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September 16th, 2012

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Sunday, September 16th, 2012 05:47 pm
After a lot of life and other projects and challenges, I'm back to focusing on Libro di Cucina. I've challenged myself to get through the rest of the recipes by this time next year- there had been 99 recipes to go, and Friday night I made three of them for dinner, so I've still got about 12 months to get through the last 96 recipes- that is about 2 recipes per week. I'm hoping to do dinners that at mostly if not entirely from the recipes here, and have a couple of more weekends for some of the potentially more intense recipes like the two sausage recipes, or the jelly/ aspic recipes. 

CXXIII. Polastri afenochiati per uno altro modo. 
Toy li polastri e smenbrali e fali bolire e non tropo e frizelli in lardo; toy mandole, fiore de fenochio e masena ogni cossa in sema e distempera con la lessadura de li polastri e poy dali per scutelle e metili specie dol[ze]. 
CXXIII. Hens with fennel in another way. 
Take the hens and joint and put them to boil but not too much and fry in lard; take almonds, flowers of fennel (top part of fennel not the bulb) and mix every thing together and temper with the boiling water of the hens and then put it in a bowl and add sweet spices.

LXV. Rapa armata.
A ffare una rapa armata, fa coxere la rapa in lo fogo; po’ ch’ è cocta, mondala e poy fay
le fette sotille e de caxo dolce fa le fete sotille e tra zaschaduna fetta de rapa miti
una de caxo e lassa cossí ben confettare insieme. Se tu voy tu ge po mettere un testo
caldo suso e serà fato; poi polverizage del zucharo, etc. 
LXV Armored turnips 
To make armored turnips, put the turnips to cook in the fire (embers) and when they are cooked peel them and cut into thin slices. Take sweet cheese and make thin slices. Between each slice of turnip put one (slice) of cheese and let them melt well together. If you want you can put them with a hot lid above and they will be done, then powder them with sugar, etc. 
6 turnips
12 oz fresh mozarella 
2 tsp sugar (to taste)
I decided to do an experiement on how various cooking methods might effect the texture and flavor of the turnips. I know several friends who have done this recipe and instead of roasting the turnips have boiled them, & or peeled them before cooking. I purchased 6 smallish turnips (I have been advised that the smaller turnips have better texture and flavor), and cooked them using 3 different methods both peeled and unpeeled before cooking. For the roasting I wrapped them in foil with just a little water then put them in the oven for 45 minutes at 350. The boiled set were boiled on the stovetop for 20 minutes, and the final set were microwaved. I normally am not a fan of microwave cooking, but modern baking potatoes are one of the few foods I will opt to cook using this method, so I figured it might be worth a try- it was not. They were "baked" in the microwave for the time programmed for baked potatoes- the texture was an abomination and a total waste of perfectly good turnips. 
These were the hit of the night- all the diners said they enjoye deverything, but RAVED about the cheesy turnips
DSCF2701 DSCF2711

LXI. Rixo in bona manera.
Se tu voy fare rixo in la meiora manera che fare se poy per XII persone, toy do libre de riso e do de mandole, toy meza libra de zucharo; to lo rixo ben mondo e ben lavato e toy le mandole ben monde e ben lavate e maxenate e distempera con l’ aqua chiara e ben colate in stamegna. Toy lo rixo e mitilo a fogo in aqua chiara; quando è levato lo primo bolire e ben spumato scolavi fuora l’ aqua in contenente e metili el lato de le mandole e fa choxere su la braxa da lonze e mescola spesse intorno che non se rompe; quando boglio streto rezonze suxo del late de le mandole e quando è apres che coto, mitige quantità de zucharo. Questa vivanda vuol esser biancha e molto spessa e quando l’ è cocto polveriza in le manestre del zucharo per suso.
LXI A good way for rice 
If you want to make rice in the best way that you can, if it is for twelve people take two pounds of rice and two (pounds) of almonds and half a pound of sugar. Take the peeled (husked) rice and wash it well. Take the almonds, peel, wash, grind and temper with clear water and strain through a sieve (prepare almond milk). Take the rice and put it on the fire in clean water, when it rises to the boil for the first time, and is boiling well, strain out the water that it contains and put in the almond milk. Continue to cook slowly on the coals (of the fire) and mix carefully so that the rice doesn’t break. When it has soaked up the almond milk and it is just about cooked add the quantity of sugar. This dish should be white and simple and when it is cooked powder with sugar above for serving. 

The rice was the perfect dish to round out the meal, but because time of my guests arrival was up in the air it didn't give it my full attention. Instead I used my rice cooker and replaced the water with homemade almond milk once it came to a boil. If I had been watching more closely I would have pulled it off just before it was done. It wound up being more sticky than I would have liked, but it was quite "creamy" in texture. 
2 cups arborio rice
4 cups filtered water - later poured out and replaced with 4 cups fresh almond milk
2 tsp sugar