Sunday, October 31, 2010


Cooking snobs
two of these chefs are smug and then there's that other smiling one who apparently cooks with wine...

They are snobs because they know their way around a recipe, a cook book and a kitchen.  I know you don't aspire to be a snob but do you ever look at a recipe and wonder what is al dente, antipasto, ceviche, béchamel, papillote, sauté ...

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Today I came upon at a recipe called Lamb Tagine ... what I saw was a bowl  of roasted dark meat and vegetables nestled cosily besides a length of couscous and guessed that perhaps it was the tangy taste that gave the dish it's "tagine" name. A little research taught me that I was not even close, a tagine is a type of Morrocan dish or the heavy clay, domed pot used in food preparation. My inner smart-ass wondered why all the mystery, just call it slow cooked lamb, but really, I can appreciate the history lesson here.  Every cooking term contains a little story of style and or region of the world deserving of appreciation as well as the opportunity to be a tiny bit of a cooking snob worthy of your salt, even if only in conversation.  Once while watching ol' what's her name ,  I found myself consorting with the tv over what a snot I thought she was when she spoke of crystal bobeches.   Not really a cooking term, bobeches, but she was setting her table for a meal and for a few minutes I didn't have a clue what she was talking about I looked them up and discovered that bobeche really is the a fabulous term to describe a bobeche.  Otherwise you'd have to refer to it as that candle ring that catches melting candle wax and keeps it from dripping on your heirloom table cloth. So, ok, I would rather say bobeche, and touché Martha, but I still think you're kinda ické.

Culinary Terms
Lamb Tagine Recipe
You want to be worth your cooking salt, so look up culinary terms (this link offers a pretty extensive and alphabetized resource)  when following recipes and you'll not only have an interesting conversational tidbit, but when you're deciding on whether to make that chicken florentine you will already know that this dish calls for spinach because any recipe speaking of florentine is speaking of spinach.

This Lamb Tagine Recipe is from Woman's Day magazine, <~link you can make it in a slow cooker.  This recipe calls for dried fruit, I'm not a fan so I leave it out and continue on in my inauthentic way. Do what you like and know that when you see "tagine" you are slow cooking.

(click paragraph as link)