How to Make the Ancient Roman Fish Sauce Garum at Home

If you're looking for a new quarantine cooking project, consider making an Ancient Roman recipe for fish sauce in your kitchen. To cook it, you'll need a pound of salt, two pounds of fish, and a high tolerance for strong smells.

For his YouTube series Tasting History, host Max Miller shares the history behind old recipes while recreating them as faithfully as possible from home. In the video below, he highlights garum: a fish sauce that was a beloved condiment in Ancient Rome.

Traditionally, garum is made by layering oily fish, herbs, and salt in a barrel and allowing the mixture to sit in the sun for months until the ingredients break down into a pungent, fermented liquid. This fermentation method also produces an odor that's hard to ignore, so for Miller's version, he chose a recipe from the 10th century agriculture book Geoponica that speeds up the process by boiling the fish in water.

Rotten fish juice may sound like an unusual culinary relic, but several versions of it are still enjoyed today. Fish sauce is popular in parts of Asia, and Worcestershire sauce—which contains anchovies—is produced in England. Garum was also similar to ancient ketchup, which was originally made from fermented fish guts. Most modern versions of the condiment no longer feature the funky ingredient.

Garum was served with a variety of dishes in Ancient Rome, including salads, savory meats, and desserts. You can investigate the sauce's appeal for yourself by following along with the recipe in Tasting History's video below.

Friday’s Best Amazon Deals Include Digital Projectors, Ugly Christmas Sweaters, and Speakers

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As a recurring feature, our team combs the web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, December 4. Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

You Can Make Baby Yoda’s Favorite Blue Cookies at Home

© LUCASFILM
© LUCASFILM

Season 2 of The Mandalorian has revealed some important plot elements, but fans of the Star Wars series are still asking one question: What were those little blue cookies Baby Yoda ate in episode four? While you can't hitch a ride to the planet Nevarro to find out, you can now bake your own version of the snack at home, A.V. Club reports.

Mandalorian creator Jon Favreau recently teamed up with Binging With Babish’s Andrew Rea to adapt the intergalactic recipe for Earth kitchens. Baby Yoda (a.k.a. The Child, a.k.a. Grogu) has an adventurous appetite, but these aqua-blue cookies may be the most delicious-looking thing he eats on the show.

Favreau revealed that the cookies used on set were basically blue-raspberry macarons. Rea recreates two versions of the snack: traditional French macarons with bright-blue food coloring, and a simpler, Nilla wafer-like confection that's easier to make. You can follow along with both recipes in the video below.

If you're not interested in making Baby Yoda's cookies from scratch, you can also buy Nevarro Nummies from Williams Sonoma for $50. Here are more products celebrating season 2 of The Mandalorian.

[h/t A.V. Club]