[Sca-cooks] brown rice
samia at idlelion.net
Sun Jul 8 17:41:18 PDT 2012
Here is what I have about rice in period. It's a tricky one to research.
The citation precedes the notes, in the last one there are three notes
from the same source.
------Lewicki T, & Johnson M. /West African Food in the Middle Ages:
According to Arabic Sources/. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1974.
p 33 Rice was both collected from wild species and cultivated. /Oryza
Barthii/ and /oryza breviligulata/ grow wild. /Oryza glaberrima/ was
cultivated; and /oryza sativa/ was introduced late in period for
------Miller, H. D. "The Pleasures of Consumption: The Birth of Medieval
Islamic Cuisine." in /Food: the History of Taste/. Edited by Paul H.
Freedman. California Studies in Food and Culture ed. University of
California Press, 2007. 135-162.
p 150 During the first centuries of Islam, rice was most often served as
an accompaniment to the main dish. With the rise of the Safavid and
Mughal empires, however, elaborate and carefully prepared pilafs became
the much celebrated centerpiece of the meal.
In thirteenth century Iraq, at least in the kitchen of al-Baghdadi, rice
is simply washed and almost carelessly thrown into the pot, with only a
brief caution to guard against it becoming "hard". So, although rice was
common in the diets of medieval Muslims, and was grown throughout the
Muslim world, from India to Spain, it was rarely accorded the exaltedly
status it would later have in, say, Safavid Persia. Instead, it was
treated as a staple to be mixed in the pot with spinach and meat, rather
than as a saffroned dish served alone as the centerpiece of a meal.
------Nesbitt, Mark, St John Simpson, and Ingvar Svanberg. "History of
Rice in Western and Central Asia." in /Rice: Origin, Antiquity and
History/. Edited by S.D. Sharma. Enfield, NH: Science Publishers, 2010.
p 315 The earliest of these cookbooks was compiled by ibn Sayyar
al-Warraq in about the 940s or 950s and details 615 recipes drawn from
over twenty cookbooks often written by or for caliphs, princes,
physicians and leading political and literary figures. A small number of
these recipes involved rice. This was typically husked white rice (aruzz
abyad maqshur), which is often referred to as being washed, sometimes
several times, "until it is clean." Rice-bread (khubz al-aruzz) is
described by al-Warraq as "less bloating than wheat bread." Among the
recipes for alcohol-free beer (fuqqa') is one where rice was substituted
for bread: the type of rice is described as ja'fari (literally "river")
which may refer to its origin in the marshes of southern Iraq.
. Nasrallah (2007:98, 109, 110, n. 6, 117-118, 238, 245, 258-259,
261-268, 270- 271, 296, 308, 362, 373-374, 378, 384-386, 393, 408-409,
P 332 The written sources of [the Early Islamic and Later Medieval]
period suggest that there was somewhat more widespread rice cultivation
than previously, and that this was undertaken in humid and/or
well-watered areas of north-west Afghanistan, Iran (Dailaman, Gilan,
Tabaristan, Fars, Khuzistan provinces), Azerbaijan, lowland Iraq,
southern Turkey (Cilicia), north-east Syria (the Nusaybin area),
Palestine (the Jordan valley), Egypt (Nile valley, Faiyum), Yemen (the
Tihama) and al-Andalus. 
. Le Strange (1905:234), Canard (1959), Ahsan (1979:90-92, 140-142),
Watson (1983:17-19), Nasrallah (2007:385), Lagardere (1996).
p 336 Rice of unknown origin was available in Trebizond (Trabzon) in
northern Anatolia in 1292; it might well be, as suggested by Venzke that
rice cultivation did not reach Anatolia until the Turkish conquests of
the 11th century AD. By the 14th century rice cultivation was well
established in the Ottoman Empire. 
. Venzke (1987-92), Beldiceanu and Beldiceanu-Steinherr (1978).
More information about the Sca-cooks