This salty, fishy liquid was garum; the sold residue was allec.
Both products had a strong smell, which no authors praise.
Flavor enhancer Sauce ingredients, compostion, and preparation methods vary according to culture, cuisine and time period.
One of the oldest sauce-type references (albeit fuzzy) is Ancient Roman Garum/Liquamen.
It was made from small fish such as sardines, anchovies, red mullet, etc.
Which were fermented together with the intestines of larger fish such as tuna, and it was included in a wide range of recipes.These early sauces, spiced and pungent, sweet and sour, do not, however, qualify as ancestors of what we know today as French sauces.Tather, they-- and the sauces served in France until the beginning of the modern period--were a continuation of Roman and Mediterranean practice.The Crusades reopened commerce with the East and broadened the palette of exotic spices that French chefs injected into their sauces.The first French cookbook, the celebrated Viandier of Taillevent (whose real name was Guillaume Tirel), provides ample proof that the fourteenth century still dotes on Oriental tastes.Textual evidence ranges from fragments of satyr plays by Aeschylus and Sophocles..full-scale recipes supplied in the Byzantine Geoponica...Various fish and parts of fish..mixed with plentiful salt and allowed to stand in the sun for about two months, after which a liquid (whence the alternate Latin name liquamen) was allowed to flow off.The next three hundred years, at least on the evidence of the leading cookbooks that have survived, was a chaos of invention, but few of the extant sauce recipes look like their modern counterparts.For the first half of the fifteenth century, the best indications of the style and substance of the cuisine come from Francois Rabelais, who catalogues the edible 'sacrifices' made by the Gastrolators to their god, Manduco...The best garum was the same colour as amber Falernian wine...Curiously, very little information is forthcoming about how garum was used, until, towards the end of the classical period, the recipes of Apicius give an unambiguous answer.