This was my most elaborate dish for the canape party, and the most challenging to construct. It’s from Francatelli’s Cook’s Guide of 1864, and is another egg dish. Although not strictly a canape the description appeared to be of a dish that could be easily divvied up into individual servings (note the ‘appeared‘!)
As you can see this is a long long recipe, and I challenge anyone to read through it once and be able to tell me exactly how many eggs I need to boil, in total, in order to have enough*
Cooking/ recipe notes
- It all went well until it came to raising the eggs up into a pyramidal form. Twelve half-eggs do not go easily into a pyramid and I spent a fair while trying different, equally rubbish looking combinations. What I went for eventually was a kind of cross of eggs for the base, with another layer on top.
- I have no idea whether the ‘single egg’ that crowns the pyramid was meant to be one of the halved eggs, or another whole egg. I only had halves at this point, so wedged 2 together with the stuffing and balanced it on top of the pyramid.
- Once I’d got the pyramid reasonably pyramiddish and stable I tried rubbing the yolks through the sieve. This went badly, and instead of the ‘vermicelli’ demanded by Francatelli I covered my wonky egg pyramid with a fine yellow yolky kind of fluff, quite unlike any foodstuff I’ve ever seen before.
- I then placed this in the oven, at a moderate temperature, and drank a few cocktails (well, maybe half a cocktail), before returning to the oven to remove what was now a baking tray with a flat mess of halved eggs in a yellowish mixture, with croutons around it. The pyramid had completely collapsed, in other words.
- I didn’t bother with the bechamel.
And the taste?
The eggs were ok. They weren’t very exciting, and a bit yolky tasting. The stuffing was quite bland. And instead of easy portions for the guests it was all a bit messy. Not worth the effort, sorry Francatelli.
* I decided it was 13 eggs.
Oeufed by Alix