The Oldest Cuisine in the World

The Oldest Cuisine in the World : Cooking in Mesopotamia

By (author) Jean Bottero , Translated by Teresa Lavender Fagan

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In this intriguing blend of the commonplace and the ancient, Jean Bottero presents the first extensive look at the delectable secrets of Mesopotamia. Bottero's broad perspective takes us inside the religious rites, everyday rituals, attitudes and taboos, and even the detailed preparation techniques involving food and drink in Mesopotamian high culture during the second and third millenniums BCE, as the Mesopotamians recorded them. Offering everything from translated recipes for pigeon and gazelle stews to the contents of medicinal teas and broths and the origins of ingredients native to the region, this book reveals the cuisine of one of history's most fascinating societies. Links to the modern world, along with incredible re-creations of a rich, ancient culture through its cuisine, make Bottero's guide an entertaining and mesmerizing read.

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  • Hardback | 152 pages
  • 157.48 x 220.98 x 17.78mm | 340.19g
  • 04 May 2004
  • The University of Chicago Press
  • University of Chicago Press
  • Chicago, IL
  • English
  • 2 line drawings
  • 0226067351
  • 9780226067353
  • 810,951

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Author Information

Jean Bottero (1914-2007) was director emeritus of L'Ecole pratique des hautes etudes in Paris. He is the author of many books, several of which have been translated and published by the University of Chicago Press. Teresa Lavender Fagan has translated numerous books for the University of Chicago Press.

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Review quote

"An enticing new book of Ancient Mesopotamian recipes." (The Times) "Truly a wonderful read." (History Today)"

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Flap copy

In this intriguing blend of the commonplace and the ancient, Jean Bottero presents the first extensive look at the delectable secrets of Mesopotamia. Bottero's broad perspective takes us inside the religious rites, everyday rituals, attitudes and taboos, and even the detailed preparation techniques involving food and drink in Mesopotamian high culture during the second and third millenniums BCE, as the Mesopotamians recorded them. Offering everything from translated recipes for pigeon and gazelle stews, the contents of medicinal teas and broths, and the origins of ingredients native to the region, this book reveals the cuisine of one of history's most fascinating societies. As Bottero concludes, although the ingredients may have differed, food was prepared in a manner astoundingly similar to how we do it today. Such links to the modern world, along with incredible recreations of a rich, ancient culture through its cuisine, make Bottero's guide an entertaining and mesmerizing read."

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