Archive for the ‘Language and food’ Category

Reuben and Rachel

March 27, 2015

On a report (from the 25th) on a recent Arby’s ad:

Arby’s Reuben Gets a New “Rachel” Variant: Arby’s latest sandwich is the new, limited-time Turkey Rachel, which is being offered as a variant on their Reuben that comes with roast turkey and housemade coleslaw rather than the corned beef and sauerkraut

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To come: the sandwiches, their ingredients, their names.

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Peeps time in Japan

March 23, 2015

As Easter approaches (April 5th this year), Peeps naturally come to mind (substantial posting on Peeps here). Peeps are endlessly versatile; here’s Grace Kang on Serious Eats, taking Peeps to Japan, in the form of Peepshi (Peeps sushi):

(Hat tip to Beth Linker.)

Yes, they’re appalling. But cute.

cumin

March 20, 2015

On the NPR blog on the 11th, “From Ancient Sumeria To Chipotle Tacos, Cumin Has Spiced Up The World” by Adam Maskevich, with this striking claim:

In English, … cumin has a singular distinction – it is the only word that can be traced directly back to Sumerian, the first written language. So when we talk about cumin, we are harkening back to the Sumerian word gamun, first written in the cuneiform script more than 4,000 years ago. [hearken back is a variant of hark back, recognized by NOAD2]

This is extravagantly phrased. There’s a connection to Sumerian, but it’s far from direct.

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Back to edible penises

March 19, 2015

A new item in the inventory of edible penises — gummi candies — but now with the penises viewed as insulting rather than (as in earlier postings on the subject) entertaining.

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Morning name: salsify (with Swiss chard as a bonus)

March 9, 2015

This morning’s name: salsify (the plant and its edible taproot), with Swiss chard (the leafy green) as a bonus.

To start: from Wikipedia:

Tragopogon, also known as salsify or goatsbeard, is a genus of flowering plants in the sunflower [Asteraceae or Compositae] family. It includes the vegetable known as salsify, as well as a number of common wild flowers, some of which are usually regarded as weeds.

The vegetable called salsify is usually the root of the purple salsify, Tragopogon porrifolius; the root is described as having the taste of oysters (hence the alternative common name “oyster plant” for some species in this genus), but more insipid with a touch of sweetness. [Many describe the taste as “nutty” rather than like oysters.] The young shoots of purple salsify can also be eaten, as well as young leaves. Other species are also used in the same way, including the black or Spanish salsify, Scorzonera hispanica, which is closely related though not a member of the genus Tragopogon.

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cruffin

March 8, 2015

In yesterday’s NYT, the story “During Bakery Break-In, Only Recipes Are Taken” by Carol Pogash, about the cruffin situation in San Francisco:

San Francisco — It takes three days to make a cruffin, a muffin-croissant hybrid that is the signature of Ry Stephen, a 28-year-old pastry chef. His shop, Mr Holmes Bakehouse, has been open three months and inspired a wild following, with customers lining up early to buy the ice-cream-cone-shaped cruffins, which reliably sell out before the line is gone.

“It creates its own frenzy,” said Rebecca Flint Marx, editor of San Francisco Magazine’s food section, who noted that not only are cruffins a cult item — and at $4.50, relatively affordable — but they are also camera-ready, as photos on Instagram attest. Fillings include caramel, strawberry milkshake or Fluffernutter cream (among other flavors), depending on Mr. Stephen’s mood.

Now, the tempting sweet may have inspired a crime. Overnight last week, a thief stole the recipe for cruffins, and Mr. Stephen’s 230 other recipes, from binders in the bakery’s kitchen. Nothing else in the store was touched: not money, valuable baking equipment, an iPad or other computers. And while Mr. Stephen has copies of the recipes on his office computer, and the store opened almost on time the next morning, he was understandably upset.

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Ode to Almond Joy

February 24, 2015

Today’s Zippy, with a candy-bar parody of Schiller’s Ode to Joy (An der Freude), used by Beethoven in the last movement of his Ninth Symphony:

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Almond Joy, Mounds, Mars bars! Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don’t.

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Morning name: calabash

February 15, 2015

My “morning name” a few days ago: calabash. Probably primed by this soup entry on the menu at the Palo Alto restaurant Reposado:

SOPA DE CALABAZA DE TEMPORADA: Roasted butternut squash, chipotle, hoja santa crema, toasted pumpkin seeds

Following Spanish calabaza will lead us to two quite different sets of calabash plants and their products. Yes, I will eventually get to Calabasas CA and to “Good night, Mrs. Calabash”.

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Name that stuff!

February 13, 2015

So what is this stuff?

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Useless hint #1: It’s from Australia.

Useless hint #2: It’s organic.

Useless hint #3: It’s vegetable rather than animal.

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Two more morning names

February 11, 2015

Morning names from recent days: drugs and food.

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