Arab gastronomy in Spanish food
A good rice pudding with cinnamon sprinkled on top.: Arab gastronomy in Spanish food
Rice, saffron, sugar, citrus … did you know that all these products were introduced by the Arabs into our gastronomy?
In another article on this blog we are going to show you recipes and Arabic gastronomy that has been introduced into Spanish gastronomy, but in this section we are going to introduce you to foods and some meals that we consume in our day to day and with which we prepare numerous recipes that they were introduced by the Arabs when they were in what is now Spain.
Many sweets are made with cinnamon, almonds or sugar. The use of these products comes from the time of al-Andalus. Nougat and marzipan, fritters, almojábanas (fried cheese cakes) or maimon cakes have their origin in the time of the Islamic Empire.
The Arabs improved the cultivation of cereals from before the Islamic Empire, but they also introduced new cereals such as black, red and Tunisian wheat.
One of the most important additions was that of sugar cane . Before, honey was used to sweeten dishes. And so new recipes and new ways of preserving food emerged, such as jam.
They also introduced the method of drying fruits, which is used for figs, plums, apricots and raisins (the latter could have been saved). They introduced the use of fruits in various recipes that continue to this day in our gastronomic culture, such as juices .
And finally, mention as not the use of spices . Before the arrival of the Arabs, it can be said that the food was a bit bland, since little spices were used to flavor the dishes. Note that even today Spanish gastronomy is not much about spices, it prefers the flavors of food than the mixture of spices that mask the flavor. Saffron, cinnamon, sesame, anise, ginger and nutmeg were some of the spices introduced by the Arabs during their passage through the Iberian Peninsula.