Travel & Life
20 Words Every Foodie Must Know
Food, much like fashion, has it’s own set of trends, fads and revolutions. Whether you’re an adorable food geek or a pretentious food snob, you’d definitely want to stay on top of it all and talk the talk. So while we all patiently wait for the new season of Masterchef Australia, here’s a list of words you need to be adding to your culinary dictionary.
1. Botanical Bistronomy
It’s a new culinary movement from France that revolves around a more simple style of cooking. By blending words such as ‘bistro’ and ‘gastronomy’, such places usually offer a casual vibe and focus upon stylish presentation as well as quality of details. For fine dining lovers, Masque in Mumbai offers this unique concept wherein the food served is a combination of bold and radical flavours.
2. Flambe- [ Flahm-bey]
3. Vegan- [vee-guh-n]
The first thing that comes to mind when we think of vegan fashion is the eco-conscious designer – Stella McCartney who does not utilize leather, fur and silk for her line. In the context of food, this is a cruelty-free diet wherein eating meat, fish, or poultry is a big no-no. That said, even animal products and by-products like eggs, diary products, soaps and cosmetics are avoided. For health, ethical and environmental reasons, celebs like Ellen DeGeneres, Ariana Grande as opting for veganism.
4. Pescatarian- [pes-kuh-tair-ee-uh n]
Ever heard someone say, “I am vegetarian, well sort of.” We’re sure you get that often. Basically, these people are practicing being a pescatarian. In such a diet, one typically consumes vegetarian foods, egg, and seafood too. Also, known as fishertarian, all those eating in this way are only doing so since this diet is rich in protein which is the brick and mortar for any individual.
5. Molecular Gastronomy
Marco Pier White once said, “Gastronomy is the greatest form of therapy one has been exposed to.” Well, after eating innovative food at restaurants like Masala Library, Farzi café etc, we couldn’t agree more. This subdivision of food science is all about chefs exploring new culinary possibilities via principles of chemistry, physics and biology to develop modern food that looks intriguing and tastes delicious. Think about wild mushroom ‘chai’, caviar jalebi, liquid nitrogen and loads more.
6. Entrée- [ah-tray]
Were you aware that mini burgers, foie gras, lamb kebabs among others are known as the entrée? If yes, then that’s great and if not then we’re rather glad to tell you more. Generally, in a three-course meal, the one that preceeds the main course is called entrée. In India, we usually call such a meal – a starter or an appetizer. Now, this term also comes from France. Now we know why we love the French so much.
7. Al dente- [alden-tey; -tee]
If you ever forget to cook your penne all the way, and in case some guests asks why, then all you need to say is – ‘It’s aldente.’ LOL. On a serious note, it refers to pasta being cooked enough to be firm but not soft. Additionally, many say, to al dente is only a stage for cooking and not really meant for eating. Nevertheless, we’re only letting know more about this contemporary Italian culinary term.
8. Antipasti- [ahn-tee-pahs-tee]
All those who enjoy Italian food will know this for sure. It is basically, the sweet and savory finger foods such as a taste of fresh oysters, crostini’s to name a few, that are artfully conceived and eaten just before the main course. Without being too filling these foods will certainly keep your senses engaging and we quite like them.
9. Amuse Bouche- [a-myz-boosh]
Having sharp flavors, these are bite sized mouth amusers tantalize one’s palate but never leave it overwhelmed. Interestingly, they are not ordered from the menu instead are served either after the order is taken or just before the main course. And besides looking like works of art, they throw light upon the chef’s approach towards experimenting.
10. Tapas- [tah-pahs]
Coming from Spain, these are sophisticated small plates with light snacks which are usually ordered while drinking. Moreover, they are shared with others too and are perfect for parties. So, from barbecued mini ribs to spiced clams and even stuffed mussels are all succulent starters that actual open up your appetite.
Utilized for giving texture, visual enhancement, and for flavors too, such edible greens are high in nutrition and can be easily grown indoors. And by that we mean – in your kitchen. That’s right. Having said that, these shots of salad vegetables such as rocket, celery to name a few give sweet and spicy leaf flavors and are used to top roasted vegetables, pizza among others.
12. Cold pressed
We’re pretty darn sure that you have come across a few individuals who are going through juice cleanses. What these people are opting for refers to having raw forms of juice that are a result of zero heat extraction. Besides preserving vitamins and valuable enzymes for about 3 days, such juices have no added sugar. While having a short shelf life, you can try them in India from Raw Pressery, Antidote etc.
13. Sashimi- [sah-shee-mee]
Served with pickled ginger, radish and more, Sashimi is a Japanese dish made from thinly sliced raw fish. A delicacy, it essentially uses salmon or tuna and requires one to know different cutting techniques. As if that wasn’t enough, there is a certain etiquette required to eat it which in fact is another ball game altogether. But hey!, that’s not going to stop us from relishing it.
14. Bao- [b-ow]
Speaking of boa’s, we can’t help but recall Fatty Bao and their revolutionary steamed snack food. Yummy. Moving on, in simpler words a bao is a bread roll with Chinese or Taiwanese fillings. These days, cross cultural fillings are gaining popularity too. So, whether it’s stuffed with meat or vegetables, the Asian bao is one of our favorite sandwich ever.
There is absolutely no denying that adding smoke to your food can transform it drastically. Such a rich flavor is added by burning wood from trees such as apple, maple, walnut etc. From meat to salmon and even vegetables are being smoked, these days. That aside, drinks, cheese and ice-creams too are smoked.
16. Artisanal- [at-ti-san-al]
You must be wondering what we’re talking about here. Well, believe it not, when science and art come together and use traditional methods, to create fresh foods on a small scale, artisanal products are produced. From cheese to breads, Mumbai is loving it all. And this summer, our new favorites are artisanal ice creams. Eh? That’s true. Gourmet scoops packed with unique flavors such as chai latte, ginger wasabi, pumpkin, pepper, savory ones etc are so distinct. Besides these, lactose free and sugar free ice creams too Sucres Des Teres, Worli or Bono Boutique, Bandra for such offbeat flavors.
17. Choux- [shooz for 1;shoo for 2]
Originating in France, it was created by the chef Pantanelli in 1540. A Choux Pastry is a light dough which was used to make small cakes. Nowadays, profiteroles, croquembouches, éclairs, French crullers, Parisian gnocchi, dumplings, and churros amidst other things are made from it. So, even if you are unfamiliar with all these names, we’re know that just like us you too will not be able to resist them. Amazing what butter, water, flour and eggs can do, right? So, find little bites of heaven at Le15 Patisserie in Mumbai is our go-to for all such delicicies.
18. Sea vegetables
Ever heard of arame, kelp, agar agar, Nori, etc? We’ll tell you about them. These days, most of us are trying to avoid processed foods, for all the right reason off course. In that case, many are adding some sea vegetables to their diet. Apart from being filled with nutrients, such versatile veggies are used by Asians to improve metabolism and assist anti-aging too. Now here’s the best part – they are simple to cook and can also be eaten raw. So, besides, health stores you can pick them from http://www.health-mall.in/ too.
19. Demi Glace
Have you come across a rich, glossy brown sauce accompanying meat or vegetables? Do you know what it is? We’ll tell you – often confused with the process of de-glazing, it’s neither a gravy nor a juice. “Demi-glace” is actually a brown stock reduced by prolonged simmering which is then mixed with the French Espagnole sauce and seasoned with dry wine or sherry. We’re feeling hungry already, are you?
20. Foie Gras (fwa-gra)
You’ve surely seen it on a menu of a fancy restaurant. For those of you who are clueless about what it is, disclaimer: You might get a wee bit grossed out here. Translated literally as ‘fatty liver’, this French delicacy comes from duck or geese that are specially fattened by feeding them corn several times a day. and is typically served with steak, dried fruit compote, etc. Willing to try?
To cut a long story short, if you feel smarter already, then we’re hoping you will not remain tongue-tied anymore and make sure to use all the foods terms that you’ve discovered.
Written by Amaira Chhabria