An 18th century meringue recipe in the next Heritage Malta Cookalong Session

05/11/2021

Heritage Malta’s Inquisitor’s Historic Cookalong Sessions are back on Thursday 18th November, this time with a sensory experience focusing on eggs in 17th and 18th century Malta, inclusive of a 1748 meringue recipe.

Recognised as a power food, eggs and egg-based dishes were included in several period cookery books. This product caught the attention of leading European chefs whose imagination highlights the versatility of this basic food. Eggs were also used as a means to differentiate social class, especially since the majority could afford to consume eggs on a daily basis. Apart from the traditional boiling, frying and poaching, culinary knowledge about the use of either the yolk or the white of the egg allowed for improved tastes and textures of many products, including the Pan de Spagna or the Meringue.

The kitchen complex at the Inquisitor’s Palace is probably Malta’s best documented early modern kitchen. Research into numerous 17th and 18th century inventories reveal an impressive facility, fully equipped to store and cook a myriad of ingredients, including eggs. The Criminal Proceedings of the Tribunal of the Inquisition also shed interesting light on the consumption of eggs in early modern Malta. In 1637 Inquisitor Fabio Chigi left no stones unturned when three friends were reported for eating eggs on lean days. Following a session of public humiliation in Vittoriosa, they were, in a matter of days, found guilty of committing similar offences, costing them a sour sentence of two years of forced rowing on the galleys of the Knights.

The cookalong session is being held in conjunction with Taste History and its multidisciplinary team of food historians, chefs and curators who have in the past years seen Heritage Malta present unique historic culinary experiences. This eighth cookalong session will see food historian Dr Noel Buttigieg explore this fascinating theme, while Taste History chef Malcolm Baldacchino will be conducting an exclusive historic cookalong demonstration of egg meringue from 1748.

This event will take place in the newly refurbished Cardinals’ Hall on the top floor of the Inquisitor’s Palace and will start at 19:00.

Tickets, at €12 per person and €10 for Heritage Malta members, are available from all Heritage Malta museums and sites, and also online on https://shop.heritagemalta.org/. All attendees will be given a complimentary copy of the Heritage Malta publication ‘MUŻA – The National Community Art Museum’.

STQARRIJA BIL-MALTI/ PRESS RELEASE IN MALTESE

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