From G.W. Bowersock’s NYRB review of two books on the history of food (and I’m as pleased as Bowersock is that the subject is finally being taken seriously):
Petronius’ depiction in the first century AD of a banquet at the house of the pretentious parvenu Trimalchio remains one of the great satires of gourmandise in Western literature. A cookbook of the time […] has survived in later copies under the name of Apicius, and I cherish the account I had many years ago from Barbara Flower, the translator of this work, about her efforts to establish a sound Latin text. She prepared each of the recipes herself in the presence of the great textual critic Paul Maas, who, when the preparation was obviously in trouble, would emend the Latin original on the spot until the dish appeared to be in order. This was editing of a kind such as not even that formidable editor of Latin authors A.E. Housman could have imagined, and it illustrates the unexpected consequences of culinary studies of the past.