Thursday, 7 June 2007

Post Something You Damn Slacker!!!

I'm back!!
The Prince of Procrastination, the Lord of Laziness.....oh hell you get the idea! - I'm a lazy so and so who is really good at putting things off and then suddenly half the week's gone by with no posting.

So how did the weekend go you ask? Very well I think, good ticket sales and lots of happy visitors made for a great couple of days.....most of them even 'got it' that we weren't talking about just the Tudor period as well, which was a bonus.
I've posted some pictures of the set up so that you can see roughly what we did, there will be some more of the food and stuff later on.
There's also this video:

which should make it clearer as well.

It was a bit of an odd weekend compared to most as the number of people that stopped and talked was, or at least seemed to be much higher than usual - could have been that we are more approachable in chefs whites rather than period clothes? - and when then talked, boy did they ever. Most of the questioning seemed to be much more in depth than usual, with many visitors staying for really long periods to chat and discuss what we were doing. This was great but also lead to other unexpected eventualities.

For example, we hardly cooked anything in comparison to a normal event and did very little in the way of experimentation, which had been one of the aims for the event, still people seemed to be happy with what they got and in the end that's what counts.

This means that answering your questions Elise regarding the comfits is, I'm afraid, not that easy. Yes we (well Robin anyway) managed to make two batches of comfits - I'll post some images another time - but as to how many coatings they got I can't say, we rather got carried away and 'stuck in' to it without thinking of keeping a record and when we did, Robin lost track several times, all I can say is at least 50 coats before colouring them, which was probably 20 coats. Proportion of sugar to water I know I have no idea and the same goes for temperature as in this case the end result of comfits was the important point not the method of making them - sorry, we'll try harder for you next time.

As for the colouring experiment, well......see for yourself what happened when the parsley juice was converted into a syrup:

not at all successful really, so we ended up with red and yellow comfits (cochineal and safflower) and unfortunately no idea as to how the parley would have made the seeds taste. I would like to do some more experiments with the colours later in the year, very probably when the weather is too hot for Dave to work on the wax model, so hopefully more info' on that soon.
With luck this post will kick start me back into a regular posting schedule again - I've some more pictures from this weekend as well as Roberts selection from the last May Holiday event, so that should keep us going image wise for a bit.

More later on ladies and gents.


Elise Fleming said...

Did Robin filter the parsley "juice" to remove the sediment when trying to color the comfits? From the photo it looks like clumps of parsley mash. If he "filtered" it, how fine was the cloth? I'm inspired to try my own parsley coloring now.

Also, was there a specific comfit recipe that said to use parsley? I know that the "juice of beets" (leaves) is specified as a comfit coloring but wondered parsley was extrapolated from coloring foods such as the pommes.

Elise Fleming said...

I'm assuming that "safflower" is a typo for "saffron"? Also, did you use the parsley water as the only liquid or did you add it once the syrup was started?