Jellied morels from the Kuchenmaistrey

1.xxiiii. If you would make jellied (gesultzt) morels. If you have fish broth like that of jellied fish, those are good. If you do not have any, make it thus: take a little vinegar and water mixed together and boil four small basses in it or isinglass, and bay berries or the leaves. Then pass it through a cloth and let it settle (gefallen). Pour it off and salt it and season it. Then pour it over the said morels.

If you would have the broth yellow, add saffron to it. Let it stand until it gels (gester), then make blanched almond kernels and stick them into it nicely, that looks pleasing (stet wol). Then serve it, thus it is done properly and well. Item you may also put such filling into crawfish shells or fill them with it.

Galantines – jellied meat or fish dishes – are almost tiresomely familiar from medieval upper class cuisine. This is the first time I’ve seen one made with mushrooms though.

My current project are recipes from the Nuremberg Kuchenmaistrey produced around 1490. This was the earliest printed cookbook in German (and only missed being the earliest printed cookbook in any language by a few years). The Kuchenmaistrey (mastery of the kitchen) gave rise to a vibrant culture of amended and expanded manuscript copies as well as reprints spanning almost a century. The recipes seem designed to appeal to a wealthy, literate and cosmopolitan clientele.

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