The Thirteenth Century

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

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Three substantial cookbooks date from thirteenth-century Egypt, Syria, and Iraq and share a common repertoire of dishes. To take one example, Kitāb Waşf al-Aؓ‘ima al-Mu‘tāda (The Description of Familiar Foods) includes most of the tenth-century sweets, although zalabiya is now made by dribbling leavened batter into boiling oil, in the manner of Pennsylvania Dutch funnel cakes. See pennsylvania dutch. The cuisine is less extravagant than that of the Baghdad of the caliphs, and various new dishes have been invented, such as qāhiriyya, a ring of pistachio paste dipped in batter, deep-fried, and drenched in syrup. A number of new desserts have been created based on stuffing or layering qaؓā’if.