Friday, March 23, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Taste-Blind

“In America we eat, collectively, with a glum urge for food to fill us. We are ignorant of flavour. We are as a nation taste-blind.”

"Frederick the Great used to make his own coffee, with much to-do and fuss. For water he used champagne. Then, to make the flavour stronger, he stirred in powdered mustard.

Now to me it seems improbable that Frederick truly liked this brew. I suspect him of bravado. Or perhaps he was taste-blind."

Coined in 1937 by M.F.K. Fisher in Serve It Forth, "taste-blind" is as useful a descriptor of the American palate now as it was then.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Food Jargon Alert: Zombie Brands

Zombie Brands
Daniel Gross's name for dead or dormant products that have been revived for a second or, even, third time. Food-related zombie brands include Tab Soda, and fast-food products advertised as being available for a 'limited time only,' such as McDonald's McRib sandwich.

Related Stories
Attack of the Zombie Brands
Attack of the Zombie Brands, Part II

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Food Jargon Watch: Culanthropy

Cuilinary philanthropy. Term used by the CulinaryCorps, a sort of AmericCorp for food, to describe the nexus of social activism, volunteerism and culinary activity. We're all for that!

The term "culanthropy" is a welcome addition to the culinary lexicon, but food professionals have a long history of generosity. From Food Not Bombs to relief efforts on behalf of the New Orleans culinary community to Chef Jose Andres' on-going support for DC Central Kitchen, the activities of culanthropists is food for thought.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Sparkling Beverages

Sparkling Beverages
New carbonated drinks from Coke and Pepsi - Diet Coke Plus and Tava, repsectively - that are fortified with vitamins and minerals. According to the NY Times, the soda companies are "...not calling them soft drinks because people are turning away from traditional soda, which has been hurt in part by publicity about its link to obesity."

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Nutrition Scold/Food Scold

Nutrition Scold/Food Scold
Slightly derogatory term applied to Eric Sclosser, Marion Neslte, CSPI, and others who are critical of the food industry and/or give critical advice on healthy eating.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Nonundelow

Coined by LA Times writer Emily Green in 2000, nonundelow refers to processed foods such as low-fat peanut butter and non-dairy creamer which have had supposidly "unhealthy" ingredients partially or entirely removed. A combination of the prefixes (non-, un-, de- and low) that are used to describe such products. Nonundelow has resurfaced in Barry Glassner's new book, The Gospel of Food, which calls a return to pleasurable eating that does not include nonundelow food products.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Food Jargon of the Day: Know Your Good Bacteria

"Good," or probiotic, bacteria reside in our gastrointestinal tract along with a host of their nasty cousins. It is believed that eating probiotics - foods that contains probiotic bacteria - will help to increase the population of good bacteria and ward-off disease and infection. Probiotics include yogurt, kefir, buttermilk, kim chi, and miso soup.

Bacteria that live in our GI tract use partially digested food to grow. Prebiotics are foods that nourish good bacteria in the intestine and allow them to survive and multiply. Prebiotics include chicory, onions, garlic, artichokes, bananas, and asparagus.

Nutritional supplements comprised of probiotic bacteria and prebiotic sugars. Synbiotics work to both add good bacteria to the GI tract and encourage the growth of the good bacteria already in residence. Synbiotics are not found naturally in foods, but are added to products such as Activia Light yogurt.