links to useful sites on cuisine and daily life

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links to useful sites on cuisine and daily life

Postby Xantippe Helia Allegra on Fri Oct 18, 2002 2:52 pm

Salvete omnes,

In my search for links to add to the Col Art's collection, I ran across these and thought we might start our own collection: ... index.html -- a site offering descriptions of Roman cuisine -- a site dedicated to the activities of everyday Roman life

Any others?

Valete optime,
Xantippe Helia Allegra

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Sun Jan 05, 2003 4:27 pm

Salve Alegra
Sorry for my late reply. It just hit me that I am the curator situs if it still exists due to the change of forum. Well if the rector has nothing against it, we could place these links on the website of this collegium.
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Postby Tiberius Dionysius Draco on Fri Jan 10, 2003 9:24 pm


after reading Allegra's post, I decided to do some reasearch myself about the roman cuisine and found this site: ... Roman.html

Most sites offer the same recipies but all of them come from the same cookbook:

"De Re Coquinaria"

Maybe something to read for the people over at collegium Artium?

Happy Cooking and valete bene,

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Postby Horatius Piscinus on Sat Jul 24, 2004 11:53 am

Salvete Duelli et omnes

Here's another link, one provided me by Ericius.

There was an incident where Roman soldiers revolted because they were given meat rather than their usual ration of grain. So I would thin Duellius is correct that the common Roman diet contained little meat. Apicius' book is not really about serving meals so much as it is about preserving meat, or more on covering up the taste of bad meat. One reason why a Roman diet would not have had much meat is that they did not have a way readily available to preserve meat. Salt was a highly valued commodity for the same reason, because it was needed to preserve meat.

The grain distribution was just that, a distribution of grain rather than bread. I think the Romans probably ate more gruel than bread. The gruel would be flavored by many different herbs that one could scavage. Levened bread was not introduced until the second century, by Greek slaves, and was again something in the diet of the upper classes. The libum recipe given by Cato offers another possibility. It is composed of two parts cheese and one part flour, and does not make a bread as we would think of it. The unlevened Roman bread probably served as platters, on which cheese and herbs were served, kind of like what we would mistake as a protopizza. The herbs were boiled greens, nettles being one green favored by Romans.

What meat they would have had was an occasional rabbit or other small animal, some birds and fish. The cales was used to provide beef to the very riches members of society. Sheep and goats was available for some less wealthy. Pork was required for funerary feasts and certain religious holidays; that may be the only time Romans ate pork. It was the sacrificial animal of Ceres, associated with the plebeian cultus deorum, however we should not confuse plebeians as being the poor. Pigs were another expensive commodity for most Romans. The poorest members of society, even slaves, formed into religious sodales, in which they received meat. These societies were to become restricted by the Senate to meet only once monthly. They could pool their money to provide for the sacrifice and feast. These did buy pork, as most of these were funerary societies, and possibly other meats as everyone of them included a rich patron. If you could afford the dues, you might belong to more than one such sodales, and thus have a meal with meat maybe once a week.

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