The 7 Portes Collection of Historic Recipe Books of Catalan Cuisine emerged from an initiative by the Solé Parellada family to disseminate the history of cuisine in Catalonia, through the study and publication of the most important recipes. To implement this proposal and ensure the project’s rigour, a scientific committee was formed in 2013 to study and select the cookbooks. The committee members are researchers A. Riera (UB), J. Santanach (UB), A. Massanes (Fundació Alicia), J. M. Cela (BSC-UPC), J. Contreras (UB) and F. Solé Parellada (UPC). The committee selects which works to publish, and has established a research plan that includes analysis of the books; their economic, food and historical context; and the objectives and method for analysing the evolution of seven centuries of Catalan cuisine.
Books in the collection
Llibre de Sent Soví
The oldest medieval recipe book
The Llibre de Sent Soví (The book of Sent Soví), dating from the fourteenth century, is the oldest recipe book that has been preserved in the Catalan language and the first book of its kind in Spain. The recipes in this book are a synthesis of Catalan haute cuisine of the era, and reveal the roots of Catalan cuisine’s history. To make it easier to access the text, the medieval version is provided alongside an adaptation to modern Catalan, and three chapters that describe this moment in history, culture and cuisine.
This volume is the first in the 7 Portes Collection of Historic Recipe Books of Catalan Cuisine, and the start of a long journey from the oldest cookbooks to those of the later part of the twentieth century, designed to illustrate the evolution, transformations and continuity of Catalan cuisine.
Llibre d’aparellar de menjar
A book with a surprising history
The Llibre d’aparellar de menjar (The book of food preparation) has never been released before: it is an unpublished work that can now be accessed by the general public.
The texts were compiled in approximately the mid-fourteenth century or slightly later. This volume contains a transcription of the original recipes and, to make them easier to understand, a version in modern Catalan. The text includes three detailed introductory chapters that describe the cultural and political context in which the work was written, as well as the cuisine and food of the time, and an in-depth study of the book itself that examines the ingredients, sauces and procedures and was undertaken by the Fundació Alícia. The book also contains graphics that illustrate the text and make it easier to follow.
Llibre de totes maneres de potatges
A manuscript from the end of the fourteenth century and the start of the fifteenth
The recipe book illustrates the consolidation of medieval Catalan cuisine, based on a rich, harmonious gastronomic tradition.
It is a professional book that organises recipes by areas, dedicates chapters on how to handle ingredients, suggests improvements in procedures, and advises on hygiene standards and how to improve tastes and textures.
The reproduction of the original text and the modern Catalan version is accompanied by an analysis of the culinary practices of the period, and on the culinary architecture of the set of recipes.