Tagged ‘guts’

Bag of Pudding

May 18th, 2013 by KM Wall

Not just any bag – the pudding bag! Pudding in a bag? Isn’t that messy? Not if you know how it’s done.

Possible the most famous bag pudding is the Christmas Pudding that Mrs Cratchit serves in Dicken’s The Christmas Carol:

“Mrs Cratchit left the room alone — too nervous to bear witnesses — to take the pudding up and bring it in… Hallo! A great deal of steam! The pudding was out of the copper which smells like a washing-day. That was the cloth. A smell like an eating-house and a pastrycook’s next door to each other, with a laundress’s next door to that. That was the pudding. In half a minute Mrs. Cratchit entered — flushed, but smiling proudly — with the pudding, like a speckled cannon-ball, so hard and firm, blazing in half of half-a-quarter of ignited brandy, and bedight with Christmas holly stuck into the top.”



Christmas Pudding - IN A BAG

Christmas Pudding – IN A BAG

Often the bag is a linen napkin ……. bag is a verb as well as a noun…..

Bag Pudding (OED)

[f. BAGn.1 + PUDDING.]

1. A pudding boiled in a bag.
1598 in FLORIO. 1600HEYWOOD1 Edw. IV, Wks. 1874 I 47 Thou shalt be welcome to beef and bacon, and perhaps a bag-pudding.

1641W. CARTWRIGHTOrdinary II. i, A solemn son of Bagpudding and Pottage.

And if there’s bag pudding, could pudding bag be far behind?


Puddingbag (OED)

A bag in which a pudding is boiled. Also transf. and fig. Cf. pudding-poke.

c1597 T. DELONEY Jack of Newberie (1619) iv. sig. G3, The other maide..with the perfume in the pudding-bagge, flapt him about the face.

1626 in NARES (Halliw.), [A piece of Sail-cloth] about half a yard long, of the breadth of a pudding-bag.

And now for what very well be the most comprehensive pudding recipe in any English cookbook ever, no matter the century. I have added the numbered and letter divisions to help you keep track of the possibilities:

Oatmeal Puddings, otherwise of Fish or Flesh Blood.

Take a quart of whole Oatmeal, steep it in warm Milk overnight, and then drain the groats from it, boil them in a quart or three  pints of good Cream; then the Oatmeal being boyled and cold have Tyme, Penny-royal, Parslee, Spinnage, Savory, Endive, Marjoram, Sorrel, Succory, and Strawberry-leaves of each a little quantity, chop them fine and put them to the Oatmeal, with some Fennel-seeds, Pepper, Cloves, Mace, and Salt,

  1. boyl it in a Napkin,

  2. or bake it in a Dish,

  3. Pie,

  4. or Guts:

    1. sometimes of the former Pudding you may leave out some of the herbs, and add these, Pennyroyal, Savory, Leeks, a good bigg Onion, Sage, Ginger, Nutmeg, Pepper, Salt, either for fish or flesh dayes, with Butter or Beef-suet, boyled or baked in Dish, Napkin, or Pie

1661. William Rabisha.  The Whole Body of Cookery Dissected. p. 184.


Rag Pudding - a 20th century dish that may hearken back to the 19th century, but is a pudding in a pie

Rag Pudding – a 20th century dish that may hearken back to the 19th century, but is a pudding in a pie


You are he that did eat the pudding and the bag.

Proverbs Collected by J. H. Esqr. London 1659

Rice puddings

April 24th, 2013 by KM Wall



Spring is a season where things change fast. One minute it’s all about dragons, the next there’s an abundance of milk and eggs to use. Rice was a common commodity to take to sea, but also a special treat when made into puddings.

Pudding funnel (these are white puddings or boudin blanc) from Ivan Day's site

Pudding funnel (these are white puddings or boudin blanc) from Ivan Day’s Historic Food site


Rice puddings

Take half a pound of Rice, and steepe it inn new milke a whole night and in the morning drain it, and let the Milke drop away; then take a quart of the best sweetest and thickest Creame, and put the Rice into it, and boyle it a little; then set it to cool an hower or two, & after put in the Yelkes of half a dozzen Egges, a little Pepper, Cloves, Mace, Currants, Dates, Sugar and Salt; and having mixt them well together, so serve it into the farms[1], and boil them as before shewed, and serve them after a day old.

1631.  Gervase Markham, Best ed. English Housewife. p. 72.

[1] ‘farms’ or forms a/k/a guts or puddings


To make Rice Puddings.

Boyle halfe a pound of Rice with three pintes of Milke, a little beaten Mace, boyle it untill your Rice be drie, but never stirre it, then you must stirre it continually or else it will burne: powre your Rice in a Collinder, or else into a strainer, that the moisture may runne cleane from it: then put to it sixe Egges, and put away the whites of three, halfe a pound of Sugar, a quarter of a pinte of Rose-water, a pound of Currans, a pound of Beefe suet shred small, season it with Nutmeg, Sinamon, and a little Salt, stirre all this together with a spoone thinne, drie the smallest guts of a Hog in a faire cloth being watered and scoured fir for the Puddings, and fill them three quarters full, and tie both ends together, let them boyle softly a quarter of an houre or scarce so much, and let the water boyle before you put them in, and doe as the other Puddings last spoken of.

Note: the previous puddings were Liverie Pudding and the notes are:

…cut the small guts of a Hogge about a foot long, fill them three quarters full of the aforesaid stuffe, tie both ends together and boyle them in a kettle of faire water, with a pewter Dish under them, with the bottome upward, and it will keepe your Puddings from breaking:…(p. 26)

1638. John Murrell. The Second Booke of Cookerie. Stuart Press: 1993.p. 27.


A Ryce Pudding.

Steep it in faire water all night: then boyle it in new Milke, and draine out the Milke, through a Cullinder[1]: mince beefe Suit [2]handsomely, but not too small, and put it into the Rice, and parboyled Currins[3], yolkes of new layd Egges, Nutmeg, sinamon, Sugar, and Barberryes[4]: mingle all together: wash your scoured guttes, and stuffe them with the aforesaid pulp: parboyle them, and let them coole.

1615. John Murrell. A New Booke of Cookerie. Falconwood Press. 1989. p. 18.


[1] colander

[2] that’s suet – a beef/sheep fat

[3] currents

[4] a small, red, sour berry much like a cranberry…..

Got Fish?

January 17th, 2013 by KM Wall

Carrying fish from the boat to the house

Once you catch the fish, you must clean the fish…..here’s some vocabulary to

Gut Fish.

Sampling of words that are just as good in the 17th century as the 21st - and by no means the last words on the subject

citings from the OED

BONE (V) – To take out the bones

1552 -  “Bonen, or plucke oute bones”

GARBAGE – To disembowel, to gut fish

1610 – “Pilchards are there taken, garbaged, salted, hanged in the smoke”

GILLS – 1519 ”Fysshes breth at theyr gyllys”

GUT (v) – to take the guts of (fish); to eviscerate

1599 “Lay it scaled and gutted sixe houres in salt”

GUTS – the inward parts or bowels

1580 – “garbishes or guttes of things”

FIN – an organ attached to the body of fishes to serve for steering and propelling in water

1599 – “The…fish had on every side a wing, and toward the taile two other lesser as it were finnes.”

SCALE – to remove scales from fish

1598 – “The fish you would rost would not be scaled”

VENT – n2 b – the anus, anal or excretory opening of animals, esp. certain non-mammalian, as fish – 1587


Fish head - the beard tells you it's a cod.....(Gadus morhua)


Bit of the day: Lights

December 3rd, 2012 by KM Wall

Puddings of Swines Lights
Parboil the lights, mince them very small with suet, and mix them with grated bread, cream, curans, eggs, nutmeg, salt, and rose-water, and fill guts.
-1685. Robert May. The Accomplist Cook. p. 187.

  • The lights in the recipe aren’t candle lights…they’re the lungs of the pig. In this case, parboil means to partially cook them – but before you put them into the water, you’ll want to beat them, otherwise they float and don’t cook evenly. Experience…..
  • They don’t take very long to cook. Mince them very small, and the suet, too.
  • Use 1/3 to 1/2 as much for breadcrumbs, and enough cream to moisten.
  • Add currents from a small handful to half the weight. This is a case were if you use raisins instead of currents, you’ll want to chop them.
  • Add eggs to loosen up the mixture.
  • Nutmeg, salt and the rosewater is a very nice touch.
  • Fill you guts somewhat slackly – using a funnel makes it easier. Tie them off at about 3 inch intervals. They will swell while cooking.
  • Poke all the air-holes with a pin.
  • Seethe in water until firm, gently, gently. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain.
  • Finish them off by frying or broiling.

Pig's Lungs


…whitings and blackings, and liverings and hackings…

November 30th, 2012 by KM Wall

More bits in the nose to tail guide to 17th century slaughter time eating.

Hog - the school of Rembrandt

Liver is another of the organ meats that has to be used fairly quickly. Liver-gut puddings are essentially liverwurst, which means liver sausage.

To make Pig’s Liver-gut puddings.

Take Pig-Liver, boil it until done, skim it. When it is cold grate it fine, the take half pint sweet Milk, a stuyver stale White-bread, cut off the crust, grate it fine, and place it in the Milk; let it boil together until it is a thick porridge, also a good piece of Butter in the porridge; when it is almost cold stir in the Liver, then take 9 or 10 Eggs well beaten, a little Salt, Pepper, Nutmeg, Cloves, and Mace finely crushed, and some melted Butter, all together well mixed, stuff the Intestines without forgetting the Pig’s-lard and let them cook for an hour.

- Rose, The Sensible Cook. pp.94-5.

Why is it, when the same thing is called pate it seems tastier, special, somehow refined? The naming of things is so important. So, from the Dutch Liver-gut puddings to the English Puddings of Hogs Livers.

Puddings of Hogs Liver

Take the Liver of a fat Hog, and parboyle it, then shred it small, and after beate it in a Morter very fine: then mixe it with the thickest and sweetest Creame, and straine it very well through an ordinary strainer; the put therto six yelkes of Egges, and two whites, and the grated crums of neere-hand a penny white loafe, with good store of Currants, Dates, Cloves, Mace, Sugar, Saffron, Salt, and the best Swine suet, or Beefe suet, but Beefe suet is the more wholsome, and lesse loosening; then after it hath stood a while, fill it into the farmes, and boyle them, as before shewed: and when you serve them to the Table, first boyle them a little, then  lay them on a Gridyron over the coales, and broyle them gently, but scorch them not, nor in any wise breake their skinnes, which is to bee prevented by oft turning and tossing them on the Grid-yron, and keeping a slow fire.

-Markham, Best ed. The English Housewife p. 68-9.

Grid-yron art:

Man playing a gridiron.....can anyone translate this?


[f. LIVERn.1 + -ing, ? after pudding.]

A pudding made of liver and rolled up in the form of a sausage.

c1460Towneley Myst. xii. 217 Oure mete now begyns;..Two blodyngis, I trow, a leueryng betwene. 1556WITHALSDict. (1568) 49a/1 Tomaculum, ex iecore porcino cibus fit, vt supra, a lyueryng. 1591 A. W. Bk. Cookrye 12b, To make Liuerings of a Swine. 1611COTGR., Fricandeaux: Short..daintie puddings..rolled vp into the forme of Liuerings. 1624CHAPMANHomer’s Batrachom. 58 Lyurings (white~skind as Ladies). 1674N. FAIRFAXBulk & Selv. 159 The Darbyshire huswife..when she makes whitings and blackings, and liverings and hackings. 1694MOTTEUXRabelais V. xxvii. (1737) 122 Chitterlings, Links,..Liverings.


“And now a bucket to collect the blood”

November 29th, 2012 by KM Wall

Ostade - Slaughter (notice the bucket to collect the blood)

“And now a bucket to collect the blood”  is one of my favorite lines from the  Arthur the Aardvark book Arthur’s April Fool (he a magician, the class bully is his ‘subject’… check out Marc Brown when your not checking out Pilgrim food). I always think of that line when it’s slaughtering time. Which is now.

Because without the blood there are no black puddings. These are not Bill Cosby or vanilla kind of puddings.

PUDDING — stomach or entrails of a pig or sheep, etc. OR the same cleaned and stuffed with meat and/or grain and seasonings.  The original meaning of “puddings” were the guts.

“Of the inward of beasts are made Puddings, which are best made of an Hog.” (1584)

“Everything hath an end, and a pudding hath two.” (1592-Nashe)

“Pudding which is called the Haggas or Haggis, of whose goodnesse it is vain to boast” (1615-Markham)

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, black puddings are:

black pudding (Also with hyphen.) A kind of sausage made of blood and suet, sometimes with the addition of flour or meal.

1568U. FULWELLLike to like Bj, Who comes yonder puffing as whot as a black pudding. 1634HEYWOODMaidenh. lost III. Wks. 1874 IV. 142 We will haue..sixe Black-Puddings to bee serued vp in Sorrell-sops. 1664BUTLERHud. II. III. 380 In Lyrick numbers write an Ode on His Mistress eating a Black-pudden. 1873E. SMITHFoods 80 Sausages and black puddings.

Another name for these little beauties are blood puddings ….also OED

blood pudding

1583PLATDivers new Exper. (1594) 13 Boile this bloud..until it come to the nature and shape of a *bloudpudding. 1741RICHARDSONPamela I. 94, I hope to make my hands as red as a Blood-pudden. 1916D. H. LAWRENCELett. (1962) I. 492 We have read the ‘Cavalleria Rusticana’: a veritable blood-pudding of passion!


Frans Hals Merrymaker (1615) They look like they could be black puddings. There's a lot going on in this painting that isn't about food, but food as metaphor. A whole 'nother post




To make blacke Puddings.

Take great Otmeale and lay it in milke to steepe, then take sheepes bloud and put to it, and take Oxe white and mince into it, then take a fewe sweete hearbes and two or three leeke blades, and choppe them verie small, and put into it then yolkes of some Egges, and season it with Synamon, ginger, cloues, Mace, pepper and salt, and so fill them.

- 1587, Thomas Dawson, Good Huswifes Jewell. p. 10.

Oatemeale is closer to current day steel cut oats – rolled oats aren’t the same thing at all. Steep them in milk, add sheep’s blood; Oxe white is beef suet; sweet herbs (thyme, marjoram, sage); I like the detail of the two or three leek blades when everything else has been rather free form, even for the 16th century; chop them very small, add the yolks of eggs and season with cinnamon, ginger, cloves, mace, pepper, salt and so fill  – the them is the guts, or the casing or the formes – which are the cleaned intestines.

You can buy black puddings  – there are international versions – English, Irish, French, Portuguese, Italian – all a little different, all very rich.

Morcilla cocoda

Chourico de sange









How to make blacke Puddinges.

Take Otemeale and steepe it in sodden milke, then take Hogges suet & good hearbes and chop them smalle, then put in fennell seed, pepper and Salt.

-         1588, Good Huswives Treasurie, p. 18.

This recipe has blood assumed. Oatmeal in milk and cream alone make the white pudding.

Boudin noir - prior to cooking

To make puddings of a Swine.

Take the blood of the Swine, and swing it, then put thereto minced onions largely with Salt, and the Suet of the Hog minced. The take the guts clean washed, and stuffe them with the aforesaid stuffe; and so seath them, then broil them upon the coles, and serve them forth.

-         1591, AW Book of Cookery ,p. 12.

Pudding funnel (these are white puddings or boudin blanc) from Ivan Day's site

Ivan Day’s Historic Food website has great information on English puddings – and much, much more!


November 6th, 2012 by KM Wall


Boiling puddings (or are those SAUSAGES?)

















275. Directions to prepare the guts for the puddings.

Scrape the litle guts when they are well scoured take them one by one and lay one end on the gut on a table and hold part of the gut in yr hand then scrape it with a knife that is not sharp there will come a great deal of filth from them you will imagine the gut were scraped away when they are don as they should be you will find them very cleere when they are all scraped drie them in a cloth and sprickle a litle rose water on them as you rub them in clothes they must be blown before you fill them to see where to cutt be sure to fill the guts very lank the scraped gutt will hold boiling better then any.

Lay a dish on the bottom of the Ketle make the water boyle before you put in the pudings let them boyle a pace take them up when they have boyled a litle while prick them and put them again never prick marrow pudings nor the liver ones.”

-         John Evelyn, Cook. Christopher Driver, ed. Prospect Books, 1997.

How to make Sausages.

Take the fillets[1] of a Hogge,[2] and halfe as much suet[3] of the Hogge: and chop them both very small, then take grated bred, two or three yolks of egges a spoonful of groce[4] pepper, as much salt, temper[5] them with a little creame, and so put them into skinnes[6] and broyle them on a gridirone.[7]

-                     1588. Good Hous-wiues Treasuire, p. 19.

[1] Fillet - 6. Cookery.    a. A fleshy portion of meat near the loins or ribs of an animal, easily detachable; the ‘undercut’ of a sirloin or rump of beef; a similar fleshy part in the body of a fowl.    b. One of the thick slices into which a fish is easily divided; also, a thick slice of meat, tongue, etc.
The fillet of beef is sometimes cooked like the fillet of veal (sense c): see quot. 1747. In the above senses sometimes with Fr. spelling: see FILET.

c1420 Liber Cocorum (1862) 31 Take filetes of porke and half hom rost. c1430 Two Cookery-bks. 49 Take lardes of Venysoun..or of a Bere, & kerue hem inne as Fylettes of Porke. 1658 SIR T. T. DE MAYERNE Archimag. Anglo-Gall. xiii. 7 The Phillets..of Beef.


[2] Hog - I. 1. a. A swine reared for slaughter; spec. a castrated male swine, a barrow-pig or barrow-hog (see BARROW2 1b); hence, a domestic swine generally.


[3] Suet - 1. a. The solid fat round the loins and kidneys of certain animals,


[4] groce – large, course


[5] temper11. a. To moisten (a substance, usually medicinal or culinary ingredients in a comminuted state) so as to form a paste or mixture; to mix to a paste.


[6] Skins – the guts, casing or puddings to put the meat mixture into

[7] gridiron 1. a. A cooking utensil formed of parallel bars of iron or other metal in a frame, usually supported on short legs, and used for broiling flesh or fish over a fire. Also formerly, a girdle or griddle.

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