The earliest known Arabic cookbook, from 10th century Baghdad, is also the first to mention pasta

This painting comes from the Khamsa of Nizami, a book of masterpiece illustrations produced in mid-16th-century Tabriz. It depicts an episode in the 12th-century Persian epic tale of Majnun—shown here in chains—and Layla, who awaits his arrival at her tent. In the background, at upper right, artist Mir Sayyid Ali included four cooks: One holds meat over a fire tend- ed by another; one brings a bowl, and one woman uses both hands to roll what is likely reshteh, a Persian word for pasta.

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