Here are the 13 most fascinating facts about ancient Egyptian food that our dear readers must know about. Food habits of ancient Egyptians were not much different than us, and one will be surprised to know that these people had feasts and festivals of which food formed an integral part. Since Egypt was a fertile land, courtesy the ever flowing Nile, a major fraction of the lands produced healthy veggies and fruits all year round. As such, food was available even to the poorest of the lot.
Its not merely their food habits that are surprising for us, its the process too that deserves an applause. We may have modern tools to process flour and beverages, but in ancient Egypt, people made use of stone grinders and troughs for making wheat flour and wine. Let’s dwell deeper into these amazing facts. Here we go!
1. Bread was the most popular food item in Ancient Egypt
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Like present day, most Egyptians loved to eat bread made of flour and seasoned with spices and milk. However, the process of making the bread in ancient times was much different than today. Bread was made out of grains like barley and wheat. Milk was added to knead the dough and along with it were added salt, yeast and nuts. The rich and the poor alike included bread in their daily diet. But, till this day, its not known whether the poorer folks also added nuts or other spices.
2. Ancient Egyptians drank beer regularly along with bread
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Ancient Egyptian food recipes were pretty much similar to the present day recipes that we use. Most Egyptian folks drank beer along with bread and meats. Beer was abundantly made and was available for poorer citizens too. Unlike wine that was considered as a luxury, beer was affordable. Even young children were given beer along with a meal. The workers too consumed beer regularly along with vegetables and bread. Each worker was entitled to beer jars containing two liters of the beverage. Barter system was used for trading beer among individuals.
3. People in ancient Egypt loved to eat poultry products
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Ancient Egyptian food was deemed incomplete without the inclusion of poultry products like geese, ducks, pigeons and swans. In Egypt, both the rich as well as the lesser moneyed class could afford to consume poultry products daily. Apart from geese and ducks, wild ostriches were also hunted by pheasants. It was not merely the meat that was popularly eaten, eggs too were equally in demand those days. Like today, in ancient Egypt too, people believed in making pickles out of poultry meats. It was done to preserve the meat for a longer time and was preserved by adding spices and other forms of seasonings.
4. Ancient Egyptians raised cattle for Milk and Dairy Products
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What did the ancient Egyptians eat apart from bread and meats? Well, milk too was a part of regular diet for both young and the old. With the passage of time, early Egyptians started the practice of cattle breeding and agriculture. They used cattle for milk and for farming too. Many Egyptians consumed dairy products like whey, cream and curds as well. However, milk was a restricted commodity that couldn’t be consumed by certain sects of Egyptians. Apart from consuming cattle milk, ancient Egyptians drank the milk of goats and sheep.
5. Ancient Egyptians liked to Drink Fruit Juices
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Ancient Egyptian food recipes differed in terms of spices and seasonings. These folks had different recipes for fruit juices as well. Unlike wine and beer, fruit juice wasn’t a regular thing to be consumed and was not much used by people. However, it still occupied an important part of diet of ancient Egyptians. Mostly it were oranges, lemons and other citrus fruits that were consumed as juices. It was because of their sweet taste. Apart from these, Egyptians also made juice of figs, dates, grapes and mixed honey for sweetening purposes. There was a plant named Chuba whose roots would be ground and every drop of juice would be extracted for drinking.