Fungus 
Redaction by THL Dagonell

Original:
Fungus X (From: A Forme of Cury)
Take Funges and pare hem clene and dyce hem, take leke and fhred
hym fmall and do hy to feep in gode broth, colo it with fafron
and do y inne powdo fort.

Translation:
Mushrooms #10
Take mushrooms and peel them clean and dice them, take leeks and
shred them small and do them to steep in good broth, color it 
with saffron and do them in strong powder.

Mushrooms:
==========
8 oz. mushrooms
1 (~8 oz.) leek
16 oz. chicken broth
1/8 t tumeric
1/2 t strong powder

Strong powder:
==============
1 part cloves
1 part mace
1 part crushed red pepper
7 parts cinnamon
7 parts ginger
7 parts black pepper
Grind all ingredients and blend together.

Saffron is the stamen of the crocus flower.  It must be hand picked and it 
takes, without exaggeration, a quarter of a million crocuses to make
one pound of saffron.  It is the most expensive spice in the world and
is literally worth more than its weight in gold.  It has a delicate 
flavor which is overpowered when mixed with other herbs and spices.  
Since this recipe only uses saffron as a coloring agent, I used tumeric 
instead of saffron for the color.

"Powder fort" or strong powder, is a strong spice mixture that cooks made to 
their own liking ahead of time and kept at hand for use in cooking, much like
modern cooks are likely to have Pumpkin Pie spice in their kitchen today.  I
use a variation of Cariadoc's recipe for strong powder. Cariadoc uses cubeb 
instead of crushed red pepper, but he was living in Chicago when he came up 
with this formula.  Chicago has an extensive Chinatown where cubebs are easily 
available.  My only reliable source of cubebs is "The Pepperer's Guild" at 
Pennsic War, so I use crushed red pepper instead.

Clean, peel and dice the mushrooms and the leek.  Dump in a pot and cover with
chicken broth.  Sprinkle in tumeric and strong powder.  Stir contents together
and bring to a boil.  The original recipe implies serving as a side dish, but
I felt it was a shame to throw away the chicken broth, so I served it as a
spicy mushroom soup.  Since my strong powder is over two years old, I used
1/2 teaspoon because I thought it would have lost potency.  It has not.  The
soup was hot and very strongly spiced, perhaps too much so for a feast dish.  
In future attempts I will make it with less strong powder.