[Sca-cooks] Early Period varieties of vegetables

lilinah at earthlink.net lilinah at earthlink.net
Fri Apr 27 20:00:05 PDT 2012

Carrots are described thus in Nawal Nasrullah's Glossary section of her translation of Ibn Sayyar al-Warraq's compendium of 9th & 10th c. recipes, "Annals of the Caliphs' Kitchens" (p.786)
1. Red-orange carrot (jazar ahmar) literally, 'red', described as juicy, tender, and delicious. Poets compare it to carnelian, rubies, flames of fire, and coral reeds.
2. Yellow carrot (jazar asfar), ticker and denser in texture than the red (Ibn al-Baytar 164)
[Ibn al-Baytar lived in the first half of the 13th c.]
3. White carrot (jazar abyad), similar to parsnips, aromatic, and deliciously sharp in taste. It is also described as having a pleasant crunch.

Carrot is bloating and slow to digest. However, it is extremely effective in stimulating coitus, especially when eaten pickled in vinegar (murabba). Prepared ike this, it can warm up the stomach, stimulate the appetite and help dispel gases (Ibn al-Baytar 164; al-Nuwayri 1176)
[al-Nuwayri lived in the late 13th to early 14th c.]

I will add that i didn't find a place where Ibn Sayyar al-Warrq's recipes mentioned the color, so i'm not sure of the dates of the poets mentioned in (1).

Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)

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