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Hit-Or-Miss

5 Disgusting Recipes From The First Ever Celebrity Cookbook

Gordon Ramsay would blush

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Long before the introduction of the tomato to Europe, Italy had a reputation for being a gourmand’s paradise. One of the most important sources for understanding ancient epicures is the collection of recipes known as Apicius de re coquinaria (roughly, Apicius on cooking). Apicius, a wealthy Roman of the 1st century C.E. who reputedly killed himself rather than eat cheaper food once he ran out of money, has gone down in history as the first celebrity chef. It’s unlikely, however, that he personally wrote any of the recipes in the collection, which probably dates to three centuries after Apicius’ untimely demise.

Many of Apicius’ recipes remain appetizing today (I recently helped Leftovers History select and research one tasty example). But others are better left to the dustbin of history. Here are 5 Apician recipes that we’d rather not try.

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via Wikimedia

1. To Improve a Broth

If your reaction to noticing that your soup has spoiled to the degree that it stinks is to dump a bunch of spices in it and then serve it to your friends, please let me know so I can never ever eat at your house.

If a broth has contracted a bad odor, place a vessel upside-down and fumigate it with laurel and cypress and before ventilating it, pour the broth in this vessel. If this does not help matters and if the taste is too pronounced, add honey and fresh spikenard to it; that will improve it.

2. Vegetable and Brain Pudding

There’s nothing wrong with eating organ meat, and I’m not even a particularly picky eater. But 5-year-old me would have had a hell of a tantrum if my mom decided to serve this dish for dinner.

Take vegetables, clean and wash, shred and cook them, cool them off and drain them. Take 4 calf’s brains, remove strings and cook them in the mortar. Put 6 scruples (a type of measure) of pepper, moisten with broth and crush fine; then add the brains, rub again and meanwhile add the vegetables, rubbing all the while, and make a fine paste of it. Thereupon break and add 8 eggs. Now add a glassful of broth, a glassful of wine, a glassful of raisin wine, taste this preparation. Oil the baking dish thoroughly and place it in the oven and when it is done sprinkle with pepper and serve.

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via Wikimedia

3. For Birds that Smell Strongly

There’s some scholarly debate over what “goatish” means in this recipe—is it just birds with a gamey flavor? Many Classicists, however, think that this recipe told cooks how to cover up the stench of rotting fowl. 

For birds of all kinds that have a goatish smell, add pepper, lovage, thyme, dry mint, sage, dates, honey, vinegar, wine, broth, oil, reduced must, mustard. The birds will be more luscious and nutritious, and the fat preserved, if you envelop them in a dough of flour and oil and bake them in the oven. Alternately, stuff the inside with crushed fresh olives, sew them up, and thus cook, then retire the cooked olives.

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via Wikimedia

4. To Make Spoiled Honey Good as New

Honey can actually stay good for a crazy long time, but you really don’t want to mess around with it when things go wrong.

How bad honey may be turned into a saleable article is to mix one part of the spoiled honey with two parts of good honey.

5. To Clarify Muddy Wine

No thanks, I’m good.

Put bean meal and the whites of three eggs in a mixing bowl. Mix thoroughly with a whip and add to the wine, stirring for a long time. The next day the wine will be clear.

Written by Caroline Wazer // History Buff // Recipes adapted from Joseph Dommers Vehling’s 1926 translations // Feature image via Wikimedia

Categories
Recipes

How to Make Bacon, Date, and Goat Cheese Cupcakes

Are you familiar with the appetizer “Devils on Horseback”? While there are many variations, the basic idea includes dates wrapped in bacon then stuffed with some sort of cheese and/or nut. I wanted to take this time-tested recipe and use it in a new way… and what more fitting way than to reimagine this classic as a dessert? So today we have Bacon, Date, and Goat Cheese Cupcakes:

Bacon Date and Goat Cheese Cupcakes

Bacon, Date, and Goat Cheese Cupcakes

Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • Eggs, oil, water called for on back of mix
  • 24 dates, pitted
  • 2 oz goat cheese

Frosting (adapted from Vermont Creamery)

  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • 4 oz butter, softened
  • 5c powdered sugar
  • 2T milk
  • 3oz cooked and crumbled bacon (or if you, like me, decided to be lazy, a bottle of bacon bits)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line cupcake tin with 24 cupcake liners.
  2. Slice each date down one side, so they open up… kind of like a clam shell.
  3. Stuff each date with a bit of goat cheese, and give each a little squeeze to kind of close it up and keep the cheese in there.
  4. Make cake batter as directed and distribute evenly into cupcake liners.
  5. Press a goat cheese filled date into each cupcake, and make sure each are covered with batter.
  6. Bake as directed and let cool. Meanwhile…
  7. Cream together the butter and goat cheese until combined.
  8. Add powdered sugar and milk and whip on high until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
  9. Pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes, and sprinkle each with a bit o’ bacon.

It’s a bacony cupcake with a surprise inside! Fun, easy, and definitely a way to mix things up when it comes to sweet and savory. Next time you need to bring an appetizer to an affair, bring these and see what happens.

Categories
Cravings

5 Gorgeous Game of Thrones Feasts Including a Dothraki Blood Pie and Bacon Wrapped Trout

GOT Feats Cover

It’s pretty safe to say that Redditor rach11 is a Game of Thrones fan. This talented chef went out of her way to create 5 amazing feasts straight from the series focusing on the cuisine of a different region in the fictional land of Westeros within every meal. Check out the rest of her albums for a more gratuitous look at GoT food porn.

Also, what an episode last night.

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Kings Landing

Kings Landing Spread

A spread that includes cornish game hens cooked in Elizabethan butter sauce, almond herb crusted fish, salmon fig tarts, lemon cakes, apricot cherry tart and an onion potato and cheese pie. There’s absolutely nothing here a king would be mad about. Also includes fruits, cheeses, breads, roasted sweet and sour carrots and a plum salad.

pie

Crusted Fish

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The Wall

The Wall

If you’ve taken a life-long vow of celibacy, you might as well fill that void with drool-worthy food. The diet of a man of the Wall features a crusted rack of lamb, roasted chicken with a carrot, chestnut and date stuffing, bean and bacon stew, a pork pie, and peas porridge. For dessert, iced blueberries with sweet cream and apple cakes. It’s a lonely, delicious life.

GOT Feats Cover

Iced Bluberries

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The Reach

Reach SPread

One of the largest kingdoms of Westeros, the Reach has a pretty high bar to set when it comes to tasty dishes. This spread includes Sister’s Stew (fish, clams and crabs) served in a bread bowl, bacon wrapped trouts, stewed rabbits, roasted beets, poached pears, a variety of fruit tarts and pastry cream swans with vanilla cream.

bacontrout

Breadbowls

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Essos

Essos

Home of the Dothroki, some of the most bad-ass nomads around, it’s no surprise that the diet is largely meat-based. Orange Honey Roasted Duck, goat cooked with sweetgrass fire pods honey, shrimp and persimmon bisque, garlic butter mushrooms, Dothraki blood sausage and goat hand pies and Dothraki blood sausage and goat cheese pie. Wintercakes, ginger candies and pastries close out the desserts.

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blood pie

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Dorne

Dorne Spread

Dorne’s abundance of fruits is a clear influence on its cuisine. Spiced lemon duck with root veggies, snake with friers mustard wine sauce, honey lemon pepper lamb chops, grape leaves stuffed with ground lamb, rice, onions, mushrooms and raisins. Also features a hefty spread of figs, cheese and dates with cream cakes for dessert.

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cheese dates

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Categories
Hit-Or-Miss

Yogurt Trifle with Pomegranate, Pear, and Dates

This is a take on an ordinary breakfast parfait except it got spruced up with some exotic fruit. This yogurt trifle is filled with pomegranates, pears and dates, both fresh and dried. (Thx Chow)

Categories
Cravings

Dates Wrapped With Smoked Bacon

These smoked bacon wrapped dates look mouth watering! I could eat these for days! (Thx Anita Szocs)

Categories
Cravings

Prosciutto and Dates

A date, wrapped in prosciutto. Created in honor of the fallen TV star, Gary Coleman. They’re sweet…they’re pudgy…just like Gary Coleman? I can get on board, the thought of these salty and sweet flavors coming together sound absolutely delicious. I would almost want an entire burrito made out of these things! Prosciutto wrap with date filling. Game changer? You heard it here first! (PicThx MySocialChef)

Categories
Cravings

Chorizo-Stuffed Dates Wrapped With Bacon

Pig stuffed in dates wrapped in pig again! I don’t know how else to explain it, there’s a lot of pork in this appetizer! Spanish chorizo sausage stuffed in Medjool dates and wrapped in bacon! I don’t know how this spin off of pigs in a blanket actually tastes, but I’m down to try! (Thx TMG)