Food, food culture, food as culture and the cultures that grow our food

No Rest for the Rugged

July 13, 2004

There you are, a pre Iron Age chef and you want to whip up a fine bouillon for tonight’s f�ete. It’s easy as pie… read on.

Have a fine young man carry the skin of the boar you just slaughtered outside. Ask him sweetly to dig 2 holes in the ground. Have him start a hardy fire in one hole and line the other hole with the boar skin. Dirty to dirt. Wet to wet. You can nail it to the earth before filling it with cold water.

Put some stones into the fire. Make sure that they are proper igneous rock or they could explode in the heat and take out the fine young man’s eye. You will need about 7 stones for the size skin pictured here below.


Click on this image for nice detail - you can see the cut marks of the vegetarian butchers and as well a reflection of the trees and sky in the water.

View image

Fill the skin with cold water, chop up some delicious vegetables and toss them in with a goodly deal of salt. Now to get this bloody water piping hot just place the now red hot stones in the water. One at a time. The soup will sputter and this is all very dangerous so pay good attention to what you are doing and how the materials you are using behave. (Don’t be overly cautious either or your tribe will starve or worse, someone else will become supreme chef.) When the stones don’t seem like they are heating anymore, take them out and toss them back into the fire to heat up again. Keep adding the hot stones and taking out the cold ones until the soup is hot. A bigger hole, a bigger fire and you’ve got yourself a nice bath!

You will not be able to avoid getting ashes and dirt into the soup. Don’t worry about this. Just like preparing bouillion on a gas stove, you will skim the crud from the top and discard, and the mud will fall to the bottom. You will simply not scoop this out when you transfer the soup to a serving terrine. Before the folks had serving terrines they probably just squatted around the hole and dipped in with their own vessel.

debra at 10:42 | | post to

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