divinite: (device)
A few people asked for recipes from the Roman Feast I served last Saturday at Lyondemere Anniversary (this was a 2 person feast that was a prize in the basket raffle, the extras were brought around for sampling).

Cucumeres (Braised Cucumbers)
When scraped and cooked in olive oil, vinegar, and honey, cucumbers are without doubt more delicious. [Pliny, Natural History, c. AD 23-79]

1 large cucumber
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp clear honey
Sea Salt (optional)

Peel and cut the cucumber into thick slices.  Pour white wine vinegar, olive oil and honey into a heavy pan and cook the slices of cucumber gently in the sauce until they are tender, shaking the pan occasionally to redistribute the cucumber slices and ensure even cooking.  Serve hot as a side dish.

Note: I served these cold and they were still wonderful.  I also adjusted the amount of honey to taste.  I kept checking to make sure that they weren't too vinegary and added a bit of honey if they were.

Staititai (Honey and Sesame Pizza)
A type of cake made with spelt dough and honey.  Epikharmos mentions it in his Marriage of Hebe. The moist dough is spread on a frying pan, and on it are poured honey, sesame seeds and cheese, according to Iatrokles. [Athenaeus, The Partying Professor, c. AD 170-230]

Note: I'm modifying this to how I made it, not how it is presented in the book I used.

1 package Trader Joe's pre-made pizza dough, plain
Olive Oil for frying
7oz feta cheese
2 tbsp clear honey
2 tbsp sesame seeds

Spread the dough into a 10" round on a flour covered board.  To be closer to the original recipe, you can use spelt flour for this, which is a vegan/whole grain alternative.  Take the 10" round and slide it into a large frying pan containing enough olive oil to cover at least half the depth of the dough (a little more than just covering the bottom of the pan will work).  Fry gently, turning over from time to time until golden brown on both sides.  Remove from pan onto pizza stone or large baking sheet.  Cover with feta (spread/mashed).  Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with sesame seeds.  Flash under a hot grill (or if you don't have one, 10 minutes at 450 should do it).

I also served this cold and while it was good, I made it again for myself and ate it hot and it was amazing!  It's very easy and only take about 20 minutes start to finish.

Both of these recipes, and all the others, were taken from Roman Cookery: Ancient Recipes for the Modern Kitchen by Mark Grant (1999).

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