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Food Terms We Loathe/Misuse


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I like molten...

As in how Ruhlman used it in his description of how to make his Fried Pork Belly Caesar.

Once the interior is molten pork fat..... mmmmm (Also, in this case, I don't mind the phrase food porn... give it to me baby!)

I'll second (or third?) authentic. It is or it isn't, but the fact that people need to categorize it that way makes me doubt the authenticity from the start.

This isn't really a problem with a word per se, but the connotation/use of the word recipe has gotten pretty out of hand these days. It's become hugely over important. I suppose "Secret Recipe" is my real pet peeve. Cooking is cooking. What separates Eric Ripert and Joe Schmoe Me ain't secret recipes. It's veritable universes of cooking skill/knowledge. He could teach me every last one of his "recipes" and I wouldn't be anywhere near his league. Same with everyone else who is more or lesser abled at cooking.

Edited by theisenm85 (log)
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I hate the trend of servers telling me that something is "very nice." It's especially bad when only one component of the dish is described as"very nice." (e.g. "for our special we have halibut with some very nice seared sea scallops") Isn't the whole dish very nice? Isn't everything you plan to serve to customers very nice? Or is some admittedly total crap and I should only order the things described as very nice? And last, shouldn't I be the one to decide if I think my dish is very nice?

This happens to me in very good restaurants, but never in casual places.

Edited by kiliki (log)
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I agree with despising "food porn."

Feel the same about crack, and jonesing, and the even worse jonesin'.

Addicted I don't like, although mostly due to its overuse.

Dislike within/without structure, as, "The croquette was molten within, shatteringly crisp (cf. pre-Pulitzer J. Gold) without."

I can't argue with "shatteringly crisp," however -- and I have tried: upon first read lo these 20 years go or so it was gathered with alacrity and delight into the lexicon for burlesque flogging fun, but now, there is only surrender to its talismanic powers.

Priscilla

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Resto. Whatever happened to the rest-o the word.

Another is "deconstructed".

I envision getting a paper bag with the ingredients and a recipe in it. If it was good enough to construct in the first place, what's the point of going backwards.

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Artisan--used as either noun or adjective.

I am getting sick of seeing that slapped on everything. Especialy stuff that comes from large scal production.

Living hard will take its toll...
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Just thought of another one, widely, all TOO widely disseminated on the network everyone loves to hate, Food Network:

And I quote many FN hosts........."ewwie-goooey".

Not sure on the spelling, but that's roughly how they pronounce it.  Usually in reference to melted cheese, or dripping chocolate or caramel.

"Ewwwwwwww" is usually what I say when something's truely disgusting.  (where's that puke icon when you need it??).  As in, "ewwwwwwwww, WHAT did you step in???

"Gooey" is not an adjective that sounds appetizing to me.

Put 'em together and it really is not something I want to put in my mouth.

And in comment to previous responses, what the hell is "toothsome" anyway?  My teeth generally don't provide many sensations, unless I bite into something too cold.  Its a phrase I've never understood, and yet one which makes me slightly grossed out.

Actually, to me it would be OOOOOHIE, gooey, like the interior of the best brownies :wub::rolleyes:

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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"Cloying"-which to me is a term used by negligible restaurant 'critics' who don't have the knowledge of food and cooking to use another term to describe a dish that is 'sticky' so they use 'cloying' because they've read it in other critics reviews.

"Confit"-used to describe dishes that are anything but prepared in the true sense of the term 'confit.' For example, 'Confit of Strawberries.' And may I ask, are you saying that you prepared your strawberries by stewing them in goose or duck fat?

If you slow-cooked the strawberries in their own juice call it like it is-"Strawberries Poached in Juice." Don't play tricks on unsuspecting diners by calling your dish something it is not.

I really don't like all the trendniness we see on many of today's menus where a sacred culinary technique like 'confit' is used to describe something that is not at all truly 'confit.' They think their trendy-and lengthy-menu descriptions are chi-chi and will somehow lure the diner into thinking because they've called the dessert 'confit of strawberries' that it's going to be a great dish-and one they can charge $15 bucks for. Worst of all, they do fool most of the people most of the time.

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Veggies (or veg),

Veggies I can deal with, "veg" bugs me for some reason (I winced every time I heard the word in Wallace and Grommit's "Curse of the Were Rabbit")

another one- although I do have plans to dine at Elixir soon, I can't say I like seeing the word "sexy" used on their menu to describe things like sauteed onions. Maybe my opinion on that will change when I do go there later this month- I don't discount that notion that they may very well cause me to have some sort of food epiphany that will convince me that such things can indeed be sexy, but for now I remain skeptical.

Sincerely,

Dante

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"Melted" as in the melted fennel sauce I chose not to try in St. Louis. I asked the waiter how to melt fennel.

uummm...normally when a vegetable melts, it means it's been in the fridge for entirely too long...

Sincerely,

Dante

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" Homemade "

       

      Who's home ?

      And, what is it ' indicative ' to... ??

Well, I can understand the term if used in conjunction with something that most people don't make at home.

Making pasta or sausage, for example, seems fairly uncommon in my experience, so one may want to make that distinction.

non-food-related, I make my own shaving cream, so I tend to make that distinction.

Sincerely,

Dante

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Another is "deconstructed".

I envision getting a paper bag with the ingredients and a recipe in it.  If it was good enough to construct in the first place, what's the point of going backwards.

I dunno about that one- it can prove useful.

Taking apart a recipe and putting it together in to something new can be kind of fun and interesting to me.

Sincerely,

Dante

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"Foodie" makes me roll my eyes. Don't we all eat food in some form or another? It's like calling someone a breather.

I used to hate that one, but I've grown to like it since. The term "Gourmet" tends to get over-used (and carries for me a connotation of limited approach) IMHO, and not that many people in the mainstream world seem to know the term "gourmand". "Foodie", to me, implies a more comprehensive and inclusive approach to the concept of the gourmet. Everything from seeking the best corn-dog to appreciating the finest foie-gras.

Sincerely,

Dante

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"Infused"- for olive oil it's okay.  But tea infused ice-cream is just tea flavored icecream!

Agreed. Infusion implies a very specific process. Now, one can, of course, flavour an ice cream with a tea infusion, or even infuse the milk used to make the ice cream with tea, but if one simply adds tea flavouring to ice cream, one is not, by definition, infusing the ice cream.

Sincerely,

Dante

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If I have to hear the terms "local" "organic" or "sustainable" (or any combination thereof) one more time I'm going to get a gun.  At one point they might have meant something, but now they are beyond cliche.

That's something the does upset me. I'm quite in favour of local, organic and sustainable, and am involved with the localvore scene here in the NH/VT area, but one of the prices one has to pay for seeing a movement gaining in popularity is that one has to watch one's terminology become trendy and, by extension, misused, and one has to endure seeing concepts one holds dear become watered down in the name of mass-appeal and (sadly) salability.

Sincerely,

Dante

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Just this week on NR, our own dear Bourdain used the word Artisanal twice and porn once (may his sacred words resound).

The porn, I seem to remember, might have been in reference to a geoduck, which emerged from the sandy puddly hole in which our intrepid traveler had been delving, shovel and elbows, for some hour or so. They fought hard for the prize, mudding up their clothes and sinking to the ankles of their big black boots, then waved the prize around like two of the twelve-year-olds in my sixth- grade class, the first few days of school after the Summer they'd discovered all things phallic. They cackled like the same rowdy boys, with references to "pants" and "women" flying into the Northwest wind.

None of the males winced at the slicing of it into sushi, but I heard several gasps in the background as the chef skinned and practically autopsied the thing as he dismembered it, rolling back its covering with disregard to all the sympathetic groans from the bystanders.

And I did smile to see several familiar faces around the dinnertable, may they remain anonymous.:wub:

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If I have to hear the terms "local" "organic" or "sustainable" (or any combination thereof) one more time I'm going to get a gun.  At one point they might have meant something, but now they are beyond cliche.

That's something the does upset me. I'm quite in favour of local, organic and sustainable, and am involved with the localvore scene here in the NH/VT area, but one of the prices one has to pay for seeing a movement gaining in popularity is that one has to watch one's terminology become trendy and, by extension, misused, and one has to endure seeing concepts one holds dear become watered down in the name of mass-appeal and (sadly) salability.

Sincerely,

Dante

Being in the Organic and Local biz, it really upsets me. Sustainable actually means a lot more to me than organic at this point. It amazes me that milk can be called organic when the cows it comes from dont graze, are hooked up to machines for most of the day and merely fed organic grain.

Organic law states animals need "access" to pasture. That could mean a single door in a chicken coop, that the chicken are too afriad to go out of. Basically they are still living in their own shit, feathers and piss.

Organic seafood: Ha! Wild or line caught: yes!

I can go on and on - if anyone wants to start another thread shoot me an email.

B

"Of all places, only at the table is the first hour never dull."

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