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Food Pronunciation Guide for the Dim-witted


Varmint
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Here's a helpful site: Audio Guide to French Culinary Terms

I only wish it were more comprehensive.

Thank you! Or shall I say, "mercy buckups"?

I am terribly French challenged. Whenever I'm in a French restaurant I get stage fright when it's time to order. I think to myself, "is that "t" or "s" at the end pronounced?" Drives me nuts.

peak performance is predicated on proper pan preparation...

-- A.B.

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Cockburn I mentioned above,  Other food related ones might be  Worcester (sauce) pronounced Wooster; Leicester (cheese) pronounced lester

Other examples (not a complete list by any means)

Wymondham (pronounced Wind-am),

Waldergrave (=Wawgrayve),

Mainwaring (=Mannering),

Magdalene (=Maudlin),

Caius (=Keeys),

Auchinlech (=Aflek)

Althorp – pronounced 'Awltrup'

Belvoir – pronounced 'Beever'

Cholmondely – 'Chumli'

Featherstonehaugh – 'Fanshaw'

Leominster – 'Lemster'

Leveson-Gower – 'Loosen-Gaw'

Marjoribanks – 'Marchbanks'

Ralph – 'Rafe'

Ranulph – 'Ralph'

St. John – 'Sin Jin'

Towcester – 'Toaster'

Woolfardisworthy – 'Woolseri'

Wriothesley – 'Roxli'

Menzies - 'Minges'

Damn. Why don't you guys just learn how to spell?

St. John as "Sinjin" I know from my "Jane Eyre" days. But if a church were called St. John's, would you also pronounce it Sinjin's?

Mercy. :wink:

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I am terribly French challenged. Whenever I'm in a French restaurant I get stage fright when it's time to order. I think to myself, "is that "t" or "s" at the end pronounced?" Drives me nuts.

Don't let it. You're the customer.

And if you're in French restaurant in the U.S. or U.K., just translate it into English: "I'll have the frog's thighs, please."

In France just point to the menu item and say "ceci". Smile warmly, they'll smile back.

Can you pee in the ocean?

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I think we could do a whole thread on the mispronunciations of "hors d'oeurves."  My favorites:

whores-do-ehr'ves  (brother-in-law's grandmother)

whore'-dee-ohr'ves  (college algebra professor)

My father, I think as a joke, used to refer to them as "horse's ovaries" - sadly, it stuck.

Do we need to start a different thread on the pronunciation of Chinese food? I keep worrying that I'm ordering something rude or disgusting by getting the tones wrong.

Would someone please clear something up? I learnt from my northern Italian neighbours to pronounce "risotto" with a short "o" in the middle (like "cough") - all I'm hearing now is "risotto" with a long "o" in the middle (like "slow") - so the long "o" is in the middle and at the end. Is one of these right and one wrong? Or is it simply one of those lovely dialect things so that both are right?

Edited by Viola da gamba (log)
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In France just point to the menu item and say "ceci". Smile warmly, they'll smile back.

Sure, but how do you pronounce that?!?!?!

Heh heh. Ceci = se-SEE (which means "this one")

You could follow that up with cela (meaning "that one"), pronounced se-LAH. By alternating ceci and cela you'll have them thinking that you're very nearly francophone. But I'd still make a point of smiling warmly.

Don't agonize over that first vowel---there's not much of it to begin with, and it's basically that upside down "e" that's used to indicate the second vowel sound in a word like "rumble".

Can you pee in the ocean?

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The one I thought of when this topic started, in the "no question is too dumb...." vein was:

prix fixe

Just couldn't do it, and couldn't bring myself to ask, either. But thanks to this thread, I am instilled with new confidence! Whee!

Andrea

http://tenacity.net

"You can't taste the beauty and energy of the Earth in a Twinkie." - Astrid Alauda

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Food Lovers' Guide to Santa Fe, Albuquerque & Taos: OMG I wrote a book. Woo!

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The alternate pronunciation of coup de grace makes me think that we're getting ready to throw bacon around the room (for whatever reason I've lately heard it used in meetings, around a conference table).

I always hear "cul de gras." Another thing people say a lot in business is "tay a tay" for a one-to-one meeting. Yeah, just leave off the last couple letters. I shouldn't laugh at people's French. I stilll can't speak a word of it without provoking gales of laughter, despite being married to a french speaker.

What kills me is pronouncing items from a Greek menu. It's so easy to get the accented syllable wrong. It's not like Japanese, where you can just try not to accent any syllable.

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My favorite is still "bouillaBAIZE," with the last syllable sounding like the f-word.

hm, i've never heard anyone pronounce it bouillabuck...

In case anybody here doesn't know this, the verb "baiser" (pronounced beh-zay), means, well, let's just say that it's nothing to do with cooking.

bouillabaisse is THE fisherman's stew par excellance. It's a cooking and eating event. The origin of the word bouillabaisse is a combination of bouillon abaissé "to reduce by evaporation"

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

Dean of Culinary Arts

Ecole de Cuisine: Culinary School Los Angeles

http://ecolecuisine.com

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Here's a helpful site: Audio Guide to French Culinary Terms

I only wish it were more comprehensive.

Thank you! Or shall I say, "mercy buckups"?

I am terribly French challenged. Whenever I'm in a French restaurant I get stage fright when it's time to order. I think to myself, "is that "t" or "s" at the end pronounced?" Drives me nuts.

Merci beaucoup, The korean version myulchi bokkum :laugh: It's a running joke with my in laws.

P.S. The French can be just as anxious as you are when ordering from "foreign" menus. Just picture the French chef in is his underwear. You can also just point to the items you want.

Edited by chefzadi (log)

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

Dean of Culinary Arts

Ecole de Cuisine: Culinary School Los Angeles

http://ecolecuisine.com

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bouillabaisse is THE fisherman's stew par excellance. It's a cooking and eating event.  The origin of the word bouillabaisse is a combination of bouillon abaissé "to reduce by evaporation"

Exactly. Whereas bouillabaise suggests something else entirely.

Can you pee in the ocean?

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I am terribly French challenged. Whenever I'm in a French restaurant I get stage fright when it's time to order. I think to myself, "is that "t" or "s" at the end pronounced?" Drives me nuts.

Don't let it. You're the customer.

And if you're in French restaurant in the U.S. or U.K., just translate it into English: "I'll have the frog's thighs, please."

In France just point to the menu item and say "ceci". Smile warmly, they'll smile back.

Is there a French wine pronounciation guide out there somewhere? I must apologize in advance to all you sumMAHlyerz for when I come to your restaurant and attempt to order the GevREE ShamBERTin.

What can I say? I'm a rube.

peak performance is predicated on proper pan preparation...

-- A.B.

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I have a few, please don't laugh.

risotto..I have a friend who says 'rizott' with no e sound on the end and a long o. Is that the Italian way, or is it also ok to pronounce the o?

edamame...I know WHAT it is, just never heard it pronounced..help.

gravlax- is that x sounded out?

And I'm sorry, but I say biscotti - with the i. the aforementioned friend says biscot with the t ending.

is pancetta 'panchetta' or pansetta?

I have more, be nice.

where is your friend from? that sort of thing is, to my knowledge, sort of associated with italian-americans, esp. in new york/new jersey/philadelphia.

e.g. ricotta in italian is ree-coat-ta, in south philadelphia it's ri-GOT.

i've heard that this is an evolution of a southern italian or sicilian accent-- the softening of the consonants and leaving off the final vowel--but i don't know enough about the various italian accents/dialects to know for sure.

pancetta has the CH sound, as if it was panchetta.

I grew up in NY in an area with a lot of Italian immigrants and first generation Italian-Americans. I don't know much about the geographic spread of Italy the community covered, but everyone went with these sorts of pronunciations.

In addition to ri-got and pro-shoot there was also muhza-RELL. The last one is the one I can't say any other way. I can say ri-cot-ta just fine. But you will never hear me utter anything close to motts-a-rell-a.

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I grew up in NY in an area with a lot of Italian immigrants and first generation Italian-Americans.  I don't know much about the geographic spread of Italy the community covered, but everyone went with these sorts of pronunciations.

In addition to ri-got and pro-shoot there was also muhza-RELL.  The last one is the one I can't say any other way.  I can say ri-cot-ta just fine.  But you will never hear me utter anything close to motts-a-rell-a.

It does indeed reflect the predominantly southern Italian/Sicilian origins of immigrants to that part of the world. Until fairly recently (and still to some extent) Italians spoke a number of quite different languages, and used more or less standard Italian as a sort of lingua franca.

I learned to speak Italian from Italians, in Italy (from Bologna, Milan, and Rome), and found that when I returned to the U.S. and spoke to Italian immigrants here that I could make myself understood easily (in Italian---these people were old, and knew almost exactly no English) but had to work pretty hard to understand them (but they were cool about it, and gave me lots of great food).

A couple of years ago I read a novel (in Italian) that takes place around the turn of the century in Sicily, and the author uses non-standard Italian similar to that used in the northeast U.S. to convey the language of the characters in the book. I'll try and find it if anybody's interested in seeing the difference.

Can you pee in the ocean?

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Sorry for the rave and if someone else mentioned this already I'll be shocked. Anyway we were

ready to rip out our hair after hearing the MIL say "SCOLL - OPS" for the past 3 weeks :rolleyes:

"You can't miss with a ham 'n' egger......"

Ervin D. Williams 9/1/1921 - 6/8/2004

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Vacqueyras?

The 'fours' in "petit fours"?

Tuiles?

Trying not to blush.

fours = foor

tuiles = tweel

Tuiles is another difficult one to get right, but for the anglophone "tweel" will suffice. What makes it difficult is what differentiates pronunciation of "Louis" from "lui": both sound like "lwee" to the anglophone ear, so that's what we say. But they're actually different sounds to somebody who is francophone.

Can you pee in the ocean?

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My favorite is still "bouillaBAIZE," with the last syllable sounding like the f-word.

hm, i've never heard anyone pronounce it bouillabuck...

In case anybody here doesn't know this, the verb "baiser" (pronounced beh-zay), means, well, let's just say that it's nothing to do with cooking.

oh the FRENCH f-word!

while my post was a joke, i have to admit that i actually didn't know what Tess was talking about.

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mille feuille... impossible![...]

Not impossible, but I don't know how to represent the "eu" sound. It's a kind of schwa. Probably "meey fuhy" (with no "h" consonant) would be OK. Make the "lle"s into "y" consonants.

Someone asked about "cuisses de grenouille"

"Kuees duh gren(oo)wiy" is somewhat of an approximation, but the "oo" is very short, the "u" sound in French is really pretty much what you get when you form your mouth into an "u" shape and say "ee" through that, and the "e" in "de" is another kind of schwa. . .

Italian is not difficult, though; it's phonetical and the vowels are not too hard to describe. Gnocchi is "nyok(k)i." "Gn"=ny; "gl"=ly (with the y a consonant), at least before i or e (I can't think of other examples offhand); "c" before i or e=ch in English; "ch" and "cch"=k(k); "sc" before i or e=sh. The only tricky one is "s." "Casa"=KAza, and I forget the rule about when "s" is pronounced "z", but Italians won't get upset about stuff like that, anyway. "A"~ah; "e"~eh; "i"=ee; "o" is like English "o" but with no "w" sound in it, ever; "u"~oo. Dipthongs retain the sounds of all vowels used, so "ai"~ahee (with no "h" sound).

Oh, also, in terms of accentation, the penultimate syllable is normally accented in Italian.

Edited by Pan (log)

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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Cockburn I mentioned above,  Other food related ones might be  Worcester (sauce) pronounced Wooster; Leicester (cheese) pronounced lester

Other examples (not a complete list by any means)

Wymondham (pronounced Wind-am),

Waldergrave (=Wawgrayve),

Mainwaring (=Mannering),

Magdalene (=Maudlin),

Caius (=Keeys),

Auchinlech (=Aflek)

Althorp – pronounced 'Awltrup'

Belvoir – pronounced 'Beever'

Cholmondely – 'Chumli'

Featherstonehaugh – 'Fanshaw'

Leominster – 'Lemster'

Leveson-Gower – 'Loosen-Gaw'

Marjoribanks – 'Marchbanks'

Ralph – 'Rafe'

Ranulph – 'Ralph'

St. John – 'Sin Jin'

Towcester – 'Toaster'

Woolfardisworthy – 'Woolseri'

Wriothesley – 'Roxli'

Menzies - 'Minges'

Damn. Why don't you guys just learn how to spell?

St. John as "Sinjin" I know from my "Jane Eyre" days. But if a church were called St. John's, would you also pronounce it Sinjin's?

Mercy. :wink:

Hey, it's our language!

My favourite is Beaulieu - took me ages to work that one out.

BAck on a food note, what about Paella? I've heard loads of variations on the 'Authentic' pronounciation - any definitive answer?

I love animals.

They are delicious.

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According to my Petit Robert, "baiser" usually means "to kiss" come "donner un baiser a quelqu'un". Action de poser sa bouche sur une personne, une signed'affection , de respect, ie: suck face, kiss hand, etc. In certain contextual situations yes, the term has a more carnal significance. Sometimes there is great confusion when mademoiselle breathlessly urges "baise moi". It's all in the perception and context, you see. :laugh:

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Paella=Pie-A-yah; ll=y sound in Spanish! (that's a hard A in the middle, just as you call the letter A.)

As for the French words, I rarely even try them. Prix fixe and foie gras I know, but that's about it! And really, do you need more than that...? :-) One that my friends disagree on is amuse bouche. I say it's amuse (uh-muze, just the way it is in English) boosh, one says it's uh-muze-ay, another agrees with me. Which is correct?

And the whole Italian-American pronunciation discussion is cracking me up--I live in northern NJ, and you should hear people around here! Gabagool=Capiccola (sp?). Very 'Sopranos' indeed... Oh, and the die-hard NJ folks just call mozzarella MUTZ. :laugh:

Edit to make the pronunciation of paella make sense to others! :wacko:

Edited by Curlz (log)

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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According to my Petit Robert, "baiser" usually means "to kiss" come "donner un baiser a quelqu'un". Action de poser sa bouche sur une personne, une signed'affection , de respect, ie: suck face, kiss hand, etc.  In certain contextual situations yes, the term has a more carnal significance. Sometimes there is great confusion when mademoiselle breathlessly urges "baise moi".  It's all in the perception and context, you see. :laugh:

Yeah, my impression was that "baiser" had received an upgrade (or downgrade) in meaning, sort of like "gamei" which meant "marry" in ancient Greek. I don't think all those people walking around saying "gamei ti, gamei to" are talking about marriage. :raz:

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One that my friends disagree on is amuse bouche.  I say it's amuse (uh-muze, just the way it is in English) boosh, one says it's uh-muze-ay, another agrees with me.  Which is correct?

I'd say amooz boosh, but I could be wrong. And then there's the fact that I've never said it out loud. :biggrin:

Edited by patti (log)

Dear Food: I hate myself for loving you.

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