Tuesday, June 20, 2006

At the table of the Grand Chamberlain.

Today, June 20th …

François Massialot was a cook to the rich and famous in 17th century France. In his book “The Court and Country Cook”, he describes an “entertainment” on this day in 1690
“in the Presence of the Cardinal d’Estrées and the Ambassadours, at the Table of the Grand Chamberlain and Purveyor to the French King”.

The First Course.


Four in number, viz.
A Bisk of Pigeons.
A Potage de Santé, with a large fat Pullet.
A Potage of farc’d Chickens, with green Pease-soop.
A Potage of Quails, after the manner of an Oil.


A great Side-dish, of a Loin of Veal, half larded and a Salpicon thereupon; garnished with Cutlets of Marinated Veal.
Two middling side-dishes, viz.
One of Rabbet-pye, and the other of farc’d Cabbage or Cole-worts, garnish’d with farc’d Fricandoe’s.
Two small side-dishes, viz.
One a white Fricassy of Chickens, garnish’d with Marinade, and the other of young Rabbets á la Saingaraz.

The Out-works.

A Dish of young fat Pullet, farced, in Cream.
One of Chickens á la Placre, with a Ramolade.
One of Pain de Perdrix.
And one of a Loin of Mutton á la Sainte Menehout.
After having taken off the four Potages, four other outworks were set on the Table, viz.
One of Pain de Veau.
One of Pigeons with sweet Basil in their Bodies.
One of Hatlets.
And a Grenade.
There were also two other Out-works, consisting of Sturgeons prepared, as for Flesh-days, two different ways, viz.
One after the manner of larded Fricandoe’s.
And the other á la Sainte Menehout in thick Slices.

The Second Course.

The Roast-meats and Intermesses are of the Nature of the Preceding.

As for the Potages served up in the Second Service, recourse may be had to those that have already been set down for the three first Months of the Year. Let us now observe, what may be added, as well to the Side-Dishes, as with respect to the Roast-meats.

Massialot goes on to list a large number of alternative dishes suitable to be included in the Second Course. The party would then have then moved on to a completely separate “banquet” course of sweetmeats and fruits.

As for a recipe, what is this thing called “Grenade”? He give detailed instructions for the complex recipe in the main section of the book (and the rationale for the name of the dish), but the glossary summarises it by saying:

Grenade, a Dish of larded Veal-collops bak’ed in a round Stew-pan between two Fires, with six Pigeons and a Ragoo in the middle, and cover’d on the top and underneath with thin slices of Bacon.

Tomorrow: A Lunch too Leisurely.

On This Topic …

There is another menu from M. Massialot’s book HERE.

Quotation for the Day …

The world is progressing and resources are becoming more abundant. I'd rather go into a grocery store today than a king's banquet a hundred years ago. Bill Gates.


madameshawshank said...

Am imagining a king or queen of hundred years ago walking to my local supermarket..the variety of produce available..the cheeses..food from every corner of the planet...rotis...all on hand..a few minutes walk away..almost at our front door..I agree with Bill! :-) 'n what a treat to discover this amazing blog...

The Old Foodie said...

Hello madameshawshank - I am very glad that you enjoy the blog. I do hope you keep coming back, and leaving comments. We really do live in wonderful food-times - - but there still seems to be something wonderful left to discover.