But Archestratus,—that writer so curious in all that relates to cookery,—in his Gastrology (for that is the title of the book as it is given by Lycophron, in his treatise on Comedy, just as the work of Cleostratus of Tenedos is called Astrology), speaks thus of the amia:—
But towards the end of autumn, when the Pleiad
Has hidden its light, then dress the amiæ
Whatever way you please. Why need I teach you?
For then you cannot spoil it, if you wish.
But if you should desire, Moschus my friend,
To know by what recipe you best may dress it;
Take the green leaves of fig-trees, and some marjoram,
But not too much; no cheese or other nonsense,
But merely wrap it up in the fig leaves,
And tie it round with a small piece of string,
Then bury it beneath the glowing ashes,
Judging by instinct of the time it takes
To be completely done without being burnt.
And if you wish to have the best o' their kind,
Take care to get them from Byzantium;
Or if they come from any sea near that
They'll not be bad: but if you go down lower,
And pass the straits into the Aegæan sea,
They're quite a different thing, in flavour worse
As well as size, and merit far less praise.