06 November 2010

6 November - Saint Leonard; Fall Back!

Weather: When the New Moon falls on Saturday, the weather will be bad for the remainder of the month.  The weather, so far, has been miserable.  Every day is wind and/or rain, or at very least overcast and cold.  Even had a little snow, which turned back into very cold rain.  It would be nice to see a little sunshine again.

For those of you who follow the practice, Daylight Saving (no 's') Time in the U. S. ends tomorrow morning, very early - like 2 am - so set your clocks back one hour before you go to bed tonight.

Feast of Saint Leonard of Noblac (6th century), patron of prisoners, women in labor, and the mentally ill, also of horses and cattle.

Saint Leonard is especially revered in Bavaria as a patron of farming and farm animals, with festivities beginning in mid-October, including processions to the church, as related by MUNICHfound: "Once the procession reaches the church or chapel, participants circle the building three times, after which the parish priest bestows special blessings on horses, livestock, farms and stables. Many of the places of worship are usually encircled with a symbolic chain in honor of the saint’s feast day."

"One of the best-known and most beautiful Leonhardiritt celebrations takes place in Bad Tölz. This event — held every year on November 6th — attracts thousands of spectators and features about 80 decorated horse-drawn wagons, including the so-called Tafelwagen — distinctive wooden carriages, exquisitely painted with traditional folk art motifs. Women and children dressed in their finest, regal-looking riders atop festively bedecked horses, flower-accented folk costumes, and the peal of church bells adds to the memorable splendor."  You can read the rest of the article here.  Photos of the Tolzer Leonhardifahrt and information on the Tolzer Leonhardimarkt are on the  Bad Toelz website.

To honor Saint Leonard, have ST. LEONARD'S PUDDING for dessert.

Here is the recipe as given in The Wigan Recipe Book (1925) : "Boil 1/2 pint of milk with the rind of one lemon.  Mix 2 tablespoons flour with a little cold milk to a smooth paste.  Then strain the boiling milk to the flour.  Add 2 ounces sugar and the yolks of 2 eggs well beaten, 2 ounces butter, and a little raspberry jam.  Grease a pudding dish and put in a little raspberry jam, pour the batter over, and bake in a moderately hot oven.  Whip the white of eggs to a stiff froth and pile lightly on top."

The Story of Crisco book advises the cook to "line the edge of a pudding dish with pastry" first, add a teaspoon of vanilla to the pudding, and brown the whipped egg whites in the oven.

You could try making this from scratch - make your own shortcrust (easy recipe here from Cooks.com) and your own pudding and meringue, like this one from Keebler.

Or go the easy route:
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Prepare a ready-made shortbread crust according to package directions.
  • Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of  raspberry jam into the baked shell to cover the bottom.
  • Fix however many boxes (usually 2) of pudding-and-pie-filling will fill your crust.  Once it is cooked, remove from heat and keep warm. Don't pour the pudding mixture into the pie shell until your meringue is ready to go. (Unless you are going the totally easy route, in which case, chill your pie as directed and top with whipped cream before serving.)
  • Make meringue (this is possibly the hardest part): 
  • Separate 3 eggs while they are cold; save the yolks for another use.  Allow the whites to come to room temperature, then beat until foamy.  Add 1/4 teaspoon of salt, then add 6 tablespoons of sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating after each addition until blended.  Continue beating until mixture forms stiff peaks.
  • Spread meringue over the entire surface of the pie, sealing to the edges of the crust (there should be no pudding showing).  Bake in preheated oven for 12 - 15 minutes, or until golden brown.  Cool the pie at room temperature.  When it is cold, it can be refrigerated.
I'll leave it to you to pick your pudding flavor.