You’re probably wondering what “A Hastiness of Cooks” means. Read the following definition and you’ll see why the phrase inspired me in writing my new book, “A Hastiness of Cooks“: A word game, popular in the great households of late medieval England, had at its heart the creation of collective nouns. In the lists of … More “A Hastiness of Cooks”: A How-to Handbook for Lovers of Historic Cooking and Cookbooks
A recipe analyzed in my upcoming book, A Hastiness of Cooks.
Marco Polo returned to Italy from his Chinese travels in 1296. The myth, legend, what have you, credits him with introducing pasta into Italy’s culinary repertoire. But Marco Polo did NOT bring pasta to Italy. And 73-year-old Italian author Oretta Zanini de Vita wants you to know that, immediately, upfront and center. Zanini de Vita … More No Thanks to Marco Polo: An Encyclopedia of Italy’s Pasta Shapes
Our sense of the ancientness of the pomegranate comes not just from words, but also from the earth. Words do provide clues to the incredible journey of the pomegranate, such as this little ditty inscribed in Egyptian hieroglyphics — said to be translated by Ezra Pound and Noel Stock, from an Italian rendition by Boris … More The Archaeology of the Pomegranate
Food in Medieval England: Diet and Nutrition (Medieval History and Archaeology), by C. M. Woolgar, Dale Serjeantson, and Tony Waldron (paperback, 2009) In the unending quest to find models for culinary historiography, here’s another fairly up-to-date addition to the growing list: This book draws on the latest research across different disciplines to present the most … More Food in Medieval England: Diet and Nutrition
According to Science Daily, Freshwater fish are an important part of the diet of many peoples around the world, but it has been unclear when fish became an important part of the year-round diet for early humans. A new study by an international team of researchers, including Erik Trinkaus, Ph.D., professor of anthropology in Arts … More Fish in the Diets of Early Modern Humans in China 40,000 Years Ago — Direct Evidence
(I’m dedicating this post to my mother, Barbara A. Purdy, a great archaeologist, whose passion for “old stuff” rubbed off on me, I guess.) A brief foray into the world of Sicilian mummies proved once more that food writers can learn a lot from silent “interviewees.” The trick lies, of course, in understanding unspoken language … More Bioarchaeology and Paleopathology in Culinary History