Cover of The Food of Spain.
22 Jun 2012
Roden takes a look at Spain’s intertwined history and gastronomy
She also features traditional recipes for seafood, poultry, drinks and more.
Author: Samara Kamenecka/©ICEX.
Award-wining UK food writer Claudia Roden has published an impressive, and lengthy, list of cookbooks, covering everything from Italian to Jewish to Middle Eastern cuisine. Her latest literary success is entitled The Food of Spain, for which she travelled to Spain, ate like a native, lived like a native, and learned to speak like a native. This is the fruit of five years of intense labor and research—cooking, tasting, cooking again, and perfecting.
Says Roden, “Spain has transformed itself into the world’s effervescent center of gastronomic creativity,” however, “You have to look into the past to understand [its] complex gastronomic map.” Her book offers an in-depth look at traditional cuisine, “tracing the cultural and religious roots of many of its signature ingredients, dishes and culinary traditions.”
The Food of Spain is organized into sections, and within those, chapters. The first is Historical Influences Celts, Romans and Visigoths; Al-Ándalus; Jewish Legacies; From The New World; The French Influences; Monasteries and Convents; Perasant Food) followed by The Regions (Regional Cooking; The North; Central Spain; The Mediterranean East and South; The Canary Islands), and finally, Products & Recipes, which runs the gamut from tapas and soups to dressing & sauces and bean & chickpea stews. This book offers a wonderful look at Spain and historical influences on its cuisine. As Roden says, things just seem to come together like a puzzle all over Spain. “There is a story behind every dish.”