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Food preparation.

 
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Hesy Ka Ra
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 1:06 pm    Post subject: Food preparation. Reply with quote

Good afternoon,

I have always been fascinated with the foods prepared and available in AE. I am aware of a Papyrus reportedly dated to 1555BC during the reign of Ahmose. This lists coriander, fennel, juniper, cumin, garlic and thyme however, this appears to describe them as health promoting. I have little doubt that they would also have been used in food.
Given this is not long after the expulsion of the Hyksos would it be possible if previously unknown spices to AE could have been imported by the Hyksos rulers and possibly cultivated in the Delta area?
As we all know there are very few references to how food was cooked; the numerous depictions of items of food offerings in tombs etc give little indication of how they were cooked and served.

I have contemplated for a long time to attempt to produce a study relating to AE recipes, I have little doubt that the recipes served today in Egypt owe their origins to dynastic times after all a fish is a fish. However, given the time difference I am far from confident they have not changed significantly due to the influences to the many influxes of cultures such as Persia, Greek and Roman not to mention others.
Honey was extremely popular and prized and used in various ways from mummification to medicine (I am completely convinced the AE knew of the antibacterial properties of honey they may not have been aware of bacteria but were well aware it promoted healing)
Was honey used in cooking, such as roasting meats for instance? I cannot find any contemporary references relating to recipes as such.

As much as I find the monuments and tombs magnificent it is the lives of everyday people that interest me the most. Whilst meat for the common people would have been expensive and rare I believe it would have been consumed during important festivals.
I would be grateful for any information relating to food preparation and recipes known no matter how obscure.

Regards

Hesy Ka Ra
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irt-akhu
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 5:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am interested, too. Did see a documentary on the AE recipe for H(n)qt (beer) I think last year on TV that was pretty good.
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Hesy Ka Ra
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am more interested in the food, we all know the AE had extensive trading routes however, I believe to try to understand the foods eaten could assist in giving us a greater insight of how extensive that was.
Comparatively speaking the world was then significantly smaller then now, or even in later eras. I would find it very strange if the AE did not absorb cooking influences form other peoples!


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Hesy Ka Ra
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The basic work on the topic is still the two-volume

William J. Darby / Paul Ghalioungui / Louis Grivetti : Food - The Gift of Osiris. - London / New York / San Francisco : Academic Press, 1977. - ISBN : 0122034015 [I]; 0122034023 [II]. - I : XXIV, 452, XLII p. - II : XXXIII; 453-877 p.

Online I just found Volume II (with the " Chapter 20 - Spices and Herbs ").

Maybe also of interest ...

H. van den Berg : Eten en drinken in het Oude Egypte. - In: De Ibis 8. - 1983. - pp. 2 - 13 & 52 - 64.

Ursula Verhoeven : Grillen, Kochen, Backen im Altag und im Ritual Altägyptens - Ein Lexikographischer Beitrag. - Bruxelles : Fondation Égyptologique Reine Élisabeth, 1984. - 237 p.

Pierre Tallet : La Cuisine des Pharaons - L'Orient Gourment. - Arles : Actes Sud / Sindbad, 2003. - ISBN : 2742745203. - 123 p.

Greetings, Lutz.
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Hesy Ka Ra
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good morning Lutz,

Many thanks.

Regards

Hesy Ka Ra
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irt-akhu
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2020 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here you go Hesy Ka Ra, courtesy of this week's EEF news email, some AE recipes for you:

https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/ancient-egyptian-recipes
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irt-akhu
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2020 8:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But wait, there's more:

https://www.sapiens.org/archaeology/ancient-egyptian-bread/
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Hesy Ka Ra
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good morning irt-akhu


Many thanks

Regards
Hesy Ka Ra
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yandiel
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I make and research a lot of AE food myself.

When I make AE food I usually follow a formula depending on how I want to make the food and how it should taste. For example, the AE cooked fava beans and lentils not a lot of the current recipes in Egypt for these meals consist of ingredients that the Ancient Egyptians did not use, for example tomatoes and citrus, these ingredients were added in later... the same can be said of some Hispanic foods, which is the food i grew up with... my mom would always tell me that her grandmother taught her how to make beans and she never added in tomato sauce like a lot of people do now a days, and so I cook my breaks without tomato sauce.. the same can be said of AE food.. so when I make fava beans, as an example, I add in onions, garlic, salt and cumin as the main flavors as I feel that’s how they used to cook, and then I add in whatever else I feel might taste good and which they may have access to like thyme, oregano, (maybe cinnamon) and other times I’ll add in Spanish ingredients because that’s my own culture (paprika, saffron or annatto, cilantro and culantro/coriander leaves). But in don’t add tomatoes, citrus or egg noodles which a lot of modern Egyptians add in because the eye introduced later on in Egyptian history and impart a very Europeanized flavor to the food.

Bread was a staple, mainly pita bread and dukkah with olive oil.. you can find a dozen different dukkah recipes out there.

Date balls, tiger nut cake and honey cakes were also eaten by the ancient Egyptians... Date syrup and date sugar are delicious on their own or can be used as a form of condiment to dip fruits in. You can make date wine at home. Dates and pomegranates were prized in Egypt and pretty much still are.

A lot of these recipes and information can be found online and can be researched enough to be truthful comparing it to the findings in the hieroglyphics- people just choose to make them in different ways and adjust other things for a modern take on them.
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