Thursday, October 11, 2007

To Make Gosky Patties

The following "recipe" appeared (along with Isabella Beeton's recipe for Baked Beef) on a Cambridge University exam paper in June. The question read
"How, and with what effects, does Edward Lear pastiche and subvert the conventions of Victorian recipe writing?"

Here's the Lear (from the Nonsense Gazette, 1870)

To Make Gosky Patties

Take a Pig, three or four years of age, and tie him by the off-hind leg to a post. Place 5 pounds of currants, 3 of sugar, 2 pecks of peas, 18 roast chestnuts, a cabdle, and six bushels of turnips, within his reach; if he eats these, constantly provide him with more.

Then procure some cream, some slices of Cheshire cheese, four quires of foolscap paper, and a packet of black pins. Work the whole into a paste, and spread it out to dry on a sheet of clean brown waterproof linen.

When the paste is perfectly dry, but not before, proceed to beat the Pig violently, with the handle of a large broom. If he squeals, beat him again.

Visit the paste and beat the pig alternately for some days, and ascertain if at the end of the period the whole is about to turn into Gosky Patties.

If it does not then, it never will; and in that case the Pig may be let loose, and the whole process may be considered as finished.

Do not try this at home! (neither the recipe, nor the exam question!) But do visit Spinning Fishwife's blog for the best birthday cake I've seen in years!

Meanwhile there was a roaring trade in quinces and quince jelly on the "country market" (ie WI) market stall today: the quinces sold faster than usual and we sold out of quince jelly! Could it be the influence of Yarnstorm's wonderful book? Or maybe that dreadful article has acutally prompted people to find out what quinces and quince jelly actually are!

Not only that, 2 of my ripple scarves were snapped up! (One by a discerning member of the public and one by a lady whose husband had bid for one of my scarves in a charity auction). Needless to say, there was already another one on the hook before the first one was sold.


Pig wot flies said...

Love the recipe! It reminds me of the ones in 'And Now All This', the sequel to '1066 and All That'.

You can get quinces for free if you pick up the ones that fall off the tree on my road. Maybe I should do that and make something with them.

Karen said...

Brilliant recipe, and well done you on your scarf sales!!