COLUMNS

On the Lighter Side: Food Definitions

Joe Guilbeau

Coffee: Ethiopia is thought to be the motherland of the first coffee beans, but though the ages, found their way to Brazil and Columbia – the two largest coffee producers today. In 2022, plantations abound throughout other South and Central American countries, Cuba, Hawaii, Indonesia, Jamaica and many African nations.

Joe Guilbeau

The coffee plant is actually a small tree with a fruit called “the coffee cherry.” Growing and tending these coffee trees is a labor-intensive process because unripe blossoms (green) and ripe red cherries can occupy a tree simultaneously, necessitating hand-picking the fruit.

The coffee cherry’s skin and pulp surround two beans enclosed in a parchment-like covering. Once these layers are discarded, the beans are cleaned, dried, graded and hand-inspected for color and quality. The green beans are then exported, leaving the roasting, blending and grinding to be done at their destination.

The best coffee is considered to come from Colombia.

Caesar salad: A salad consisting of greens (classically Romaine lettuce) tossed with a garlic vinegar dressing (made with Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice), grated parmesan cheese, croutons and a coddled egg and sometimes anchovies.

This is said to have been created in 1924 by Italian Chef Caesar Cardini, who owned a restaurant in Tijuana, Mexico.

Marinade: A seasoned liquid in which foods such as meat, fish and vegetables are soaked (marinated) to absorb flavor and, in some instances, to be tenderized. Most marinades contain an acid (lemon juice, vinegar or wine) and herbs or spices. The acid ingredient is especially important for tough cuts of meat because it serves as a tenderizer.

Because most marinades contain acid ingredients, the marinating should be done in a glass, ceramic or stainless-steel container – never aluminum. Food should be covered and refrigerated while it marinates.

Bread pudding: A simple baked dessert made with cubes or slices of bread, saturated with a mixture of milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla and spices. Chopped fruit, such as pineapple or nuts, can also be added.

Bread-and-butter pudding is typically made buttering the bread slices before adding the liquid mixture. Both may be served hot or cold with cream or a dessert sauce. I know a lady who makes the best bread pudding in town.

Snow crab is indigenous to North Pacific and Canada’s East Coast and can measure up to 3 feet across. Its white flesh is tinged with pink and has a slightly salty flavor. It is a highly valued food crab.

Other Food Notes

Betty White was asked what her secret to live a long life. “Hot dogs and beer.” Roger that.

Boudreaux opened a Cajun restaurant on the moon, but the business was a failure. The restaurant served good food, of course, but it had no atmosphere. OK, I’m paid to be a humorist, right?

I think I’ll sit down in my easy chair and enjoy a good snow apple!