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Ancient Rome Recipes
by Marcus Gavius Apicius
During the reign of Tiberius, M. Gavius Apicius lived luxoriously at the resort of Minturnae.
He reportedly spent 100 million sesterces on his lavish dinners, which eventually exhausted his fortunes. Unable to indulge his lavish appetites anymore, Apicius chose to commit suicide rather than eat like a peasant.
Apicius left us "de re Coquinaria", the oldest known cookbook in existence...
There are recipes for cooking fish and seafood, game, chicken, pork, veal and other domesticated animals and birds, for vegetable dishes, grains, beverages, and sauces; virtually the full range of cookery is covered.
There are also methods for preserving foods, revitalizing them, even adulterating them.
Some of the recipes are strikingly modern; others use ingredients and methods that have long since disappeared.
In this section of RomeGiftShop.com we will share with you these ancient and unique Imperial Rome Recipes...
First I have to introduce you to some native Roman ingredients, such as:
-- Caroenum: Boiled must (you have to boil the new wine or grape juice until it is only half the amount you started with).
-- Defritum: Either thick fIg syrup, or must that's boiled until you have only a third of the amount with which you started.
-- Liebstoeckl: I didn't find an English translation. In Latin it's called 'levisticum officinale'. It's an umbelliferous plant with yellowish flowers. Its dried roots are used as spice. It seems to be a kind of celery.
-- Liquamen: a salty fish sauce. Most of the time you can replace it by salt.
-- Passum: Very sweet wine sauce, made by boiling the must (new wine or grape juice) to thicken it. (maybe add honey? - just my guess)
-- Poleiminze: A kind of mint that's growing in inundated areas. Just replace it by ordinary mint.
-- Saturei: I didn't find an English translation. In Latin it's called 'satureia hortensis'. It's a violet or white flowered kind of labiate plants which grows mainly in Southern Europe. It's used as a spice plant, especially for bean dishes.
-- Silphium: Its other names are 'Laser' or 'ferula asa foetida'. I've noticed that it's also called 'hing' in the Indian cuisine. It is an onion and garlic substitute and should be used rather sparingly because of its very strong taste and smell.
And here are some useful conversions
5ml = 1 tsp
15ml = 1 tblsp
28.3g = 1 ounce ( ==> 100g = 3.5 ounces )
454g = 1 pound ( ==> 1kg = 2.2 pound )
250ml = 1 cup
1 l = 4 cups
180 deg C = 350 deg F
220 deg C = 425 deg F