Ancient Egyptian Food and Drink by Ahmed Hamdy Eissa   

Ancient Egyptian Food and Drink


The Egyptians were very secure in that the Nile valley always yielded enough to feed the country, even when famine was present in other nearby parts of the world.
The Egyptian's basic food and drink, bread and beer, were made from the main crops they grew, wheat and barely. There were many types of bread, including pastries and cakes.
Since there was no sugar, honey was used as a sweetener by the rich, and poor people used dates and fruit juices.
Egyptians liked strong-tasting vegetables such as garlic and onions. They thought these were good for the health.
They also ate peas and beans, lettuce, cucumbers, and leeks.
Vegetables were often served with an oil and vinegar dressing.
Figs, dates, pomegranates and grapes were the only fruits that could be grown in the hot climate. The rich could afford to make wine from their grapes.
Ordinary people ate fish and poultry. On special occasions they ate sheep, goat, or pig; but there was little grazing land available so meat was expensive and most people ate it only on festive occasions.
Egyptians stored their food in jars and granaries. Fish and meat had to be especially prepared for storage. One method was salting. Another was to hang up the fish in the sun, which baked them dry.
In ordinary families the cooking was done by the housewife, but larger households employed servants to work in the kitchen and a chef - usually a man - to do the cooking.
The Egyptians had ovens, and knew how to boil roast, and fry food.
There were few kitchen tools: pestles, mortars, and sieves.

An Ancient Egyptian "Date Candy" Recipe (For 2 people)


1. 1cup of fresh dates
2. 1t of cinnamon
3. 1/2t of kardemam seed
4. 1/2cup of fresh ground walnuts
5. small amount of warm honey
6. dish full of fine ground almonds


1. mix the dates with some water to paste
2. mix in cinnamon and kardemon seeds
3. kneed in the walnuts
4. form balls, spread with honey and cover in the ground almonds.
5. It is actually pretty good tasting.
This recipe was from 1600BC and was found on an ostraca.

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