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A recipe is a set of instructions that describes how to prepare or make something, especially a
dish Dish, dishes or DISH may refer to: Culinary * Dish (food), something prepared to be eaten * Dishware, plates and bowls for eating, cutting boards, silverware Communications * Dish antenna a type of antenna * Dish Network, a satellite television ...
of prepared food.


History


Early examples

The earliest known written recipes date to 1730 BC and were recorded on
cuneiform Cuneiform is a Logogram, logo-Syllabary, syllabic writing system, script that was used to write several languages of the Ancient Near East. The script was in active use from the early Bronze Age until the beginning of the Common Era. It is nam ...

cuneiform
tablets found in Mesopotamia. Other early written recipes date from approximately 1600 BC and come from an
AkkadianAkkadian or Accadian may refer to: * The Akkadian language Akkadian ( ''akkadû'', ''ak-ka-du-u2''; logogram: ''URIKI'')John Huehnergard & Christopher Woods, "Akkadian and Eblaite", ''The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the World's Ancient Languages' ...

Akkadian
tablet from southern
Babylonia Babylonia () was an and based in central-southern which was part of Ancient Persia (present-day and ). A small -ruled state emerged in 1894 BCE, which contained the minor administrative town of . It was merely a small provincial town dur ...
. There are also works in
ancient Egypt Ancient Egypt was a civilization  A civilization (or civilisation) is a that is characterized by , , a form of government, and systems of communication (such as ). Civilizations are intimately associated with additional char ...

ancient Egypt
ian
hieroglyph A hieroglyph (Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximat ...
s depicting the preparation of food. Many ancient Greek recipes are known.
MithaecusMithaecus (Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the following periods: Mycenaea ...
's cookbook was an early one, but most of it has been lost;
Athenaeus Athenaeus of Naucratis Naucratis or Naukratis ( grc-gre, Ναύκρατις, "Naval Command"; Egyptian Egyptian describes something of, from, or related to Egypt. Egyptian or Egyptians may refer to: Nations and ethnic groups * Egyptians, a n ...
quotes one short recipe in his ''
Deipnosophistae The ''Deipnosophistae'' is an early 3rd-century AD ancient Greek, Greek work ( grc, Δειπνοσοφισταί, ''Deipnosophistaí'', lit. "The Dinner Sophists/Philosophers/Experts") by the Hellenistic period, Greek author Athenaeus of Na ...
''.
Athenaeus Athenaeus of Naucratis Naucratis or Naukratis ( grc-gre, Ναύκρατις, "Naval Command"; Egyptian Egyptian describes something of, from, or related to Egypt. Egyptian or Egyptians may refer to: Nations and ethnic groups * Egyptians, a n ...
mentions many other cookbooks, all of them lost.
Andrew Dalby Andrew Dalby, (born 1947 in Liverpool Liverpool is a City status in the United Kingdom, city and metropolitan borough in Merseyside, England. Its population in 2019 was approximately , making it the List of English districts by populat ...

Andrew Dalby
, ''Food in the Ancient World from A to Z'', 2003. p. 97-98.
Roman recipes are known starting in the 2nd century BCE with
Cato the Elder Marcus Porcius Cato (; 234–149 BC), also known as Cato the Censor ( la, Censorius), the Elder and the Wise, was a Roman soldier, senator The Curia Julia in the Roman Forum ">Roman_Forum.html" ;"title="Curia Julia in the Roman Forum">Curia ...
's '' De Agri Cultura''. Many authors of this period described eastern Mediterranean cooking in Greek and in Latin. Some
Punic The Punic people or Western Phoenicians, were a group of Semitic people, Semitic peoples in the Western Mediterranean who traced their origins to the Phoenicians of the coasts of Western Asia. In modern scholarship, the term 'Punic' – the Lati ...
recipes are known in Greek and Latin translation. The large collection of recipes ''De re coquinaria'', conventionally titled ''
Apicius ''Apicius'', also known as ''De re culinaria'' or ''De re coquinaria'' (''On the Subject of Cooking'') is a collection of Roman Roman or Romans usually refers to: *Rome, the capital city of Italy *Ancient Rome, Roman civilization from 8th ce ...

Apicius
'', appeared in the 4th or 5th century and is the only complete surviving cookbook from the classical world. It lists the courses served in a meal as Gustatio (appetizer), Primae Mensae (main course) and Secundae Mensae (dessert). Each recipe begins with the Latin command "Take...," "Recipe...." Arabic recipes are documented starting in the 10th century; see al-Warraq and al-Baghdadi. The earliest recipe in
Persian Persian may refer to: * People and things from Iran, historically called ''Persia'' in the English language ** Persians, Persian people, the majority ethnic group in Iran, not to be conflated with the Iranian peoples ** Persian language, an Iranian ...
dates from the 14th century. Several recipes have survived from the time of
Safavid Safavid Iran or Safavid Persia (), also referred to as the Safavid Empire, '. was one of the greatest Iranian peoples, Iranian empires after the 7th-century Muslim conquest of Persia, ruled from 1501 to 1736 by the Safavid dynasty. It is often ...

Safavid
s, including ''Karnameh'' (1521) by Mohammad Ali Bavarchi, which includes the cooking instruction of more than 130 different dishes and pastries, and ''Madat-ol-Hayat'' (1597) by Nurollah Ashpaz. Recipe books from the
Qajar era Qajar Iran (), also referred to as Qajar Persia, the Qajar Empire, '. officially the Sublime State of Persia ( fa, دولت علیّه ایران ') and also known then as the Guarded Domains of Persia ( fa, ممالک محروسه ایران ' ...
are numerous, the most notable being ''Khorak-ha-ye Irani'' by prince Nader Mirza. King Richard II of England commissioned a recipe book called ''
Forme of Cury ''The Forme of Cury'' (''The Method of Cooking'', from Middle French Middle French (french: moyen français) is a historical division of the French language that covers the period from the 14th to the 16th century. It is a period of transition ...
'' in 1390, and around the same time, another book was published entitled '' Curye on Inglish'', "cury" meaning cooking. Both books give an impression of how food for the noble classes was prepared and served in England at that time. The luxurious taste of the
aristocracy Aristocracy ( grc-gre, ἀριστοκρατία , from 'excellent', and , 'rule') is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Ar ...
in the
Early Modern Period The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's past. It is understood through archaeology, anthropology, genetics, and linguistics, and since the History of writing, adve ...
brought with it the start of what can be called the modern recipe book. By the 15th century, numerous manuscripts were appearing detailing the recipes of the day. Many of these manuscripts give very good information and record the re-discovery of many herbs and spices including
coriander Coriander (;
coriander
, parsley, basil and
rosemary ''Salvia rosmarinus'', commonly known as rosemary, is a shrub with fragrant, evergreen, needle-like leaves and white, pink, purple, or blue flowers, native plant, native to the Mediterranean Region, Mediterranean region. Until 2017, it was known ...

rosemary
, many of which had been brought back from the
Crusades The Crusades were a series of religious wars initiated, supported, and sometimes directed by the Latin Church in the medieval period. The term refers especially to the Eastern Mediterranean campaigns in the period between 1095 and 1271 that h ...

Crusades
. Nimmatnama-i Nasiruddin-Shahi 283.jpg, A page from the '' Nimatnama-i-Nasiruddin-Shahi'', book of delicacies and recipes. It documents the fine art of making
kheer Kheer (kheeri, payesh, payox, payasam or phirni) is a sweet dish and a type of wet pudding popular in the Indian subcontinent, usually made by boiling milk, sugar or jaggery, and rice, although rice is sometimes substituted with one of the foll ...

kheer
. Sweets 1.jpg,
Medieval India Medieval India refers to a long period of the history of the Indian subcontinent between the "ancient period" and "modern period". It is usually regarded as running between the breakup of the Gupta Empire in the 6th century AD and the start o ...
n Manuscript (''circa'' 16th century) showing
samosa A samosa () is a fried or baked pastry Pastry is a dough of flour Kinako Flour is a powder A powder is a dry, bulk solid Solid is one of the four fundamental states of matter (the others being liquid, gas and plasma ...

samosa
s being served.


Modern recipes and cooking advice

With the advent of the
printing press A printing press is a mechanical device for applying pressure to an ink Ink is a gel, sol, or solution Image:SaltInWaterSolutionLiquid.jpg, Making a saline water solution by dissolving Salt, table salt (sodium chloride, NaCl) in water ...
in the 16th and 17th centuries, numerous books were written on how to manage households and prepare food. In Holland and England competition grew between the noble families as to who could prepare the most lavish banquet. By the 1660s, cookery had progressed to an art form and good cooks were in demand. Many of them published their own books detailing their recipes in competition with their rivals. Many of these books have been translated and are available online. By the 19th century, the Victorian preoccupation for domestic respectability brought about the emergence of cookery writing in its modern form. Although eclipsed in fame and regard by
Isabella Beeton Isabella Mary Beeton (' Mayson; 14 March 1836 – 6 February 1865), known as Mrs Beeton, was an English journalist, editor and writer. Her name is particularly associated with her first book, the 1861 work ''Mrs Beeton's Book of Household ...

Isabella Beeton
, the first modern cookery writer and compiler of recipes for the home was
Eliza Acton Eliza Acton (17 April 1799 – 13 February 1859) was an English food writer and poet who produced one of Britain's first cookery books aimed at the domestic reader, ''Modern Cookery for Private Families''. The book introduced the now-unive ...
. Her pioneering cookbook, ''Modern Cookery for Private Families'' published in 1845, was aimed at the domestic reader rather than the professional cook or chef. This was immensely influential, establishing the format for modern writing about cookery. It introduced the now-universal practice of listing the ingredients and suggested cooking times with each recipe. It included the first recipe for
Brussels sprouts The brussels sprout is a member of the Gemmifera Group A group is a number A number is a mathematical object used to counting, count, measurement, measure, and nominal number, label. The original examples are the natural numbers 1, 2, 3, ...
. Contemporary chef
Delia Smith Delia Ann Smith (born 18 June 1941) is an English cook and television presenter, known for teaching basic cookery skills in a no-nonsense style. One of the best known celebrity chefs in British popular culture, Smith has influenced viewers ...
called Acton "the best writer of recipes in the English language." ''Modern Cookery'' long survived Acton, remaining in print until 1914 and available more recently in facsimile. Acton's work was an important influence on Isabella Beeton, who published ''
Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management The book best known as ''Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management'', also published as ''Mrs Beeton's Cookery Book'', is an extensive guide to running a household in Victorian Britain, edited by Isabella Beeton and first published as a book i ...
'' in 24 monthly parts between 1857 and 1861. This was a guide to running a
Victorian Victorian or Victorians may refer to: 19th century * Victorian era, British history during Queen Victoria's 19th-century reign ** Victorian architecture ** Victorian house ** Victorian decorative arts ** Victorian fashion ** Victorian literature ...
household, with advice on fashion,
child care Child care, otherwise known as day care, is the care and supervision of a child or multiple children at a time, whose ages range from two weeks to eighteen years. Child care is a broad topic that covers a wide spectrum of professionals, institut ...
,
animal husbandry Animal husbandry is the branch of agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentary Image:Family watching television 1958.jpg, Ex ...
,
poison In biology, poisons are Chemical substance, substances that can cause death, injury or harm to organs, Tissue (biology), tissues, Cell (biology), cells, and DNA usually by chemical reactions or other activity (chemistry), activity on the molecul ...

poison
s, the management of
servants A domestic worker is a person who works within the scope of a residence. The term "domestic service" applies to the equivalent occupational category. In traditional English contexts, such a person was said to be "in service". Domestic workers per ...
, science, religion, and industrialism. Of the 1,112 pages, over 900 contained recipes. Most were illustrated with coloured engravings. It is said that many of the recipes were plagiarised from earlier writers such as Acton, but the Beetons never claimed that the book's contents were original. It was intended as a reliable guide for the aspirant middle classes. The American cook
Fannie Farmer Fannie Merritt Farmer (23 March 1857 – 16 January 1915) was an American culinary expert whose '' Boston Cooking-School Cook Book'' became a widely used culinary text. Education Fannie Farmer was born on 23 March 1857 in Boston Boston (, ), ...
(1857–1915) published in 1896 her famous work ''The Boston Cooking School Cookbook'' which contained some 1,849 recipes.


Components

Modern culinary recipes normally consist of several components * The name of the recipe (Origins/History of the dish) * Yield: The number of servings that the dish provides. * List all ingredients in the order of its use. Describe it in step by step instructions. * Listing ingredients by the quantity (Write out abbreviations. Ounces instead of oz). * How much time does it take to prepare the dish, plus cooking time for the dish. * Necessary equipment used for the dish. * Cooking procedures. Temperature and bake time if necessary. * Serving procedures (Served while warm/cold). * Review of the dish (Would you recommend this dish to a friend?). * Photograph of the dish (Optional). * Nutritional Value: Helps for dietary restrictions. Includes number of calories or grams per serving. Earlier recipes often included much less information, serving more as a reminder of ingredients and proportions for someone who already knew how to prepare the dish. Recipe writers sometimes also list variations of a traditional dish, to give different tastes of the same recipes.


Internet and television recipes

By the mid 20th century, there were thousands of cookery and recipe books available. The next revolution came with the introduction of the TV cooks. The first TV cook in the world was
Philip Harben Philip Hubert Kendal Jerrold Harben (17 October 1906 – 27 April 1970) was an English cook, recognised as the first TV celebrity chef. Biography Harben was born in Fulham, London, and was educated at Highgate School. His mother, Mary Jerrold, ...
with a show on the BBC called ''Cookery'' which premiered in June 1946. A few months later ''I Love to Eat'' presented by
James Beard James Andrews Beard (May 5, 1903 – January 23, 1985) was an American chef, cookbook author, teacher and television personality. He pioneered television cooking shows, taught at The James Beard Cooking School in New York City New Yo ...

James Beard
became the first such program in the . TV cookery programs brought recipes to a new audience. In the early days, recipes were available by post from the BBC; later with the introduction of
CEEFAX Ceefax (, punning on "seeing facts") was the world's first teletext Teletext, or broadcast teletext, is a videotex File:Minitel1.jpg, Minitel was perhaps the most successful videotex service worldwide, using this terminal, circa 1982. Vi ...
text on screen, they became available on television. The first Internet
Usenet newsgroup A Usenet newsgroup is a repository usually within the Usenet Usenet () is a worldwide distributed discussion system available on computers. It was developed from the general-purpose Unix-to-Unix Copy (UUCP) dial-up Dial-up Internet access ...
dedicated to cooking was ''net.cooks'' created in 1982, later becoming '' ews://rec.food.cooking rec.food.cooking'. It served as a forum to share recipes text files and cooking techniques. In the early 21st century, there has been a renewed focus on cooking at home due to the
late-2000s recession The Great Recession was a period of marked general decline (recession In economics Economics () is the social science that studies how people interact with value; in particular, the Production (economics), production, distribution (e ...
. Television networks such as the
Food Network Food Network is an American basic cable channel owned by Television Food Network, G.P., a joint venture and general partnership between Discovery, Inc. (which holds a 69% ownership stake of the network) and Nexstar Media Group (which owns the re ...

Food Network
and magazines are still a major source of recipe information, with international cooks and chefs such as
Jamie Oliver Jamie Trevor Oliver (born 27 May 1975) is a British chef and restaurateur. He is known for his approachable cuisine, which has led him to front numerous television shows and open many restaurants. Born and raised in Clavering, Essex, he was e ...

Jamie Oliver
,
Gordon Ramsay Gordon James Ramsay (; born 8 November 1966) is a British chef, restaurateur, television personality, and writer. Born in Johnstone, Scotland, and raised in Stratford-upon-Avon, England, he founded his global restaurant group, List of restau ...

Gordon Ramsay
,
Nigella Lawson Nigella Lucy Lawson (born 6 January 1960) is an English food writer and television cook. She is the daughter of Nigel Lawson, Lord Lawson of Blaby, a former Conservative Conservatism is an aesthetic Aesthetics, or esthetics (), is ...
and
Rachael Ray Rachael Domenica Ray (born August 25, 1968) is an American celebrity cook, television personality, businesswoman, and author. She hosts the syndicated Syndication may refer to: * Broadcast syndication, where individual stations buy programs ...

Rachael Ray
having prime-time shows and backing them up with Internet websites giving the details of all their recipes. These were joined by reality TV shows such as
Top Chef ''Top Chef'' is an American reality competition Reality television is a genre of television programming that documents purportedly unscripted real-life situations, often starring unknown individuals rather than professional actors. Reality t ...
or
Iron Chef was a Japanese television cooking show produced by Fuji Television. The series, which premiered on October 10, 1993, was a stylized cook-off featuring guest chefs challenging one of the show's resident "Iron Chefs" in a timed cooking battle ...
, and many Internet sites offering free recipes, but cookery books remain as popular as ever.


Recipe design tools

Molecular gastronomy of juices and other liquids is a technique of molecular gastronomy. Molecular gastronomy is the Science, scientific approach of nutrition from the perspective of physics and chemistry. The physical properties: force, Vector (mathematics and phys ...
provides
chef A chef is a trained professional cook and tradesman A tradesman, skilled tradesman, or tradie refers to a skilled worker who specializes in a particular occupation that requires work experience, on-the-job training, and often formal v ...

chef
s with cooking techniques and ingredients, but this discipline also provides new theories and methods which aid recipe design. These methods are used by
chef A chef is a trained professional cook and tradesman A tradesman, skilled tradesman, or tradie refers to a skilled worker who specializes in a particular occupation that requires work experience, on-the-job training, and often formal v ...

chef
s,
foodie A foodie is a person who has an ardent or refined interest in food Food is any substance consumed to provide Nutrient, nutritional support for an organism. Food is usually of plant, animal or Fungus, fungal origin, and contains essential n ...
s, home cooks and even worldwide to improve or design recipes.


See also

*
Cookbook A cookbook or cookery book is a kitchen reference containing recipe A recipe is a set of instructions that describes how to prepare or make something, especially a dish Dish, dishes or DISH may refer to: Culinary * Dish (food), something p ...

Cookbook
*
Course (food) In , a course is a specific set of items that are served together during a , all at the same time. A course may include multiple or only one, and often includes items with some variety of s. For instance, a served with would be considered a si ...
*
Culinary art Culinary arts, in which ''culinary Culinary arts, in which ''culinary Culinary arts, in which '' culinary'' means "related to cooking Cooking or cookery is the art, science, and craft of using heat to Outline of food preparation, prepare ...
*
hRecipe hRecipe is a draft microformat for publishing details of recipes A recipe is a set of instructions that describes how to prepare or make something, especially a dish of prepared food. History Early examples The earliest known written recipe ...
- a
microformat Microformats (μF) are a set of defined HTML classes HTML attributes are special words used inside the opening tag to control the element's behaviour. HTML attributes are a modifier of an ''HTML element, HTML element type''. An attribute eith ...
for marking-up recipes in web pages *
List of desserts A dessert Dessert () is a course (food), course that concludes a meal. The course consists of sweet foods, such as confections, and possibly a beverage such as dessert wine and liqueur. In some parts of the world, such as much of central and ...
*
List of foods This is a categorically-organized list of foods. Food Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for an organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανισμός, ''organismos'') is any ind ...
* Rhyming recipe


References

* * {{Authority control Cooking Folklore Knowledge sharing Learning