Herb fritters from the Kuchenmaistrey

These could be good.

3. xxi. Item another fritter. Take parsley, garden mint and other pleasingly fragrant seasonings (wol gesmacke wurtz) quite as (you do) for sauces. Add white breadcrumbs to it or grated gingerbread and pound that well together. Pass it through a cloth with good wine and mix eggs and flour, and make a stiff batter that you slide into the fat (ein ziech) with a spoon. But (make) small fritters like walnuts (baumnüß) and fry them.

These are basic egg-based fritters with a flavouring of herbs and spices, but they sound quite attractive. The reference to herbs and seasonings ‘as for sauces’ likely refers to green sauce powders like the one described in Cod Pal Germ 551. There are similar recipes in the Kuchenmaistrey as well. Apparently this was common practice. Grated gingerbread was often used to both flavour and thicken sauces and preserves, and if we trust a surviving recipe, it could be quite spicy.

I will continue posting recipes from the Nuremberg Kuchenmaistrey produced around 1490, but my mode will change. Instead of translating one daily and posting it here, I will try to use what time there is to translate as much as I can and post only some of them here. Once the entire text is done, I will try to get it published either as a book, or online.

The Kuchenmaistrey (mastery of the kitchen) was the earliest printed cookbook in German (and only missed being the earliest printed cookbook in any language by a few years). The book 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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