VILLA Food & Drink Breakfast Luncheon At the Tavern Family Supper


...and these idlers pass the entire day closed up in a tavern."

From soon after sunrise til nearly sunset, many urban Roman men passed the entire day away from home, and the number of taverns in the urban centres of Pompeii and Herculaneum attest to the fact that many cives must needs feed themselves during these hours.

Further, many citizens living in the stew of apartment houses, or insulae, had little in the way of kitchen facilities, and any hot food they might enjoy likely was consumed in the taverns, called tabernae, popinae, thermopolia or tabernae vinariae. Some cauponae served not only food but provided travellers a bed for the night. These were called deversoriae or tabernae deversoriae.



1 head celery
125 ml./4 fl. oz. white wine
125 ml./ 4 fl. oz. white wine vinegar

Wash and chop celery, then simmer gently with wine and vinegar til tender. Season to taste with sea salt and serve hot or cold as a relish.

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200 g./7 oz. Cheddar cheese
100g./3 oz. spelt flour
1 egg
Olive oil for frying
60 g./2 oz. clear honey
1 tbsp poppy seeds

Grate cheese and work into flour with your fingertips til mixture resembles bread crumbs, then add egg and work into a dough.

Break off small pieces and roll in your hands, forming balls about 2 cm/one inch in diameter.

In a heavy pan heat olive oil to a depth of at least two cm/one inch deep. When oil is hot, but not smoking, gently lower balls into the oil using a slotted spoon. Pastry balls will be golden-brown when done, about five minutes. Drain on paper towels or kitchen paper.

Heat honey in saucepan until very runny. Pour poppy seeds onto a plate and roll balls first in honey til coated, then transfer to plate and coat with poppy seeds.

Serve warm or cold... scrumptious!

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