Æthelmearc Crown Tourney

Lunch: A Roman-Style Picnic


Ground Meat Patties




Hard-Boiled Eggs

Melons or Pears





Dishes based on

Apicius and An Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook

Prepared by Lady Katja Davidova Orlova Khazarina



Isicia Omentata (forcemeat sausages)

Apicius 2, 1, 7

1 lb. ground beef

1 slice bread, ground into large crumbs

1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper or cubebs

1 T mam nem

1/4 C pinolas, finely ground

Mix all together, form patties, and grill or fry until done. Serves 4-5. X75 recipe

[The original recipe creates a sausage rather than a patty, but I thought that hamburgers were more appropriate for a tourney lunch. Also, the Romans used a fish sauce, liquamen, in many of their dishes. I have substituted the modern Asian fish sauce, mam nem. Oh, and the Romans used a lot of black pepper - I use cubeb, another common Medieval spice, because I prefer its taste and it doesn't seem to bother people with pepper allergies.]


[Since tomatoes are a New World vegetable, ketchup would obviously not be appropriate for this lunch. Mustard was THE condiment of the Middle Ages, so I'm serving it with the burgers.]

Picentine Bread

Apicius 5, 1, 2

3 C water, 105 to 115 degrees

1 T yeast

1 T sugar

2 eggs

about 10 C flour (some whole wheat)

1/2 C oil, preferably olive

4 tsp. salt

cumin seeds

Proof yeast in water with sugar. When bubbly, mix in flour alternately with oil, eggs, and salt. Knead until smooth and elastic, then let rise, covered, until double (roughly one hour). Punch down and let rise again. Punch down a second time, knead lightly, then let the dough rest under upside-down bowl for 15 minutes so that the gluten will relax. Divide the dough evenly and cut into 20 pieces. Form into rolls, place them on a baking sheet, glaze with water, oil, butter, milk, or eggs (as desired), and let rise for about an hour. Reglaze, sprinkle with seeds, and bake in a 400-degree oven for 20-25 minutes until lightly brown. Cool on a rack. Makes 20 rolls. X14 recipe

[The original is more of a dumpling than a bread roll and includes cheese and grape must. Other bread eaten during the Roman period appears have been made of spelt or other grains and eaten moistened in honey and milk. Again, since this is a simple tourney lunch, I used my own family recipe for Italian bread and included the cumin seeds specified in the original.]



Based on Pepones Et Melones, Apicius 3, 7


Based on Patina De Piris, Apicius 4, 2, 35

[I wanted to serve fruit with this lunch and the Romans apparently ate both of these, albeit cooked. I thought fresh would be more pleasant for the fighters.]


Fabaciae Virides Et Baianae (green and Baian beans)

Apicius 5, 6, 1

2 15-oz cans of chickpeas

1-2 T oil

1 tsp. coriander seed

1 tsp. cumin seed

1 chopped onion

1 T balsamic vinegar

Sauté onions in oil until golden. Drain and add chickpeas, stirring to mix well and lowering heat. Grind seeds in a mortar and pestle, then add to chickpeas and onions. Add vinegar and mix all together well. Serves 4. X10 recipe

[The original specified soybeans, which many people won't eat, and Baian beans, which I couldn't find or verify that they still exist. I substituted chickpeas, which my research said was common during Medieval times. Rather than use my liquamen substitute, mam nem, in this dish in addition to the hamburgers, I used balsamic vinegar as the salty/sour ingredient - it appears to be a Medieval ingredient, from my research.]

Hard-Boiled Eggs

Based on In Ovis Apalis, Apicius 7, 19, 3


onion skins or yellow food coloring

saunders, beets, or red food coloring


whole bay leaves

Boil the eggs until hard boiled. Steep 1/3 in onion skins for yellow shells, steep another 1/3 in red coloring, and leave the remaining 1/3 white. Place bay leaves under eggs.

[The original contained liquamen (again!), so I decided not to have fish sauce overkill in this lunch. The coloration is in honor of our new kingdom, obviously.]


Based on Apicius

Syrup of Lemon

Cariadoc, A Miscelleny, based on An Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook, A-74/104

5 C lemon juice

10 lb. sugar

3 qt water

Cook equal parts lemon juice and sugar with water to form a syrup, then dilute one part syrup to 10 parts water. Makes 120 cups.

X2 recipe

[Aack! I can't stand serving powdered lemonade drink mix to people at an event. So, I'm serving something period which is as thirst quenching as the powdered abomination and tastes much nicer.]


Marcus Gavius Apicius, Romanae Artis Coquinaria Liber (The Roman Cookery Book, circa 1st Century), Barbara Flowers and Elizabeth Rosenbaum, Peter Nevill Limited, London, 1958.

Duke Sir Cariadoc of the Bow and Elizabeth, An Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook of the 13th Century from A Miscelleny, 7th Edition, 1996.


©1997 Chris P. Adler