From the Diary of Lurcio

Dies Martis, XII Days Before Calends of Mensis Augustus, in the consulship of Imp. Antonius Overinflatius Blairus and Elizabethia Poshnobbus Windsorus II

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Diary and Notes


Ooh, no. Missus. Ooh, get away with you.

Well.... A funny thing is...

Ooh no. Stop that, no... I should really get on with today's story shouldn't I?

Well...It's a funny thing. I was coming back from the Forum, when who should I spy but 'Madam' out walking on her own, unacompanied... well... that's no way for a lady of a house to be behaving thinks I, so I slips behind a column. Ooh, slips a column eh? No, well...stop that, titter ye not...missus. And why was she holding a big pair of melons thinks I...

And where does she go, turns off up a back alley. Up the back alley no less... now then, stop that...please, this is a serious show...

And who did I see following her but Captain Bilious carrying some plums.

Well....ooh now then yes. Yes...I just had to see what they were up to so of course I followed them and what do you think happened? Well, poor Captain Bilious tripped over and his plums nearly dropped out of his hands. 'Madam' turns around and helps him up but her melons get in the way and she falls on poor Captain Bilious and her massive melons knock his plums and they just shoot out of his hands...shoots his load all over the floor.

what a mess...


Oh, the late great Frankie Howerd, I don't think I could do him justice.

Still, excellent ancient Roman style dinner. Recipes courtesy of the Romans in Britain website. I have adjusted them somewhat as I didn't have any dates (used sultanas instead - probably better than dates) and I toasted the bread for the bread salad.

I think I'm starting to get the hang of Roman seasoning - and superb it is too. I've varied the quantities from thse suggested considerably, and also altered the cooking methods to take account of our modern equipment.

This was really tasty, one of the best chicken dishes I can think of. The sauce reductions have a very modern feel, the sort of thing Atonin Carême and Georges-August Escoffier 'invented' and claimed as French. I wonder if they ever checked the cookbook of Apicius and stole ideas?

This was a truly fantastic dinner - when I open my ancient Roman restaurant in Bath and scam tourists, this will cost £50.00 per head but nobody will mind, it is probably worth the money.

Take care now, the slaves are revolting...

Cake Blog

Puff Pastry Mince and Cream Pie: Top notch family entertainment from Sainsbury's.


  • Aniseed Chicken
  • Bread Salad
  • Leeks in Celery Broth
  • Spicy Lentils
  • Mushrooms in Honey


    Aniseed Chicken
    1 Medium Sized Chicken
    1 Bottle Cheap White Wine
    2 Tbsp Sultanas
    200ml Chicken Stock
    1 Tbsp Honey
    1 tsp Fish Sauce
    1 tsp Wine Vinegar
    1/4 tsp Aniseed
    1/4 tsp Dried Mint
    1/4 tsp Dried Ginger
    Black Pepper
    Bread Salad
    1/2 Crusty White Loaf
    50g Cheddar Cheese
    1 Tbsp + 2 tsp Olive Oil
    1 Clove Garlic
    1 tsp Honey
    1/2 tsp Wine Vinegar
    1/2 tsp Fish Sauce
    Pinch Mint
    1/4 tsp Coriander
    Leeks in Celery Broth
    2 Sticks Celery
    2 Leeks
    200ml Vegetable Stock
    1 tsp Honey
    Spicy Lentils
    200g Red Lentils
    1 tsp Olive Oil
    1/2 tsp Wine Vinegar
    2 tsp Coriander
    Squirt Lemon Juice
    1/4 tsp Salt
    Mushrooms in Honey
    200g Chestnut Mushrooms
    1 tsp Olive Oil
    1 tsp Honey
    Dash Wine Vinegar


  • Aniseed Chicken: Pour the wine in a saucepan along with the aniseed, ginger, a little pepper and mint and begin to simmer (without the lid on). Reduce to 1/4 volume. While the wine is reducing place the chicken in another pan (with a lid) and poach in a little water for 20 minutes. Remove the chicken and cut slits in the skin. Add the stock to the reduced wine and the other ingredients and pour over the chicken. Roast slowly for two hours, basting regularly. Grind loads of fresh pepper on before serving.
  • Bread Salad: Cut the crusts off the bread and cut the bread into croutons. Drizzle with a little olive oil (1 Tsbp) and bake until golden brown. Leave to cool. Grate cheese over the bread. Make a dressing with the other ingredients and pour over the bread and cheese just before serving.
  • Leeks in Celery Broth. Chop the celery into chunks and simmer in some vegetable stock for 20 minutes. Remove the celery and add the leeks to the broth along with the other ingredients. Simmer gently with the lid off the pan until the leeks are soft and the liquid has reduced to a thick sauce.
  • Spicy Lentils: Simmer the lentils until soft and then drain. Add the other ingredients and warm through.
  • Mushrooms: Cut mushrooms into quarters, fry gently in a little oil. Season with honey and vinegar.


    *All quantities are very approximate and for three people