Cooking and Eating Habits in Ancient Egypt

The ancient Egyptians were very fond of drawing cooking and eating scenes in their temples and tombs to ensure their needs in the afterlife. Thus, we believe that they were food lovers in their daily life. We must not forget mention that they were the biggest eaters of different kinds of meat in the world. The food habits practiced in ancient Egypt were very similar to most of modern Egyot. In ordinary families 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. Food was cooked in simple clay pots, using wooden utensils and stored in jars. The Egyptians had ovens, and knew how to boil roast, and fry food. There were few kitchen tools: pestles, mortars, and sieves. Archaeologists have unearthed early mortars with rubbing stones that would probably have been use to separate the chaff from the grain. Only rich people ate meat regularly, while ordinary people didn't eat much, but many workers kept pigs and ate fish, even though they were told by the priests that pork and fish were unclean. Meat was either stewed or roasted. An uncommon type of model found only during the Old Kingdom is of a man squatting next to a brazier over which is a large cooking pot full of meat cuts. Many birds were eaten like ducks, geese and even pelicans, were kept for their meat and their eggs, and also they ate pigeons and quails at banquets, but we know that poor people lived mainly on bread and vegetables, such as onions, radishes, cucumber and garlic. Fruits such as melons, dates, figs and pomegranates were also grown, but oranges, lemons, bananas, cherries, pears and peaches were unknown. The bread was rough and gritty, as the corn was ground by hand using rough stones.

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