The Barbarians’ Cookbook

Eric C. Rath

in Food and Fantasy in Early Modern Japan

Published by University of California Press

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780520262270
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520947658 | DOI:
The Barbarians’ Cookbook

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The Southern Barbarians' Cookbook is a culinary text that speaks to important changes in Japan's foodways in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Written in the seventeenth century, if not earlier, the book is a collection of Portuguese and Spanish recipes, making it unique among premodern culinary writings in Japan. Accordingly, it offers insight into historical developments outside of cooking and is the missing link in the transition from culinary texts to culinary books. The Barbarians' Cookbook also reveals broader developments in foodways in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. It describes the introduction of new food ingredients, cooking techniques, and dishes that would reshape the Japanese cuisine. The book may not have been widely circulated until modern times, but it offers a chance to examine the links and the gaps between the elite medieval culinary world and the developing popular trends in the Edo period in terms of ingredients (food) and thinking about food (fantasy).

Keywords: Southern Barbarians' Cookbook; Japanese cuisine; foodways; recipes; cooking; culinary books; food ingredients; Edo period; fantasy; Japan

Chapter.  11253 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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