[Sca-cooks] Hello, Intorducing myself

Craig Daniel teucer at pobox.com
Wed Dec 9 13:07:55 PST 2009

On Wed, Dec 9, 2009 at 3:57 PM, Antonia Calvo <ladyadele at paradise.net.nz> wrote:
> You never know.  Presumably Spanish Christians continued to eat pork.

Probably (I would say "almost certainly" except that I can't be arsed
to try and document it - certainly pork consumption or lack thereof
was a big deal in Christian-ruled pieces of Spain at the time and
moreso in following centuries), but it wouldn't have turned up in an
Islamic cookbook.

At the time of the anonymous Andalusian cookbook, most Christians in
al-Andalus were living in distinct dhimmi communities, speaking their
own language (Mozarabic, a now-extinct Ibero-Romance language attested
in a number of stanzas of poetry quoted by Arabic sources), dressing
differently from their Muslim neighbors (note: I don't study that area
much so I'm relying here on what garb folks have told me, so I could
be wrong), and otherwise segregating themselves culturally. It would
shock me to find that they *weren't* cooking differently from their
neighbors also.

Really it's a question of semantics. If a Mozarabic cookbook turned up
- well, first of all I confess the linguist in me would be even more
excited than the food historian, since it would probably be more text
in Mozarabic than currently survives, but it would also probably
document something distinct from what's in the Arabic corpus, and I
doubt we'd be inclined to call it the same cuisine.

 - Jaume

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