Sunday, November 10, 2013

St. Martin's Bags and Croissants (Martinshornchecn) - Art Every Day Month - Day 10

Monday marks St. Martin Day or Martinmas. One of the ideas I found on Pinterest was for St. Martin Bags that was described on Catholic Cuisine.

St. Martin's Bags, which are a tradition in Malta, are given to children; and filled with a wide variety of treats associated with the feast.

The finished St. Martin's Bags that I made.

So, for the tenth day of Art Every Day month, I made cloth bags for each of us. On the outside of each bag, I drew and colored a goose with fabric markers. I added a bit of grass and some yellow flowers.

Tracing the outline of the goose.

Once I had finished the illustration, I sewed the bags along three sides.

Bags sewn along three edges.

Then I clipped the edges with a pinking shears.

Corners clipped along the bottom edges.

Next, I turned the bags inside out so the right sides were facing out; and used a pinking shears to give a decorative edge to the top of the bags.

There are lengths of ribbons in various patterns to tie the bags closed.

Some of the items that will be included in the bags are:
~almonds
~cashews
~peanuts
~tangerines
~dried apple slices
~raisins

Rosemary Cashews

Rosemary cashews
(Photo taken on November 4, 2007.)

With the exception of the tangerines and dried apple slices, we had all the items on hand. Other items which could be included - but won't be in our bags this year (maybe next year, though) - are:
~walnuts
~hazelnuts
~chestnuts
~oranges
~figs
~pomegranates

The bags are decorated with a drawing of a goose - a symbol associated with St. Martin. The goose became a symbol of St. Martin because it is said that when trying to avoid being ordained bishop he had hidden in a goose pen, where he was betrayed by the cackling of the geese.

Hundreds of Geese Flying Overhead
Hundreds of geese flying overhead.
(Photo taken on December 3, 2011.)

St. Martin's feast day falls in November, when geese are ready for killing. St Martin’s Day was an important medieval autumn feast, and the custom of eating goose spread to Sweden from France. It was primarily observed by the noblemen and craftsmen in town. In the peasant community, not everyone could afford to eat goose, so many ate hen or duck instead

Colorful Rooster
Rooster.
(Photo taken on July 15, 2012.)

Later today, I am also making Martinshornchecn (St. Martin's Day Croissants) which will be served tomorrow. These sugared croissants were given out as a special treat to children for Martinmas. The following recipe is from Cooking with the Saints:

Ingredients
3/4 c. milk
1 tsp. dry yeast
4 c. flour
3 Tbsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
3 eggs
3/4 c. butter
2 egg yolks
1/2 c. coarse sugar

Directions
Heat milk to lukewarm and dissolve the yeast. Sift the flour into a bowl, make a well in the middle and add the yeast mixture and sugar and salt. Work to a smooth dough and let rest for 1 hour in a warm place.

Add the eggs and half the butter and work it back into a smooth dough. Some flour may have to be added if the dough is too sticky. Melt remaining butter.

If you cannot get coarse sugar, crush sugar cubes with a rolling pin. On a floured surface roll out dough to a thickness of about 1/8 inch. Cut into 8-inch squares. Brush with butter and sprinkle with the coarse sugar.

Starting from one corner, roll up each square and turn in the ends to make croissant shapes. Brush with egg yolks and sprinkle with more sugar. Preheat oven to 400 degree F. Transfer croissants to a buttered baking sheet and bake for about 25 minutes.

Makes 12 to 16 large croissants.


4 comments:

Indigo Janson said...

Very interesting to learn about this St Martin's Day tradition in Malta. Your little bags look great with that cute goose design! I hope you enjoy making and eating those croissants... :)

Vicki Miller said...

Thanks for dropping by my blog.
Isn't it funny how all our celebrations all over the world all have special foods associated with them? Love the bags!

Anoeska said...

I really love those bags you made. They're so cute!

Julie Jordan Scott said...

So much great info in your blog post. I loved reading about traditions in Malta. My mouth wants to taste a croissant now!

Thank you for visiting my blog! Happy AEDM!