As a sea-based civilization, sea creatures played an important role in ancient dietary concepts
Introduction Compared with ancient Greece, ancient Rome was different in that both men and women could attend the dinner party.This was obviously influenced by Etruscan habits.After guests arrive, first take off outdoor shoes, put on slippers, and then go to the table.Dinner usually consists of three courses: appetizers, several main courses and dessert.But a more elaborate feast might include other dishes.Lettuce, fish and eggs are common appetizers;In fact, eggs are so common as appetizers that the Latin phrase “from egg to apple” is the Equivalent of “from soup to nuts” in English.Eggs served on the table, including poached eggs, fried eggs, poached eggs, scrambled eggs, omelets.Among the exhibits at the National Archaeological Museum in Naples, Italy, is a square pan with a handle and four circular grooves for frying eggs.The use of a plate with an egg-shaped dent suggests that the Ancient Romans considered the presentation of a good dish when entertaining guests.A dish of olives is usually served in the middle of an appetizer.As today, seasoned salads were a popular starter.Pliny the elder advised eating lettuce in summer because it was cold and appetizing;Apicius, the cookbook writer, suggests substituting chicory for lettuce in winter, “with a dressing, or with honey or strong vinegar.”The poet Collumera’s basic salad recipe includes “vanilla, mint, rue, cilantro, parsley, leeks or scallions, lettuce leaves, brassica, thyme or catmint, and leaf of the winged leaf.”The Ancient Greeks and Romans were no strangers to cucumbers, cooking them, eating them raw and mixing them into salads.Emperor Tiberius loved cucumbers so much that he had them grown on movable shelves so that he could eat them wherever he went.Today, tomatoes are an essential ingredient in Italian cooking, but this exotic plant was unknown to the Ancient Romans.The choice of vegetables depends on one’s class.While leeks and Onions are closely related to each other in the allium genus, they are a popular appetizer among the rich, while Onions are relegated to garnish and seasoning.Onions are considered a “poor man’s food”.Similarly, although turnips were widely grown in Italy, Pliny called them “vulgar food” because they were believed to cause flatulence and hiccups.The green leafy vegetables the Greeks and Romans ate included cabbage, leaf beets, and mustard leaves, but not spinach, which had its Persian origins before the Greeks and Romans knew it existed.Famous traditionalist Cato the Elder loved cabbage as a panacea for all ills.For Cato, cabbage is a miracle substance.Eat cabbage to cure ulcers, headaches, tumors, arthritis, heart disease, hangovers.Fried cabbage for insomnia;Drying cabbage, crushing it into powder and inhaling it can cure respiratory ailments.Cooking cabbages is a cure for ear disease (Lao Cato, On Agriculture).He may have a point, because kale, and broccoli in particular, are currently notorious for their health benefits and are thought to be rich in cancer-fighting substances.Poet Marchal offers a way to improve the white appearance of cabbage, “to keep its pale color from making you lose your appetite, turn the cabbage green by placing it in water with soda added.”Mushrooms are so popular with the rich that there is even a special pot for cooking them called Boletaria.It is said that Emperor Claudius died by eating poisonous mushrooms, which were presented to him by his wife Agrippina.But he probably wouldn’t be so stupid.In an invitation to a friend, Marchal describes the usual appetizers: “The first course is lettuce (to aid digestion), baby leeks, then salted baby tuna…Sprinkled with eggs and rue leaves.There will be more eggs to follow — soft-boiled eggs, and cheese from Villarbloom Street and olives that have been wintered in the trees.”In this book, he realized that leeks, while tasty, had a bad effect: “Never kiss with your mouth open after eating a strong smelling Talentum leek” (” Words of Caution “).The second course usually consists of various meats and cooked vegetables.Game is popular, such as boar, venison and rabbit.Domestic animals commonly eaten include pigs, sheep, goats, and poultry, although pigs are the only animals raised for meat.The stuffed dormouse was considered such a special delicacy that the Romans devised special urns in which dormice were fed and waited for them to grow.Meat is often made into stews, patties, meatballs, sausages, mince, mince, meat pudding, croquettes.In fact, ordinary Romans could buy sausages and blood sausages from street vendors and small restaurants.Apicius recorded recipes for seafood croquettes using crab, lobster, cuttlefish, scallops and oysters.Aquaculture and farmed fish shouldn’t be taken for granted as a modern phenomenon. The Romans’ love of seafood led them to practice oyster farming (using long ropes suspended from horizontal wooden beams) and to dig fish ponds, which they called piscinae.Roman aristocrats enthusiastically competed to see which pond could produce the best fish.In addition, they raise snails, keeping them in special “snail beds,” limiting their range of movement so that they get fat.The Romans were also familiar with the use of animal parts, brains and pancreases in French cooking today.The Roman gastronome Apicius had provided lung, liver, kidney, brain, sow belly, sow uterus, skin, brittle skin, tail, hoof practice.As can be expected, Marine life, as a sea-based civilization, also played an important role in the ancient concept of diet and food.There is evidence that The Greek colony of Sicily was the birthplace of culinary activity, particularly with regard to Marine life.The first cookbook was written here.A famous chef, Mesecus, whom Plato hailed as a “model cook,” left what may be one of the earliest recipes in history, “cutting off the head of hairfish, washing it and slicing it, and pouring cheese and oil over it” (Atnaeus, Feasts).Hibalis, another Greek colony in southern Italy, was noted for its lavish lifestyle, which later gave rise to the English word “sybaritic”.It is said that new cookbook publishing there can enjoy a year of copyright;Eels and eel fishermen enjoy special treatment and are not taxed.Legend has it that when a Hipparian named Simendurides moved to the Interior of Greece, he brought 1,000 fishermen, birders and cooks with him because he feared the cooking would not be up to his standards.All this shows how much the Heparis loved to eat.The Mediterranean is teeming with all kinds of edible creatures.A Roman Mosaic depicting Marine life is a very detailed and realistic depiction of many different Marine species (eels, octopuses, shrimp, lobsters, squid, and many recognizable fish). The Mosaic was an art form for the general public, which shows how familiar ancient people were with Marine life.Similarly, there is a wealth of literature on Marine life, including Auben of Silesia’s Fishspeak, a six-step epic of fishing in a set of five volumes.He mentions more than 120 different types of sea creatures in his poems.In his play The Earth and the Sea, The Sicilian writer Epicamus describes a debate between farmers and fishermen over who can provide the best food for everyone’s table.The ancient Greeks and Romans thought fish were smart and difficult to catch, although today they are generally considered to have low intelligence.Sea creatures are tricky, often able to escape traps laid by fishermen and difficult to deceive.Perhaps it was the difficulty of catching fish that made it so attractive that ancient people loved seafood.According to Pliny, wrasse were so popular that they were caught from the Carpathian Sea (rivers in the Carpathian Mountains) and released in the coastal waters of Campania.In the first five years, all caught wrasse were released back into the sea, perhaps the earliest recorded case of fish management.For the ancients, fish evoked a desire similar to sexual desire. For example, Anaxidides praised the fisherman’s skill in his play Odysseus: “What other art can make the lips of the young burn, make their fingers tremble, make them gulp and gasp in haste?When thou seest a true beauty, how, without the skill of a fisherman, shall thou make her fall off her guard with thy fair talk?”Fish sometimes appear in Greek bottle paintings as a gift to aid seduction, such as an octopus given to a prostitute by a man who is attracted to her.Girls and prostitutes who played the flute often had nicknames related to fish, such as “sand-tip fish”, “red bonito” and “cuttlefish”.Two sisters were named anchovy, apparently because of their fair skin, long fingers, and large eyes.Looking like a fish was a feature of beauty, an aesthetic that might have emerged only in cultures where seafood was so popular.