Excerpt from the Market Newsletter originally published on 8 Sept, 2010. View the full newsletter for all the photos and links.
Cooking, and reading about cooking
I don’t have any questions to answer this week, which means I get to pick something from my own collection. If you enjoyed the medieval recipes I shared last spring, you should find these classical Greek and Roman reconstructions interesting too.
Cheese and sesame sweatmeats
(Globi, from Philoxenus and Cato)
1.25 c. milk
2 Tbsp. semolina
3 Tbsp. honey (divided)
4 oz. ricotta cheese
.75 c. lightly roasted sesame seeds (divided)
olive or vegetable oil for deep-frying
Bring the milk to a boil and sprinkle the semolina over it, stirring constantly. Cook briefly but do not let it burn. Allow to cool slightly, stirring occasionally, until it forms a firm paste. Add 1 Tbsp. honey and the cheese; mix well and stir in the sesame seeds. Heat oil in a deep-fryer or saucepan until a little of the mixture dropped into the oil rises and begins to color. Form mixture into balls between two spoons and drop into the oil 2-3 at a time. Turn occasionally until they are golden-brown on all sides; lift from the oil and drain on paper towels. Warm the remaining honey and toss the cooked balls in it, then in the remaining sesame seeds. May be served hot or cold.
(Moretum, from a poem attributed to Virgil)
2 bulbs garlic (very roughly, 15-25 cloves)
8 oz. Pecorino Romano cheese
1 large handful cilantro
2 tsp. chopped fresh rue
2 heaped tsp. chopped fresh celery leaf
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
Peel and roughly chop the garlic and herbs; grate the cheese. If you are grinding by hand, start with the garlic and salt and break it down to a pulp, then add the cheese and herbs. When you have a smooth mixture add the liquids and mix well. If you are using a food processor, process all the solid ingredients into a smooth mixture, then add the liquids. Chill. Serve with a crusty loaf as a snack.
Both recipes this week are from: The classical cookbook / Andrew Dalby and Sally Grainger. J. Paul Getty Museum, c1996.