brown.' In other recipes wehat was boiled in water till the grains burst, the cooled and mixed with cow's milk or milk of almonds; and well beaten egg yolks were often stirred in too. If the eggs did not colour it enouth, it was yellowed with saffron. At the meals of great families wheaten frumenty was the accompaniment of venison or porpouise. But the frumenty of poorer folk was a breakfast or supper dish in itself, and it was usually made of maslin or barley, mixed with milk when that was to be had, or with water alone, or with a little cream or butter."
    ---Food and Drink in Britain From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Acadamy Chicago:Chicago IL]1973, 1991 (p. 199-200)

    [14th century]
    To make frumente, Forme of Cury

    [15th century]
    "30. Grenee fourmemtee...To make a Wheaten GReavy, Set some wheat to boil until it burns [no more water is take up], drain the water off form it and let it cool. Then aget freshly drawn cow's milk and set it to boil in a new pot; when it is just about to bubble, throw your wheat into it little by little, stirring attentively. Whwen it is all in, draw you pot back off the fire. Then get well beaten egg yolks with their treads cleanly removed. with saffron and good starch, all this strained; boil everything together until it is so thick that the spoon can stand up in teh middle of it. Then pull it back off the fire. Add butter and salt judiciously. It should be of a fine colour. To make 20 bowls of Wheaten Gravy you need: twenty-five egg [yolks], one ounce each of galinggale, mace, cloves, ginger, saffron, nutmeg, chervil, pepper, laserwort, one pound of sugart, one pound of stgarchm one-half pound of butter."
    ---The Vivendier: A Fifteenth Century French Cookery Manuscript, critical edition with English translation by Terence Scully [Prospect Books:Devon] 1997 (p. 58-59)

    [1685]
    "To make Furmenty.
    Take wheat and wet it, then beat it in a sack with a wash beetle, being finely hulled and cleansed from the dust and hulls, boil it over night, and let it soak on a soft fire all night; then next morning take as much as will serve the turn, put it in a pipkin, pan, or skilet, and put it a boiling in cream or milk, with mace, salt, whole cinamon, and saffron, or yolks of eggs, boil it thick and serve it in a a clean scowered dish, scrape on sugar, and trim the dish."
    ---The Accompisht Cook, Robert May, facsmile 1685 edition [Prospect Books:Devon] 2000 (p. 420)

    [1747]
    "Furminty. Take a Quarts of ready-boiled Wheat, two Quarts of Milk, a quarter of a Pound of Currans, clean picked and washed; stir these together and boil them, beat up the Yolks of three or four Eggs, a little Nutmeg, with two or three Spoonfuls of Milk, add to the Wheat, stir them together for a few Minutes, then sweeten to your Palate, and send it to Table."
    ---Art of Cooking Made Plain and Easy, Hannah Glasse, facsimile 1747 edition [Prospect Books:Devon] 1995 (p. 79)

    [1875]
    "Frumenty. To a quarter of a pint of wheat, that has been boiled tender in milk, but not pulped, add a quart of new milk or cream, a piece of cinnamon, equal quantities of sugar and well-washed currants, three ounces of each, and boil for fifteen minutes longer. Take the mixture off the fire, and stir in (if only milk be used) the beaten yolks of three eggs and a glass of brandy; send to table in a junket bowl, to be served in cups. Time to boil wheat, from three to four hours. Probable cost, 1s."
    ---Cassell's Dictionary of Cookery with Numerous Illustrations [Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co.:London] 1875 (p. 235)

    [1894]
    "Wheat Frumenty (or Furmenty).--This is a very old-fashioned but nice and nourishing dish, if sufficent time be given to its preparation. Take as much wheat as may be required, wash it well, then put it in a jar, and cover with cold water; leave it to soak for twelve hours, then bake it in a very slow oven until done. It should crack and be soft, but not be broken up; it may take form four to six hours. Some prefer to bake the wheat in milk, which makes it nicer and more nourishing, but it does not cook well; another way, and a good one, is to use water for the first part of the cooking, and milk for the finish. When ready for the frumenty , take some of teh baked wheat, and allow for ech quart the same measure of new milk; put both over the fire and stir to the boil; add about a quarter of a pound of clean dry curants, or raisins, stoned and halved, adn in about twenty minutes take the pan from the fire, and stir in sugar to taste and some spice (nutmeg or cinnamon is often used); then beat in a couple of eggs, or, where thery are plentiful, more may be used; do not boil again, but beat for some few minutes. This should be sent to table in a junket bowl, and served in cups. To rich dishes of this sort, in the days when frumenty was a Lord Mayor's dish, brandy was one of the ingredients. When whole wheat cannot be got, cracked wheat may be used. We may mention that other fruits are as nice as those named. For example, prunes, figs, dates, and dried bananas are very suitable; currants are not digestible, and are better omitted if for children; the raisins are improved by soaking for a few hours in water."
    ---Cassell's New Cookery Book, Lizzie Heritage [Cassell and Company:London] 1894 (p. 573)

    Related foods? Blancmange, Hasty pudding, Polenta & Wheatena.


    Pudding mixes & instant puddings
    The history behind pudding mix is fascinating stuff. In the middle of the 19th century [corresponding neatly with the dawn of the modern industrial age] technological advances enabled the refinement of cornstarch extraction. Alfred Bird's custard powder [1847] made from flavored cornstarch set the stage. By the turn of the 20th century recipes for all sorts of corn-starch puddings [most noticeably chocolate and tapioca] were featured in mainstream cookbooks, both under the categories of dessert and convalescent foods.
    "Chocolate corn starch pudding
    Melt one-third square unsweetened chocolate and add to Corn Starch Pudding [the recipe for this is given on the same page, it is not a mix] before adding egg."
    ---Food and Cookery for the Sick and Convalescent, Fannie M. Farmer [1911] (p. 174) [NOTE: this book also has recipes for corn starch pudding, tapioca custard pudding, cottage pudding, chocolate bread pudding and baked cream of rice.]

    According to The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America/Andrew F. Smith Vol. 1, p. 642), My*T*Fine was the first packaged pudding introduced to the United States. The year? 1918. This pudding required cooking. U.S. Patent and Trademark records list the date for this tradename as 1916 (but does not comment on the pudding):

    Word Mark MY-T-FINE Goods and Services IC 029. US 046. G & S: PREPARED DESSERT POWDERS MADE IN VARIOUS FLAVORS. FIRST USE: 19160700. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19160700 Mark Drawing Code (5) WORDS, LETTERS, AND/OR NUMBERS IN STYLIZED FORM Design Search Code Serial Number 71402693 Filing Date February 4, 1938 Current Filing Basis 1A Original Filing Basis 1A Registration Number 0359369 Registration Date August 16, 1938 Owner (REGISTRANT) PENICK & FORD, LTD. INCORPORATED CORPORATION DELAWARE 420 LEXINGTON AVENUE NEW YORK NEW YORK (LAST LISTED OWNER) NABISCO BRANDS COMPANY CORPORATION ASSIGNEE OF DELAWARE 1105 NORTH MARKET STREET SUITE 803 WILMINGTON DELAWARE 19801

    Fueled by the men's nutrition [Battle Creek, MI--Mr. Kellogg & Mr. Post] and women's domestic science [Boston, MA--Miss Farmer & Miss Parloa] movements, the invention of packaged pudding mix was inevitable. One might suppose that when General Foods [aka Jell-O] introduced its chocolate pudding mix in 1926 it was simply cashing in on the fact that people loved [chocolate] pudding and believed that "store bought it better." That reasoning might also account for General Foods' timely acquisition of the Minute Tapioca Company.

    Jell-O wasn't the only brand of gelatin desserts & puddings manufactured in the US in the late 19th/early 20th century. Other popular brands were Knox and Royal. All three brands published recipe booklets to promote their products. It is interesting to note that booklets published in the 1900s-1910s contain recipes for custard made with gelatin.

    This passage from Royal Desserts, Standard Brands [1932] confirms two things: pudding mixes had recently been introduced to the American public and Americans regarded pudding as a healthy food.

    "These new Royal Puddings suit every taste two new popular flavors both made with healthful Arrowroot Starch. You'll be enthusastic about the delicious, real "homemade" taste of these puddings. Royal Chocolate Pudding has that rich, creamy chocolate flavor everybody loves. Royal Vanilla Pudding is flavored with real vanilla extract--and not imitation vanilla flavoring...and what a difference that makes in both taste and aroma!

    Royal puddings look good too. They have none of that cheap, watery, thin appearance. They hold their shape perfectly without being pasty and "starchy." Arrowroot makes them different! Royal Puddings are made with arrowroot starch for thickening. That's what makes them taste different...look different. That's why, too, they're ideal for children's desserts. For arrowroot starch has long been recognized as unusually nutritious and easily digested. The finest cooks prefer arrowroot as a thickener because it is easy to keep smooth and because it cooks quickly, yet is entirely free from any "starch" taste, making desserts of unusual tenderness and delicacy. And Royal Chocolate and Vanilla Puddings are made up with milk...another important reason why they make such particularly wholesome desserts for children. Food experts, dietitians and doctors, you know, emphasize the necessity of milk in the diet. [we can confirm this, we have a US Dept. of Agriculture brochure from this time period touting the healthfulness of milk] Prepared in 6 minutes!

    Royal Puddings are wonderfully easy to make. Think of it--they can be perpared and cooked in only 6 minutes! Yet the arrowroot cooks completely in this time. There's no fuss, no bother, no extra dishes, when making Royal Puddings. All you have to do is add cold milk to the pudding in a sauce pan and stir while bringing to a boil. If preferred, it may also be cooked in a double boiler until completely thickened. This method is recommended for large quantities of Royal Pudding." (pages 16-17)

    Pudding recipes from this booklet (using the packaged product):
    Floating Island
    Custard sauce (3 cups of milk instead of the standard 2 for regular pudding)
    Boston and Washington Cream Pie
    Chocolate or vanilla Cream Pie
    Chocolate cake filling
    French chocolate souffle
    Quick rice pudding (add two cups of cooked rice to the Vanilla pudding)
    Chocolate pecan cockles
    Chocolate bread pudding
    Strawberry meringue puffs
    Butterscotch sauce
    Peach cream dessert
    Chocolate fudge sauce
    Zweiback cream pudding
    Coffee or mocha blanc mange
    Coupe allegretti
    Chocolate or vanilla ice cream

    About instant (cold-milk-mix, uncooked) pudding
    Our survey of historic newspapers suggests this product was introduced to American consumers in the early 1950s. Evidence here:

    [1949]
    "Puddings that may be prepared in thirty seconds, frostings ready for spreading, popcorn of every hue in the rainbow, chocolates so tine it takes 135 to make a pound, and "pink" peaches provide the news today. When a delegate from this department went shopping recently, these were the novel products she purchased for testing in the kitchen of The New York Times. Amazo is neatly named. It amazed even our own tasters, whose palates--after sampling the variety of foods considered for this colunm in the course of a year--are not too easily impressed. Put a pint of cold milk in a bowl, add the powdery contents of one package of Amazo, whip with a roaty beater thirty seconds--and dessert is served. It is a creamy pudding, smooth in texture, delicate if flavor, a puding that can double as a pie or cake filling. The American Maize-Products Company, the manufaturer, has furnished the market with another cornstarch pudding, but this one, contrary to its predecessors, needs no cooking. The label does not exaggerate; the pudding may be made ready in half a minute. Three flavors are offered: vanilla, chocoalte and--rather less to our liking--butterscotch. Cream, plain or whipped, will suggest itself as a garnish. Sliced fruit is another possibility for the vanilla dessert. Gimbels invites its customers to taste Amazo, which is being demonstrated there for the first time. It may also be found at Gristede's, Bohack's and Hearnes. Fourteen cents a package is the approximate price."
    ---"News of Food," Jane Nickerson, New York Times, March 17, 1949 (p. 31)

    [1950]
    "For today's column, a kind of honor roll, we review products reported here in 1949 that were outstanding because of their novelty, fine quality or both. First, from American manufacturers, some preparations that fit in with the popular trend of cutting time in the kitchens: Amazo, a highlight of last spring, is the pudding that requires only thirty seconds to produce. The powdery contents of a package are added to a pint of cold milk and whipped with a rotary beater. This gives a smooth, creamy dessert in a half minute, during which no cooking is necessary. Made by the American Maize Products Company in vanilla, chocolate and butterscotch, Amazo costs 27 cents for two packages at Bohack, Gristede and other stores."
    ---"News of Food: Outstanding Products of 1949 Are Listed, From a Quick Pudding to Nut Butters," New York Times, January 4, 1950 (p. 45)

    [1951]
    "New Uncooked Puddings. The Joseph Burnett Company, a division of American Foods, Inc., and know for more than a century for its flavoring extracts and food colorings, is now introducing instant puddings of chocolate, butterscotch, and, of course, vanilla. Like the Amazo puddings taht fist became available in March, 1949, these require no cooking. The contents of the 4 1/2-ounce pacakge (14 cents at Gristede stores) are mixed with milk, whipped briefly, then poured into serving dishes."New York Times, July 31, 1951 (p. 18)

    [1952]
    "1 Pkgs of New Royal Instant Pudding Free...It's Homogenized...For richer flavor! Creamiers Texture! Easy Digestion! At Your Gorcers' now. New homogenized Royal Instant Pudding makes your favorite desserts turn out better than ever before. New Royal Instant Pudding is completely different! It makes quicker, more-delicious-than-ever fruit and nut puddings, pies, ice creams, parfaits, refrigerator cakes, beverages, sauces, cake frostings and fillings! Try wonderful new Royal Instant Pudding today--before your grocer's sale ends...3 wonderful flavors! Chocolate. Vanilla. Butterscotch." ---display ad, Los Angeles Times, , May 15, 1952 (p. B5)

    "A new instant pudding dessert, recently announced by the maker of a line of excellent packaged desserts is real hand. Arriving in our market just in time for summer weather, this food product is one to lighten your cooking routine. Perhaps you've tried it. If not, listen to the easy directions: Open the box, empty into 2 cups of cold milk and beat 1 minute. It's that easy! The flavor list reads vanilla, chocolate and butterscotch. Texture is light and creamy; taste is rich and fresh. It's good when prepared by the directions and has unlimited variety dressed up in other ways."
    ---"Instant Pudding Makes Instant Hit," Marian Manners, Los Angeles Times, June 25, 1952 (p. B4)


    Blancmange
    This Medieval invalid food, Lenten dish & everyday
    pottage alternative featured prominently in early European cookbooks. AKA blewmanger, blancmanger, White Dish.

    What was blancmange?
    "The blancmange (meaning 'white food') was one of the most popular dishes everywhere in Europe from the Middle Ages through the mid-seventeenth century. Originally it would have been made with almond milk and was specifically designed to be a light food appropirate for invalids. Nearly every cookbook written in these several hundred years includes a recipe, and some offer multiple variations. it could also be baked in a pie, colored with saffron, or cooked until fairly solid and sliced. The final texture should be like a very stiff pudding, although a sweet chicken pudding scented with roses sounds a little strange today, the final taste is surprisingly pleasant. Today the term blancmange refers to a sweet almond and milk pudding thickened with gelatin."
    ---Cooking in Europe 1250-1650, Ken Alabala [Greenwood Press:Westport CT] 2006 (p. 111)

    "Blancmange has not always been the pale wobbling thing which until recently lurked behind jellies on Britain's tea tables. When the word first entered the English language, in the fourteenth century, it was used for a savoury dish. As its name inmplies (French blanc, white', manger, eat'--the final 'r' did not dissapear until the nineteenth century) it was made from pale ingredients. Almonds, in some form or another--ground, fried, or as almond milk--were included, as was rice, either whole or as rice flour; these formed the basis of a thick gruel or pottage, to which was added chicken meat...The transformation of the chicken dish of the Middle Ages to the modern confection was a gradual one. Often the chicken was omitted, and a gelling agent added. By the eighteenth century it had become a sort of almond jelly, made with milk or cream. In the nineteenth century arrowroot was introduced into the recipe as a thickener, with flavourings such as lemon peel and cinnamon making it an appropriate dessert dish. This paved the way for the modern commercial cornflour-based version, which...remained a mainstay among British puddings until the 1960s, when instant pre-prepared desserts started its demise."
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 32-3)

    "Blancmange...The ancestor of the homely modern [pudding-like] dish was honoured on medieval and Renaissance menus all over W. Eruope. The 14th- and 15th-century English blancmangers were made of shredded chicken breast, sugar, rice, and wither ground almonds or almond milk, but there were many variations on the idea on the Continent; furthermore, there was a whole family of related dishes...It has long been speculated that it derives from the Middle East, whence both rice and almondsd were imported. One of the most widespread dishes in medieval Arab cuisine is isfdhabaj (a Persian name which also means white food'), and the recipes translated by Arberry (1939) is lamb stewed with almond milk. However, Perry (1989) points out that this happens to be the only isfidhabaj recipe in Arab culinary literature containing almond milk; the others show little or no resesmblance to the European dish. It seems likely that blancmanger does reflect eastern influence, but the exact source and path are obscure...Although modern people are always surprised to learn of a sweet made from chicken breast, this was common in medieval Arab cuisine, where chicken was sometimes literally candied. The concept survives in the contemporary Turkish rice and chicken dessert Tavuk gogsu kazandibi, whether this is an idea picked up from the Arab sources or conceivably a version of blancmanger."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 80)

    "While the ordinary people of [Medieval] lowland Britain ate their pease pottage...the nobility and gentry enjoyed some of the rich spicy meat and fish pottages introduced from Norman France. The great Anglo-Norman pottages--'civey', gravey', charlet', buckkenade', mortrews', blancmange' and others--took their character not from the meat of fish they contained, but from the sauce in which those ingredents were cooked...'Blancmange' was another standing pottage, chiefly notable for the absence of strong spices in its composition. The ingredients were capon [chicken] flesh, teased small with a pin, whole boiled rice, alsmond milk and plenty of sugar. It was decorated with a surface scattering of red and white aniseed comfits or blanced almonds. At a feast, blancmange was sometimes departed' or divided into two parts, one of which was coloured red or yellow as a contrast to the other which was left white; or it was departed with a different pottage, such as the yellow caudel ferry'. Needlesss to say mortrews of fish' and blancmange of fish' were eaten on fasting days...perch or lobster or dried haddock for the fish day blancmange."
    ---Food and Drink in Britain From the Stone Age to the 19th Century, C. Anne Wilson [Academy Chicago:Chicago] 1991 (p. 206-8)

    "Prominent among the festal foods of medieval times had been the pottages made from meat with sweet dried fruits, almonds, sugar and spices. Of the thick ones blancmange was the principal survivor; and like its predecessor, based usually upon teased or carded capon meat, and ground almonds were still a frequent flavouring, thought htey were often supplemented and sometimessupplanted by rosewater. And when it is thick as pap', said a contemporary recipe, take it form the fire, and put it in a fair platter, and when it is cold, lay three slices on a dish, and cast a little sugar on it, and so serve it in.' But an alternative version now existed as well, a meatless blancmange made with cream, sugar and rosewater, thickened with egg yolks or with beaten egg whites. Blancmange, which had been a first course dish in medieval times, now tended to appear in the second course, sometimes offered along with leach. During the seventeenth century both capon flesh and meatless types coexisted, the latter now sometimes thickened with wheat or flour; and Robert May still offered recipes for fish blancmange too. Then, late in the century, a new concept of the dish arrived from France. It began with a hen, but this hen was boiled with calves' feet, and the resultant jelly was thickened with ground almonds, flavoured with rosewater and allowed to set. In another recipe the hen was omitted altogether, and the hartshorn jelly made, which was strained with ground almonds and milk. Such blancmange closely resembled white leach. It also foreshadowed the Englsih blancmange of the eighteenth century, which was always a kind of jelly, stiffened with isinglass or hartshorn, coloured with milk, cream or beaten egg whites, but still flavoured with the almonds which had so long been associated with the confection of that name. The final transformation came from the new world. In the West Indies, as in the East Indies, arrowroot was cultivated as a source of starch. Perhaps the early settlers recognized its potential as a thickener for meatless blancmange. By the early 1820s recipes were published there for American or West Indian blancmange. Boiling milk, sweetened and seasoned with a little cinnamon and lemon peel, was poured upon a solution of arrowroot and stirred briskly the while, since it thickened instantly. It was put into a mould and turned out the next day. Here at last was the true precursor or the modern cornflour blancmange."
    ---ibid (p. 225-6)

    [14th century England]
    Blawmanger; (includes modernized version)

    [14th century Spanish Catalonia]
    "White Dish

    Make a good chicken broth. Then take uncooked chicken breasts, all that are needed, and press them a little in a mortar, without breaking them. Then take them from the mortar and hit them with your hands on a plate. Then take almond milk made with the broth, that has thickened adequately, and put it to cook in a good, varnished pot. Stir it well, and keep it from the smoke. Put in a little well-ground rice flour, and white sugar, and cook its slowly, just until it boils. When it has thickened, take it from the fire and put it on the coals. Cover it with a clay lid, and keep it covered a while. Then stir it a little and cover it again, and be sure that there is no fire burning on the sides of the pot. Then flavor it with salt. This dish should be al little browned. one knows when it is cooked when one puts it in his mouth: the white is all tender and it has a sharp taste that is not present in cold water. This dish can be made with partridge and other chicken. Also, you can make it in another way, which can be made of almonds: grind the chicken breasts so no large pieces show, and put them to cook with ground rice flour. But, however, the first way described above is better, as long as you know to leave it on the coals long enough to have take on color and a good, sharp flavor by itself. Also, one should put in a ground substance; one chicken breast for a bow of white dish. For the sugar, milk, and rice flour, as it seems best to you. you can put in half a bowl of ground rice per ten chicken breasts." ---The Book of Sent Sovi: Medieval Recipes from Catalaonia, edited by Joan Santanach, translated by Robin Vogelzang [Barcino Tamesis:Barcelona Spain] 2008 (p. 191)
    [NOTE: Original Catalan text appears on p. 190)

    [15th century Rome]
    "First: How to Make Blancmange Over Capon

    To make twelve servings: take two librae of almonds and crush well. In order that they may be whites as possible, soak in cool water for a day and a night. Then crush them, and when they have been crushed, add a little cool water so that they do not purge their oil. Then take a capon breast and crust together with the almonds; and takes some bread white and soak it in leave capon broth; and crust with the other ingredients; and take a little verjuice, a half ounce of ginger, well peeled so that it is all white, and a half libra or more of sugar; and thin with some lean capon broth; and pass through a stamine into a well-cleaned pot; and place the pot over hot coals away from the flame, stirring often with a spoon; and let it cook for a half hour; and when it is done cooking, add three ounces of good rose water. Then serve in bowls or cover the entire capon, or whatever fowl it may be, with the blancmange, and serve. if you cover the capon with the blancmange, to make it even more beautiful, top generously with pieces of apple. If you with to give this dish two colors, take an egg yolk and some saffron, and mix together with a part of the dish, and make sure that it is more sour with verjuice than the white version. When prepared in this way, the dish is said to be 'broomish.' If you have two capons, dress one white and the other yellow." (p. 62)

    "How to make Twelve Servings of Blancmange in the Catalan Style
    Take two jugs of goat's milk and eight ounces of extra fine rice flour and boil the rice flour in the milk. Then take the half-cooked breast of a capon that was butchered the same day and rip into strings as thin as hair and place in a mortar and give them no more than two turns of the pestle. Then, when the milk has simmered for a half hour, add the breast to the milk together with a libra of sugar; and let it boil for about a quarter of an hour more; and you must stir continuously, from the beginning to the end. You can tell that it is done when you remove the spoon and you see that the blancmange is syrupy. Then add some rose water, as above; and serve in bowls with a bit of sugar." (p. 62)

    "Lenten Blancmange
    To make ten servings: take a libra and a half of peeled almonds and crush well, as above, and take some bread white that has been soaked in white pea broth. If you do not have any peas, substitute with another broth by boiling very white bread in water for half an hour and then soak the above-mentioned bread white in this broth. Then take some good saltwater fish or some good freshwater pike that has been boiled. Take a half libra of its most firm and white meat and crush well with the almonds and bread white, a little broth, a half libra of peeled ginger, eight ounces of sugar, and some orange juice, which, if unavailable, can be substituted by a little verjuice to which rose water has been added. Incorporate and pass through a stamine; cook in a pot for an eighth of an your, away from the flame so that it does not burn; and stir continuously with a spoon." (p. 73)

    "Blancmange in the Catalan Style
    To make ten servings, take a libra of well-peeled and well-crushed almonds which you have thinned with fatty pullet broth, or another type of broth, and pass through a stamine; boil in a well-cleaned cooking pot, adding two ounces of rice flour that has been thinned with almond milk and strained; and simmer for an hour, blending and stirring with a spoon all the whole, adding a half libra [of sugar and] capon breast that has been cooked in the almond milk in the beginning and then finely chopped and well crushed. When the whole mixture is done, add a little rose water; serve in bowls, topped with sweet spices." (p. 75)

    "How to Make Ten Servings of a Pottage That Resembles Blancmange
    Take a libra of peeled and well-crushed almonds; thin with fatty pullet broth or other good broth, and pass through a stamine into a pot to boil with an ounce of rice flour thinned with almonds milk; allow it to boil for an hour, stirring all the while and adding a half libra of sugar and a bit of finely chopped and crushed capon that was cooked first in milk; when all this mixture is cooked, add a little rose water; serve in bowls, topped with sweet spices." (p. 122) ---The Art of Cooking: The First Modern Cookery Book, Maestro Martino of Como, edited and with an introduction by Luigi Ballerini, translated and annotated by Jeremy Parzen, with fifty modernized recipes by Stefania Barzini [University of California Press:Berkeley CA] 2005
    [NOTES: (1) This book offers modernized recipes for "How to Make Balncmange Over Capon" (p. 149) and "Blancmange in the Catalan Style" (p. 81). (2) A stamine is 'a woolen or worsted cloth used as a sieve, a fundamental tool in medieval and Renaissance cookery." (p. 51) (3) A libra "was equivalent to twelve ounces...a pound in the troy system, as opposed to the avoirdupois system, in which a pound is equivalent to sixteen ounces.' (p. 51).]

    [1545 London]
    To Make Bleaw manger (with chicken)

    [1595 London]
    "To make blewmanger

    Take to a pint of cream, twelve or thirteen yolks of eggs, and strain them into it. And seethe them well, ever stirring it with a stick that is broad at the end. But before you seethe it put in sugar and in the seething taste of it, that you may, if need be, put in more sugar. And when it is almost sodden put in a little rose water that it may taste thereof. Seethe it well till it be thick, and then strain it again if it hath need, or else put it into a fair dish and stir it till it be almost cold. Take the white of all the eggs and strain them with a pint of cream and seethe that with sugar, and in the end put in rose water as into the other, and seethe till it be thick enough. Then use it as the other. When you serve it you may served one dish, and another of the other in rolls, and cast on biscuits."
    ---The Good Housewife's Jewel, Thomas Dawson, reprint 1595 edition with and introduction by Maggie Black [Southover Press:East Sussex] 1996 (p. 85-6)
    [NOTES: (1) According to the glossary in this book, the word "seethe" means a reasonably fast boil. (2) Recipe titled "To make a blanch manger on the fifth day" appears on p. 89.]

    [1604 London]
    "To Make Blancmange.

    Leige, Modern-day Belgium, 1604 (Lancelot de Casteau, 32)
    ...Take a capon or chicken which has been dead two or three days, and cook it, being cooked remove the breast meat and cut it into little pieces, and pound it in mortar, adding two or three spoons of cow's milk. The take seven pound six ounces of cow's milk, a pound of rice flour which is very fine, and mix well your flour with the capon meat, and mix all the milk aforementioned with it. Then take a pound and a half of sugar, which is very white, place it in a cauldron on the fire and stir it well constantly with a wooden spoon, being boiled a quarter of an hour, place it eight ounces of rose water, a little salt, and let it boil again a little quarter hour, then remove from the fire and put in plates or in cups, or in square forms."
    ---Cooking in Europe 1250-1650, Ken Alabala [Greenwood Press:Westport CT] 2006 (p. 111)

    Compare with Cold Shape & Frumenty.


    Bread pudding
    The history of bread dates back to prehistoric times; pudding (both sweet and savory) was first enjoyed by ancient peoples. Food historians generally attribute the origin of basic bread pudding to frugal cooks who did not want to waste stale bread. Since very early times it was common practice to use stale/hard bread in many different ways...including edible serving containers (Medieval sops, foccacia), stuffings (forcemeat), special dishes (French toast) and thickeners (puddings). In the 19th century recipes for bread pudding were often included in cookbooks under the heading "Invalid cookery." Recipes vary greatly and are often influenced by the type of bread employed.

    "Bread puddings. An importrant category. Many desserts include bread whether in the form of breadcrumbs or slices of bread...It is safe to assume that from the very distant past cooks have sometimes turned stale bread intoa sweet pudding, if only by soaking it in milk, sweetening it by one means or another, and baking the result. The addition of some fat, preferably in the form of butter, and something like currantsis all that is needed to move this frugal dish into the category of treats, and this is what has ensured its survival in the repertoire, even on cooks who never have stale bread on their hands. This enhanced product is known as bread and butter pudding and this same dish can also be made with something more exotic than plain bread, for example, brioche, pannetone, slices of plain cake, etc. and can be enlivened by judicious spicing or by reinforcing the currants with plumper sultanas and mixed peel. But such elaborations must be kept under strict control, so that what is essentially a simple pudding does not lose its character under the weight of sophisticated additions. The likely history of the pudding can be illuminated by looking back at medieval sops and at the medieval practice of using a hollowed-out loaf as the container for a sweet dish...variants of bread pudding could be eaten hot as pudding or cold as a cake...an Egyptian dessert which bears a marked similarity to bread and butter pudding, and which was originally a simple dish or rural areas...is called Om Ali and is made with bread...milk or cream, raisins, and almonds...Another Middle Eastern bread sweet, Eish es serny (palace bread), is mad by drying large round slices cut horizontally through a big loaf to make enormous rusks, which are then simmered in sugar and honey syrup flavoured with rosewater and coloured with caramel. Traveling further east, an Indian dessert in the Moghul style, Shahi tukra, is made with bread fried in ghee, dipped in a syrup flavoured with saffron and rosewater, and covered with a creamy sauce in which decorative slices of almond are embedded.""
    ---The Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 103)

    Bread pudding & the Civil War
    Our survey of Civil War food history books and primary sources indicates bread pudding was popular on both sides of the Mason Dixon Line. Civil war soldiers sometimes subsitituted crackers for bread. Sweeteners were hard to come by, especially for Confederate soldiers. Still? They made do. Notes here:

    "Desserts existed almost solely in the imagination, especially with the scarcity of sugar. "If we wanted something extra, we pounded our crackers into fine pieces, mixed it up with sugar, raisons and water, and boiled it in our tin cups,"..."This we called pudding." Some Yankees bought meal at a local meal and made flapjacks and puddings in what Fisk said was "a style of simplicity such as only soldiers would think of adopting." For Confederates, a final "course" could be even less appetizing. Fruit and berries were ocften baked into pies that for want of sugar and proper flour, could be fearsome to the taste and digestion. Some Kentucky Confederates made a sugarless fried pie, "this having all the tough elasticity of a rubber suspender." Once in a while, when there was a little sugar, soldiers with Lee made blackberry pies. Often the only sweetener available was watermelon juice, not easy to obtain when by 1863 a single watermelon sold for $40.00 in the camps."
    ---A Taste for War: The Culinary History of the Blue and the Gray, William C. Davis [Stackpole Books:Mechanisburg PA] 2003 (p. 26)

    A SAMPLER OF BREAD PUDDING RECIPES THROUGH TIME

    [1747]
    "A bread pudding

    Cut off all the crust of a Penny white loaf and slice it thin into a quart of new milk, set it over a chafingdish of coals, till the bread has soaked up all the milk, then put in a piece of sweet butter, stir it round, let it stand till cold, or you may boil your milk, and pour over your bread, and cover it up close, does full as well; then take the Yolks of six eggs, the whites of three, and beat them up, with a little rosewater, and nutmeg, a little salt, and sugar, and if you choose it, mix all well together, and boil it half an hour."
    ---The Art of Cookery, Made Plain and Easy, Hannah Glasse [1747] p. 109

    [1824]
    "Bread pudding

    Grate the crumb of a stale loaf, and pour it in a pint of boiling milk, let it stand an hour, then beat it to a pulp; add six eggs, well beaten, half a pound of butter, the same of powdered sugar, half a nutmeg, a glass of brandy, and some grated lemon-peel; put a paste in the dish and bake it."
    ---The Virginia Houswife, Mary Randolph, facsimile 1824 edition with historical notes and commentaries by Karen Hess [University of South Carolina Press:Columbia] 1984 (p. 150)

    [1845]
    "Rich Bread and Butter Pudding

    Give a good flavour of lemon-rind and bitter almonds, or of cinnamon, ir preferred to a pinto of new milk, and when it has simmered a sufficient time for this, strain and mix it with a quarter of a pint of rich cream; sweeten it with four ounces of sugar in lumps, and stir it while still hot to five well-beaten eggs; throw in a few grains of salt, and move the mixture briskly with a spoon as a glass of brandy is added to it. Have ready a thickly-buttered dish three layers of think bread and butter cut from a half-quartern loaf, with four ounces of currants, and one and a half of finely shred candied peel, strewed between and over them; pour the eggs and milk on them by degrees, letting the bread absorb one portion before another is added; it should soak for a couple of hours before the pudding is taken to the oven, which should be a moderate one. Half an hour will bake it. It is very good when made with new milk only; and some persons use no more than a pint of liquid in all, but part of the whites of the eggs my then be omitted. Cream my be substituted for the entire quantity of milk at pleasure.
    New milk, 1 pint; rind of small lemon, and 6 bitter almonds bruised (or 1/2 drachm of cinnamon); simmered 10 to 20 minutes. Cream, 1/4 pint; sugar, 4 oz.; eggs, 6; brandy, 1 wineglassful. Bread and butter, 3 layers; currants, 4 oz.; candied orange or lemon-rind, 1 « oz.; to stand 2 hours, and to be baked 30 minutes in a moderate oven."
    ---Modern Cookery for Private Families, Eliza Acton, 1845 facsimile reprint with an introduction by Elizabeth Ray [Southover Press:East Sussex] 1993 (p. 359)

    [1847]
    "Poor Man's Bread Pudding

    Pour boiling water over half a loaf of stale bread, and covering it up closely, let it remain until thoroughly soaked; then squeeze it in a towel until half the water is out; put it in a bowl, and wweeten with brown sugar to the taste; add, while hot, a large tablespoonful of butter; flavor with grated nutmeg, a spoonful of brandy, ditto of rose-water; add some stoned raisins. It should be put in a well buttered baking dish about an inch deep, and should bake four hours in a slow oven."
    ---The Carolina Housewife, Sarah Rutledge, facsimile reprint of 1847 edition [University of South Carolina Press:Columbia] 1979(p. 126)

    [1849]
    "A Baked Bread Pudding

    Take a stale five cent loaf of bread; cut off all the curst, and grate or rub the crumb as fine as possible. Boil a quart of rich milk, and pour it hot over the bread; then stir in a quarter of a pound of butter, and the same quantity of sugar, a glass of wine and brandy mixed, or a glass of rose water. Or you may omit the liquor and substitute the grated peel of a large lemon. Add a tablespoonful of mixed cinnamon and nutmeg powdered. Stir the whole very well, cover it, and set it away for half an hour. Then let it cool. Beat seven or eight eggs very light, and stir them gradually into the mixture after it is cold. Then butter a deep dish, and bake the pudding an hour. Send it to the table cool."
    ---Directions for Cookery in its Various Branches, Miss Leslie [1849] (p.299)

    [1884]
    "Bread pudding
    (includes French bread pudding) from
    Mrs. D.A. Lincoln

    [1918]
    Bread pudding
    from Fannie Merritt Farmer

    [1936]
    "Bread pudding

    No. 1. 1 qt. stale bread or cake in cubes
    1 pt. Milk
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 eggs
    1/4 cup seeded raisins
    Beat the whole eggs, add milk, sugar, and gratings of nutmeg or cinnamon if desired; pour over the bread in a pudding dish, let stand until thoroughly soaked and bake 20 minutes in a moderate oven. Add seeded raisins and almonds if desired. Serve with milk, jelly or any pudding sauce..."
    ---The Settlement Cook Book, Mrs. Simon Kander [Settlement Cook Book Co.:Milwaukee] Twenty-first Edition Enlarged and Revised 1936 (p. 341)

    You can examine several more 19th century American bread pudding recipes courtesy of the digital cookbook collection uploaded by Michigan State University. Search recipe name: bread pudding

    Need more? Ask your librarian to help you find this article: "It's puddying time!" Country Living, April 1991, p. 132
    ---this piece traces the history of bread pudding and its symbolism in colonial America.

    Related foods? French toast& batter puddings.


    Rice pudding
    Rice pudding is an ancient dish enjoyed by people of many cultures and cuisines. This food traces its roots to the grain pottages of made by middle eastern cooks. It has long been associated with good nutrition and easy digestion, and were first mentioned in medical texts rather than cookery books. Throughout history rice pudding has been recommended for the young, the old, and people of all ages with stomache ailments. In 19th century America, arrowroot and tapioca puddings were prescribed for much the same reason.

    The history of rice is a long and complicated story. Food historians generally agree that rice came to Europe by way of India. At first, rice was not used as an ingredient in cooking. It was prized for its medicinal value and known as a thickening agent. The history of spices also figures prominently in the history of this dish.

    Rice pudding around the world

    Middle East
    "Firni, a sweet milky dessert, to be eaten cold, made either with cornflour or rice flour or sometimes both and usually flavoured with rosewater and/or ground cardamom. The dish is decorated with chopped or ground almonds or pistachio nuts...the history of firni goes back a very long way; it seems to have originated in ancient Persia or the Middle East; and to have been introduced to India by the Moghuls."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 300)

    "Shola...the name given to a number of dishes all over the Middle East, Iran, and Afghanistan in which short-grain rice is cooked until soft and thick, wtih other ingredients chose according to whether the shola is be be savoury or sweet...sholleh was brought to Perisa by the Mongolians in the 13th century...Shola-e-zard is a sweet saffron and rosewater (or orange flower water) flavoured rice dish...It has a religious significance, being made on the 10th day or Muharram (the Muslim month of mourning)...also made as a nazr, which is a custom of thanksgiving or pledge practiced in Iran and Afghanistan. The shola is cooked and then distributed to the poor and to neighbours and relatives."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 720)

    Asia
    "Kheer is the Indian name for sweet milk puddings usually made with rice, although it can also be made with fine noodles called seviyan, or semolina, carrots or sage. It is sometimes called sheer, which means milk in Persian. It probably originated in Persia where a similar dessert is known as sheer birinj (rice pudding). There are many variations in the flavourings which can include raisins, cardamom, cinnamon, almond, pistachio, saffron, kewra essence...or rosewater, etc. For special occasions it is customary to decorate the chilled kheer with edible silver or gold leaf. The Persian version, sheer birinj, according to Kekmat...was originally the food of angels, first made in heaven when the Prophet Muhammad ascended to the 7th floor of Heaven to meet God and he was served this dish."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 431)

    "Kheer. A sweet confection based on rice. When prepared as a ritual pucca' food, the rice is first lightly fried in ghee before boiling with sugared milk till the milk thickens. A kheer of jowar is mentioned in the fourteenth century padmavat of Gugarat, and other cereal products (vermicelli, cev, pheni) may be used as well. A thinner product is payasam, and both are popular desserts, routinely as well as on festive occasions. The Hindi word kheer derives from the Sanskrit ksheer for milk and kshirika for any dish prepared with milk."
    ---A Historical Dictionary of Indian Food, K. T. Achaya [Oxford University Press:Delhi] 1998 (p. 130)

    "The Chinese eight jewel rice pudding is so named because it is made with eight different kinds of fruit preserved with honey. Eight was said by Confucius to be the number of perfection. The fruits are arranged on the bottom of the dish and cooked, sweetened glutinous rice poured on top. The pudding is then steamed for several hours so that the rice breaks down into a homogenous mass."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 665)

    Europe
    "Rice pudding is the descendant of earlier rice pottages, which date back to the time of the Romans, who however used such a dish only as a medicine to settle upset stomaches. There were medieval rice pottages made of rice boiled until soft, then mixed with almond milk or cow's milk, or both, sweetened, and sometimes coloured. Rice was an expensive import, and these were luxury Lenten dishes for the rich. Recipes for baked rice puddings began to appear in the early 17th century. Often they were rather complicated...Nutmeg survives in modern recipes. It is now unusual to add eggs or fat, and rice pudding has tended to become a severely plain nursery dish. Nevertheless, it has its devotees."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 665)

    "Northern Italians fancy themselves as having a monopoly on the consumption of rice, but in fact rice first entered Europe as a foodstuff via Arab-occupied Spain and Sicily. The Romans knew rice only as an extremely expensive commodity imported in small quantities from India for medicinal purposes."
    --- Pomp and Sustenance: Twenty-Five Centuries of Sicilian Food, Mary Taylor Simeti [ECCO Press:Hopewell NJ] 1998 (p. 69)

    RECIPES
    Recipe for early Roman rice pudding:

    "Oriza
    Rice is boiled in fresh water. When it is properly cooked, the water is drained off and goat's milk is added. The pot is put on the flame and cooked slowly until it becomes a solid mass. It is eaten like this hot, not cold, but without any salt or oil--Anthimus On the Observance of Foods.'"
    ---Roman Cookery, Mark Grant [Serif:London] 1999 (p. 154)
    [NOTE: Anthimus (c.AD450-520) was a doctor from Constantinople who wrote a medical and culinary treatise. This recipe was translated by Mark Grant from the original Anthimus: On the Observance of Foods.]

    Recipe for medieval Italian rice pudding (This is probably close to the recipe first introduced to South/North America--rice was an old world food that was first introduced to the New by the European explorers).

    "Rice in Almonds
    For ten guests, wash half a pound of rice two or three times in warm water. When it is washed and cooked, spread on a board until the water has evaporated. Then put in a mortar and grind with a pound of peeled almonds, and put through a sieve into a pan with fresh water. Add a half pound of sugar. It is necessary that it boil a half hour far from flame, on coals, because of smoke, and be stirred with a spoon. Rice can be cooked the same way in goat's milk. Because this dish quickly absorbs smoke, if that should happen, get rid of the smoke this way: transfer the rice from the pot into a clean pan..."
    ---Platina: On the Right Pleasure and Good Health, critical edition and translation by Mary Ella Milham [original book published in the 15th century] (p. 335)
    A similar period recipe was blancmanger (with various spellings). This recipe also included fowl or fish, depending upon the Christian calendar.

    Rice pudding was a popular dish during Shakespeare's time. The Bard himself alludes to it's making at a celebratory feast in A Winter's Tale, Act IV, Scene iii, lines 37-49. The book Dining With William Shakespeare by Madge Lorwin reprints an original recipe from Thomas Dawson's The Good Huswifes Jewell (1596): "To Make a Tart of Ryse...boyle your rice, and put in the yolkes of two or three Egges into the Rice, and when it is boyled put it into a dish and season it with sugar, synamon and ginger, and butter, and the juice of two or three Orenges, and set it on the fire againe."

    Rice pudding recipes

    If you would like to try creating a rice pudding that approximates what automat patrons might have eaten during a specific time period, consider the following recipes:

    "Cream rice pudding
    2 tablespoonfuls cold boiled rice,
    3 tablespoonfuls sugar,
    Yolk 1 egg,
    3 tablespoonfuls cornstarch,
    2 cupfuls milk,
    1/2 teaspoonful McIlhenny's Mexican vanilla

    Put the milk with the cold rice in a double boiler, add the sugar and salt. When it boils, add the cornstarch wet in a few tablespoonfuls cold milk. Just before it is ready to take from the fire, add the egg and flavoring. Eat cold with whipped cream."
    ---Mrs. Curtis's Cook Book, Isabel Gordon Curtis [1903] (page 57)

    "Creamy rice pudding
    1 tablespoon uncooked rice.
    1 quart milk.
    1/2 cup sugar.
    1/8 teaspoon nutmeg or cinnamon.
    1/2 teaspoon salt.

    Wash the rice. Add the other ingredients. Pour the mixture into a baking dish. Cook in a very slow oven (250-275 degrees F.) For 2 or 3 hours, and stir occasionally. Double the quantity of rice may be used and then the pudding does not require such long cooking, but is not so creamy. If desired, one-half cup of raisins my be added and the sugar reduced to one-third cup."
    ---Aunt Sammy's Radio Recipes Revised, Bureau of Home Economics, U.S. Department of Agriculture [1931] (page 101)

    "Rice pudding
    Cook: 2/3 cup Rice
    Drain it and rinse it with cold water.
    Combine, beat well and add:
    1 1/3 cups milk
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    3 1/2 tablespoons sugar
    1 tablespoon soft butter
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    2 eggs
    Add:
    1/3 cup raisins (optional)
    1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
    1 teaspoon lemon juice

    Combine these ingredients lightly with a fork. Grease a baking dish and cover the bottom and sides with: bread crumbs (optional). Put the rice in it and cover the top with bread crumbs. Bake the pudding in a moderate oven 325 degrees until it is set. Serve it hot or cold with: Cream, Strawberry or Raspberry Hard Sauce, fruit juice or Hot Sherry Sauce."
    ---The Joy of Cooking, Irma S. Rombauer [1946] (p. 633).

    Related foods? Bread & tapioca puddings.
    Tapioca
    The natural source for tapioca is the root of the
    cassava (also known as manioc, yuca) plant BUT tapioca does not occur naturally. It requires (man-made) processing. There are many forms of processed tapioca: flakes, seeds & pearls. Tapioca has traditionally been considered a healthy food because this form of starch is easy to digest. In 19th century America, tapioca pudding was often prescribed for the young, old and infirm. Arrowroot was a similar product. Minute Tapioca, a quick cooking version, dates to 1894.

    What is tapicoa?
    An important product of Cassava, and broadly speaking the only one which has a presence in western kitchens. Cassava flour is treated in such a way as to form what are called flakes, seeds, and pearls of tapioca, which consitute an article of commerce known under the name tapioca fancies. Cassava is an American plant, although the main producers are now in Asia and Africa...Tapioca pudding is well known as one of the family of British milk puddings. Like other members of the family, it is sometimes despised by the ignorant, that is to say persons who have no knowledge of how good they are when properly made....Pearl tapioca, rather than the quicker cooking flake kind, is preferred for tapioca pudding, and that available in North America is usually the best..."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 782)

    "Tapioca is a grainy starch obtained from the fleshy root of the cassava, a tropical American plant of the genus Manihot. The name for it in the Tupi-Guarani languages of South America is tipioca, a compound formed from tipi, 'residue' and ok, squeeze out'; it reflects the way in which the starch was produced by crushing the root fibres, steeping them in water, and then squeezing all the liquid out. Spanish and Portuguese changed the word to tapioca, the form adopted in English in the late eighteenth century. By Mrs. Beeton's time the use of tapioca had become widespread, and she herself writes in glowing terms of its possession of that elusive quality beloved of Victorians, digestibility: Its nutritive properties are large, and as a food for persons of delicate digestion, or for children, it is in great estimation' (Book of Household Management, 1861(. She gives a recipe for tapioca soup, in which it was used for thickening broth, but she also of course mentions tapioca pudding, the tapioca-based milk pudding that for close to the next hundred years was to be a not altogether welcome staple of the British sweet course."
    ---An A-Z of Food & Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 337)

    [1875]
    "Tapioca. Tapioca is procured from a plant which grows in British Guiana, and is known to botanists by the name of Jatropha, or Manihot Janipha. The tapioca is procured from the root of the plant which, oddly enough, contains hydrocyanic acid; and it is said that the native Indans poison their arrows from the juice of the root before they begin preparing the tapioca. The native cassava is also prepared from the same plant. Tapioca is a wholesome and nutritious farinaceous food very easy of digestion. It is used for puddings, for thickening soups and sauces, and it is also simply boiled in milk or water as a food as food for invalids. When mixed with other flour it will make very good bread. It would be bought of a respectable dealer, as a spurious kind is sometimes offered for sale made of gum and potato-flour. The jar in the store-cupboard which contains tapioca should be kept closely covered, or insects will get into it."
    ---Cassell's Dictionary of Cookery [London:1875?] (p. 957)

    [1911]
    Tapioca Grocer's Encyclopedia/Artemis Ward.

    19th century USA tapioca recipes (& tapioca as an ingredient) are availble from Michigan State University's Feeding America (searchable digitable cookbook collection).

    Minute tapioca
    According to the records of the
    U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, Minute brand tapioca was introduced to the American public April 1, 1894 (registration=#0161824, registration year=1922). Competing "quick cook" and "instant" tapioca products also existed. Minute brand tapioca was aggressively advertised on a national level, resulting in popular name recognition. Easier to use than traditional tapioca, this modified natural substance remains in use today.

    Company origin & evolution
    "Minute Tapioca was incorporated in Massachusetts in March, 1913, succeeding to the business of a company of simlar name organized under the laws of maine, which was organized in September, 1894, as the Whitman Grocery Co., subsequently changing its name...Postum Cereal Co., INco now postum Co., Incl, acquired the Minute Tapioca Co., last fall (1926). ["Minute Tapioca is Excellent Earner," Wall Street Journal, March 28, 1927 (p. 4)]. Postum became part of the new General Foods in 1929. GF still owns the Minute Tapioca trademark.

    [1896]
    "Minute Tapioca. No more soaking of tapioca. No more hard, soggy lumps. Minute Tapioca requires no soaking, is equal to double the amount of any other tapioca, is cheaper than any other and is absolutely pure."
    ---display ad, The Youth's Companion, May 7, 1896 (p. 11)

    [1914]
    "15 minutes from Box to Table. You won't need to starty your dessert hours ahead with Minute Tapioca. Unlike bulk tapioca, it requires no soaking. Just stir it in when you make the pudding. The readiness with which Minute Tapioca is prepared, its delicacy of flavor and pure nutriment make possible a great variety of tempting desserts that men-folk like. You can prepare Minute Tapioca desserts as quickly as you can make a pitcher of lemonade."
    ---display ad, Boston Cooking School Magazine, May 1, 1914; 18, 10; American Periodicals p. 793

    [1923]
    Minute Tapioca, company recipe booklet.

    [1934]
    "Heard the 'glad news' about the new Minute Tapioca" Imagine a tapioca pudding lighter, creamier and more delicately delicious than any you eve tasted in all your days! Here it is--bade with the NEW Minute Tapioca! Your first taste will tell you--here's a pudding as light as a whip, as rich as a custard, as creamy as a Bavarian...Minute Tapioca Cream is now easier than many a 'prepared' pudding to make. Yet it's a real honest-to-goodness home made pudding, full of real nourishment. Economical. A dessert that all the family can enjoy."
    ---Easy Triumphs with the New Minute Tapioca: 85 recipes with glad news in them, [General Foods Corporation:New York] 1934 (p. 3)
    [NOTE: the back of this booklet states Minute Tapioca divison is located in Orange, Mass.]

    [1948]
    "Dust off the welcome mat for a dessert favorite, back now after a five-year wartime qabsencel It's quick-cooking tapioca. Children love it, and grown-ups go for it, too. Now it's back in countrywide distribution. Desserts aren't all. As a thickener in fruit pies, as a binder in meat loaves and in fish caseroles, it was a prewar favorite with American cooks. Also, if you want a souffle to stand up striaght and tall at the dinner table, add a little tapioca to enforce it so itwon't fail. Minute tapioca was a war casualty, and even the 'mock tapioca' produced from a laboratory-developed starch-producing grass, was so short in supply that it was merely a drop in the pudding pot. For the past five years tapioca has been missing from gorcery shelves because after Pearl Harbor it was no longer possible to import it from Java. The consinued unrest in Java postpones tappioca production there indefinitely, so the manufactuers of the family product in its red and blue box have turned once again to South America, where tapioca had originated but where relatively little of the special quality required for the minute variety had previously been produced. But now good supply lines have been set up with Brazil. There's and interesting story behind the oprigin of the quick cooking, now familar minute tapioca. A sailor (whose name is not known) really started the buisness. Back in 1894, this sailr who was staying at the home of Mrs. Susan Stavers, somewhere near Boston, asked for tapioca pudding. When he was served, he complained it was too coarse and lumpy. It seems he'd tasted better in the tropics! Just as an experiment, he suggested to Mrs. Stavers that she run the tapioca through the coffee grinder. Result--a wonderful pudding and the beginnign of a new business.""
    ---"Grocers Can Stock Tapioca Again and Family Menus are Back to Normal," Ruth Miller, Christian Science Monitor, April 2, 1948 (p. 16)
    [NOTE: Photo of product from Miracles with Minute Tapioca, 1948, here.]

    Related dish: rice pudding. Related starches: Cassava, sago & taro.


    Summer pudding
    Simple
    bread puddings have long been associated with healthy living and invalid cookery. Summer pudding appears to be a variation on this theme. According to the food historians, summer pudding, as we know it today, was a British recipe of the 19th century. Some were steamed, others were baked, still others quickly cooked with tapioca (another popular ingredient for healthy/invalid cookery). The degree of "healthiness", not unlike many dishes today, depended upon the method of preparation and the selection of ingredients.

    "Summer pudding. A favourite English dessert which combines a mixture of summer fruits with bread. Redcurrants...and raspberries are the best fruits to use, but some varieties of gooseberry are suitable, and a small quantity of blackcurrants and very few strawberries may be included. In autumn, blackberries can be substituted. In other countries, corresponding kinds of berry will do very well...In the 19th century this pudding seems to have been known as 'hydropathic pudding' because it was served at health resorts where pastry was forbidden. This name must have begun to seem unattractive or inappropriate early in the 20th century, when the new name summer pudding, which is now universally used, began to appear in print. Until recently it was thought that the earliest recorded use was by Florence Perry (1917) who, on the title page of her attractive book, styled herself The Pudding Lady'...However, it has now been established that a missionary in India, Miss E.S. Poynter (1904), had used the term much earlier, in her book; and that soon afterwards Miss L. Sykes (c. 1912) used it as the title of a recipe which was even closer than Miss Poynter's to those now in use."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 770)

    "Summer pudding. A British pudding or dessert of mixed summer fruit moulded in a pudding basin lined with overlapping slices of bread. The dish is said to have originated in spas and nursing homes, where it was served to patients as an alternative to heavy puddings made with pastry, and it was known as hydropathic' pudding. Before bread was dosed with additives to prevent it from drying, summer pudding was a popular dish for using up day-old or slightly stale bread and a glut of summer fruit. It is still a popular, fabulous dessert, and it has the advantage of being light but full of flavour."
    ---Larousse Gastronomique, Completely Revised and Updated [Clarkson Potter:2001] (p. 1163)

    [1875?]
    "Summer Pudding.

    Beat five tablespoonfuls of flour smoothly with a quarter of a pint of milk. Add gradually three-quarters of a pint of milk. Add gradually three-quarters of a pint of boiling milk, and boil the mixture, stirring it all thetime, for five minutes. Pour it out, and let it become partially cook, then add two fresh eggs and half a tea-cupful of sugar. Beat the batter briskly for a few minutes, and stir in a tea-cupful of fresh summer fruit of any kind. Put the mixture into a buttered bowl, tie it securely with a floured cloth, plunge it into boiling water, and keep it boiling quickly till done enough. Turn it out, and serve immediately. Send sweet sauce or powdered sugar to table with it. Time to boil, and hour and a half."
    ---Cassell's Dictionary of Cookery with Numerous Illustrations, [Cassell, Petter, Galpin:London] 1875? (p. 944)

    [1894]
    "Hydropathic Pudding

    This has many names. It is very nice when properly prepared, and the pudding served very cold. Required: fruit, sugar, and bread. Cost, variable; generally moderate.
    The nicest fruits for this are raspberries or currants, or a mixture, or strawberries, with or without a few red or black currants; plums are sometimes used. Take a plain mould, and cut a piece of bread to fit the bottom; then put fingers of bread round; the sides should be bevelled a little so that they overlap and prevent the escape of the fruit. The latter is stewed withh enough sugar, and poured in, and a cover of bread put on. A plate with weights on is put on the top, and the pudding put in a cold place to set.
    Another way is to line the mould, and then fil up with layers of bread and fruit; and if the bread is cut very thinly, this will be generally liked better than the first mode, as there is less fruit, and it suits the majority better. For a plainer dish a basin may be used, and slices of bread put to line it entirely; then either of the modes can be followed. These should be turned out with care, and may be served plain, or with a simply made custard. They are useful for those who cannot take pastry or rich puddings, and for children."
    ---Cassell's New Universal Cookery Book, Lizzie Heritage [Cassell and Company:London] 1894 (p. 851)

    [1936]
    "Cold Summer Pudding

    Utensils--Two basins, knife, sieve, wooden spoon, saucepan.
    Line a buttererd basin with layers of thin slices of bread. Fill the centre with layers of bread. Rub 1 lb. of raspberries and red currants through a sieve and pour this puree into the basin. Stand it in a cold place until all the juice is absorbed by the bread, then turn into a glass dish. Stew 1/2 lb. red currants and 1/2 lb. raspberries with enough sugar to sweeten, until the sugar is dissolved. Rub this through a sieve, or strain it over the pudding. Serve with cream or chilled custard."
    ---Cookery Illustrated and Household Management, Elizabeth Craig [Odhams Press Ltd.:London] 1936 (p. 41)

    [1956]
    "Summer Pudding

    "This may be made two ways. In the first method the pudding is filled with fruits stewed whole, in the second with sieved fruit. This is sometimes preferred, because it is seedless.
    Method 1. Line a china bowl or souffle dish wtih slices of bread soaked in the juice of the stewed fruit. Fill the lined bowl with the fruit; black currants, raspberries, red currants, or blackberries and apples mixed. Place one or thwo layers of bread in between the fruit and finish off with a round of bread soaked in juice on top. You press it lay a saucer or plate on it, with a 1 lb. weight on top. leave in the ice-box or a cool place overnight. Turn out and serve with a whipped custard or plain cream.
    Method 2. This is exemplified in the following recipe for Blackberry Summer Pudding.

    "Blackberry Summer pudding (Seedless)
    2 apples
    1 1/4 lb. blackberries
    1/2 pint water
    1 1/2-2 oz. sugar
    stale white bread
    1 heaped teaspoon arrowroot or corn-flour to 1/2 pint juice
    Peel, core and thinly slice the apples; wash the blackberries. Put the water into a pan with the sugar, and when dissolved boil rapidly for 5 minutes. Add the fruit, cover, and simmer till pulpy, for approximately 10 minutes. Strain, reserving the juice, rub fruit through an aluminium strainer, then add half the juice, adding more sugar if necessary. Slice bread very thinly, cutting off the crust. Cover the bottom of a china souffle case with the bread, then spoon in enough of the thin puree to cover completely. Continue like this, with layers of bread and puree, until the dish is well filled, making sure thatne ach layer of bread is well soaked with the fruit puree. Lay a small plate on the top with a 1-lb. weight on it and leave overnight. Meanwhile, add a spoonful or two of the remaining juice to the arrowroot. Put this and the juice into a pan and bring to the boil. It should have consistency of thin cream. Leave till cold. Turn out the pudding, pour over a small quantity of the sauce, and serve the rest in a sauce-boat. Cream may be served separately. If properly made there should be no trace of white bread, and the pudding itself should be quite short in consistency. This may well be made with damsons, fresh or bottled."
    ---The Constance Spry Cookery Book, Constance Spry and Rosemary Hume [Pan Books Ltd.:London] 1956 (p. 906-907)


    Related recipe? Queen of puddings.


    Spotted Dick & Spotted Dog
    Food historians tell us both spotted dick and spotted dog are suet-based puddings which descended from
    roly-poly recipes. While suet puddings and pies date to the Medieval Ages, this particular iteration debuts in the 19th century. Traditional English plum puddings are similar in method, mode, and serving suggestions.

    The first printed evidence of the phrase "spotted dick," as it relates to food, is attributed to Alexis Soyer, the chef of London's illustrious Reform Club, 1849. Why this term? The Oxford English Dictionary confirms an 19th century colloquial use of the word 'dick' meaning pudding. Spotted is assumed to be alluding to the visual effect created by the raisins or sultanas. Neither the OED nor the food historians offer separate explanations regarding the origin of the related term "spotted dog" as it relates to food.

    "Spotted dick is a fine old traditional English dish: a sweet suet pudding, typically cylindrical, and studded with currants or raisins. Its name has made it the target of double entendres as leaden as the pudding itself often is. The first reference to it comes from the Modern Housewife (1849), a cookery book for the middle classes by the French chef Alexis Soyer, who settled in Britain: he gives a recipe, beginning: Plum Bolster, or Spotted Dick--Roll out two pounds of paste...have some Smyrna raisins well washed...' And in 1892 the Pall Mall Gazette reports that the Kilburn Sisters...daily satisfy hundreds of dockers with soup and Spotted Dick'. The origin of dick is not clear, but there are records of its more general use, meaning pudding', in the nineteenth century: an 1883 glossary of Hudderfield terms, for instance, gives Dick, plain pudding. If with treacle sauce, treacle dick. An alternative name, spotted dog, had appeared by the middle of the nineteenth century: For supper came smoking sheep's heads...and "spotted dog," a very marly species of plum-pudding' (C.M. Smith, Working-men's Way in the World, 1854)."
    ---An A-Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 321)

    "Spotted Dick and spotted dog are both popular British suet puddings which are spotted' with raisins. Strickly speaking, spotted dick is of the roly poly' type...with raisins and sugar spread on a flat sheet which is rolled up; and spotted dog is a plain cylindar with raisins or currants and sugar mixed with suet paste, so that it has visible spots on the outside. Both, correctly, should be boiled in a cloth, but are often now baked."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 748)

    Recipes for spotted dick are hard to find in most period cookbooks. That does not ncecessarily mean recipes of this sort are omitted. It sometimes means the item is listed under a different name. There are dozens of variations. Generally, they are noted as "economical" dishes. Compare Mr. Soyer's recipe with Mrs. Beeton's:

    Soyer [1860]
    "339. Spotted Dick.--Put three-quarters of a pound of flour into a basin, half a pound of beef suet, half ditto of currants, two ounces of sugar, a little cinnamon, mix with two eggs and two gills of milk; boil in either mould or cloth for one hour and a half; serve with melted butter, and a little sugar over."
    ---Shilling Cookery for the People, Alexis Soyer, facsimile 1860 reprint edition [Pryor Publications:Kent] 1999 (p. 130)

    Beeton [1863]
    "336. Boiled Currant Pudding (Plain and Economical)
    Ingredients.--1 lb of flour, 1/2 lb. Of suet, 1/2 lb. Of currants, milk.
    Mode.--Wash the currants, dry them thoroughly, and pick away any stalks or grit; chop the suet finely; mix all the ingredients together, and moisten with sufficient milk to make the pudding into a stiff batter; tie it up in a floured cloth, put it into boiling water, and boil for 3 1/2 hours; serve with a cut lemon, cold butter, and sifted sugar.
    Time, 3 1/2 hours. Average cost, 10d. Sufficient for 7 or 8 persons. Seasonable, at any time."
    ---Englishwoman's Cookery Book, Mrs. Isabella Beeton [Ward, Lock, and Tyler:London] 1863 (p. 160)

    Food historians tell us spotted dick/dog also sometimes refers to Irish soda bread with raisins:

    "In Ireland soda bread is prepared with either white or wholewheat flour. Brown soda bread is popularly served with smoked salmon. A sweet version of the bread can also be prepared with the addition of sugar and currants, raisins, or sultanas; this is known by a variety of names including spotted dick, spotted dog, and railway cake."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 732)

    Queen of puddngs
    According to the Oxford English Dictionary (2nd editon, accessed online), "Queen of the Pudding" and "queen's pudding," are one in the same. This dish is essentially a steamed suet pudding. The oldest print reference provided is from 1884 (Cassell's Dictionary of Cookery 675/2 'Queen's Pudding.' Food historians tell us this recipe is almost identical to Manchester pudding, which may indicate where the recipe originated.

    "Queen's pudding, or queen of the puddings, as the name of a pudding, seems not to have a very long history. As a dish, however, it apparently goes back to the 17th century. Sir Kenelm Digby (1669) gave a recipe for a dish like modern queen's pudding: breadcrumbs combined with milk and egg yolks, part baked, and then topped with jam and meringue made from the whites and baked until done. What queen may have been involved or how is unclear. There is a recipe for 'Queen Pudding' in Garrett (c. 1825); but it is not the same as queen's pudding above. This same book does, however, have a recipe for Manchester Pudding, which matches one given by Mrs. Beeton (1861) and may provide a clue. A Manchester pudding has a layer of puff pastry at the bottom of the dish and does not have a meringue topping. Otherwise it is more or less the same as queen's pudding. The evidence perhaps suggests that queen's pudding received its name at about the beginning of the 20th century; and at that time there was only one queen who could have inspired the name (no doubt after commenting favourably on a helping of Manchester pudding, possibly in the course of a royal visit to that city) and that of course was Queen Victoria. Be that as it may, queen's pudding in its modern form is one of the best British puddings."
    ----Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 644)

    "Queen of Puddings. One of the classic English puddings, queen of puddings consists of bread-crumb and custard mixture with a layer of jam and then meringue on top. It seems to have originated in the nineteenth century (although neither Eliza Acton nor Mrs. Beeton mention it.)"
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 274)

    [1875]
    "Queen's Pudding.
    --Butter a plain mould or basin rather thickly with butter, flour it well, and stick raisins, slices of candied peel or dried fruit over the inside rows. Fill the basin with layers of bread and butter, and put between each layer sugar flavoured with lemon rind, blanched and sliced almonds, and candied peel. Pour over the whole a mint of milk which has been mixed with four well-beaten eggs. Cover the basin closely, and boil or steam the pudding. Time to boil the pudding, half an hour. Probable cost, 1s. 2d. Sufficient, if made in a quart mould, for five or six persons."
    ---Cassell's Dictionary of Cookery with Numerous Illustrations [Cassell, Petter, Galpin:London] 1875(p. 675, column 2)
    Related recipe? Bread pudding & Summer pudding.

    What was roly-poly pudding?
    A survey of period cookbooks confirms this particular pudding was popular in Victorian times. It was most often served up as a sweet dish, but savory recipes exist as well. It was also referred to by Charles Dickens (Bleak House) and Beatrix Potter (The Tale of Samuel Whiskers or The Roly Poly Pudding).

    "Roly-poly pudding, a widely used name for a suet pudding made in a roll shape. The name is generally given to a pudding with a sweet filling such as jam, or treacle and breadcrumbs, or mixed dried fruits with marmelade; in each case spread over a flat sheet of dough and rolled up...Formerly roly-poly pudding was boiled in a pudding cloth; but the skill of enclosing a pudding of this shape in a cloth has now mostly been lost. Since it could not be adapated to a basin as could a round pudding, it is now almost invariably baked."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 668)

    Selected historic recipes

    [1845]
    "Rolled pudding.

    Roll out thin a bit of light puff paste, or a good suet crust, and spread equally over it to within an inch of the edge, any kind of fruit jam. Orange marmealade, and mincemeat make excellent varieties of this pudding, and a deeplpayer of fine brown sugar, flavoured with the grated rind and strained juice of one very large, or of two small, lemons, answers for it extremely well. Roll it up carefully, pinch the paste together at the ends, fold a cloth round, secure it well at the ends, and boil the pudding from one to two hours, according to its size and the nature of the ingredients. Half a pound of flour made into a paste with suet or butter, and covered with preserve, will be quite sufficiently boiled in an hour and a quarter."
    ---Modern Cookery for Private Families, Eliza Acton, 1845 facimile edition with an introduction by Elizabeth Ray [Southover Press:East Sussex] 1993 (p. 351)

    [1861]
    Rolled Treacle Pudding, Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management, Isabella Beeton (recipe 1372)

    [1875]
    "Roly-poly Pudding.
    --The pastry for this favourite pudding may be made in three or four ways, according to the degree of richness required. For a superior pudding mix a pound of flour with a half pound of very finely-shred suet, freed from skin and fibre. Add a good pinch of salt, an egg, and nearly half a pint of milk. Roll it out three or four times. For a plainer pudding, mix five or six ounces of suet with a pound of flour, add a pinch of salt, and make a paste by stirring in a half a pint of water. When suet is objected to, rub six ounces of butter or six ounces of sweet dripping into a pound of flour, and proceed as before. When a similar quantity still of dripping is used, the addition of a spoonful of baking-powder sill help to make the pastry light. Roll out the pastry to a long thin form, a quarter of an inch thick, and of a width to suit the size of the saucepan in which it is to be boiled. Spread over it a layer of any kind of jam, and be careful that it does not reach the edges of the pastry. Begin at one end, and roll it up to fasten the jam inside, moisten the edges and press them securely together. Dip a cloth in boiling water, flour it well, and tie the pudding tightly in it. Plunge it into a saucepan of boiling water, at the bottom of which a plate has been laid to keep the pudding from burning, and boil quickly until done enough. If it is necessary to add more water, let it be put in boiling. Marmalade, treacle, sliced lemon and sugar, lemon-juice and sugar, chopped apples and currants, either separately of together, may be used instead of jam for a change. Time to boil the pudding, one hour and a half to two hours, according to the size."
    ---Cassell's Dictionary of Cookery with Numerous Illustrations [Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co:London] 1875 (p. 769)

    [1936]
    "Roly-Poly Pudding

    1 lb. Suet Paste.
    Jam, or Treacle.
    Utensils: Basin, knife, pastry board, rolling pin, wooden spoon, pudding-cloth, saucepan. Enough for 6 persons.
    Make 1 lb. of geeo suet paste, as described on page 331, and roll it out to a quarter of an inch in thickness. Spread it evenly over with any kind of jam, or with treacle, to within an inch of the edges, and roll it up carefuly. Wet the paste and press it firmly together at the ends. Fold a well-buttered cloth round, tie it at the ends, and tighly pin it in the centre. Boil the pudding for 1 1/2 hours, and when cooked, remove the cloth carefully. A nice, sweet sauce can be poured over and around the roly-poly; and, if liked, the top can be sprinkled with castor sugar and shredded pistachio nuts."
    ---Cookery and Household Management, Elizabeth Craig [Odhams Press:London] 1936 (p. 336-337)

    Suet Paste
    1 lb. Flour.
    Pinch of Salt.
    6 oz, Beef Suet.
    1/2 pint cold water.
    Free the suet from all skin and shreds, and chop it very finely. Put the lfour, and a pinch of salt, into a basin, and rub the chopped suet well into it. Mix into a smooth dough, with about half a pint of cold water, then roll out, and use. Less suet may be used for a very plain paste, or for a very righ one use a little more. The quantities first given are for a good ordinary paste for boiled fruit or meat puddings, or suet dumplings. The most important point in obtaining a successful paste is chopping the suet very finely."
    ---ibid (p. 331)

    About puddings.

    Zabaglione (aka Zabaoine, Sabayon)

    What is Zabaglione"

    "Zabaglione, or zabaione as it is also spelled, is an Italian dessert consisting of egg yolks, sugar, and wine (typically Marsala) whisked together over heat until it froths, and generally served in glasses."
    ---An A-Z of Food & Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 374)

    "French borrowed the word sabayon from Italian zabaglione, and the concept too: it is a sweet confection made from whipped egg yolks and wine. A fashionable late twentieth-century application of it was as a sauce for fruit, flashed briefly under the grill. The word sabayon is also used for a sort of whipped-cream sauce served with fish."
    ---An A to Z of Food and Drink, John Ayto [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 2002 (p. 291)

    Where did the name originate?

    "Zabagione is the Anglicized (and internationally current) form of the Italian word which is correctly spelled zabaione and which became at the beginning of the 19th century sabayon in French. It deontes one of the most luxurious dishes of the caudle type, and is generally supposed to have been invented in the early 16th century at the Florentine court of the Medici. Egg yolks, Marsala wine, and sugar are beaten vigorously in a double boiler until thick and foamy. There are later versions with cream, including a frozen one. Lesley Chamberlain...remarks that a version of zabaglione was popular among the Russian aristocracy in the late 19th century under the strange name of 'gogol mogol'. This was at the height of Russian-French imperial cuisine, so...presumably arrived in St. Petersburg with a French chef who was accustomed to making sabayon. In France the name sabayon is also applied to a sauce, which belongs with the sauce called mousseline and is often made with champagne, for serving wtih fish or crustaceans."
    ---Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999(p. 863)
    [NOTE: according to this source, "caudle" was originally a hot drink made from ale or wine, thickened with egg yolks and sweetened with sugar or honey. It was popular in Medieval Europe. By the 16th century the term came to denote a custard-like dessert.]

    "Zabione...There are several stories as the name's origin, which seems to be Piedmontese. The most common contends the dessert was originally called sanbajun, the Piedmontese pronunication for San Giiovanni de Baylon, the patron saint of pastry chefs. Others believe it commemorates Carlon Emmanuele I of Savoy or may be derived from the word sbaglione (big mistake). Clifford A. Wright, in his book Cucina Paradiso (1992), belives the word derives from the Sicilian dialect word zabbina (to whip), which in turn comes from Arabic zabad, meaning "foam of water and other things."
    ---The Dictionary of Italian Food and Drink, John Mariani [Broadway Books:New York] 1998 (p. 282)

    Brief survey of recipes through time

    [1891]
    "Zabaione

    3 egg yolks
    30 grams (about 1 ounce) of powdered sugar
    1 1-1/2 deciliters (about 3/5 of a cup) equal to approximately nine tablespoons of Cyprus, Marsala or Madeera wine.
    Double these amounts to serve eight people. If you prefer it more 'spirited,' add a tablespoon of rum; adding one teaspoon of ground cinnamon wouldn't be a bad idea either. With a wooden spoon beat the yolks with the sugar until they turn almost white, then add the liquid, mix well and put over a high flame, whisking constantly and taking care not to let the mixture boil, because in that case it would curdle. Remove the zabaione from the flame the moment it begins to turn light and fluffy. In my opinion, it is best to use a chocolate pot."
    ---Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well, Pelligrino Artusi, originally published in Italian 1891, translated by Murtha Baca & Stephen Sartarelli [Marsilio Publishers:New York] 1997 (p. 521)

    [1907]
    "Sabayon.

    Place 250 g (9 0z) caster sugar and 6 egg yolks in a well-tinned bason and whisk until it reaches the ribbon stage. Mix in 2 1/4 dl (9 fl oz or 1 1/8 U.S. cups) dry white wine; place in a pan of very hot water on the side of the stove and whisk the mixture until it becomes thick and frothy. Flavour to taste with vanilla sugar, orange sugar, lemon sugar, or 3 tbs of a good liqueur such as Kirsch, Kummel or Rum. Note: Sabayon can be made with other kinds of fine wines such as Madeira, Sherry, Marsala, Asti, Champagne etx. In this case the selected wine replaces the white wine and there is no need or any other flavouring."
    ---The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery, A. Escoffier, first translation into English by H.L. Cracknell & R. J. Kaufmann [John Wiley:New York] 1979 (p. 519)

    [1945]
    "381.--Zabaione

    Egg yolks, 3
    Powdered sugar, 2 ounces
    Marsala or Mederia wine, 6 spoonfuls
    Rum, 1 spoonful, if desired
    Cinnamon, 1 teaspoon
    Beat the egg yolks with the sugar, until they are almost white. Add the wine, mix, and put it on a bright fire. Stir continually; do not allow to boil; remove it when it begins to rise. This recipe is sufficient for 4 persons, if served in glasses."
    ---Italian Cook Book, adopted from the Italian Pellegrino Artusi by Olga Ragusa [S.F. Vanni:New York] 1945 (p. 240-241)

    [1975]
    "Zabaglione

    One of Italy's most famous and favorite sweets is from the Piedmont. Made with beaten eggs and Marsala, it is served either warm or chilled in small glasses. It's also considered a great restorative, so much so that it's part of the the language: a losing soccer player is greeted with jeers of 'Go get yourself a zabaglione!'
    6 egg yolks
    6 tablespoons sugar
    12 tablespoons Marsala wine
    A round-bottom copper bowls is ideal for making zabaglione. Use the bowl as the upper part of a double boiler. If you don't have one, simply use an ordinary double boiler. Put the egg yolks into whichever container you are using, add the sugar, and beat until very pale and fluffy. Then put the container in hot but not boiling water, keep on beating until the mixture thickens to the consistency of a light batter. Remove form the heat, beat a few minutes longer, and our into 6 dessert glasses. It can be served lukewarm or, if we think it's much better, cold.

    "Zabaglione Biscui/Neapolitan Zabaglione
    A Neapolitan variation of zabablione uses egg whites and whipped cream to make a richer but lighter dessert.
    1 recipe Zabaglione
    3 egg whites at room temperature
    1/2 cup all-purpose cream
    Make the zabaglione as described in the preceding recipe. When it is the consistency of a light batter, beat the egg whites until they are stiff and fold them gently into the zabaglione. Whipe the cream and fold that in, too. Spoon the mixture into 6 dessert glasses or custard cups and place them in the freezer for half an hour."
    ---The Romagnoli's Table, Margaret and G. Franco Romagnoli [Atlantic Monthly Press Book:Boston] 1975 (p. 252-253)

    Related foods? Custard, English Trifle/Zuppa Inglese & Italian Cream Cake.


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    © Lynne Olver 2000
    1 June 2014