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The holiday weekend brings thoughts of pork to the table. Personally, I think of hot dogs, and yes, while I occasionally wander to fancies of hamburgers on the grill, I return to pork. My favorite pork product is the tenderloin. Small and juicy, they are neither too sweet or too salty. I know many people cook ham over holiday meals, but I never understood why. Now I know. We can thank the old Norse God of agriculture, weather and (ahem) male fertility, Freyr, for this tradition. The ham over Christmas was a tradition for “Germanic peoples as a tribute… to boars, harvest and fertility.” (Source, wikipedia). For this week’s recipe, we pay our own tribute to Freyr; may it bring us a bountiful harvest and abundant fertility!

If you recall when we first tasted a recipe from De Re Coquinaria by Apicius, we also find Aresty’s Apician Ham and Figs.

289 Fresh Ham
Musteis petasonem

A fresh ham is cooked with 2 pounds of barley and 25 figs. When done skin, glaze the surface with a fire shovel full of glowing coals, spread honey over it, or, what’s better: put it in the oven covered with honey. When it has a nice color, put in a sauce pan raisin wine, pepper, a bunch of rue and pure wine to taste. When this sauce is done, pour half of it over the ham…

I’m saving the rest of the recipe to share later, but first, let’s get to the mods!

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