Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Food Jargon Watch - Super Taster Article

Super-taster - an individual who has more specialized taste buds on the tip of his or her tongue than the average person - is not new to the culinary cultural lexicon, but an article by Susan Bowerman for the Tribune Newspaper group does a good job of tracing the evolution of the super-taster theory.

Food Jargon of the Day

Defined by the LA Times as "an appetizer or dessert that consists of a number of components layered artfully in a small glass. (The word verrine refers to the glass itself; literally it means "protective glass.")"

Custody Fat
Coined by the folks at Slate Magazine, to refer to an attempt by government officials in Britan to remove a 218 lb. eight year old boy from the care of his mother.

Food Jargon of the Day: Hybrid Horribles

Hybrid Horribles
Name given to chain restaurant "fusion food" by health and nutrition advocates. Hybrid horribles are mash-ups of tired and true fast food classics, like bacon cheeseburger pizzas or buffalo-chicken stuffed quesadillas. Double the junk food, double the calories, fat, and cholesterol!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Food Jargon Watch: Wine and Spirit Technology Edition

Applied to an array of digital wine advisments from e-commerce sites to cute robots that use infra-red technology to identify wines.

Short for synthetic corks. Made by Supreme Corq and other producers from “biomedical grade thermoplastic elastomer." Syncorks were created to combat "cork taint", a defect caused by natural cork closures that makes wine undrinkable.

Food Jargon of the Day: Art of the Shocktail

Shocktail (aka the Meatini or Carnivore Cocktail)
A cocktail made by mixing or infusing liquor with some sort of meat product.

File this bit of food jargon under "not for the faint of heart." Recently, Chow, the NY Times, and the Washington Post have all served-up articles featuring meat-based cocktails. In the nascent world of carnivore cocktails, mixology techniques seem to range wildly, from the easily digestible (bacon-garnished Bloody Mary) to the slightly queasy (pork-rind rimmed Margarita) to the gag reflex inducing (the Beefytini, featuring beef-jerky-infused vodka). Pass the Tums!

A Google search also revealed recipes from a cadre of self-styled shocktologists. The grandfather of them all, the Weeniecello, is created by soaking Hebrew National hot dogs in 100-proof vodka for five weeks.

Those interested in the shocktail's historical roots can check out an updated version of Lamb Liquor, an ancient Mongolian libation, at

Recipe Links:

Andrew Fenton's Weeniecello

Josh Karpf: In Search of the Perfect Pork Martini's Bacon Martini's Lamb Liquor (scroll down page to Mongolian recipes)

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Provenance of Food

As the demand for local and organic foods, fair trade coffee and tea, and humanely-raised meat and eggs increases, tracing the provenance of the food we eat is becoming an increasingly popular trend. Provenance strives to offer consumers “proof” of authenticity through origin narratives that detail where the food was grown, who grew it, when it was harvested, and who harvested it. Provenance can take a range of forms from a simple listing of a farm and its location to elaborate stories, origin denominations, and certificates of quality.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Death of the Gastropub?

The Spring 2007 issue of City Magazine has declared the term "gastrobpub" passé, claiming that "...gastropub came in and out of the culinary lexicon in 2006 faster than you can say bangers and mash."

Wikipedia defines a gastropub as a British term for a public house ("pub") which specialises in high-quality food a step above the more basic 'pub grub.' City Magazine suggests substituting any of the following terms: public house, tavern, brasserie.

Those who can't yet bring themselves to part with "gastropub", can check out the Gastropub Glossary, A Handbook of Helpful Terms at

Food Jargon of the Day: Pro-Offal

An individual that promotes the consumption of offal - the entrails and internal organs of a butchered animal. As in "I'm pro-offal. Can you tell me where I might find rolled pig's spleen in Albuquerque?" The pro-offal worship Fergus Henderson, author of the 2004 cookbook The Whole Beast: Nose to Tail Eating. You can find the pro-offal online at the offal eaters forum.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Cheftestant

Heather Havrilesky's term for contestants on culinary-related reality shows such as Top Chef, Hell's Kitchen, and Iron Chef.