Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Way of Ordering a Dessert or Regalio

A Banquet of Sweet-meats is said to be dress'd upon a Level, when disposed of upon China-dishes, and Machines made of Wood, or Osier-twigs, having a great Board in the middle, in form of a Square, or Hexagon, … or else it may be fill'd with altogether with China-dishes; that in the middle being rais'd higher than the others; upon which several small Pyramids are to be erected, of an exact Proportion; so that the same sorts of Comfits, and the same Colours may appear on every side, at the opposite Angles. Lastly, a Row or Border of raw Fruits may be made round about the Dishes, upon every Board to garnish the top, and the whole Dessert is to be set out with Flowers, Greens, and other Ornaments, according to the Season.

I am getting ready for next year's Ladies' Tea at rendezvous [ONWPR & EPR], acquiring China-dishes [import porcelain or local faïence in imitation of] and trying out recettes for sweet-meats.

Image Source & Text: The Court & Country Cook, François Massialot, 1702, p. 125-130.

As an aside: Notice the folds in the tablecloth--these are the result of either being folded in a clothes press or having been ironed in .

Caterers still make use of this idea for our luxury tables at very special events.

Image Source:

3 comments: said...

I was brought up in England to believe that "sweetmeats" were internal parts of an animal, kidneys, hearts not these sweet toothed delicacies. I understand the culinary definition of 'Sweetmeat" refers to the animals testicles, which would indicate that what I was brought up to understand is nearer the truth

Carolyn said...

Dear Lord,
Sweet-meat is considered a confection, sucrrerie or bonbon in 1702, when the Englished translation of François Massialot's 1691 Le Cuisinier Royal et Bourgeoise was published. We are talking about French foods and a book about French foods translated for English town and country houses who wished to follow French culinary tradition. You might be confusing sweetmeats with sweetbreads or ris which are culinary names for the thymus (also called throat, gullet, or neck sweetbread) or the pancreas (also called heart, stomach, or belly sweetbread) especially of the calf (ris de veau) and lamb (ris d'agneau) (although beef and pork sweetbreads are also eaten). Various other glands used as food are also called 'sweetbreads', including the parotid gland ("cheek" or "ear" sweetbread), the sublingual glands ("tongue" sweetbreads or "throat bread"), and testicles (cf. Rocky Mountain oyster). The "heart" sweetbreads are more spherical in shape, and surrounded symmetrically by the "throat" sweetbreads, which are more cylindrical in shape.

Curtains designs said...

i love your pretty tastes and your attractive ideas

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