The Place for real traditions.Irish Culture begins in prehistory. First was a paleolithic mindset-based on hunting. The spirits of animals aid in this. Groups had totems- birds, boar,for identity. Next came a Neolithic awareness- crops, agriculture,farm animals. Villages and lineages. Multiple gods became single gods with many powers. Chieftains by birth ruled. Next the Bronze age with rule by heroes. We got cookbooks and recipes left the mind. How do we know what to do? That's our purpose.

Irish Chieftain's feast

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Bread and servitude

Rose, Nancy.
Rose. DON'T you bake all your bread at Mr. Clinton's?
Nancy. vEvery bit, indeed!
Rose. How do you manage to get barm, it's very scarce, and I believe you have no brewery near you?
Nancy. Why then, I'll tell you that; for my mistress never wants barm, and I have so often made the mixture by her directions, that I can't but remember it. She gets a quart of good barm, and then she boils flour and water together very well, till it is a nice, smooth, thinnish paste; when that is about blood warm, she mixes the barm with it, and puts all together into a vessel large enough to let it work, and keeps it in a place neither hot nor cold, and covers the vessel close.
Rose. And how much of that works the bread?
Nancy. At first very little more than if it was all barm, but it takes more time to rise the flour. Every few days add as much more paste, and you may do so fof a month, or more, in mild weather, till the strength of the barm is gone. But, according as you add paste, it will take more and more of the mixture to rise the flour. A pint of the strongest, left in a spunge, like batter, for some hours, does a stone of flour. If you leave it all night, let the batter be the thicker. After you work the bread, leave it a few hours more.
Rose. Well, I'm obliged to you; this may be of use sometime or other to me.
Nancy. I don't like the trouble of it, if I could help it. I'd rather put in a good dash of barm at once, to hurry up the bread; but my mistress won't allow that, she says it makes the bread bitter, and wastes the barm.
Rose. Sure you are happy to have such a good housekeeper for a mistress, especially if she be goodhumouretl, which I believe good housekeepers often are, because they time business for themselves and their servants, and things go on so regular that there is no room for fretting.

- Cottage dialogues among the Irish peasantry, with notes and a preface, M. Edgeworth,
Maria Edgeworth,1811, p.46.