Food: A Culinary History (Paperback)

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By Jean-Louis Flandrin (Editor), Massimo Montanari (Editor), Albert Sonnenfeld (Translator)
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Staff Reviews

The History of Food? This is a class that I would have died to take in college. Full of tasty tidbits and surprising facts. Worth the read for any "foodie."

— Joe


When did we first serve meals at regular hours? Why did we begin using individual plates and utensils to eat? When did "cuisine" become a concept and how did we come to judge food by its method of preparation, manner of consumption, and gastronomic merit?

Food: A Culinary History explores culinary evolution and eating habits from prehistoric times to the present, offering surprising insights into our social and agricultural practices, religious beliefs, and most unreflected habits. The volume dispels myths such as the tale that Marco Polo brought pasta to Europe from China, that the original recipe for chocolate contained chili instead of sugar, and more. As it builds its history, the text also reveals the dietary rules of the ancient Hebrews, the contributions of Arabic cookery to European cuisine, the table etiquette of the Middle Ages, and the evolution of beverage styles in early America. It concludes with a discussion on the McDonaldization of food and growing popularity of foreign foods today.

About the Author

Jean-Louis Flandrin is professor emeritus at the University of Paris VIII-Vincennes. Massimo Montanari is professor of medieval history and the history of food at the Institute of Paleography and Medieval Studies, University of Bologna.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780231111553
ISBN-10: 023111155X
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Publication Date: May 7th, 2013
Pages: 624
Language: English
Series: European Perspectives: A Series in Social Thought & Cultural Criticism (Paperback)