Photos from Ilkla Moor

October 10, 2010 at 10:46 am Leave a comment

Ilkla (or Ilkley) moor is a wet and cold place in Yorkshire, about which there is a silly song in a strong Yorkshire dialect. If you go courting on Ilkla moor without a hat, you’ll no doubt catch a cold and die. Then we’ll bury thee, the worms will eat you up, the ducks will eat up the worms, then we’ll eat the ducks, then we’ll have etten thee.

This is our annual event in experimental campfire cooking. We take recipes more than 600 years old, and we try to translate and re-create them. We get the meat from the farm, as well as the vegetables and herbs. We have to buy in nuts and spices, but we grind them up ourselves in a mortar and pestle.

Saturday had strong winds which made putting up the tents difficult. Indeed, we had to take down our ‘purple’ tent with the latin motto because the winds were too high.

Everybody who was not otherwise busy was asked to chop, grind or stir something.

The apple and parsnip fritters in beer batter were very popular. They were scattered with “poudre douce” or sweet powders, made with cinnamon and nutmeg and anise and raw sugar (maybe some others).

The dish of the night was the peacock stewed in wine and dates and pinenuts. Delicious. Allison picked up a young peacock at the last poultry auction for $15, as she figured that was cheaper than chook meat. We used a recipe for pheasant, as peacocks are just a large type of pheasant, and the result was very acceptable.

The other hit for the night was a savoury ginger custard sauce for the chickens roasted on the spit. Yum.

Basically all the 12 dishes worked, and there was plenty of contrast. I admit that we cheated a bit with the camelyne (cinnamon) sauce as we just ran out of time. There were just 30 people at the feast, but this campfire cooking is really hard work for larger numbers.

After the feast, we sat around the campfire singing songs. The wind dropped, and it really was very pleasant out there. We had Bethan and Annabel and Gui from the Sydney SCA, who did some madrigals as well as some silly songs and a few campfire favourites.

There was a heavy combat tourney on the Saturday and some training (heavy and archery) on the Sunday. On both days, but especially the Sunday, we did some horse riding.

Here’s some photos from the event from the wonderful Jim: (click to bring up a larger picture)

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On Ilkla Moor, 18-19 September 2010 Misrule: the Feast of the Fool — Sat 4 December

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