Borscht?, Pirogy?, Mamaliga? (1818)

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Mon Apr 8 23:15:16 UTC 2002

by Adam Neale
London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown

   These food dishes have been covered before, but they deeply antedate OED and M-W.  It doesn't hurt to have more food cites, because of variations in spelling and perhaps in the recipes (as in "borscht").

Pg. 129:
   The best food which we met at these inns, was the stewed veal of calves, two days old perhaps, floating in a sour paste called _Barszcz_ and pronounced _barchethe_, and beet root or cucumbers stewed and fermented like sour-crout, called _buraszki_, with _rosoli_, a gruel made of flesh and oatmeal, or _pirogy_, a soup or pottage made of barley, rice, and millet, or manna, (_Festuca fluitans_.)  These messes are all very disagreeable, particularly the large overgrown cucumbers fermented with salt and fennel leaves.  The bread is equally bad, black, gritty, and ill tasted, generally composed of every grain except that of wheat.

Pg. 167:
   Maize is much cultivated, yields abundant crops, and it never disappoints the hopes of the husbandsman.  _Mamalika_, a pottage made of its meal, forms the principal food of the peasantry.

Pg. 209:
   ...the Greeks had formerly a proverb "That no one in his senses would carry as a rarity owls to Athens, box trees to Cytorus, or fish to the Hellespont"...
(Coals to Newcastle?--ed.)

Pg. 210:  During the long and frequent fasts of the Greek church, the salted _pelamydes_, or the roe of the tunny and sturgeon, called _caviare_ and _pontargue_, form the principal food of the poorer classes...

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