Tag Archives: Cooking

Cookery and Research

spotteddogI got a horrible cold around the end of January, and somewhere amidst the fog of yuck, I decided that what I really needed was steamed pudding. So this happened.

I love books on historical cookery. I’ve had this one for about a bazillion years, because if you like such books, this is the one EVERYBODY talks about first. So it’s a part of my collection–but I’d never got around to reading the actual novels it’s referencing! Everyone always tells me they’re great, so I had them down on my list of “treats for later.”

(I did pick up “The Golden Ocean” years ago, but Phil tidied up before I’d really been able to get into it, and that was the end of that.)

Last month, I finally started the research project that is the Aubrey/Maturin series, and all its little companion volumes that make the series that much more fun to read. Hooray! It really is that good! Argh! I haven’t had time to read in the last couple weeks! Prepping this Kickstarter campaign has completely eaten all my time and brainpower. When things calm down, it’s back to sea for me…

obrienbooks

Pies and the First Tea Company!

Professoressa Foglio, looking for trouble.

Professoressa Foglio, looking for trouble.

Tonight we’re all eating pie…Phil and the experiments have their garlic-y Italian pies, and I have a lovely little steak and ale pie that I found at the Yuppie Candy Store that is Trader Joe’s. Nom. Finding very nice meat pies in the US isn’t as easy as one might hope. I usually resort to making my own. I am especially fond of fruit and meat pies, and indeed one of my fondest memories of my time in the SCA is waking up one morning to the song of a passing pieman, who sold me glorious little turnovers filled with beef and apricot. I’ve always been a sucker for food that lets me pretend I’m at an inn in a fantasy novel…stews and sturdy brown breads and little pies and all that. While I wait for the rest of the party, I can stuff my face.

One of the things I bought in the tourist pits of London is the British Museum’s Medieval Cookbook. People look at me funny when I say that I’m interested in historical food, but I love my cookbook collection.

Still, the best thing I found in England was the work (and person) of Dr. Geof and the First Tea Company. The good Doctor was in the vendor hall at WorldCon, and he was always mobbed with an admiring…er…mob. Being utterly charmed, I escaped our booth and joined the throng whenever I could. All good Steampunks should join up with the First Tea Company, and get your insignia patches and pins and all that ASAP. Never again will you have to explain how you like your tea. In fact, at WorldCon, he was out of several of the (gorgeous, hilarious, brilliant) patches I wanted, so now I need to go and sweep up the last few items I couldn’t get at the time.

–Kaja