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Pork Stew – Ancient Roman Recipe

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[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mO8BIw8cTrw&w=560&h=315]

Welcome to our kitchen Today we prepare an ancient Roman recipe

A flavorful and rich pork stew We start with the ingredients We need pork collar, pine nuts, walnuts, a bit of honey, garum (we’ll talk later about it), olive oil, white wine vinegar, and the spices: white pepper, cumin, lovage, and celery seeds And then fresh thyme, you can use dry thyme and you’ll have a delicious dish anyway First, we soak in water the pine nuts and walnuts for a couple of hours

This is a common technique in the cookbook we are using here Then we grind in the mortar a pinch of celery seeds, one of lovage, and a bit more of cumin and white pepper The recipe doesn’t tell us what kind of pepper to use, we chose white pepper Pliny in the 1st century wrote that ancient Romans imported from India white, black, and long pepper This recipe is part of the cookbook conventionally attributed to Apicius, the widest source of ancient Roman recipes

This recipe is called copadia in Latin In Apicius’ cookbook there are several copadia recipes The ingredients change considerably from one recipe to another The word copadia refers to any stew made with meat cut in pieces We prepared in the past another copadia, in this case, made with beef

You find the link at the end of this video We remove the thyme leaves from the stems and add them in the mortar, with the pine nuts and walnuts Pine nut and walnuts and to a lesser extent also almonds and hazelnuts were often used as thickeners in ancient Roman cuisine They will help to obtain a thick and rich sauce We suggest serving this flavorful stew with barley polenta

You will find the link to the recipe at the end of this video We add in the mortar a bit of honey, garum, white wine vinegar, and olive oil And mix everything together Garum was an ancient Mediterranean fish sauce A few historical sources describe its production step by step

It was made with fish and salt, sometimes with aromatic herbs and spices Some types of garum were produced in the same way as modern-day South-East Asian fish sauces Today there are a few producers of garum If you don’t find it you can use a South-East Asian fish sauce to substitute it, or just a pinch of salt Now we cut the meat

We chose pork collar, but the original recipe doesn’t specify the type of meat or the cut You can use the meat you prefer, for example, mutton or beef We suggest to choose a cut that is not too lean We pour in a pan the sauce and dilute it with a bit of water Then we add the meat and simmer it until it’s tender

We cooked the pork collar for a couple of hours, but the cooking time changes depending on the cut and size of the meat If you prefer, you can first sear the meat with a bit of olive oil and then add the sauce In this case, don’t add olive oil to the sauce We chose not to sear the meat because, reading Apicius’ cookbook, this step is probably not philological for an ancient Roman stew This rich and flavorful stew is a delicious way to taste a very common dish on ancient Roman tables

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Source: Youtube

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