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The cookbooks that have been preserved in Catalan from the 17th to the beginning of the 19th centuries are mainly convent recipe books, linked to ecclesiastical orders. Around the years 1731-1734, brother Francesc Roger (1706-1764/7) held the position of cook at the convent of Sant Francesc de Ciutadella. The result of this dedication is the“Art de la cuina”, preserved in a single manuscript, intended for practical use in front of the stove. This is the first known cookbook of the Islands. Despite the modesty of the codex, the work has great gastronomic interest, as it collects the oldest roots of the culinary practice of Menorca, especially that of the popular classes, adapted to simplicity and Franciscan customs. At the same time, dishes from some recipe books printed in Spanish, with a courtly orientation, are no strangers. The Art of Cooking consists of 209 recipes, organized into three large sections. The first, dedicated to meat dishes or made with meat, includes a specific section for egg preparations and closes with a recipe for white food. In the second there are the fish dishes, sauces included, with two sections, one of the most original in the book, for crustaceans and shellfish, at that time very little valued, but abundant on the Menorcan coast. There are also two turtle recipes. The last section is made up of vegetable dishes, intended for light meals and, like fish, for fasting days.
Book available in Catalan.