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Deep fat frying

Talk about period recipes & ingredients

Deep fat frying

Postby Myristica » Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:59 pm

I know a number of recipes call for ingredients to be deep fried, but would this have always have been done in animal fat? I imagine olive oil would be really expensive in comparison during the Tudor period. Having just bought what can only be described as a "miniature" deep fat fryer (i.e. just one litre), I'm keen to try out something other than chips and battered treat size mars bars! :drool:
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Re: Deep fat frying

Postby TerryL » Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:34 pm

TC's fig fritters (especially when marinaded in rum) were a very acceptable 'nibble'.
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Re: Deep fat frying

Postby Tomas de Courcy » Wed Oct 26, 2011 4:37 pm

Lard, butter, and olive oil are what I generally use when doing fried recipes. Though if we're cooking for non medieval friends we break out the canola - beer battered apple slices are a huge hit with everyone.

Olive oil stores well for long periods of time so I wouldn't imagine that it's price would be prohibitive. There are lots of Frytour recipes though, I'd go through them and check to see if it specifies what you fry them in.
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Re: Deep fat frying

Postby TerryL » Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:55 pm

Don't forget doughnuts - they can be made in a deep fat frier, and warm doughnuts.... hmmm

Is this request for historic/medieval things to cook or just things other than chips and fish in batter?
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Re: Deep fat frying

Postby digger » Thu Oct 27, 2011 8:33 am

In German sources frying is done with lard, butter, clarified butter and occasionally with suet. Plant oils are rarely used and can often not be identified because the texts just mention "oil". But archaeological records, toll rolls and other written sources show that there has been used a great variety of oilplants: expensive imported olive-oil, rape seed oil, nut-oils (hazle and walnut), line seed oil, hemp-oil, expensive sesam-oil, colza oil for example. In northern Germany, more closely to the coast, train oil, fish oil, whale fat, seal fat and such are recorded but there are no recipes which mention them. The production and availability of plant oils could not satisfy the demand. This seems to be one of the reasons for the late medieval "Butterbriefe" - popal permissions for the consumption of animal fat on fasting days and in Lent.

I don't know the situation in Britain as good as in Germany, but I would expect mostly about the same. Except for olive oil. It seems to me, judging from the relatively small quantity of English recipes I have read, that olive oil was more readily available and not that expensive as in Germany - and therefore used more often.
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Re: Deep fat frying

Postby digger » Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:12 am

I forgot camelina (gold-of-pleasure; like the oil from flax seeds somtimes also called lineseed oil) oil, poppy oil and pumpkin oil
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Re: Deep fat frying

Postby Captain Reech » Wed Nov 23, 2011 11:29 am

Just a note on availability of Olive Oil in England; My partner has been immersing herself in shipping manifests from the mid to late 15th C and there appears to be a regular three way trade at the time with ships travelling from the low countries to England, then off to Spain and then back to Holland (via England again) Oil, sometimes simply "Oil" and sometimes named as "Olive" features heavily in the manifests on the Spain/England leg. Bearing in mind that the space on these ships was divided up between a number of merchants/speculators rather than the whole ship being filled with a uniform cargo owned by one company. Even with the technology of the time it's only a 2-3 day trip Enfland to Spain at the most and oil would be a an easy to store product with a price that wouldn't fluctuate too much representing a safe investment for those speculating on the trade. I imagine getting the oil to landlocked German states would either incur either overland haulage costs from Holland or would come via France (With even greater costs in haulage and duties) As with the modern world, every time a product changes hands someone gets their cut so a merchant from England could buy oil from the docks in Spain and offload it direct to the market in London. I wouldn't say it would be a cheap product but, form the quantities described I should imagine it would be readily available to the upper middle class and those involved in professional catering in major cities and towns.

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Re: Deep fat frying

Postby Grymm » Sun Nov 27, 2011 11:42 am

We've had similar discussions about the availability of Oyl of Olyff before, there's some here http://www.tudorcook.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=240&hilit=papal

Are you after some recipes to try out in your new toy?

Robin did these for the Tudorbeathan cookery course, make them about walnut sized and you'll need to play with the spinach:breadcrumb:spice ratio but they tasted really nice , I did some for a family 'curry' night starter even Kitty (Notoriously anti veg, it's her Scottish heritage) was after seconds =o)
To Make Fritter Of Spinach
Take a good deal of Spinach and wash it clean. then boil it in fair Water. When it is boiled take it forth and let the Water run from it. Then chop it with the back of a knife, and put in some Eggs & grated Bread. Season it with Sugar, Synamon, Ginger and Pepper, Dates minced fine, & Currants. Roll them like a ball and dip them in batter made of ale and Flour.

Fritter of spinach is:-
spinach
eggs
grated bread
dates
currants
sugar
cinnamon
ginger
pepper

and a beer &flour batter

Boil spinach, squeeze water out chop with the back of the knife mix pulp with bread, eggs, minced dates and currants and spices, form mix into balls/small cakes, dip in batter and fry.

I added some coriander and cumin to curry them up a bit.
Futuaris nisi irrisus ridebis.
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