Food and cooking



In a world without refrigeration, food had to be stored in cool, rodent-proof conditions. The large clay storage jars called amphorae were ideal for this purpose. Foodstuffs in store would have included barley and wheat, fruit, nuts, cheese, olive oil, wine, onions and garlic, herbs and spices, honey, salt and vinegar. Smoked fish and salted meat would also be stored.

Cooking utensils were hand-made from clay or bronze, and nearly as varied as those in use today with the exception of forks which were not used by the Greeks. They could be hung from the wall or in the case of larger items stored on racks or on the floor. A small portable hearth (eschara) could be used in the courtyard like a barbecue or moved inside in poor weather. The hearth could be used to boil food in pots or for roasting and baking if combined with a portable clay oven.


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