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Recipe for Sesamides
(Sesame wafers)


by Athenaeus The Partying Professors

Yeah, go ahead and click here to buy this book!
Roman Cookery: Ancient Recipes for Modern Kitchens.

Yes, this book has a new cover, but I like this one better. Blah, I am so horrible.
AFAIK, this recipe comes from Grant and was inserted by original site author (I will say again to PLEASE buy these author's books! By doing so, you will help support them — even for books that are older and might not sell as well anymore... These authors do not do this for money, they do it for love. Please support them!

Sesamides — These spherical sweets were made with toasted sesame seeds and honey. In the Pergamon region, these desserts are still made today (Athenaeus 14.646f). It is a cake that was given to the bride, so that coinciding with the celebration of Valentine's Day, is a possible recipe to give to the beloved: "It has been said that they bring it to the bride as a gift : sesame pies ..." (Ateneo, IV, 172 e)

So, doing my searching, besides the fact that I beleive it was lifted mostly from Grant, I found an AWESOME website about De Re Coquinaria in, of all things, Spanish! It's great. Photos and cool stuff. I am really struck. Reading it with google translator is hard, but doable!! Check it out: De Re Coquinaria: Blog about ancient Roman cuisine and other aspects of the ancient world, mainly its legacy today.

Original recipe:

Translation: Honey, oil and roasted sesame sweets that had a ball shape, it is believed that it was typical to give it as a gift to the bride. "It's a cake shaped ball, made with honey, sesame together and oil. Antifante says "sesamídes or honey cakes". (Ateneo, XIV, 642 e).


  • 100g/3 oz sesame seeds
  • 50 g/2 oz spelt flour
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 3 tbsp water


  • Spread the sesame seeds on a baking tray and toast them under the grill for 3 minutes, shaking frequently. Leave under the grill until thay are a golden brown. If the seeds jump about and make a popping sound, this is natural.
  • Mix all the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl and work into a firm pastry.
  • Gather the pastry into a ball and place in a plastic bag for an hour.
  • After the hour, roll the pastry out thinly on a lightly floured board.
  • Using a 5 cm/ 2" pastry cutter, cut out discs and place them on a greased baking tray.
  • Bake in a pre-heated oven at 190°c/380°f/Gas mark 5 for 10 minutes.
  • Cool on a wire rack and serve.
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