The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1028 Monday, 10 May 2004
Date: Saturday, 8 May 2004 00:51:32 -0700
Subject: Shakespeare & Food: "Imagine writing Hamlet without a cup of
Shakespearean Diet: Pasta, No Coffee
By Campbell Roberton
New York Times, May 8, 2004
It was hard to miss the peacocks in the ballroom of the Pierre Hotel or
the man breathing fire a few yards away. The jugglers were equally
conspicuous. So was the chamber group playing Renaissance music. But the
main attraction on Monday night at a benefit for the Theater for a New
Audience, a Shakespeare-oriented theater company, was the food, all
updated versions of Elizabethan recipes. There was, unsurprisingly, rack
of lamb as well as spinach and a salad of baby greens.
"As early as the 1500's in England they had tortellini recipes," said
Francine Segan, the author of "Shakespeare's Kitchen:
Renaissance Recipes for the Contemporary Cook" (Random House, 2003) and
the culinary adviser for the evening.
Hard to believe, but tortellini is there in "The Accomplisht Cook,"
written in 1660 by the English chef Robert May. He was the Emeril
Lagasse of his time, gaining notoriety while working in several noble
households and famous for such stunts as baking a deer-shaped loaf of
bread that bled wine when pricked. He wrote the first edition of his
cookbook at 70, recording over a thousand recipes from his career,
including those for liver p