In an another entry I quoted a Latin phrase which sparked some additional conversation. This is a good opportunity to reenter the Sabine flow of things on WDTPRS, for I am indeed back at the Sabine Farm.
I quoted: Vae tibi tam nigrae, dicebat caccabus ollae.
Commenter Jeff offered:
“’Alas, so black you are,’ said the pot to the kettle.”
Which is fine, though I would do it more like:
“’Woe to you, so black you are!’ said the fry pan to the cook pot.”
I am not dead sure about frying pan and cooking pot for these instruments, but I am guessing based on my reading of a recipe in the late 4th early 5th century cookbook attributed to the 1st century Apicius, De re coquinaria.
Here is the recipe. Let me know what you think – aside from the fact that it looks pretty good. Did I get the pans right in your opinion?
3. Gruem vel anatem ex rapis: lavas, ornas et in olla elixabis cum aqua, sale et anetho dimidia coctura. rapas coque, ut exbromari possint. levabis de olla, et iterum lavabis, et in caccabum mittis anatem cum oleo et liquamine et fasciculo porri et coriandri. rapam lotam et minutatim concisam desuper mittis, facies ut coquatur. modica coctura mittis defritum ut coloret.
ius tale parabis : piper, cuminum, coriandrum, laseris radicem, suffundis acetum et ius de suo sibi, reexinanies super anatem ut ferveat. cum ferbuerit, amulo obligabis, et super rapas adicies. piper aspargis et adponis.
See what I mean?
I could call that caccubus a roasting pan, I suppose, but I think frying pan fits.
Now that hunting season is coming, and some ducks and other birds will be coming my way to die and to be eaten – bless them – I might have to try this. On a shelf I have the English edition of Apicius someone worked up. This recipe is included!
I’ll let you work on your own perfect versions of the recipe for Crane or Duck with Turnips before I post what this English edition worked up with modern measures.
Horace might have had something like this at the original Sabine Farm!
Maybe Augustine ate something like this in North Africa, at least before his enforced poverty in his monastic mode in Hippo.
I don’t say this idly, either.
And if he did, I bet he would have used implements like these which follow.
These I found in the British Museum a few short days ago. They were found in the site of ancient Carthage. One dish is inscribed with the family name Cresconius, who were prominent in the late fourth and early fifth centuries.
This hoard of silver was could have been hidden when the Vandals swept through Carthage (on their way also to Hippo, where Augustine died in 430 during the siege). More likely is that it was squirred away around 400 during the Donatist controversy Augustine fought in so strenuously. Remember that in 405/06 Augustine wrote an anti-Donatist work called Contra Cresconium grammaticum et donatistam.
Did this silver belong to the fellow against whom Augustine wrote? Possibly.
In the meantime, Sabine autumn is setting in with splendor.
Here come the apples on the tree next to the chapel. They are wonderful and I am picking and cooking with them. More on that below.
Colors are coming. I love this time of year.
Weather can be dramatic, which adds to the vistas.
Tonight I am not making crane, but rather a stuffed pork roast.
Pork was the default meat for the ancient Romans, by the way, just as it is in Chinese. Romans didn’t like to eat beef. Anyway, after my long absence, I had to get some groceries and found this roast at an absurdly low sale price and figured I could eat it for a few days, after observing the Feast of the Archangel Michael. The apples will be reduced with some peppers I grew, along with herbs such as thyme and a little lemon peel and perhaps a touch of gin for the botanicals and its stringency at just the right moment. The stuffing has rosemary, parseley, sage, thyme and fennel, all from the garden.
For the jansenistic types who hate good food cheaply but creatively made, or the idea that someone somewhere might be eating a decent meal, I figure this whole thing cost about $6, including the bread, excluding the cost of seeds at the beginning of spring and the price of about two ounces of gin (though I use more to make a martini in honor of the angelic choir). Dunno what the gas for the oven cost.
I might use a few table spoons of flour to make gravy at the end.
Whew! This is getting expensive!
Still… it’ll feed me for probably three days, I think.
Yes, I think I’ll have that martini now.
Here are the results.
But first, someone asked how I made the apple sauce. Simple. I peeled and cored the apples, cut them up, tossed them in the pan with some stuff, added water cooked them down. Easy peasy.
The stuffed pork roast after a 350 degree oven for … a while.
Plated and ready to go down the little red lane. I had some juice and scrapings from the pan, but I had to get some gravy I made another time and froze. Just didn’t have enough.
And a shot from this morning, because it was so beautiful.