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The Ancient Egypt Site (main.gif - 14.4 Kb)

Our primary source of knowledge about the Ancient Egyptian menu are scenes, especially, but not exclusively, those in private tombs where the deceased receives offerings.

The abundant offerings will often include:

  • fish, from the richly populated Nile, the Fayum and the marshes 
  • birds (geese etc.) 
  • meat from cattle, but also from gazelles... 
  • bread and pastry 
  • and an abundance of vegetables and spices
     
   
 

An abundant offering of food and drink, stacked up to the heavens, for Amun-Re in the temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahari.

 

The story of the Shipwrecked Sailor teaches us that the hero of the story considered the following goods "good food": 

  • figs 
  • grapes
  • sycamore figs
  • notched sycamore figs 
  • cucumber 
  • fish 
  • birds 
     

There is no known Ancient Egyptian word that can be translated as "cheese". The Roman historian Plinius has noted that the naturally thickened form of milk, such as quark, was known to the Egyptians, but that they did not produce cheese. However, remains of cheese may have been found in jars dated to the 1st Dynasty. In the story of Sinuhe, "milk in some sort of cooking" is mentioned, which might be an expression used for "cheese". 

Unfortunately, we do not have an Ancient Egyptian recipe book that could inform us more on what spices were used (if any), how the meals were prepared, ... 

As drinks, we will find wine, beer and of course, water. Wine was made from grapes, beer from bread.

   
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