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Eggs, their history in the human diet
Eggs from wild birds have been part of the human diet for as long as evidence exists. It is possible that man learnt to preserve eggs (generally from sea-birds) in containers of ash, as evidence of this has been found in Eastern Scotland and the Hebrides. The procedure was still common in the western Scottish isles at the end of the 17thcentury.
By Roman times domestic fowls (hens, brought by them from north-west India) had become common; and though their laying habits would have been seasonal, they were a staple part of the Roman diet - generally made into flavoured custards, and baked with fish and meat into a dish called patina, or used to bind sausages and stuffing"s. They expected their hens to lay 155 eggs a year, and this figure remained the target into medieval times. The eggs produced would have been much smaller than those of today. See 'Eggs'; 'Eggs and shop labels'; 'Egg, Cotswold Leghorn'; 'Egg, Duck'; 'Egg, Emu'; 'Egg, Goose'; 'Egg' Maran'; 'Egg, Ostrich'; 'Egg, Quail'; "Egg Whites; Whipping";
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