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Re: [Apicius] Posca

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  • jdm314@aol.com
    Iustinus Correo ceterisque salutem plurimam dicit, Thanks for drawing my attention to this. I hadn t noticed the recipe. It sounds good. Now, she admits
    Message 1 of 40 , Jul 4, 2009
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      Iustinus Correo ceterisque salutem plurimam dicit,



      Thanks for drawing my attention to this. I hadn't noticed the recipe. It sounds good. Now, she admits there's no recipe attested, but I kind of wish she said more about her reasoning. It's a shame, because I'm heading to the Conventiculum on monday, and it would be awesome to have a non-alcoholic drink recipe, especially one suited to hot weather. But without knowing more, I don't want to present it as ancient. And btw, didn't we decide in a previous discussion that the Romans didn't have balsamic? Cider vinegar also seems unlikely--they certainly knew of cider, but I don't think it was terribly common.




      And by the way, Kaufman is not actually correct when she says there is no attested recipe: just a few days ago I stumbled on one! Oxyrrhynchus Papyrus #1384, a Christian magical-medical text. As a special treat, here's my translation:




      For purgative posca:
      Rx cumin, 4 drachmas (~14 g)
      fennel, 2 drachmas (~7 g)
      celery, 4 drachmas (~14 g)
      costus, 4 drachmas (~14 g)
      mastic, 4 drachmas (~14 g)

      coriander, 7 drachmas (~24 g)

      bay berries, 21

      karoion (caraway?), ___ drachmas

      perna (ham??), ___ drachmas

      pennyroyal, ___ drachmas

      leaf (i.e. malabathrum/bay), ___ drachmas

      salt, ___

      vinegar, ___



      Um, tantalizing, isn't it? So many of the quantities are missing... most notably THE VINEGAR! Argh!











      aa



      -----Original Message-----
      From: Correus <correus@...>
      To: Apicius@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Mon, Jun=2
      022, 2009 4:14 pm
      Subject: [Apicius] Posca


































      SALVETE OMNES!

      How many of you out there drink (or have at least tried) Posac?



      Here is a recipe from Cathy Kaufman‘s book ’Cooking in Ancient Civilizations‘, p. 182.



      Combine 1½ cups of vinegar with ½ cup of honey, 1 tablespoon of crushed coriander seed and four cups of water. The mixture should be boiled in a saucepan to dissolve the honey before being allowed to cool to room temperature. After straining out the coriander seeds, it can be served.

        VALETE APPIVS·IVLIANVS·CORREVS·APICIVS



      The truth may be boring, and even unpleasant: But it is always better than half truths and out right lies.



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    • Lori Tishgart
      Good call on the tree gender. I will have to make sure to get some of both. On another note, if you want to propagate another bay tree from the one existing
      Message 40 of 40 , Apr 4, 2011
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        Good call on the tree gender. I will have to make sure to get some of both. On
        another note, if you want to propagate another bay tree from the one existing at
        your house, check first all over the ground below the tree. Oftentimes you will
        find very young trees already started around the roots of the larger tree.



        ________________________________
        From: Heather Rose Jones <heather.jones@...>
        To: Apicius@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Mon, April 4, 2011 6:59:07 AM
        Subject: Re: [Apicius] Bay Tree



        On Apr 3, 2011, at 9:54 PM, Lori Tishgart wrote:

        > Ok, I admit my ignorance. I have more HUGE California Bay Laurels
        >(Umbellularia
        >
        > Californica) around my house than I know what to do with! While they provide
        > lovely shade, their scent on warm days is wonderful! I keep looking for the
        > berries, but all that I see are very small white flowers (which are currently
        > falling off at this time). I use the leaves for cooking all of the time, but

        > they seem to be more pungent than the dried variety that I get at the grocery
        > store. Thank you Sally for pointing out that one gets the berries from the
        > laurus nobilis and not its California cousin. We call the laurus noblis "Sweet
        >
        > Bay" here and it is plentiful. I will keep a look out and harvest the berries

        > as I see them (in Fall?). Does anybody know when the berries are ready to be

        > picked and dried? As for myself, I plan to put several Sweet Bay in the
        >ground
        >
        > this spring. Lori T.

        Adding to the anecdotal information ...

        I live in the SF Bay area and have an Italian Laurel tree that I planted about
        20 years ago. It's quite large now (I have to prune it to keep it from towering
        over my 2-storey house) and it flowers every year, but I've never seen any
        berries result from the flowering. My unresearched guess would be that either
        it isn't a self-pollinator and needs a second tree in the vicinity or that it
        needs pollination help from some insect not native to California.

        And, of course, having said that, I had to go do the research. At
        http://www.yourgardenshow.com/plants/7651-Laurus-nobilis it notes "Trees are
        dioecious (separate male and female trees). Flowers on female plants, if
        pollinated, are followed by single-seeded purple-black berries." So absent
        another tree of the right gender expression, I never would get berries.

        I'm currently trying to see if I can successfully pot a root-sucker from the
        tree as I'm in the process of selling my house and would like to propagate that
        particular tree for sentimental reasons if possible.


        Heather Jones

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