Introduction

My name is Elizabeth Walsh. I am a student of Spanish and history in University College Cork. I have a huge passion for food, you could even call it an obsession. Personally, I feel it can tell us a lot about a culture. After completing a year-long Erasmus in Spain, I realised that food truly brings people together. Each culture is different but what always stands out is that food is better when it’s shared with others. People tell their stories over a meal. Spanish food is different to Irish food and I think this is reflective of our cultural difference. Spain has many traditional dishes, most famously ‘paella’, a rice dish, but there are also many famous regional dishes such as ‘pulpo’, an octopus dish in Galicia.  In Ireland our traditional dishes would mainly consist of potatoes, vegetable and meat. Down through the years there were so many different groups of people arriving in Spain, all of which would bring their own traditional cooking styles and spices. Spain is heavily influenced by different groups of people. My aim is to bring this diversity of food to English speakers who love cooking food from different cultures. Recipes are meant to be shared and enjoyed. I want people to be as passionate about Spanish food as I am. I also wanted to look into the traditional role of women in the household in terms of cooking.

I chose to pick recipes from Enciclopedia Del Hogar (Encyclopaedia of the Home) because this book was used as a guideline for women in the Franco era of Spain. I found it fascinating that women followed this as a means of providing for their husband and children. There are hundreds of recipes. I focused on the economic menus and picked dishes from these to translate. There were many menus but I choose recipes from these ones as I felt it reflected the lifestyle in Spain as people would often find good economical recipes to cook for their families.

This book provided some challenges when translating recipes. There was terminology which was difficult to translate perfectly into English. The book does however provide a list of key terms with their meanings which was very useful. I struggled with translating the term ‘asado’ because in English this translates directly into roasting but it may also refer to barbequing or chargrilling.  After consulting the list of terms I found that it means grilled or barbequed in the oven which I felt sufficiently meant roasting for an English speaker. Ingredients also proved challenging. I thought that ‘laurel’ in Spanish was the same in English but unfortunately it means two different things. Spanish laurel would be a bay leaf to an English speaker, whereas the English speaker’s laurel is not a leaf which would be used in cooking.  Spanish recipes are also written in a different format. They are in paragraphs, therefore I had to adjust these to short points which an English speaker would be more used to seeing.