If we talk about Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz’s books, you will surely think of Redondillas (1689). However, this time we refer to the Cookbook of the convent of San Jerónimo.
The selection and transcription of the recipe book of the convent of San Jerónimo is attributed to Sor Juana. This happened as a result of the discovery of a cookbook whose wording is attributed to the “Tenth muse”.
The book includes dozens of recipes typical of the convents of the viceregal period. It is believed that Sor Juana was entrusted with the task of transcribing the recipes. However, personal contributions are not ruled out.
The recipes are a clear sample of the mestizo cuisine due to the mixture of ingredients from Arab and Spanish cuisine with the Novohispanos. Next, we will share some recipes extracted from the Cookbook of the San Jerónimo convent. Edited by the Instituto Mexiquense de Cultura in 1996.
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Sor Juana’s culinary secrets in her cookbook
You boil anise and butter in a saucepan, once it starts boiling, you add flour. Keep on stirring so it doesn’t burn. Once a ball is formed, you take it off the saucepan and let cool. After, to each pound of flour you use nine eggs to fry.
They will start melting in your hand, and once it is thick, you add more butter with a silver spoon. Until they drop on the fire and they come out golden.
Six fresh cheeses, a pound of flour, melted butter, and the ground cheese. They are flattened after being thoroughly kneaded with a rolling pin, cut with a cup and fried.
‘Ante de mamey’
One pound of mamey, half of almonds, two of clarified sugar and strained, put on the fire until it reaches a point not very high. Pineapple paste is made, a pound of pineapple another sugar, layers of mamón (kind of sponge cake) are put and the pasta is decorated with cinnamon, raisins and almonds.
Two pounds of clarified sugar, add grated coconut and after it thickens well, set aside and let cool and little by little add 12 beaten yolks, put on the fire and stir. To a ground coconut, add 10 yolks, four real almonds, 12 id. of sugar and wine enough to wet the bun. It does not have cinnamon on top.
The rice pudding is made and once it is done, set aside and in a casserole with butter pour half the rice into the casserole, let cool. The mince has already been set to fill with tomato, raisins, almonds, pine nuts, citron and capers, and the other half of the rice is poured on top and put on two fires it is smeared with some feathers butter on top and so it is cooked it moves away.
Juana de Asbaje, better known as Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz is the greatest exponent of the Golden Age literature in Latin America. The so-called “Tenth muse” left her life in writing and in addition to poetry, she wrote prose, theater and self-sacramental.
In addition to being one of the great exponents of the literature of our country, she is considered a symbol of female empowerment. If you are interested in learning more about the “Tenth Muse” recipe book, you can consult it at this link.
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