Publication Day: ‘Best of Delectable Foods and Dishes from al-Andalus and al-Maghrib,’ a 13th-century Cookbook

The English translation of the thirteenth-century cookbook Fiḍālat al-khiwān fī ṭayyibāt al- ṭaʿām wa-l-alwān by the Andalusi scholar Ibn Razīn al-Tujībī is out in translation — with introduction and glossary — by leading food scholar and translator Nawal Nasrallah:

This thirteenth-century cookbook, published in English as Best of Delectable Foods and Dishes from al-Andalus and al-Maghrib, showcases, the publisher writes, “the sophisticated cuisine that developed in the Iberian Peninsula under Muslim rule through its 475 exquisite recipes.” Al-Tujubi’s text is available here for the first time in English, based on a newly discovered manuscript.

From Brill:

To introduce readers to the wonders of cooking and foodways in al-Andalus and the Maghreb, the translated text is supplemented with an extensive introduction and glossary, illustrated throughout with 218 color miniatures and artifacts, with 24 modernized recipes to give readers a taste of the cuisine.

Ibn Razin al-Tujibi was a thirteenth-century scholar, jurist, poet, and foodie. Of his works, this manuscript is the only one known to be preserved.

The independent scholar and author Nawal Nasrallah, a regular contributor to ArabLit Quarterly, has published both books and articles on the history and culture of Arab food, including the acclaimed Delights from the Garden of Eden (Equinox 2013). Her brilliant and accessible English cookbook translations include Annals of the Caliphs’ Kitchens (Brill 2007) and Treasure Trove of Benefits and Variety at the Table (Brill 2018).

You can find the book’s complete table of contents available on the Brill website.

A few pages of the manuscript have been scanned in and published online, and a few of the recipes translated by Fernando de la Granja Santamaría, to Spanish, as part of the doctoral thesis La cocina arabigoandaluza según un manuscrito inédito.