Seasoning

seasoning

The people of Gaul which is modern day France, part of Belgium, western Germany, and northern Italy, discovered that various foods could be improved by aging them using a process referred to as “saisonner” which means “passing of the seasons” in German. After being conquered by the Normans in 1066, the British adopted this new aging process and referred to it as “seasoning”. With the introduction of Middle Eastern spices brought by returning Crusaders during the 13th century, seasoning took on the meaning of “anything which embellishes the taste of food”

Syrup and Molasses

syrup-and-molasses

Syrup and molasses are not the same thing, but are commonly confused and used interchangeably. Both syrup and molasses are comprised of sugar and have similar textures and uses. Molasses is a byproduct of the sugar making process as it is the syrupy residue left behind after sugar crystals are extracted from sugar cane or sugar beets during the boiling process. Cane syrup is made from sugar cane juice as the juice is boiled down and evaporated to create cane syrup. The types of molasses vary based upon which step of the sugar crystallization process the residue came from. Light molasses is the residue left behind after the first boiling process, while dark molasses comes from the second boiling process. Blackstrap molasses, the residue left after the third boiling is dark and bitter and normally not used for cooking. Cane syrup is referred to as “golden syrup”, “jus de canne” or “sugar cane juice”. Cane syrup is an amber colored liquid, available in light and dark varieties. To prevent crystallization, some cane syrup manufacturers add corn syrup to the product

Wasabi

wasabi

200 years ago, sanitary conditions were very poor in Japan. Clean water was scarce and refrigeration did not exist which posed a problem as fish is a staple of the Japanese diet. The Japanese used wasabi to stave off germs and food poisoning. Wasabi kills Escherichia coli and many other bacterium instantly. Eating raw fish referred to as “maguro” which means “tuna” in English was possible without modern soap and refrigeration because of wasabi. The Japanese also realized that white eyes on a fish mean it’s old, while shiny eyes on a fish indicates that it is fresh