Evolution and History of Cooking
The value of history is that it helps us to understand the present and the future. In food service, knowledge of our professional heritage helps us to see why we do things as we do, how our cooking techniques have developed and refined and how we can continue to develop and innovate in the years ahead.
• First recorded instance of inn-keeping • Generally managed by mother and father operations • Most food was from their own gardens and flocks • Meals consisted of mainly dates, figs, apricots, fish, chicken, duck, onions and red cabbage. • Cooking media was largely olive oil • Poorer inns served predominantly ‘pulses’ that is soups made from a base of lentils.
• Ancient Greeks were the next who left written and pictorial records of eating, drinking and sleeping away from home • Culinary world owes much of its knowledge to the Greeks • Almost all of the foods purchased and prepared today, as well as many types of beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic were used during middle and Late Greek times. • The oldest cookbook preserved today is that of “Apicius” written sometime between400 BC and 100 AD depending upon the historical source. • This book contains not only detailed instructions for preparing the cuisine of that day, but also rigid specifications for purchasing foodstuffs • The art and cookery then spread to the Roman chefs of that day who were both negatively as well as positively motivated to learn the art of cooking food. • The Greeks are also credited for developing the first comprehensive set of kitchen utensils and equipment • Tools like frying pans, sauce pans, colanders, Bain Marie and butcher’s knives are being used even today.
• During this time, a group of scholars were sent to Greece to study literature and arts, including culinary arts • Many of the finest Greek chefs were