Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Mutton Wine

While reading Science and Civilisation about mead, I found this passage talking about the medicated wines in The Wine Canon of North Hill (北山酒經):
Two wines with animal components are included, the venerable tiger-bone wine and the estimable mutton wine.  The tiger-bone is still going strong, but the lamb appears to have lost its appeal. (page 237)
For a brief moment I felt safe in knowing that I didn't have a copy of the source text.  These were simpler times, full of innocence and happiness.  Then I though, "well, I should really make sure it hasn't been digitized yet" and lo and behold, ctext.org has it.  Ugh.  It's in the third chapter ("下")

44


〔白羊酒〕
White Mutton Wine

45



臘月取絕嫩羯羊肉三十斤,
In the twelfth month take thirty jin of the meat of a particularly tender wether.
肉三十廳內要肥膘十斤,
Within the thirty [jin?] should be ten jin of fat.
連骨使水六斗已來,
Add six dou of water to the bones,
入鍋煮肉,令極軟。
Put it in a wok and boil the meat, and make it extremely soft.
漉出骨,將肉絲擘碎、留著肉汁。
Strain out the bones, split and break down the meat fibers , and retain the broth.
炊蒸酒飯時,勻撒脂肉拌飯上,蒸令軟。
When you are steaming the rice for the wine, evenly scatter the fatty meat on the surface of the mixed rice, and steam it until it is soft.
依常盤攪,使盡肉汁六斗,潑飶了,
Mix it in a common bowl, use a full six dou of the meat broth, to completely spread the savory flavor throughout.
再蒸,良久卸案上,攤令溫涼得所。
Steam it again, a good long time to get rid of what’s on the table top, and spread it to cool.
揀好腳醅,依前法酘拌,
Select some good dregs, and mix it in according to the previous recipe.
更使肉汁二升以來,收拾案上及元壓面水,
Again take two sheng of meat broth, and put it together with what’s already on the table and the first liquid to be pressed out.
依尋常大酒法日數,但曲盡於酴米中用爾。
Pass a few days following the usual method for big wines, but only use yeast starters from the middle of the cakes [?].
一法,腳醅發,只於酘飯內方煮肉,
One method is to distribute the dregs, and only put the boiled meat into the additions of grain.
取腳醅一處搜拌入甕。
Take dregs at one time and mix them into the weng.

The wine canon was published in 1117 during the Song dynasty, and according to the dictionary 王力古漢語字典, during the Song dynasty one dou was ten sheng, and one sheng was 670 mL.  One jin was 633 grams.  That makes the overall recipe call for 18.99 kg of meat and 4.154 L of broth.

I'm not making this because I don't eat sheep.  But maybe someone will.

Science and Civilisation goes on to point out that this wasn't just this one book.  Mutton wine continues on after North Hill, with books in 1235, 1330, sometime in the Yuan dynasty, and 1596 all having recipes.

Creative Commons License

No comments:

Post a Comment

Starting A New Blog for Non-Brewing Topics

http://sundries.alecstory.org I intend to keep this one focused on brewing, but some of this audience might find non-brewing medieval topi...