Garum and Fish
The roman diet derived from Greek culture and was based off of things they ate and how they ate them. The romans main consumption was fruit nuts and meat but changed frequently throughout rulers and eras. They often drank wine. Usually which was watered down because clean water was far and hard to come by. They didn't typically drink juices and they never drank milk. The rich usually at well. They had a diet that was rich like them. They are great food and lots of meat. They ate food from all over the country. Non-elite people and slaves ate a very basic diet with basic foods. They typically ate birdseed and along with not very good wine. The elite ate meat frequently while the poor couldn't afford it and couldn't get it. Their meat was usually boiled not fried because that is how they like it. Food was rarely roasted. It was only during feasts would they prepare the food in such as way as that. Fish was eaten regularly. It changed throughout the different kings and eras of Rome. The three meals of the day for the Romans included: Ienteculum which was breakfast. This happened at sunrise or the first hour. They typically ate nuts, wheat biscuit type things, bread, along with flavored cheese. Not all Romans ate breakfast. Sometimes they just started the day with a cup of water. The next meal is the prandium, which was lunch. This happened around the sixth hour and the Romans usually ate eggs with bread and cheese along with leftovers from the previous day. The next meal was the cena or dinner. They are this during the ninth or tenth hour. This is where a variety of foods was eaten. This was the biggest meal of them all. This is the meal where fish was usually eaten. A lot of times they ate wheat porridge. Roman dinner parties happened occasionally. They usually happened after something was accomplished. These were lavish and had abundant foods. Usually was at least a four coarse meal. Seafood played a big role in these. The types of fish the ate were the following: Carp, catfish, clam, flounder hake, lobster, rays, perch, mussels, mullet, mackerel, lobster, and swordfish. They usually ate fish with the bone in it and even sometimes with the gill in it. They ate it with a delicate fish sauce called Garum or Liquamen. That was made by crushing and fermenting small fish like sardine and smelts. They mixed them with a variety of spices and herbs. A similar sauce is used today in Thai food. Garum is a very slow process which requires much delicacy. It typically takes a week to three weeks. But it is supposed to taste even better if you let it ferment for months! But was only slow cooked like that on very special occasions. Garum is just basically a tasty sauce to top of a fish the was usually boiled back in roman times. Romans basically ate laying down. They ate at square tables and were lying down on cot like things. They socialized and ate with mostly their hands. The used knives to cut meat. Sometimes they would have soup or stew and would use even spoons too. The fish the Romans particularly enjoyed as a whole was shellfish. They ate it with a Liquamen sauce that was rich and flavorful. They almost always drank wine with their cena (dinner). Wine was often mixed with other ingredients and juices to enhance the flavor and taste. The main course was called the prima Mensa. This consisted of the beginning meal which occurs during cena. Next part of the cena is the secunda Mensa where the majority of the food is served and eaten. Secunda Mensa also has desert in it. Usually something sweet. This was usually followed by entertainment displayed by slaves and the unhealthy. Dinner parties would include songs, singing, women dancing, entertainment, refreshments, conjurers, dwarfs, and acrobats. The Romans took control over a vast area of land. They had many rivers, streams, lakes, and oceans to catch fish in. Their main source was the Tiber and the Nile. These major rivers held an abundance of fish for the Romans to catch and eat.
Recipe2 pounds of fish (smelts, anchovy, sardines) 1 tablespoon of mint2 tablespoons of oregano 1 liter of water