By Felipe Fernández-Armesto
In Near 1000 Tables, acclaimed nutrients historian Felipe Fernández-Armesto tells the interesting tale of nutrients as cultural in addition to culinary background -- a window at the heritage of mankind.
during this "appetizingly provocative" (Los Angeles Times) booklet, he publications readers during the 8 nice revolutions on this planet background of nutrients: the origins of cooking, which set humankind on a direction except different species; the ritualization of consuming, which introduced magic and which means into people's dating with what they ate; the inception of herding and the discovery of agriculture, maybe the 2 maximum revolutions of all; the increase of inequality, which ended in the advance of haute delicacies; the long-range alternate in nutrients which, essentially by myself, broke down cultural obstacles; the ecological exchanges, which revolutionized the worldwide distribution of crops and cattle; and, ultimately, the industrialization and globalization of industrially produced nutrition.
From prehistoric snail "herding" to Roman banquets to important Macs to genetically changed tomatoes, Near one thousand Tables is a full-course meal of awesome narrative, fabulous perception, and engaging explorations that might fulfill the hungriest of readers.
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Additional info for Near a Thousand Tables: A History of Food
The shish kebab-the universal gifi of Central Asian cuisine-is more likely to have been cooked in antiquity on a dagger. THE INVENTION OF COOKING At their most solemn feasts, however, most peoples tend to eat their most traditional foods and among the steppeland nomads this means reverting to cooking in skins and stomachs and guts. Sharon Hudgins is the author of the most vivid modern accounts of steppeland dining experiences. She was served with a sheep's head in its skin, wool intact, at a Buriat banquet in 1994.
It has unmistakable connotations of savagery, especially if the meat is only given rudimentary butchering before the roasting. An Italian visitor to the pampa in 1910was struck by thed'utterlyprimitive" way the gauchos cooked their meat in the hide "so that it conserves its bloody juices" and ate it with razors while seated on tree trunks. The early cook's solution was the invention of the hot-stone griddle: using fire to heat stones, and hot stones to cook food on. This is particularly effective for foods that come naturally wrapped by coatings which retain moisture while being permeated by heat-mollusks by their shells, for instance, or some kinds of fruits or wild grains by thick or densely fibrous husks.
C. This technical advance made the modern batterie de cuisine essentially complete. When cooks had earthenware pots, which were resistant to fire and impenetrable by water, they could add frying to the repertoire of roasting, boiling and grilling. We like to congratulate ourselves on the accelerating pace of modern technological change; but since the invention of earthenware, nothing else we have devised to cook with has had such an enriching effect, and none, until the microwave, opened up the possibility of any genuinely new method of cooking.
Near a Thousand Tables: A History of Food by Felipe Fernández-Armesto