Monday, April 30, 2007

Truth in Labelling

We'll be rolling out for Virginia in a couple of weeks and one thing I look forward to is being close enough to the Atlantic that cod will be a pretty standard fish again.

Living here you get a lot of catfish and some tilapia. The tilapia isn't bad, but the catfish can often have an odor one can taste.

In fact, Jaru informed me that in Taiwan the word for catfish means garbage fish -- and that she was a little surprised that we actually eat the garbage fish here in the States. Frankly, I'm a little surprised too.

Garbage fish is not the only highly accurately named food the Chinese have.

A while back I asked Jaru what the Mandarin word for MSG was, figuring that it was a staple of Chinese food and that they likely haven't been using the chemical term for untold centuries.

Before I continue, I'd like to mention one little anecdote: Jaru came back from eating at a restaurant and she was feeling a little ill -- like her blood pressure was amped. She suspected the restaurant was using MSG. She suspected this because the food tasted too good.

Which brings me back to the Chinese name for MSG -- The Essence (Chi/Soul) of Flavor.

No comments: