Roman Numerals Lesson – The Food of Ancient Rome

                          Roman Numerals Lesson – The Food of Ancient Rome(Time for a Little Fun)

ancient roman food

For the poor of Rome meals consisted of bread, meat & vegetables. The rich ate much more extravagantly.

Here are a few of the more well known delicacies.

– stuffed dormice
– snails fattened in milk
– sow’s udder stuffed with salted sea urchins
– ostrich brains
– goat’s lungs
– calf’s brain custard
– rotten fish gut juice
– stewed seaweed

Possible Task I Research the food above and make a menu complete with how the food is prepared and prices in roman numerals. NB the Roman currency of time was the ‘denari’. The daily wage was from half a denari to II denaries. A loaf of bread cost I denary. A cow cost about C denary and a cloak cost about XII denaries.

Possible Task IIWrite a short play that outlines what is involved in the preparation of a dish in ancient Rome. The short plays can then be combined to make a longer play to present to another class in your school.

The Food of Ancient Rome

Setting: The scene begins in a restaurant with several couples sitting at tables and a is waiter busily serving.

Patron: (Gestures to waiter & in a rather posh voice says…) Excuse me waiter. I have a rather sensitive palate and was just wondering if you could run me through the preparation of you famous ‘fish sauce’?

Waiter: (In a strong professional voice) Why certainly sir. Firstly we take the gills, intestines and blood from a freshly caught Mediterranean mackerel and place them in a jar. We then salt the ingredients heavily and add vinegar, parsley, wine and some sweet herbs.

Patron: Hmmm, sounds delicious so far. Do continue.

Waiter: Next we expose the mixture to the hot sun for several days until the fish parts rot down to a thick sauce.

Patron: Mmmmmmm, my mouth is watering in sweet anticipation already.

Waiter: After around III months in the bottle the sauce is ready to serve.

Patron: Hmmmm, sounds delicious. Do bring us a bottle.

(Another patron summons the waiter. Join your plays on here)

Further research

– Is it true or false that the ancient Romans used powdered mouse brains for toothpaste?

– The ancient Romans had a special room they called ‘The vomitorium’ where guests at parties could go to throw up and then return to the feast to eat some more. True or False? How did you find out?

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