I'm interested in learning about Cuban cuisine, can anyone recommend THE authoritative book on authentic Cuban cooking?
Pegeen is a trusted home cook.
I love Cubano cuisine. I learned from a neighbor and although I never bought a cookbook, these two seem well-regarded:
A Taste of Old Cuba: More Than 150 Recipes for Delicious, Authentic, and Traditional Dishes Hardcover
by Maria Josefa Lluria De O'Higgins
September 17, 1994
Cuba Cocina! Hardcover
by Joyce Lafray
November 12, 1994
There are several books to start with. In terms of looking for an authoritative book, it would be best to use all resources rather than one. That's just our opinion, and we love books so it works out to keep hunting for special recipes.
Notable Cuban Cookery books are varied, some contain excellent compilations, while others are authored. There's a lot of excellent options available. The Villapol books are sold at very high prices, the bilingual edition is quite rare and also pulls high prices.
An example of excellent compilation references are both
- Gusta Usted: Lo Mejor Y Lo Clasico De La Cocina by Dolores Guiral De Costa (Spanish Edition) (Ediciones Universal) 1999
- Gran Cocina Latina: The Food of Latin America Hardcover by Maricel E. Presilla (W. W. Norton & Company) 2012
Another book by Maricel that is a hidden gem is Feliz Nochebuena, Feliz Navidad: Christmas Feasts Of The Hispanic Caribbean [Kindle Edition] Maricel E. Presilla Ismael Espinosa Ferrer the illustrator is her father. This has a lot of excellent recipes all within an excellent children's book.
Other titles near and dear to us are listed below.
- Manual Del Cocinero Cubano by E. De C. Y G. (Spencer Y Comp., Habana) 2013 Originally printer in 1856
Repertorio completo y escogido de los mejores tratados modernos del arte de cocina española, americana, francesa, inglesas y turca arreglado al uso, costumbres y temperamento de La Isla de Cuba - Completando tan interesante obra: Un tratado de dulceria y pasteleria, tambien Cubano, en donde practicamente se enseña el modo de hacer dulces con todas las frutas de este fertil suelo
- Nuevo Manual De La Cocinera Catalana Y Cubana Recopilado por Juan Cabrisas (Maxtor) 2010 Originally Published 1858
Completisimo manual de cocina, reposteria, pasteleria, confiteria y licoristas, segun el metodo practico que se usa en Cataluña y la isla de Cuba
- Nuevo Manual Del Cocinero Cubano Y Español by J. P. Legran (Spanish Edition) (Light Messages) 2013 Originally Published 1864
Con Un Tratado Escojido De Dulceria, Pasteleria Y Botillería, Al Estilo De Cuba
- Delicias De La Mesa, Manual De Cocina Y Reposteria. Prologo Del Dr Abraham Perez Miro (Spanish) by Maria Antonieta Reyes Gavilan Y Moenck (Molina y Cia, Habana) 1945
- Havana Salsa: Stories and Recipes Paperback by Viviana Carballo (Atria Books) 2007 Viviana earned the prestigious Grand Diplôme at the Cordon Bleu in Paris and studied regional cuisine in Spain.
- Secrets of Cuban Entertaining: A Menu Cookbook by Rocio Lamadriz, Piedad Robertson & Olga de Zaldo (Byron Kennedy & Co.) 1981
- El sabor de Cuba: Los 5 Sentidos (Spanish Edition) by Rene Vazquez Diaz (Tusquets Editores) 2002
- The Flavor of Cuba: Traditional Recipes from the Cuban Kitchen Paperback by Laura Milera (Author), June Squillace (Illustrator), Amy Reichman (Photographer) (Royal Palms) 1995
- Fuego Al Fuego : Cocina Tropical Afrodisiaca / Fire To The Fire : Tropical Aphrodisiac Cooking: Cocina Tropical Afrodisiaca (Spanish Edition) by Gilberto Smith (Author), Fernando Fornet (Author) (Ediciones Union) 2002
- Rey Langosta: Creaciones del Maestro Gilberto Smith y Fernando Fornet (Lo Real Maravilloso, Habana) 2000
- Three Guys from Miami Cook Cuban by Glenn M. Lindgren (Gibbs Smith, Publisher) 2004
Raquel is an excellent author and has several books in both English & Spanish, as well as a volume on Latin American cookery.
- Cocina Cubana: Las Mejores Recetas (Spanish Edition) by Raquel Rabade Roque (Downtown Book Center Inc) 1990
- Cocina cubana: 350 recetas criollas by Raquel Rabade Roque (Spanish Edition) (Spanish) (Vintage Espanol) 2007
- The Cuban Kitchen by Raquel Rabade Roque (English Edition) (Knopf) 2011
- Cuban Table: A Celebration of Food, Flavors, and History Hardcover by Ana Sofia Pelaez (Author), Ellen Silverman (Photographer) (St. Martin's Press) 2014
An interesting distinction of Cuban cuisine are its' influences from Spain, Native American, African, Chinese, and French traditions. Not only is the Cuban island in the Caribbean, it can also be considered a part of Latin America.
- The Columbia Restaurant Spanish Cookbook by Adela Hernandez Gonzmart and Ferdie Pacheco (University Press of Florida) 1995
- The Columbia Restaurant: Celebrating a Century of History, Culture, and Cuisine Florida History and Culture by Andrew T. Huse (University Press of Florida) 2009
- The Gasparilla Cookbook Hardcover by The Junior League of Tampa (Favorite Receipes Press) 1961
Last but not least is Nitza Villapol whose volumes are regarded by modern audiences as some of the more important books. We treasure them all the same. The recipes are only here so that you can make the dishes your own.
- Cocina al minuto by Nitza Villapol y Martha Martinez (La Habana) 1959
- Cocina Criolla by Nitza Villapol
A new favorite of ours is small paperback titled
- El Arte de Preparar los Manjares Recetas de Antaño: Manual de la Cocina Cubana by Actividades Latino Americanas (Service Offset Printers, Coral Gables, Miami) 1965.
Time Life Foods of the World: The Cooking Of The Caribbean Islands (1970) covers some of Cuba's dishes as does Craig Claiborne's New York Times International Cookbook (1971).
This list has some other respected volumes as well. We just wanted to point out some of our favorites. We would rank them in a different order, and highlight more of the selections we introduced above. We hope you enjoy & that our list helps you find something nice.
pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.
No quibble with the books but for the record, Amazon is NOT the publisher. I'm sure that Maria and Joyce would prefer that you buy from a real bookstore.
Hey, p,,, I have missed you
Please enter a valid email address.
Well played. You deserve a cookie.
How one Jewish dessert got so dang popular (& what we lost along the way)
What's the Big Deal About Babka?
One Living Room, Two Ways
Cookware Friends (Hi, Vintage-Inspired Cast Iron!)
When You Just Wanna Cook
Vintage Never Goes Out of Style
prevented successful signup:
We'll never post anything without your permission.
prevented successful login:
Thanks for signing up!
Connect with us to get more Food52!
Get the recipes and features that have us talking, plus first dibs on events and limited-batch products.
(Oh, and $10 off your order of $50 or more in the Food52 Shop, too.)