Spanish Cookery Books

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

The first cookery books in Spain appeared during the period of Arab rule, in the 13th and 14th centuries. However, isolated earlier documents give valuable culinary insights. In his treatise On Agriculture (ad 60–5) Columella, the Roman philosopher and astronomer, who was born and first farmed in Cadiz, gives various everyday recipes for preserving food. Moslem medical treatises, such as a 12th-century work Tratado de los alimentos (1992), translated by Expiración García Sánchez, also give extensive details about spicing, foods, and medicinal dishes.