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Food is culture

Food is culture

Food is culture:

Food and cooking are essential elements of our culture.  Cuisine is part of our cultural heritage.  Through gastronomy we can get to know the customs of a country and its people.  As Josep Pla, Catalan journalist and writer, said:  “Cooking is the landscape put in the pan”.

Food is culture.  Noting the dietary patterns at a certain time, we know a territory, a landscape, a people, a technology, some institutions, some ideas, some external influences (Toni Massanés, director of ALICIA Foundation – Food and Science).

Cooking helps to discover the main aspects of a particular culture:

  • Its history:  since prehistoric times, Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans visited and settle in the Catalan coast leaving their mark and making the foundations of what today is known as the Mediterranean Diet, based on consumption of cereals, olive oil and wine. In the Middle Ages, the arabs brought to our country: rice, citrus, eggplant and sugar.  Centuries later, in 1492, the discovery of America opened another very interesting stage for food with the addition of new products that today are fully integrated in our culinary heritage: potatoes, tomatoes, cocoa, cinnamon …
  • Cooking also reflects different ways of thinking prevailing at a particular time: in the Middle Ages meat was identified as a source of power and energy.  In the XVII and XVIII, fats were very valuable and expensive because of short supply. Today fats are considered an enemy of health because some of they produce cholesterol and diabetes.  Currently, food not only responds to a biological need of energy, but it is also analyzed as a source of health.
  • Products used and dishes elaborated and its evolution and the reasons behind this evolution.  Catalonia is a land of welcome, the influence of the different people who has come to this territory its reflected in the cuisine.  Catalan cuisine is also a reflection of its climate and of its privileged location, with dishes that show balance between sea and mountains
  • Noting how food is organized:  ways of eating, the schedules, differences between the everyday food and festive food, it is possible to discover social aspects of a territory.

In Cocina en…(Barcelona, Spain) we believe that food is culture, and we join the objective of incorporating to our tourist space a food offer that reflects the culture and landscape of the country.  And, what is everyday more important, Cocina en… supports the relation between food, cooking and the sustainable land management, defense of the landscape and rural development.

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