Dec 272015
 

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Today is the feast of St John, sometimes also known as the feast of John the Apostle, or John the Evangelist, or both. There’s not much in the way of customs associated with the day, but I always celebrate it in my own little way because it is my saint’s day. John (and all its linguistic variants) has for millennia been a very popular name. The original Hebrew, יוחנן (Yôḥanan), is a short form of a longer name meaning “Yahweh is gracious.” It was the most popular name for newborns in the U.S. until 1924 and in England until 1950. The most popular name for newborns in England now is Jack, which, ironically, was originally a nickname for John. Many people do not realize that such names as Sean, Ewan, Ian, Hans, and Ivan are all linguistic variants of John. Others such as Johann, Jean, Jan, Jehan, and Juan are a little more obvious. Anyway, I was registered as Juan at birth, but used to use John in English-speaking countries (courtesy of my mum). My father was John and so was his father. My son was also registered at birth as John, but subsequently changed it. The name is strongly built into my patrilineage.

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Some scholars over history have wanted to conflate John the Apostle with the author of five books of the Greek Bible(Gospel of John, 3 epistles, and the Revelation). I think this is a mistake on two grounds. First, I believe that both the language of these works, and their theology place them outside the time period when John the Apostle lived. Second, I do not believe these 5 books are the work of a single author. The gospel and 1 John may well have been written by the same person, but 2 John and 3 John are clearly by a different hand, and Revelation by yet another. Scholars who want to merge them into a “Johannine” corpus are, I believe, being driven by theological motives that are not consonant with historical and literary analysis.

ST JOHN THE EVANGELIST by Pompeo Batoni (1708-1787) from Basildon Park. The Italian painter born in Lucca was celebrated for his portraits.

John’s gospel and the Synoptic gospels (following Mark) are at odds in many ways. For example, Mark places the Last Supper as a Passover meal and John dates it as the day before Passover, so that the crucifixion coincides with the slaughter of the paschal lambs – buttressing his theology of Jesus as the perfect sacrifice. My tutor at Oxford set me the essay, “Was the Last Supper a Passover meal?” which I dutifully agonized over. I was too green at the time to say anything sensible, let alone original. Maybe I still can’t. His argument was that John had to be right, otherwise the theology made no sense. But my tutor was a high church Anglican priest of the old school, for whom theology trumped historical analysis. I’m long past that way of thinking. John’s gospel is the cornerstone of Trinitarian thinking, and therefore anchors centuries of theology. Without it Christianity would look a whole lot different. Historically many very smart non-theologians, such as Jefferson and Newton, have found the doctrine of the Trinity unpalatable, as do I.

1 John contains some of my favorite passages, notably:

4:7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God, and knows God. 4:8 He who doesn’t love doesn’t know God, for God is love.

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A great deal of my own personal theology hinges on this statement, especially, “God is love.” I can get pretty close to a trinitarian way of thinking if I equate God the Father with love in its totality, God the Son with love personified, and God the Holy Spirit with love manifested in individual action.

Because five books of the Greek Bible are traditionally attributed to John he is the patron of writers and associated professions: bookbinders, booksellers, compositors, editors, engravers, papermakers, printers, and publishers.

My head image here is an El Greco, depicting John holding a chalice with a dragon rising from it. This is based on the legend that John was given a chalice of poisoned wine by the emperor Domitian, but the poison rose out of the wine in the form of a dragon.

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Fergus Henderson is well known in culinary circles as the master of cooking and celebrating offal. He runs a restaurant in London called St John, so why not rejoice in offal on this day when many Westerners are still trying to be creative with leftovers? Offal is, after all, “leftover” meat for great swathes of the Western world these days – more’s the pity. I’ll eschew the opportunity to glorify tripe just this once, because other offal dishes can be equally magnificent – tongue, heart, kidneys, sweetbreads, spleen, etc. Here’s a recipe I created many years ago: pig’s feet pancakes.

This concoction was inspired by a recipe for a Spanish appetizer, but I converted it to a main dish. These dainties are so, so rich that I find that even when made bite sized they have the capacity to fill the belly in just a few mouthfuls. One of the full sized ones described here will more than adequately satisfy the heartiest appetite. Be warned, though, that these delights are quite time consuming and complicated to make, so I recommend that you at least prepare the filling ahead of time. It can be made a day in advance and refrigerated. If the batter coating seems too much, the pancakes can be filled and served plain with a garlic sauce dip.

© Pig’s Feet Pancakes

Ingredients

Filling

4 whole pig’s feet

rich beef stock

2 tablespoons butter

¼ cup chopped onion

1 cup chopped crimini or black mushrooms

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried sage

 

Pancakes

2 eggs

½ cup flour

½ cup milk

butter for frying

 

Batter

1 cup flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup beer

oil for frying

Garlic Sauce

1 cup mayonnaise

8 garlic cloves (or 1 tbsp prepared minced garlic)

Instructions

Place the pig’s feet in a saucepan and cover with beef stock. Simmer very gently for two to three hours or until they are well cooked and the meat is falling from the bones. Let the feet cool to the point where they can be handled, and separate out the bones. Run the meat and skin through the coarse blade of a food grinder or use a food processor to chop them coarsely (the point is to retain some texture to the meat). Heat the butter in a frying pan and gently sauté the chopped onion until it is soft and translucent. Add the mushrooms to the pan and continue to sauté until they begin to take on a golden color. Add the ground meat, parsley, thyme and sage and fry the whole mixture until it is heated well through. This can then be set aside.

Make the pancake batter by sifting the flour into a mixing bowl and then slowly adding the milk while stirring vigorously with a wire whisk to create a smooth mixture without lumps. If the mixture feels thick, add water until it is the consistency of custard. Add the eggs one at a time, beating vigorously. Set the batter aside to rest for 30 minutes. The most essential tool for making the pancakes is a heavy omelet pan with a 4″ to 5″ base. After the batter has rested heat the pan on high heat and add a teaspoon of butter. Let it sizzle, but do not let it brown.   Swirl the butter around to coat the bottom of the pan then pour enough batter in so that the pan’s bottom is just covered with a thin layer (it will tend to puddle in the middle, so swirl it round to get an even coating. Return to high heat and shake the pan as soon as the pancake has set slightly. Flip the pancake over with a spatula, and quickly cook the other side. The pancake should have light brown mottled spots on both sides, but still be basically yellow. Turn the pancake on to a plate and repeat the process until all the batter is used (about 6 pancakes).   Making the pancakes takes a bit of practice, but do not worry if they are not perfectly round or good looking; they are going to be rolled and deep fried so appearances are not important. However, it is vital to keep them as thin as possible, so the thinner the batter, the better.

Place one of the pancakes on a flat surface and put two tablespoons of filling in the center. Fold the near edge of the pancake over the filling, then fold the sides in, and finally pull the far edge down to make a tight envelope around the filling. Fill the rest of the pancakes in the same way.

Make the frying batter by sifting the flour and baking powder together in a mixing bowl. Add the oil and beer and mix well to get rid of any lumps. Set aside to rest for 20 minutes. When rested, heat cooking oil in a deep fryer to 395°F (or you can shallow fry in a skillet as long as you have a depth of oil of more than ¾”). Dip each filled pancake in the batter and then deep fry until golden brown. These pancake packets will float on the hot oil, so must be turned with a slotted spoon at least once for an even browning. Remove from the oil and place on paper towels. Keep cooked pancakes hot in a warm oven until they are all fried. Serve them with a garlic dipping sauce made by crushing and mincing the garlic fine and stirring it well into the mayonnaise. Only light accompaniments are suggested — such as a tossed salad, or some lightly poached vegetables — because these pancakes are so very rich and heavy.

Serves 6

Nov 302013
 

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Today is the feast of Andrew the Apostle, called in the Orthodox tradition Protokletos, or “First-called,” Christian Apostle and the brother of Saint Peter. The name “Andrew” (Greek: Andreia, “manhood, valour”), like other Greek names, appears to have been common among the Jews, Christians, and other Hellenized people of the region. Unusually, no Hebrew or Aramaic name is recorded for him. He is considered the founder and the first bishop of the Church of Byzantium and is consequently the patron saint of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.

The gospels state that Andrew was the brother of Simon Peter. He was born in the village of Bethsaida on the Sea of Galilee. Both he and his brother Peter were fishermen by trade, hence the tradition that Jesus called them to be his disciples by saying that he will make them “fishers of men.” At the beginning of Jesus’ public life, they were said to have occupied the same house at Capernaum.

The Gospel of John says that Andrew was a disciple of John the Baptist, whose testimony first led him, and another unnamed disciple of John the Baptist to follow Jesus. Andrew at once recognized Jesus as the Messiah, and hastened to introduce him to his brother. In the gospels, Andrew is referred to as being present on some important occasions as one of the disciples more closely attached to Jesus. Andrew told Jesus about the boy with the loaves and fishes (John 6:8), with Philip told Jesus about the Greeks seeking Him, and was present at the Last Supper.

Eusebius in his church history quotes Origen as saying Andrew preached in Scythia. The Chronicle of Nestor adds that he preached along the Black Sea and the Dnieper river as far as Kiev, and from there he traveled to Novgorod. Hence he became a patron saint of Ukraine, Romania and Russia. According to tradition, he founded the See of Byzantium (Constantinople) in 38, installing Stachys as bishop. According to Hippolytus of Rome, he preached in Thrace, and his presence in Byzantium is also mentioned in the apocryphal Acts of Andrew, written in the 2nd century. Basil of Seleucia also knew of Apostle Andrew’s mission in Thrace, as well as Scythia and Achaia. This diocese would later develop into the Patriarchate of Constantinople. Andrew is recognized as its patron saint.

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Andrew is said to have been martyred by crucifixion at the city of Patras (Patræ) in Achaea, on the northern coast of the Peloponnese. Early texts, such as the Acts of Andrew known to Gregory of Tours, describe Andrew as bound, not nailed, to a Latin cross of the kind on which Jesus is said to have been crucified; yet a tradition developed that Andrew had been crucified on a cross of the form called Crux decussata (X-shaped cross, or “saltire”), now commonly known as a “Saint Andrew’s Cross” — supposedly at his own request, as he deemed himself unworthy to be crucified on the same type of cross as Jesus had been. According to Judith Calvert “The familiar iconography of his martyrdom, showing the apostle bound to an X-shaped cross, does not seem to have been standardized before the later Middle Ages.”

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Relics of the Apostle Andrew are kept at the Basilica of St Andrew in Patras in Greece; the Duomo di Sant’Andrea, Amalfi in Italy; St Mary’s Roman Catholic Cathedral, Edinburgh in Scotland; and the Church of St Andrew and St Albert, Warsaw in Poland. There are also numerous smaller reliquaries throughout the world. St Jerome wrote that the relics of St Andrew were taken from Patras to Constantinople by order of the Roman emperor Constantius II around 357 and deposited in the Church of the Holy Apostles. The head of Andrew was given by the Byzantine despot Thomas Palaeologus to Pope Pius II in 1461. It was enshrined in one of the four central piers of St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican.

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In 1208, following the sack of Constantinople, those relics of St. Andrew and St. Peter which remained in the imperial city were taken to Amalfi, by Cardinal Peter of Capua, a native of Amalfi. The Amalfi cathedral (Duomo), dedicated to St. Andrew (as is the town itself), contains a tomb in its crypt that it maintains still contains the rest of the relics of the apostle.

In September 1964, Pope Paul VI, as a gesture of good will toward the Greek Orthodox Church, ordered that all of the relics of St. Andrew that were in Vatican City be sent back to Patras. Cardinal Augustin Bea along with many other cardinals presented the skull to Bishop Constantine of Patras on 24 September 1964. The cross of St. Andrew was taken from Greece during the Crusades by the Duke of Burgundy. It was kept in the church of St. Victor in Marseilles until it returned to Patras on 19 January 1980. The cross of the apostle was presented to the Bishop of Patras by a Catholic delegation led by Cardinal Roger Etchegaray. All the relics, which consist of the small finger, the skull (part of the top of the cranium of Saint Andrew), and the cross on which he was martyred, have been kept in the Church of St. Andrew at Patras in a special shrine and are revered in a special ceremony every November 30.

Cypriot tradition holds that a ship which was transporting Saint Andrew went off course and ran aground. Upon coming ashore, Andrew struck the rocks with his staff at which point a spring of healing waters gushed forth. Using it, the sight of the ship’s captain, who had been blind in one eye, was restored. Thereafter, the site became a place of pilgrimage and a fortified monastery stood there in the 12th century, from which Isaac Comnenus negotiated his surrender to Richard the Lionheart. In the 15th century, a small chapel was built close to the shore. The main monastery of the current church dates to the 18th century.

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Apostolos Andreas Monastery (Greek: ????????? ???????) is a monastery dedicated to Saint Andrew situated just south of Cape Apostolos Andreas, which is the north-easternmost point of the island of Cyprus, in Rizokarpason in the Karpass Peninsula. The monastery is an important site to the Cypriot Orthodox Church. It was once known as “the Lourdes of Cyprus,” served not by an organized community of monks but by a changing group of volunteer priests and laymen. Both Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities consider the monastery a holy place. As such it is visited by many people for votive prayers.

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Andrew is also revered in Malta. The first reference regarding the first small chapel at Luqa dedicated to Andrew dates to 1497. This chapel contained three altars, one of them dedicated to Andrew. The painting showing “Mary with Saints Andrew and Paul” was painted by the Maltese artist Filippo Dingli. At one time, many fishermen lived in the village of Luqa, and this may be the main reason behind choosing Andrew as patron saint. The statue of Andrew was sculpted in wood by Giuseppe Scolaro in 1779. This statue underwent several restoration works including that of 1913 performed by the Maltese artist Abraham Gatt. The Martyrdom of Saint Andrew on the main altar of the church was painted by Mattia Preti in 1687.

The official stance of the Romanian Orthodox Church is that Andrew preached the Gospel in the province of Dobruja (Scythia Minor) to the Daco-Romans, whom he is said to have converted to Christianity. There have been some ancient Christian symbols found carved in a cave near Murfatlar. These have been used for propaganda purposes in the communist era as part of the ideology of protochronism, which purports that the Orthodox Church has been a companion and defender of the Romanian people for its entire history.

Early Christian History in Ukraine holds that the apostle Andrew is said to have preached on the southern borders of modern-day Ukraine, along the Black Sea. Legend has it that he travelled up the Dnieper River and reached the future location of Kiev, where he erected a cross on the site where the St. Andrew’s Church of Kiev currently stands, and prophesied the foundation of a great Christian city, Jerusalem of the Russian/Ukrainian land.

About the middle of the 10th century (possibly earlier), Andrew became the patron saint of Scotland. Several legends state that the relics of Andrew were brought by divine guidance from Constantinople to the place where the modern town of St Andrews stands today (Gaelic, Cill Rìmhinn). There are good reasons for supposing that the relics were originally in the collection of Acca, bishop of Hexham, who took them into Pictish country when he was driven from Hexham (c. 732), and founded a see, not, according to tradition, in Galloway, but on the site of St Andrews.

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According to legend, in 832, Óengus II led an army of Picts and Scots into battle against the Angles, led by Æthelstan, near modern-day Athelstaneford, East Lothian. The legend states that he was heavily outnumbered and hence whilst engaged in prayer on the eve of battle, Óengus vowed that if granted victory he would appoint Saint Andrew as the Patron Saint of Scotland. On the morning of battle white clouds forming an X shape in the sky were said to have appeared. Óengus and his combined force, emboldened by this apparent divine intervention, took to the field and despite being inferior in numbers were victorious. Having interpreted the cloud phenomenon as representing the crux decussata upon which Saint Andrew was crucified, Óengus honoured his pre-battle pledge and duly appointed Saint Andrew as the Patron Saint of Scotland. The white saltire set against a celestial blue background is said to have been adopted as the design of the flag of Scotland on the basis of this legend.

Andrew’s connexion with Scotland may have been reinforced following the Synod of Whitby, when the Celtic Church felt that Columba had been “outranked” by Peter and that Peter’s brother would make a higher ranking patron. The 1320 Declaration of Arbroath cites Scotland’s conversion to Christianity by Andrew, “the first to be an Apostle.” Numerous parish churches in the Church of Scotland and congregations of other Christian churches in Scotland are named after Andrew. The national church of the Scottish people in Rome, Sant’Andrea degli Scozzesi is dedicated to St Andrew.

My profile image here is taken from a larger photo of me beside the font of Iglesia San Andreas (Presbyterian) in Buenos Aires, where I was baptized in 1951.

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Andrew is the patron saint of several cities and countries including: Barbados, Scotland, Ukraine, Russia, Romania, Patras in Greece, Amalfi in Italy, Luqa in Malta, and Esgueira in Portugal. He was also the patron saint of Prussia and of the Order of the Golden Fleece. The flag of Scotland (and consequently the Union Flag and that of its commonwealth countries) feature St Andrew’s saltire cross. The saltire is also the flag of Tenerife, the former flag of Galicia and the naval jack of Russia.

The feast of Andrew is observed on November 30 in both the Eastern and Western churches, and is the national day of Scotland. In the traditional liturgical books of the Catholic Church, the feast of St. Andrew is the first feast day in the Proper of Saints.

Here is an excerpt from the page on St Andrew in the Lowland Scots edition of Wikipedia:

St Andra’s Day is the feast day o Saunt Andra an is celebratit on 30th November ilka yeir.

Saunt Andra is the patron saunt o Scotland an St Andra’s Day (Scots Gaelic: Latha Naomh Anndra) is Scotland’s offeicial naitional day. In 2006, the Scots Pairlament waled ti mak the day a Bank Haliday. Syn 2002, St Andra’s Day haes been Scotland’s offeicial banner day anaw, meinin that the Saltire Banner wul flee frae aw Scots Govrenment biggins wi a bannerpaul. Houme’er, Unitit Kinrick Govrenment biggins in Scotland wul flee the Union Banner, an anerlie flee the Saltire Banner gin thar is mair nor the ae bannerpul.

Full page is here:

http://sco.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saunt_Andra

I bet you didn’t know there was a Scots Wikipedia. Scots is now considered a language in its own right, distinct from English.

Scottish cuisine is as wrongfully maligned as its English counterpart by the ignorant.  As in England, cooking in Scotland suffered a setback in the 20th century because of shortages caused by the world wars, but is now firmly back on its traditional footing.

During the Late Middle Ages and early modern era, French cuisine played a role in Scottish cookery due to cultural exchanges brought about by the “Auld Alliance,” between Scotland and France against England, especially during the reign of Mary, Queen of Scots. Mary, on her return to Scotland, brought an entourage of French staff who are considered responsible for revolutionizing Scots cooking and for some of Scotland’s unique food terminology. Many Scots cooking terms are derived from French:

“Ashet” from “Assiette” (a large platter).

“Cannel” from “Cannelle” (cinnamon).

“Collop” from escalope (cutlet).

“Gigot” from gigot (leg of mutton).

“Howtowdie” from Old French “Hétoudeau” (a boiling fowl).

One of my favorite soups is Scotch broth, made with a base of barley and lamb, plus carrots, onions and leeks.  I always make it when I have a bone left over from roast leg of lamb.  It can also be made cheaply with lamb neck bones.  Here’s my recipe from memory.  Amounts of ingredients are up to you. I wing it.

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Scotch Broth

Put a lamb bone with plenty of meat still on it, or 1-2 lbs of lamb neck bones, in a large pot, with 2 cups of pearl barley, some chopped fresh parsley, lots of freshly ground pepper, and salt to taste.  Top with water or light stock and simmer one hour.

Add diced carrot, onion, and leek (green and white parts) and simmer another hour, or until the barley is properly soft.

Add a few extra grinds of pepper and chopped fresh parsley. Simmer another 5-10 minutes and serve piping hot in deep bowls.

Jul 252013
 

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Today is the feast of St James the Greater.  James (Jacob in Aramaic/Hebrew) has a very prominent place in the gospels and is mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles.  He is one of the first of the apostles to be called to follow Jesus:

“As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the sea—for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me and I will make you fish for people.’ And immediately they left their nets and followed him. As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. Immediately he called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him.” (Mark 1:16-20)

Three of the four mentioned here – James, John, and Simon (later Peter) – are described in the gospels as a privileged inner circle among the apostles.  Simon/Peter and John went on to be leaders of the new church in Jerusalem, but the James who is described in the Acts of the Apostles as the head of the church is not James son of Zebedee (the apostle), but, rather James the Just (described as the brother of Jesus).  James the Greater’s execution is, however, noted in Acts, and he is traditionally recognized as the first of the apostles to be martyred for his faith by King Herod (usually identified as Herod Agrippa):

“About that time King Herod laid violent hands upon some who belonged to the church. He had James, the brother of John, killed with the sword.” (Acts 12, 1-2)

Jesus gave James and his brother John the surname/nickname Boanerges, which means “sons of thunder.” No one knows what this name refers to, but could possibly mean they had fierce tempers, or were powerful orators and advocates, or both.

Saint James (Santiago) is the patron saint of Spain and according to legend, his remains are held in Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, the Celtic region of NW Spain. The traditional pilgrimage to the grave of the saint, known as el camino de Santiago (“the way of St James”), has been the most popular pilgrimage for Western European Catholics from the early Middle Ages onwards. 125,141 pilgrims registered in 2008 as having completed the final 100 km walk (200 km by bicycle) to Santiago to qualify for a Compostela (certificate of completion and plenary indulgence). When 25 July falls on a Sunday, it is called a Jubilee year, and a special east door is opened for entrance into the Santiago Cathedral. Jubilee years can fall every 5, 6, or 11 years. In the 2004 Jubilee year, 179,944 pilgrims received a Compostela.

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The city of Santiago de Compostela became the seat of the saint, from the legend of his body having been miraculously translated there. His remains were supposedly conveyed from Jerusalem, where he died, to Spain in a ship of marble.  On arrival the horse of a Portuguese knight plunged into the sea with its rider and, when rescued, the knight’s clothes were found to be covered with scallop shells. So the scallop shell became the sign of the pilgrim, usually worn on a coat or hat. Medieval Galicians  who were willing to accept passing pilgrims into their homes hung scallop shells over their doors. In French, une coquille Saint-Jacques – literally, a “St James shell” – is the culinary term for scallop.

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The remains of the Apostle lay forgotten until the year 813, when a hermit named Pelayo was led to their hidden site by a shining star (compostela). The local bishop had the cathedral erected at this location where the bones of the saint supposedly lie in a chapel located in the basement of the church. The pilgrimage to Compostela became almost as popular and important in medieval Europe as that to Jerusalem. Because of this, seventeen English peers and eight baronets have scallop shells in their arms as heraldic charges.
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I’m really torn concerning the recipe of the day. Coquilles Saint Jacques is the obvious choice, but there is an old English saying that if you eat oysters on St James you will have good fortune for the coming year.  I think the simplest compromise is to make Coquilles Saint Jacques for dinner and have a few oysters on the half shell as an appetizer.  You can get baking scallop shells online or in a good cookware store.  In a pinch you can make this dish in ramekins but it really is not the same. Asparagus makes a nice accompaniment.
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Coquilles Saint Jacques

Ingredients:

1 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons minced shallots or green onions
1 bay leaf
2 tspns finely-minced fresh tarragon
½ tspn salt
½ pound sliced fresh mushrooms
1 pound washed scallops (bay scallops are best in this recipe; if only sea scallops are available, cut into crosswise slices 1/8″ thick)
3 tbsps butter
4 tbspns flour
¼ cup whole milk
2 egg yolks
½ cup heavy cream
salt and pepper
squeeze of lemon juice
½ tbspn butter
6 tbspns grated Gruyère or Swiss cheese
6 scallop shells or ramekins of ? cup capacity
Sprigs of fresh herbs for garnish: tarragon or flat-leaf parsley

Instructions:

Simmer the bay leaf, tarragon, salt and pepper in the wine for 5 minutes. Add the scallops, mushrooms and enough water to barely cover them.

Bring to a simmer, cover and simmer slowly for 5 minutes. Remove scallops and mushrooms with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Reduce the cooking liquid to one cup by rapidly boiling. While the liquid is reducing, whisk the egg yolks and cream in a bowl.

In a separate saucepan, melt the butter, add the flour, and cook over low heat for two minutes, stirring constantly. Do not allow this roux to brown.

Remove from the heat. Add the cooking liquid slowly while whisking.  Then add the milk, whisking to blend into a smooth sauce. Return to the heat and simmerl for one minute.

Whisk the sauce from the pan into the egg yolk mixture, by driblets. Return to the pan and simmer, stirring, for 1 minute. Thin with cream if necessary. Season to taste with salt, pepper and a few drops of lemon juice.

Mix ? of the sauce with the scallops and mushrooms.

Butter the shells or ramekins; spoon in the scallop mixture and cover with the rest of the sauce. Sprinkle with cheese and dot with butter.

Arrange the shells on a broiling pan.

The recipe can be prepared up to this point at any time before the meal. Fifteen minutes before serving, set the scallops 8 to 9 inches beneath a moderately hot broiler to heat through gradually, and to brown the top of the sauce.

Serve immediately.

Serves 6