We’re back from the Rowany Festival now.
We still have to dry the tents out and unpack everything. It’s quite a logistical challenge to get everything there and back.
I will do a write-up on the Okewaite site but it may take a few days. We’ll get some photos there, and links to photos taken by people outside our group. The short answer is that it went very well.
Today I’ll talk about our period cooking experiences.
On Thursday we arrived at the site, and during the setup period our campfire ironwork appeared. This was made by a work contact of mine, Daryl, who is a hobby blacksmith looking out for interesting projects.
Daryl made us a couple of stands, each about 1.8m high, with a rod between them. The stands came with spit hooks and little dragon heads on top.
He also made us some S-hooks, a couple of long toasting forks, and a trivet for going directly over the coals to put pots on.
With a couple of modern utensils we bought separately, this was enough to cook rather complex feasts for 25-30 people in our campsite.
Mostly the recipes came from Forme of Cury, a cookbook commissioned by King Richard II in the 14th Century. This is a favourite of mine, and comes from the era where nearly everything was cooked over the campfire.
Our plan was to cook this way just for the Friday night, but in fact we used the campfire for everything throughout the event. Because we had quite a few small pots, we made a lot of little dishes, and they tasted great.
We used the great big potjie (South African cauldron) to cook a couple of legs of lamb and some vegies for the Friday, then added in the leftovers of the spitted ducks to make a lunchtime soup the next day. Which was delicious. We kept the soup going until the Monday, when we needed the pot again.
Daryl and his wife joined us for dinner on Sunday. He has now promised to make us a few more odds and ends for the campfire.
Here’s our menu for the event, as best I can remember it:
ALL BREAKFASTS – porridge with mulberry sauce, bacon and eggs, French toast once
ALL LUNCHES — cheese and pickles, ham and salami, fruit, soup once it was made
THURSDAY NIGHT – soup kitchen provided by the event
* potroasted legs of lamb with root vegetables
* ducks on the spit
* pears in a red wine syrup
* cabbage in onion and leek pottage
* bread baked by myself
* an oatmeal, mead and currant pudding
* beef and almond rissoles
* frumenty (a savoury porridge made with cracked wheat)
* various vegies cooked in stock
* fig fingers and shortbread cakes (pre-made in Goulburn per Forme of Cury recipes)
* bread baked by Owen, and another by Sarah
* stonding pudding (an early Christmas pudding type dish, made in the bag in Goulburn before we left)
* egg custard
* lamb stew, with middle eastern influences
* cous cous
* patties made from left-over frumenty (really tasty)
* bread baked by me
* more fig fingers and shortbread
[was going to be pea and ham soup, but the bacon bones got mildew in all the damp heat]
* vegetable and salmon stew, with pasta thrown in
* bread by Owen
* sweet fruit bread by Allison, with custard