The Florid Prose of Food

CLICK ABOVE TO PLAY MUSIC

Music – “Food Glorious Food” from On Top Of Spaghetti by Juice Music. Released: 2008.

I recently stumbled across a brief article about a dinner for the British children’s charity, “Ark”, held in June, 2011. Supporters of the charity eagerly looked forward to one of the early appearances of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (aka William and Kate) at the event and it was well attended. Dinner for the event was a pricey ₤10,000 per person, which of course, benefited the charity.

The menu was somewhat florid in its’ descriptions and punctuated with numerous adjectives to highlight the esoteric ingredients, how they were caught, how they were cooked and more. I realize that this was not a typical “restaurant menu”, but here it is:

Carpaccio of Maldivian long line caught yellow fin tuna

Fanning an island of Rio Grande Valley avocado crème fraiche, topped with young coconut, with splash of Goan lime, coriander and sprinkled with toasted organic sesame seeds

Carpaccio of Yellow Fin Tuna

Carpaccio of Yellow Fin Tuna

Avocado (creme fraiche?)

Avocado (creme fraiche?)

Goan Lime Pickle (Is this a 'splash' of Goan lime?)

Goan Lime Pickle (Is this a ‘splash’ of Goan lime?)


(Please note that the Rio Grande Valley traverses through Texas, New Mexico and Colorado. The avocados are only grown in Texas, so why not be more specific as long as you’re going to these lengths? Also, I could find no mention of a species of lime known as ‘Goan’, but rather only as a term used to describe the region where Goan lime pickle is made. I don’t know what a ‘splash’ of Goan lime is)

Pacific Ocean black cod fillet
And-glazed with a Japanese tamari and manuka honey reduction. Delicately balanced on a sumptuous organic pearl barley risotto, hand in hand with a delightful English courgette flower beignet, teriyaki jus

Manuka Honey

Manuka Honey

Pearl Barley Risotto

Pearl Barley Risotto

Risotto: http://gravatar.com/mamacookblogspot

(A black cod fillet with soy sauce and honey, sitting on top of barley risotto, with a flower beignet on top)

Courgette Flower

Courgette Flower

OR
Roasted fillet of Australian Kobe beef

Australian Kobe Beef

Australian Kobe Beef

Maris Piper Chips

Maris Piper Chips

Nestling in a Kent garden pea puree, temptingly accompanied by a succulent spinach and onion compote, to die for triple-cooked Maris Piper chips and Indonesian long pepper sauce

(Expensive piece of beef in pureed peas, with spinach and onions, chips and hot sauce)

Hereford organic blackcurrant soufflé

Blackcurrant Souffle

Blackcurrant Souffle

Snuggled up with a swirl of Kentish apple and sorrel sorbet, Kentish apple blossoms perched on top, with crunchy Turkish hazelnut crumble

Apples from an Orchard in Kent, UK

Apples from an Orchard in Kent, UK

(Blackcurrants in apple and sorrel sorbet, apple blossoms on top and hazelnut crumble) (snuggled up?)

Turkish Hazelnuts

Turkish Hazelnuts

I am bemused by the verbs and adjectives used in describing the menu items:
“fanning”, “delicately balanced”, “sumptuous”, “nestling”, “to die for”, “snuggled up”, “perched on top”…you get the idea. While I love to read, I much prefer to also see a photograph of what my dinner plate is going to look like after I order it, artistic license notwithstanding. No wonder today’s restaurant menus are so huge and unwieldy.

Speaking of restaurants and largesse, I learned that the largest number of menu items on a restaurant menu (currently the Guinness World Record holder), is the Mofarguru restaurant, in Budapest. As of 2005, a total of 1,810 items are listed on the 192-page menu! I’d love to see their kitchen!

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About vintagecookbookery

Cookbook lover and collector with a burgeoning collection of cookbooks. Reading and researching food trends, history of cooking techniques and technological advances in cooking, what we eat and why and cookbooks as reflectors of cultures is a fascination for me. As of November 7th, 2013, I hold the current Guinness World Record title for the largest collection of cookbooks: 2,970 at the official count on July 14th, 2013 (applaud now, thank you very much!) The current (unofficial) number is now 6,124. What next? More shelves!
This entry was posted in Cookbooks, Cooking, Cooking and Social History, Eating, Food Trends, Menu Planning, Restaurant Menus, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The Florid Prose of Food

  1. Thanks for pointing that out…..I didn’t see any link, when I located the photo. It really looks delicious!

  2. Hi, the barley risotto photo is from my blog. I don’t really mind you using it in this context but if you do so, please can you link to my blog so people can find the recipe? Thanks.

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