Title

Clay & Continuity

Topic

Cazuela

Region

Catalonia

English Article

 

Clay and Continuity

Many times when I am traveling the byways of Spain, I feel an almost magical bond connecting me with the hundreds of generations who have populated this ancient land. Sometimes it is prompted by a seemingly insignificant object such as the humble cazuela, the simple terra cotta dish that has been used by Spanish families for thousands of years.

We can trace this type of cookware back to 1000 BC, during the times of the first Phoenicians who settled in the Atlantic port of Cádiz. As the centuries have passed, the long succession of people who have inhabited the narrow Cádiz peninsula have continued to use this type of terra cotta bowl for daily living. Today when I visit a tapas bar in Cádiz, I am likely to be served fresh olives or a portion of sizzling hot garlic shrimp in an earthenware terra cotta cazuela, not unlike those of centuries past. See full english article...

Spanish Article

 

Clay and Continuity

 

A menudo al recorrer los caminos de España, me invade la sensación de que un vínculo casi mágico me une a los cientos de generaciones que han poblado esta añeja tierra. A veces el sentimiento aflora ante un objeto a primera vista insignificante como una simple cazuela o un sencillo plato de barro cocido de esos que usan las familias españolas desde hace miles de años. Esta forma de cocción de utensilios se remonta aproximadamente al año 1.000 antes de Cristo en los tiempos en que los fenicios se asentaron en el puerto de Cádiz en la costa atlántica. A lo largo de los siglos, los pobladores de la estrecha lengua de tierra gaditana han continuado haciendo uso de este tipo de cuencos de barro cocido en su vida diaria. Incluso hoy en día en cualquier bar de tapas de Cádiz, pueden servirme unas olivas aliñadas o una ración de gambas al ajillo en cazuela de barro no muy distinta de aquellas de hace siglos. See full spanish article...

Discussion Questions

 

  1. Don notes the Phoenician legacy of the cazuela, which is still in use today. What is the cazuela?
  2. Why did the Romans add pebbles to the clay – what benefits did this have?
  3. Don describes the “magical convergence of cultures” including native Iberians, Christians, Muslims and Jews – what are some of the legacies of this cultural blending in art and architecture?

Extension Activity

Design a cazuela of your own - what will it look like? Will it have a handle? A cover? What shape is it? What would you like to cook in your cazuela?

Links (will open the LaTienda.com site in a new window)