Food Cultures of the World Encyclopedia [4 volumes]

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More About This Textbook


From babka to baklava to the groundnut stew of Ghana, food culture can tell us where we've been—and maybe even where we're going. Filled with succinct, yet highly informative entries, the four-volume Food Cultures of the World Encyclopedia covers all of the planet's nation-states, as well as various tribes and marginalized peoples. Thus, in addition to coverage on countries as disparate as France, Ethiopia, and Tibet, there are also entries on Roma Gypsies, the Maori of New Zealand, and the Saami of northern Europe. There is even a section on food in outer space, detailing how and what astronauts eat and how they prepare for space travel as far as diet and nutrition are concerned.

Each entry offers information about foodstuffs, meals, cooking methods, recipes, eating out, holidays and celebrations, and health and diet. Vignettes help readers better understand other cultures, while the inclusion of selected recipes lets them recreate dishes from other lands.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is a quality encyclopedia with broad appeal especially for public libraries and undergraduate colleges and universities."


Library Journal

"With its geographical structure and consistent formatting, Food Cultures of the World Encyclopedia provides a unique perspective on what the world's population eats and why and is recommended for high school, public, and academic libraries."


Booklist, Starred Review

"Recommended. Lower- and upper-level undergraduates, general readers, and professionals/practitioners."



"Entries are well-written in a concise yet informative language that results in an easy and engaging read. This is aimed at an academic audience but the style would also make this an accessible read to anyone with a general interest in food culture."


Reference Reviews

Library Journal
Prolific writer Albala (Food and Faith in Christian Culture; Food in Early Modern Europe) and an army of food scholars and experts here tackle the monumental task of summarizing the world's dietary culture in 154 alphabetically organized entries covering Africa and the Middle East, the Americas, Asia and Oceania, and Europe. Albala explains that in order to constrain the size of the work, most food variations are discussed within the context of the country or nation of origination, but that certain groups demanded separate entries. For instance, there is one entry for Canada, but the United States is broken into regions, and Basque territory in Europe and the Hmong in the United States have individual entries. Perhaps the strength of this well-written, useful work, however, is its focus on food culture broadly, including the social connections, rituals, daily routine, values, and challenges in making dietary choices as impacted by religion, health, celebrations, and more. In an effort to achieve this lofty goal, the set provides valuable extras. All of the pieces include an overview of the area or people, major foods, cooking practices, typical meals, trends in eating out, special occasions, and diet and health. They also each boast "Food Culture Snapshots" that describe a typical day with a fictional family as they plan, purchase, or gather food and then cook and eat it. Further-reading recommendations follow the entries; these are sometimes relatively lengthy. Each volume is complemented by black-and-white photos, a number of recipes, and a full index. BOTTOM LINE This is a quality encyclopedia with broad appeal especially for public libraries and undergraduate colleges and universities. —Lisa A. Ennis, Univ. of Alabama Lib. at Birmingham
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313376269
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/25/2011
  • Pages: 1400
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 11.50 (h) x 4.50 (d)

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