Project Description

Culina Romana: Exploring Ancient Roman Cuisine

We meet in one of Rome’s famous outdoor market, Campo de’ Fiori, about an hour before lunch.  Among flowers, spice vendors, and locals choosing their fruits and vegetables, we discuss the history of the ancient Roman diet.  We’ll go back to the old days, when shepherds–limited to nuts, berries, millet, and acorn stew–complained about their fare.  As Romans conquered the Mediterranean, they began to incorporate a wider variety of fruits, vegetables, and grains into their diet.  They made proto-croissants with Egyptian wheat, went gaga over expensive exotic fish, and imported peach preserves from the ends of the Empire.  We’ll then compare Imperial cuisine to its modern Italian counterpart and talk about the ancient sources that provide us with this information.

We continue our discussion at a nearby restaurant, where we taste some of the wines the Romans loved, nibble the breads, meats, and cheeses that were their staple food, sip soups based on ancient ingredients, and discuss the aspects of ancient cuisine that manifest themselves in Italian foods.

Lunch costs approximately € 20 a person.
Note: The menu can be adapted to vegetarian – or other dietary – needs. Please ask for more information if you have any other dietary restrictions.

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