Mrs Bates, let me propose your venturing on one of these eggs. . . .you need not be afraid, they are very small, you see -- one of our small eggs will not hurt you.
Ever solicitous, Mr. Woodhouse does love to make gastronomic suggestions! This period recipe is, in fact, called "Torta of Herbs in the Month of May", and is bursting with fresh vegetables and and herbs. Delicious for any meal!!
Tota of Herbs in the Month of May
Cut up and grind the same amount of cheese as I said in the first and second tortae ["a pound and a half of best fresh cheese"]. When you have ground this up, add juice from bleta, a little marjoram, a little more sage, a bit of mint, and a good bit of parsley; when all this has been ground in a mortar, add the beaten whites of 15 or 16 eggs and half a pound of liquamen or fresh butter, and mix. There are those who put in some leaves of parsley and marjoram that have been cut up but not ground, and half a pound [surely a typo for half an ounce, as in the previous recipes] of white ginger and eight ounces of sugar. When all of these have been mixed together, put this in a pot or deep dish that has been well greased on the coals at a distance from the flame so that it does not absorb the smoke; and stir it continually and let it boil until it thickens. When it is nearly done transfer it into another pot with the crust and cover it with your lid until it is all cooked with a gentle flame. When it is done and put on a plate, sprinkle it with best sugar and rose water.
Note: earlier Torta recipes refer to a pastry crust rolled thin and both top and bottom crusts.
3/4 lb Monterey Jack cheese
Herbs ground in mortar:
1/4 t marjoram (dry or fresh)
1/2 t sage (dry or fresh)
1 t fresh mint
1/2 c fresh parsley, stems off
3/8 c spinach + 1 T water
5 egg whites
1 stick melted butter (1/4 lb)
(1/4 c chopped parsley)
(2 t fresh marjoram)
(1/4 oz finely chopped ginger)
(1/2 c sugar)
double 9" pie crust
Sprinkled on crust after baking:
about 1/4 t rosewater, about 1 T sugar
Spinach is measured unchopped, then chopped and ground in a mortar with the water to provide spinach juice in place of bleta juice. Mix this with other herbs and grind in mortar or food processor; mix with grated cheese. Beat egg whites lightly, melt butter and add; put in pie crust and cover with top crust. Unground herbs are an option; sugar and ginger, for a dessert pie, are another option (ginger seems to mean fresh ginger root).
Bake at 400 deg. for 10 minutes, then at 350 deg. for about another 40 minutes, then sprinkle with mixed sugar and rosewater.
Recipe from Caridoc's Miscellany
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