Christie Byrne, Period 7
1 kg pears
4 tbsp honey
100mL passum (sweet grape juice or white wine)
50 mL liquamen (known as garum, the famous fish sauce)
1/2 tsp ground cumin
Mesh cooked and peeled pears (without core) together with cumin, honey, passum, garum, and oil. Add eggs and put into cassorole (I used muffin tins). Cook approximately 25 minutes at 325 degrees Farenheit in the oven. Serve with pepper sprinkled on the soufflé.
Compare and Contrast: A modern pear soufflé recipe:
- Unsalted butter, softened, for dishes
- 5 tablespoons sugar, plus more for dishes
- 3 large ripe pears, preferably Bartlett
- 1 lemon, halved
- 1 piece of fresh ginger (3 inches), peeled and cut into smaller pieces
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 large egg yolks
- 6 large egg whites
- 1 pinch of cream of tartar
How to make garum:
Sardines (or other fish)
The most salty condiment in Ancient Rome was the famous fish sauce. The fish sauce added a new dimension of flavor to the dishes which were often plain. There were four major fish sauce types: garum, liquamen, muria, and allec.
XLIII. ON MANCINUS.
Martial's Epigrams Book One
"Twice thirty were invited to your table, Mancinus, and nothing was placed before us yesterday but a wild-boar. Nowhere were to be seen grapes preserved from the late vines, or apples vying in flavour with sweet honey-combs; nowhere the pears which hang suspended by flexible twigs, or pomegranates the colour of summer roses: nor did the rustic basket supply its milky cheeses, or the olive emerge from its Picenian jar. Your wild-boar was by itself: and it was even of the smallest size, and such a one as might have been slaughtered by an unarmed dwarf. Besides, none of it was given us; we simply looked on it as spectators. This is the way in which even the arena places a wild-boar before us. May no wild-boar be placed before you after such doings, but may you be placed before the boar in front of which Charidemus was placed.1"
1 By Domitian, to be torn in pieces. See Sueton. Life of Domit.