Much ado about…..


Food Quiz.

Posted by gottabkd on Sunday, January 25, 2009

Do you know your shellfish from your German sausage? Professional chefs have a language all their own. Are you fluent in food speak, or would stepping into a hotel kitchen be like moving to a foreign country? Take this culinary terminology quiz and find out.

Get a pen and paper and see how you do.

1. You’re in the kitchen, spatula in hand, when the chef tells you the vegetables haven’t sweated enough. You think:
a) Ugh, I’m not eating THOSE when they’re done
b) OK, I need to let them cook gently in the oil for just a little longer
c) Hmmm, I’d better put the lid on and crank up the heat
d) Right, I’d better boil them vigorously until all the water’s gone

2.A European friend invites you to his place for zakuski. What do you expect to eat?
a) Russian tidbits and ice-cold vodka
b) Turkish-spiced sesame seeds to go with your raki sofrasi
c) Italian egg punch dessert and Marsala Superiore
d) German toasted bread slices and Liebfraumilch

3. You see “sweetbreads” on the menu, but your diet-conscious friend tells you not to touch them. What are they?
a) Sugar-coated bread rolls similar to donuts
b) Pigs’ stomach linings
c) Endocrine glands from cows
d) Small patties of honey and ground buckwheat

4. The waiter rushes in from the dining room and screams, “dab, on the fly!” What does he want the chef to do?
a) Wipe away the red wine a guest has spilled on his clothes
b) Add some dollops of fresh cream to the bowl of strawberries on his tray
c) Not sure, but the chef’s his father, so maybe he meant “dad”
d) Defrost a flounder and cook it as soon as possible

5. The fruitcake recipe calls for two cups of raisins. What should you throw in?
a) Dried Thomson seedless grapes
b) Dried Zante grapes
c) Dried Muscat grapes
d) Any of the above

6. The bride has very specific tastes and asks you to use cochineal to highlight her cake frosting in pink. What is cochineal made from?
a) A species of cactus, Nopalea coccinellifera
b) Pigs’ livers (from the French “cochon” for pig)
c) The crushed bodies of insects
d) A byproduct of brewed beer

7. A work colleague says she had a jerk last Saturday. What do you think?
a) Shame, she’s such a nice girl. Why can’t she find a nice guy?
b) Nice, I wish she’d invited me. Though the food might have been too hot.
c) Weird, I thought she was a picky eater. Can’t see her chewing that dried beef stuff.
d) Hmmm, isn’t that a party game where you have to eat stuff quickly before the plate is jerked away?

8. You arrive for dinner and your date says you’re having dirty rice for supper. What happened?
a) Chopped meaty bits and spices in the rice give it the appearance of being dirty
b) The rice fell on the floor and was scraped back into the bowl
c) You’re having brown rice with the husks still attached
d) The rice has been cooked with soy sauce and has a brown-gray tinge to it.

9. You are cooking dinner for your family of fussy eaters. Between them, they don’t like potatoes, rice, pasta, or bread. What could you give them as a source of carbohydrates?
a) Quark
b) Kielbasa
c) Caponate
d) Quinoa

10. The fashion designer down the street says he’s having a party with lots of ganache. What does he mean?
a) Fancy food of all kinds–it’s a mixture of “gourmet” and “panache”
b) A cooked mixture of chocolate and cream
c) Cold, uncooked summer tomato soup
d) Frozen Italian ice cream made from whole milk and eggs1. The correct answer: B OK, I need to let them cook gently in the oil for just a little longer

Sweating means cooking vegetables in oil over gentle heat so they become soft and their juices are concentrated in the cooking fat. This method of cooking vegetables is most typically used in Europe to create a flavourful base before liquids are added. Traditional methods call for the pan to be covered so the vegetables do not become brown. For other dishes it is useful to cook them covered to start with and then remove the lid to allow the vegetables to slowly caramelize.

Sweating is not to be confused with sautéing (“jumping” in the pan), a French technique involving frying foodstuffs quickly, stirring constantly, over high heat to seal in flavor.

2. The correct answer: A Russian tidbits and ice-cold vodka

Russian zakuski comprise a variety of starters such as anchovies, blini (little pancakes), caviar, cheese, fish, cured meats, and salted cucumbers. Usually, a shot of vodka is followed by a piece of zakuski.

Turkish zahtar (spiced sesame seeds), Italian zabaglione (egg punch dessert), or German Zwieback (double-baked dry toast) might go very well with vodka, but they wouldn’t be traditional combinations, or zakuski.

3. The correct answer: C Endocrine glands from cows

Sweetbreads are made from the thymus and pancreas glands of animals (calves, lambs, and pigs). Many people consider their mild flavor and velvety texture a delicacy. Sweetbreads can be prepared by sautéing, braising, poaching, grilling, frying, or roasting. The Oxford English Dictionary cites the first appearance of the term in print in English in 1565, although it states “the reason for the name is not obvious.”

Sugar-coated rolls similar to donuts are, well, donuts! Stomach lining from a pig is called tripe, and small patties of honey and ground buckwheat are an interesting concept. Maybe you should try making them sometime?

4. The correct answer: D Defrost a flounder and cook it as soon as possible

A dab is a small flatfish native to both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. It is one of several varieties of flounder and has a sweet, lean, firm flesh. Flounders tend to be low in fat and should not be overcooked as this tends to dry out the flesh. They may be cooked in many ways including poaching, broiling, sautéing, and baking.

Flatfish are so called because they have rather flat bodies. Both eyes are located on the upper side and the side facing downward is always much paler in color than the upper side. (If you got this one right, you might have a future in cooking!)

5. The correct answer: D Any of the above

A raisin is just about any variety of dried grapes, including Thomson seedless, Zante, and Muscat. Raisins are usually dark brown in color, rich in iron, contain a variety of vitamins and minerals, and have naturally high sugar content.

Sultanas or “white raisins” are lighter in color, although they may be made from the same grape varieties. They undergo a different drying process that includes treating with sulfur dioxide to retain the golden color.

6. The correct answer: C The crushed bodies of insects

Cochineal is a bright red dye made by extracting pigment (carminic acid) from the crushed bodies of the cochineal bug (Dactylopius confusus). These insects are found on certain species of cactus, especially Nopalea coccinellifera, native to Mexico and Central America. It is necessary to harvest huge quantities of insects to make a very small quantity of dye and, as a result, it is very expensive. A single drop is sufficient to make a bowl of white frosting pink.

These days cochineal has been largely replaced in the kitchen by synthetic products, although it is still used in the laboratory as a biological stain. (If you got this one, you really know your obscure ingredients.)

7. The correct answer: B Nice, I wish she’d invited me. Though the food might have been too hot.

The only thing this girl is guilty of is eating good food. A jerk is a Caribbean-style barbecue in which the meat has been marinated in a green pesto-like mixture of herbs and spices. Very hot peppers are one of the most important ingredients, so you’d better get ready to have your palate set on fire.

Jerky is spiced, dried beef (or deer, elk, or moose) that can be stored for several months safely before eating. It is something of an acquired taste, although those who like it LOVE it.

8. The correct answer: A Chopped meaty bits and spices in the rice give it the appearance of being dirty

The addition of chopped or ground chicken livers and gizzards, onions, and seasonings give white rice a “dirty” appearance in a Cajun (South Louisiana) specialty. This is how dirty rice gets its name. Apparently, the ground giblets impart an excellent flavor. As an alternative to chicken you could try chopping and adding your favorite meat, poultry, or sausage.

9. The correct answer: D Quinoa

Quinoa is a very small ivory-colored grain that cooks like rice, but cooks in about half the time and to about four times the size. It is sometimes called a “super food” because it contains iron, plant protein, potassium, magnesium, and lysine, in addition to carbohydrates. It was once the staple food of the Incas.

Quark is a soft, unripened cheese with the texture and flavor of sour cream; kielbasa is a smoked sausage made from pork; and capanote is a Sicilian vegetable dish usually including cooked eggplant, celery, capers, anchovies, chili peppers, olives, tomatoes, vinegar, and onions.

10. The correct answer: B A cooked mixture of chocolate and cream

While ganache might be a gourmet treat served with panache, it isn’t a combination of those words. Ganache is made by combining semi sweet chocolate with boiling cream and stirring until smooth. Depending on the proportion of each the resulting ganache can be used as a cake glaze, or beaten until fluffy and used as a cake filling or other confectionary delight.

Cold summer tomato soup is gazpacho, and Italian ice cream made from whole milk and eggs is gelato.

My results:
Compliments to the chef!
Food is your first language! Did you grow up in a kitchen? You are on your way to becoming a culinary master. You should pursue a culinary arts degree.


Till Next Time…..

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© 2006-2009 All rights reserved, written for Gottabkd by gottaBKD. Accept no imitations.


2 Responses to “Food Quiz.”

  1. fracas said

    7/10 right for me. What does that mean? I think it means Mr. Frac needs to take me out more often. Knowing more than a few of those means I cook too much for someone who doesn’t like to cook.


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