My Favorite Food is couscous

Assaf Shtein

One of the first written references is from an anonymous 13th-century North African cookbook, Kitāb al-tabǐkh fǐ al-Maghrib wa'l-Andalus "The cookbook of the Maghreb and Al-Andalus", with a recip for couscous that was 'known all over the world'. To this day, couscous is known as 'the North Africa national dish'. Couscous was known to the Nasrid royalty in Granada as well. And in the 13th century a Cyries historian from Allepo includes four references for couscous. These early mentions show that couscous spread rapidly, but generally that couscous was common from Tripolitania to the west, while from Cyrenaica to the east the main cuisine was Egyptian, with couscous as an occasional dish. Today, in Egypt and the Middle East, couscous is known, but in Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco and Libya couscous is a staple. It is the national dish of the Maghreb countries. Couscous reached Turkey from Syria to in the 16th century and is eaten in most of the Turkish southern provinces.

Couscous is a traditional meal of the cuisine from Trapani. In Rome Bartolomeo Scappi's culinary guide of 1570 describes a Moorish dish, succussu; in Tuscany.

One of the earliest references to couscous in France is in Brittany, in a letter dated January 12, 1699. But it made an earlier appearance in Provence, where the traveler Jean-Jacques Bouchard wrote of eating it in Toulon in 1630. Couscous was originally made from millet. Historians have different opinions as to when wheat began to replace the use of millet. The conversion seems to have occurred sometime in the 20th century, although many regions continue to use the traditional millet. Couscous seems to have a North African origin. Archaeological evidence dating back to the 10th century, consisting of kitchen utensils needed to prepare this dish, has been found in this part of the world.

In some regions couscous is made from Farina or coarsely ground barley or pearl millet. In Brazil, the traditional couscous is made from cornmeal.

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