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Cuba: From Colonialism to Communism

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Article on Cuban Cookbooks

Fine Dining: Race in Prerevolution Cuban Cookbooks
Folch, Christine
Latin American Research Review 2008; 43 (2): 205-223.
English summary; Spanish summary.
1542-4278 (electronic)
General Subject Areas:
Subject Literature: Cuban literature
Period: 1800-1999
Genre: prose; cook books
Subject Terms:
1857-1956; treatment of race
Document Information:
Publication Type: journal article
Language of Publication: English
Update Code: 200805
Sequence Numbers: 2008-2-18530
Electronic Access:
DOI: 10.1353/lar.0.0029
This article treats pre-1959 Cuban cookbooks as interlocutors to see how the struggle to define Cuba's racial and national body can be found in efforts to characterize what goes into that body by setting a close textual analysis of the books alongside an account of their historical context. In examining recipes, visuals, and nonrecipe prose, this article explores how later authors attempt to represent Cuba as white and European by ignoring and trivializing the culinary contributions of nonwhite Cubans and particularly Afro-Cubans, a move that encounters resistance in the ongoing persistence and popularity of Afro-Cuban cuisine. As an interface between political economic processes and personal choice, the author argues that cookbooks act as a site for assertions of racial and national identity in which some authors embarked on a racial project to civilize the consumer by civilizing cuisine via the cookbook, thus illustrating social fissures, tensions, and contradictions that climaxed in the 1959 revolution.

Cuba Libre - drink of Cuban Independence from Spain


Cuba Libra Mixed drink

Origins of the Cuba Libra, Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America

Primary alcohol by volume
Served On the rocks; poured over ice
Standard garnish lime wedge
Standard drinkware

Highball Glass (Tumbler).svg

Highball glass
IBA specified ingredients
  • 100ml of Cola
  • 50ml of rum

Build all ingredients in a highball glass filled with ice. Garnish with limewedge.