Friday, March 27th, 2020 - Friday, August 21st, 2020
Although we cannot yet announce a date, our next event will be Anne Willan in conversation with Cathy Kaufman on Willan’s new book, Women in the Kitchen: 12 Essential Cookbook Writers Who Defined the Way We Eat, from 1661 to Today.
Originally planned as an in-person talk at The New School on May 5, it will likely be delayed until fall.
Meanwhile, we hope you are using some of your enforced leisure to cook! Here’s a comforting recipe adapted from a 1468 cookbook. Platina was the Vatican Librarian under Pope Sixtus IV. With access to medical books and culinary manuscripts, Platina wrote (with extensive borrowings from other sources) On Honest Pleasures and Good Health (1468), the first cookbook to be printed via that new invention, the Gutenberg press. We offer this adaptation of one of Platina’s recipes in the spirit of pleasure and good health, and include Platina’s language to give you a sense of the adaptation.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Using a mixer and the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light. Add the whole eggs one at a time plus the egg white (if omitting the baking powder) and beat until thoroughly incorporated.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the dried fruits, nuts, fennel seeds, flour and optional baking powder. Add half the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and beat briefly. Add the Marsala and beat again briefly. Stir in the remaining flour mixture and knead by hand until the dough holds together, about 30 seconds to one minute.
- Divide the dough in half. Shape into rounds by hand and transfer to an oiled baking sheet. Using a razor blade or a pastry scraper, cut a tic-tac-toe pattern onto the dome of each loaf. Brush each loaf with the egg wash and bake for about 40 – 50 minutes, or until a toothpick tests clean.