There are etiquettical situations that affect us in these days of ubiquitous oriental cuisine which our forefathers did not even realise. They didn’t have to worry about which way to point the teapot in a Japanese restaurant, or remember not to stab the sushi with the hashi, and to put them back on the hashioki. Or that it’s OK to say the “n” word if you mean a slice of raw fish perched punningly atop a blob of rice. Or that the soy sauce is not for the unaga, which has its own sweet sauce. O tempura, o morays!
Category Archives: Culinary
Both food shots and the occasional own recipe in here. For foodies.
Original playout date: 28 January 2008
This evening we are in Taksim, in Beyoğlu, where the most thriving part of the city’s nightlife is, with shops open until late, and restaurants until even later. We went to one restaurant famous for the quality of its mezedes or hors d’oeuvres and were treated to some impromptu fasıl music. The title “Ye Beni” means “Eat me”, though whether it has the full range of meanings associated with that phrase in vernacular English I couldn’t begin to ask. Maybe someone here will tell me?
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Original playout date: 22 December 2007
“This is one from the early Autumn on the terrace.
If there’s one thing that doesn’t fly on youtube it’s anything to do with gardens or gardening videos, but despite that, here I go uploading another one. Will I ever learn? Maybe in 2008, but it’s still 2007 now, and I gotta upload off my material or just dump it, and I thought someone out there might, by some odd chance, take an interest in these fine fungi.
By the way, I say, I say, I say: why did the parasol mushroom get invited to all the best parties? Because he was a “”fun guy”” to be with!”
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Original playout date: 14 December 2007
Don’t drink these awful products, which are part of the globalisation which is reducing your choice and your freedoms. Support your local Carbonated Soft Drinks producer this Christmas instead.
Original playout date: 3 December 2007
A look at the home of Beef Stroganoff, one of Russia’s best known contributions to world cuisine, and a nice gallery of St Petersburg, with an “Acapulco” rendition of Group St Petersburg’s famous song “Okoldovana, ocharovana” by Diana Kopytina.
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Original playout date: 21 November 2007
A taste of Armenia, with genuine Armenian music and some Armenian language.
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Original playout date: 7 November 2007
Every self-respecting Channel needs a cookery programme, and here, in an unfortunately rather dingy first attempt in what could become a series, Huliganov seeks to join the ranks of Delia Smith, Madhur Jaffrey and Jamie Oliver and shows us how to make his own culinary invention: Huliganov Salad!
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Original playout date: 1 November 2007
“This was, at the time, my 300th video on this Channel. One has been dropped so now it is the 299th, not that it is easy to notice that. Many thanks to all the viewers and subscribers who encouraged me to reach this milestone, and then beyond.
I’m celebrating by giving you what (according to the comments received) you seem to want – the third part (the second in a row) of Huliganov’s Russia. Read the rest of this entry
Playout date: 17 February 2007
Views at the time added to HTV: 37,861
Likes at the time added to HTV: 17
Dislikes at time added to HTV: 5
Popularity % ” ” ” =L/(L+D): 77.3%
Comments at time added: 4
Total interactions at time added: 26
Total interactions to views 0.1%
Camera: Panasonic DMZ -FZ30
Post Production: Windows Movie Maker – slight use
Other people featured: Tanya, Sophie, rest of family
Music used: “Happy birthday to you”
Languages used: English with Polish in surroundings
Animals/plants featured: None
Who gives pooh cake to their daughter for her birthday? We do. Tanya liked Winnie as much then as she does now. So cute only 5 years old blowing out the candles.
I recently came across a fine example of how keeping language “simple” means that a really deep understanding of concepts becomes impossible. Thinking depends absolutely and directly on language – people say that the purest thinking is mathematics, but all that is is words and grammar replaced by symbols. 1 means “one” or “jeden” or “uno” or whatever that is in your language – I think I can pretty much guarantee nobody reading here has abandoned their language’s word for 1, 0 etc and simply thinks about those terms in the non-linguistic way a binary circuit regards them.
So when we simplify language and remove harder constructions and any vocabulary beyond a few thousand words, what happens? The BASIC ideas may be more understandable to more people, but they are like explanations given to children.
Let’s look at the examples I found. Both are from the same source and both refer to something familiar probably to all of us, namely: why do cut onions make us cry? First the Wikipedia entry in standard English:
Cut onions emit certain compounds which cause the lachrymal glands in the eyes to become irritated, releasing tears.
Chopping an onion causes damage to cells which allows enzymes called alliinases to break down amino acid sulfoxides and generate sulfenic acids. A specific sulfenic acid, 1-propenesulfenic acid, is rapidly acted on by a second enzyme, the lachrymatory factor synthase (LFS), giving syn-propanethial-S-oxide, a volatile gas known as the onion lachrymatory factor or LF. This gas diffuses through the air and soon reaches the eye, where it activates sensory neurons, creating a stinging sensation. Tear glands produce tears in order to dilute and flush out the irritant.
Eye irritation can be avoided by cutting onions under running water or submerged in a basin of water. Leaving the root end intact also reduces irritation as the onion base has a higher concentration of sulphur compounds than the rest of the bulb. Refrigerating the onions before use reduces the enzyme reaction rate and using a fan can blow the gas away from the eyes. The more often one chops onions, the less one experiences eye irritation.
The amount of sulfenic acids and LF released and the irritation effect differs among Allium species. In 2008, the New Zealand Crop and Food institute created a strain of “no tears” onions by using gene-silencing biotechnology to prevent synthesis by the onions of the LFS enzyme.
And now, the same, but from the Simple English Wikipedia set:
Why onions make eyes water[edit source]
When you cut an onion, you open some cells of the onion. Then, some chemicals react. When one chemical floats through the air and reaches your eyes, they sting. There are ways to keep the chemical away. You can:
- Cut the onion under water
- Keep the onion in the fridge, and cut when it is cold
- Leave the root end on until last
- Use a sharper knife
- Have a fan blowing away from you on the onion
- Wear goggles, like for swimming or skiing
The Simple Version keeps the practical parts, like cutting from the top, but it just can’t handle what the chemicals actually are.
The good news is of course that these “Hard words” are the most international and, paradoxically, it is often the “hard” words which give the least trouble to the polyglot, so you end up with multi-language speakers who tend to talk like this:
This gas is diffusing through air and is reaching soon eye, where it’s activate a sensory neurons, created stinking sensation.
And the equivalent in four to forty different languages.
Some people swear by chicken broth as a cure-all. Certainly Jewish traditions make a lot of it, and from them also Polish cuisine makes a big deal out of rosol, as they call it. It is a useful pick-me-up while on a liquids only fast, and it is very useful to tide oneself over between meals as an alternative to tea or coffee.
For those eating chickens, the best chickens to use are older ones, like an old rooster who has served his days making hens happy and waking your neighbours up in the morning while you blithely sleep through it. He has tough meat and is unpalatable. His Chicken Kiev would be more of a Chicken Maydan, but boiled into broth he gives you more microelements than Mendeleyev himself wrote about in the song “On the road to Mendeleyev, where the flying fishes playev”.
The Mexican recipe for chicken soup is rumoured to start with the same four words as every recipe in the Mexican recipe book, accordingly to the old joke. If you don’t know what those four words are I will not ruin the tone here by mentioning them, but maybe someone will show their knowledge of the history of comedy by mentioning them in the comments section below. (Come on, I have to do something to encourage readership participation round here!)
It has been a few weeks not so much hectic as rather completely crzay, hence my kind and loyal readers might with reason consider themselves somewhat neglected by this blog. In order to put that right, I shall attempt a brief post on a useful topic which may be of help to many people.
Some years ago my dear friend Leslie Grufford informed me that you should not eat and drink at the same time. I was not convinced of this at the time as I knew that Mr Grufford was prone to making statements that I didn’t agree with, although with the passage of time some of them have increased their plausibility and this statement of his is no exception. Looking at the matter today I trawled the internet looking for opinions on whether you should avoid fluid intake close to mealtimes and if so why?
Of course I had an inkling myself of why this should be, and this was confirmed by those who said that the stomach contents are flushed into the lower reaches of the Alimentary Canal more quickly if you drink fluids, whereas it hangs around longer in the “pouch” as some commentators put it, if you don’t drink at the same time, which not only enables the feeling of fulltitude to happen with less food, but also better digestion of the nutrients in the food.
Which all kind of makes sense. The best reason to have liquids at hand is of course in case you find yourself choking, but hopefully that doesn’t happen very often and if anxiety to avoid choking makes you eat slower, then well, there’s a third advantage.
It is one thing to know the above though, and quite another to put it into practice. People like to have a drink with meals and there are some social kinds of eating which rather call for the drinking of fluids at the same time.
Maybe we need to change social morays and other sociable eels like the conga in order to reflect what actually is conducive to better health. Maybe we should wait for a good hour after desert before we start to drink coffee. In a lot of restaurants I’ve been at that tends to be what can happen anyway even whn you don’t want it to, so maybe that should be formalised and written into the newest editions of Debretts?
Aperitifs and wine with meals which are included in the price with certain set posh meals are a big temptation to let all that go by the board on occasion, but if that happens at least we need to get back on the programme when we are eating in normal life. It isn’t what happens on conferenced that determines if we are fat or thin, but what happens in our own kitchens and dining rooms and at our desks or canteens at work.
I will say this – an unexpected side effect I noticed when becoming vegetarian was that the desire to drink while eating automtically went down. I need to remember to drink after meals.
The recommendations people on line say that their doctors had given them is not drinkning from 15 minutes before eating a meal to 30 minutes or in some cases 60 minutes after finishing eating. Maybe 45 minutes is a good compromise. I like the 80:20 rule but I’m not sure it would apply here very well.
- Bartender Wisdom: ‘A Damn Good Drink’ (esquire.com)
- The Order In Which You Eat Your Food In Matters (chelseagalipeau.wordpress.com)
- Families that eat together may be the healthiest, new evidence confirms (talesfromthelou.wordpress.com)
- First Rounds On Me! (marryrichandhavebabies.wordpress.com)
- Menu Plan Monday | Etiquette Before Eating #2 (solaceandjoy.wordpress.com)
- Rules (constantlyunderconstruction.wordpress.com)
- Weight Loss Shakes Recipes (answers.com)
- Menu Plan Monday + Food Etiquette (solaceandjoy.wordpress.com)