Amazingly stupid

European food and ingredients have become staple food choices for the British. The use of ingredients such as garlic, peppers, avocados, Parmesan cheese and all those other European ingredients that are now taken for granted are relatively new and were still rare in the 1990s.

Half of those named ingredients, avocados and peppers, are actually American.

Jeebus.

57 comments on “Amazingly stupid

  1. The author is a “Reader in Hospitality Studies, Sheffield Hallam University” which tells you all you need to know to go looking for something better to read.

  2. Speaking of the European Union (apparently we’re supposed to be leaving soon), does anyone else wonder if the remainers have panicked and blocked May’s deal because so many Brexiters seemed to be caving to it?

    Does this make us more or less likely to “crash out” on schedule?

  3. Garlic and parmesan (not the best but…) were in widespread use in the 90s. Not in the ’70s but definitely by the 90s.

  4. “were still rare in the 1990s”: oh balls. Stuffed pepper was a staple of my undergraduate refectory in the late 60s. Parmesan was on sale at an excellent cheese counter round the corner from the maths department.

    By the 70s I was certainly eating garlic and avocado routinely. The idiot is wrong by decades.

  5. Parmesan cheese? It’s a fucking style, you fucking mongs. The only reason we don’t produce Parmesan here is that we can’t call it Parmesan because of fucking stupid EU rules, even though there’s people making cheese that basically is fucking Parmesan

    https://www.bookhamharrison.co.uk/twineham-grange/twineham-grange-150g

    Garlic? We fucking grow it here, twats. It’s been growing wild around Cirencester since we were telling Romani to Eunt Domus.

    “And wine drinking has permeated through all social classes.”

    And that’s mostly down to the Australians producing good Chardonnays that gave nasty, sugary German Liebfraumilch a fucking kicking and forced Europe to pull its socks up.

  6. Samuel Pepys buried his Parmesan Cheese to protect it from the Great Fire of London. Dug up again too when the coast was clear.

  7. Well “He holds a Masters Degree in Socio-Anthropology and and PhD in Social Semiotics” which doesn’t seem to have much to do with food or cooking, so what do you expect? Knowledge?

  8. Growing up in Sheffield in the 1970s on benefits we had garlic, peppers, avocados and Parmesan cheese. I would pick all but the cheese out of my Spag Boll.

  9. There are woods in East Lothian full of wild garlic. I grow a years supply of garlic for my household each year in the foreign parts known as east Kent. The avocado I’m having for supper tonight was grown in Mexico.

  10. The author is a “Reader in Hospitality Studies, Sheffield Hallam University” which tells you all you need to know to go looking for something better to read.

    He holds a Masters Degree in Socio-Anthropology and and PhD in Social Semiotics

    It’s a sad moment when a man finally realises he has squandered the best years of his life.

    If this man leaves after Brexit, who will study Hospitality for us?

  11. peppers, avocados, Parmesan cheese and all those other European ingredients that are now taken for granted are relatively new and were still rare in the 1990s.

    They weren’t rare in our middle-class NI house in 1960s; nor was wine with Sunday roast.

    .
    Sheffield Hallam University – contributes nothing to society: close it

  12. And wine drinking has permeated through all social classes

    Be amazed, but we can still drink European wine after Brexit. Worst case scenario if the EU insist on being cunts is you’ll pay 10% more. Not that different from when the nosey middle-class wankers raise alcohol duty, really.

  13. does anyone else wonder if the remainers have panicked and blocked May’s deal because so many Brexiters seemed to be caving to it?

    It’s a power struggle between Fake Brexit and NeverBrexit, so probably.

    Probably also for the best that May doesn’t get a third go at pushing through Fake Brexit, because relying on Tory MP’s to not betray you is like hiring Michael Jackson to watch your kids. You might be okay, but why take the chance?

    The greatest danger to Brexit isn’t that Parliament might contrive to cancel Article 50 (though obviously they might).

    The worst case scenario would be if Brexiters were complicit in certifying the shit sandwich Mrs May brought back from Brussels as “Brexit” – if that bait n switch is successfully pulled off, the game’s up for British democracy.

    BTW – anyone know why, apart from their usual effeminate spinelessness, Tories are so defensive of May? Even the Brexiters largely treat the dozy cow with more deference than poor, hapless John Major got. Can’t be sex appeal – she looks like Wurzel Gummidge after a failed sex change. Do they just like being humiliated?

  14. When I was living in Los Angeles in the 1950s avocado trees were commonly used to provide windbreaks in orange groves. There was no market for the fruit, so it just fell to the ground and rotted.

  15. Back in the late 80s I made a meal for a girlfriend that included a salad that had mangetout.

    She told her friends the next day that she’d had ménage à trois

  16. Thank you BoM4, I didn’t know that parmesan style cheese was made in Great Britain. I’m a fan of making my own pesto, growing basil is easy, cold-pressed rape seed oil infused with garlic or chilli is easy to get, so the main ingredient left to find is pine nuts.
    Will they be cheaper once we’re out of the Customs Union? Will they grow here perhaps? Research required, I suppose.

  17. The USA is not part of the EU, but we are able to get things that were made in the EU. I’m guessing that European vendors will continue to be willing to do business with you Brits, as well, despite what the Guardian seems to think.

  18. And all the others can be gotten from America also.

    So even if they cut you off, those things will still be available. Because the US isn’t going to stop selling to the UK because Brussels is pissy.

  19. “The immersion by chefs in European gastronomy means they have brought back techniques, ingredients and contacts that have contributed to the UK’s food scene becoming so rich and vibrant. The thriving food scene has also encouraged talented expatriates to invest in the UK restaurant industry and to choose the UK as a place to work.”

    So, with Brexit does this mean the existing trained chefs will forget all those techniques? Or that they won’t teach them? Or that a Brit can’t get a work permit?

  20. “The influx of European workers are not only attracted by the UK food scene, but also by the availability of varied employment opportunities in the hospitality sector. Employers have difficulty in filling vacancies, as there is a lack of qualified chefs in the UK.”

    So, there’s an influx of European workers – but employers are having difficulty filling vacancies? Sounds like those Europeans aren’t coming to work then.

  21. In the tropics these Avos grow like weeds. My uncle had a caravan park in Tzaneen and he wasn’t allowed to let the campers pick avos from the camping site as it would depress the Avo prices..

    I just love avos, it reminds me of my youth, we used to buy two dozen for half a crown (0.125p) virtually nothing, by the roadside whenever we drove past that part of the world to the Kruger.

    My father used to hate it as it had the connection of poor whites and blacks, I used to and still consider it a treat.

    To this day I still look at the source labels whenever I buy them from my local Tescos. And No, I do not consider the South African avos as the best, I prefer the Brazil sourced ones. .

  22. ZT said:
    “When I was living in Los Angeles in the 1950s avocado trees were commonly used to provide windbreaks in orange groves. There was no market for the fruit, so it just fell to the ground and rotted.”

    Best thing to do with it. Most people who eat it are pretentious twats who want an image rather than something with a decent taste.

  23. Good grief, this is in The Conversation, which promises “Academic rigour”. Rigor mortis perhaps.

  24. “So even if they cut you off, those things will still be available. Because the US isn’t going to stop selling to the UK because Brussels is pissy.”

    Given the way the EU is acting I’d be more than prepared to pay for US goods, even if EU ones are available.

    “So, with Brexit does this mean the existing trained chefs will forget all those techniques? Or that they won’t teach them? Or that a Brit can’t get a work permit?”

    I think the EU will be hiding all the recipes behind the Great EU Firewall.

  25. “So, with Brexit does this mean the existing trained chefs will forget all those techniques? Or that they won’t teach them? Or that a Brit can’t get a work permit?”

    At worst it means that the sort of Modern Wank of Noma and El Bulli don’t get here. People who want to eat miniature pine cones and something that looks like gob on your plate will have to go to Europe for it.

    The non-twats who just want a nice meal out will be unaffected.

  26. At worst it means that the sort of Modern Wank of Noma and El Bulli don’t get here. People who want to eat miniature pine cones and something that looks like gob on your plate will have to go to Europe for it.

    +∞
    I would only have added “… and pay £300 for a tasting menu”.

  27. All he is saying is you people are going to PAY DEARLY FOR LEAVING THE EU!

    EU IS LIFE!

    Without ‘all those other European ingredients’ you DIE!

    Repent while you still can!

  28. Well we get all that here in China which I’m pretty sure isn’t in the EU, but I need to check. I can get bottles of Frenchwine from the Metro cash and carry for as little as 3 quid.

    We also get chefs from all over Europe and elsewhere.

    I was eating avocado in the 1980s. I remember my mother would cut one in half and put lemon juice and sugar in the stone cavity, something she must have learned as a child in the 50s or 60s.

    These people are mad.

  29. Just had a double check of our online shopping list with the local supermarket; and all of those are on the shopping list, or available to be added to it.

    Garlic-wise we have a choice of Australian or Chinese (which is about 1/10th of the price); both taste the same but Chinese garlic goes a weird shade of blue when cooked. We therefore use Chinese in darker sauces and eating raw and save the expensive stuff for lighter sauces.

    It can only be through the generosity of the EU that they let people in New Zealand purchase the avocados that we grow here.

  30. Oh, christ on a bike. Why do remoaners think that the UK will be blockaded by the EU, that The Who won’t be able to tour there, that people won’t be able to go to France on holiday, or any of the other mind-garglingly stupid claims they’ve made?

    The pro-EU-gunlaw campaigns in Switzerland have made equally stupid claims – since the EU gunlaw is being foisted on Switzerland via Schengen/Dublin, they’ve gone with the tagline “Keep freedom of travel – YES to EU gun law”, over a picture of Paris. As if, pre 2008, Swiss people were prohibited from travelling over the border….. FFS. If that’s the best argument you’ve got…

  31. It might simply be down to culture. I don’t think my grandmother, god rest her, ever cooked with peppers, or used garlic. ‘Exotic’ to her was when fish fingers went on sale.

  32. I’m in New Zealand at the moment. Champagne widely available and I noticed Danish bacon in the supermarket today, not that I’d eat it under any circumstances.

    More importantly I have discovered that they make some fantastic Chardonnays, and excellent Bordeaux- and Rhône-style reds. Far better than the more familiar Sauvignons.

  33. I’m guessing (hoping) the staff refectory at Sheffield Hallam has a menu that reflects PHE proposed food guidelines for meats, sugar , salt and portion size and all food brought onto the site has to be inspected by food wardens.

  34. Good grief, this is in The Conversation, which promises “Academic rigour”

    Written by the same people who came up with the “German Democratic Republic”.

    The pro-EU-gunlaw campaigns in Switzerland have made equally stupid claims – since the EU gunlaw is being foisted on Switzerland via Schengen/Dublin, they’ve gone with the tagline “Keep freedom of travel – YES to EU gun law”, over a picture of Paris

    A curious choice of an example of gun control, given recent history.

  35. Lets have a piece about the EU treachery Tim.? After all Gab Dissenter should work just as well on Contins as on Murph.

  36. So, there’s an influx of European workers – but employers are having difficulty filling vacancies? Sounds like those Europeans aren’t coming to work then.

    I suspect it’s a case of Brits wanting decent food but are not prepared to pay enough for it such that a decent, well-trained chef can afford to live in London. In which case a restaurant opens, after a while the chef quits for a better job (as they are prone to doing), and the owners can’t replace them. I bet half the chefs in London are winging it, following menus and recipes set up by someone who quit and knew what they were doing.

    Anecdata: a mate of mine’s brother in law is a chef in a restaurant in London which became The Next Best Place To Be Seen in all those lists which come out. It became famous, won all sorts of awards. But the chef was paid a pittance, all the proceeds went to the owner. He didn’t quit because he’s a bit of a dullard and he’s never going to leave the UK, but you can imagine an internationally mobile European chef being out of there in a jiffy.

  37. Richie bollocks #41,598

    “Phil Butler says:

    Like Bill Hughes, I shop with discretion, avoiding the well-known companies who generally offend on more than just tax manipulation. We know that Amazon, apart from avoiding tax, has actively destroyed book stores. We can avoid the egregious companies…

    Reply

    Richard Murphy says:

    I agree”

    Spud sells his books on Amazon.

  38. @MC in NZ: and there is, or was, wunnerful Riesling to be had from Martinborough, to wit Margrain. Pleasant spot to stay, too.

    For Pinots we liked Central Otago, for meatier reds Hawkes Bay.

  39. What about this part of the article?

    If I am right in believing food and cuisine to be an expression of culture, then Britons are European.

    Surely you could better say:

    If I am right in believing food and cuisine to be an expression of culture, then Britons are Indian.

    I bet there’s more curry houses in the UK than European restaurants. We should become a part of India.

  40. Pretty much any NZ wine is likely to be better than the old world equivalent, certainly at the same price point. Why would anyone buy champagne there, when NZ fizz is so much better and half the price? (Answer: Veblen good).

  41. @DJ
    WTF is ‘European’ food and cuisine? Practically every nation (nay region) has their own distinct cuisine. I’m familiar with Italian, French, Spanish, … but there isn’t much overlap, nor would anyone want there to be.

    And a similar statement can be made about culture (in the sense of how people behave and expect others to behave, rather than art, sculpture, music) more generally.

  42. We know that Amazon, apart from avoiding tax, has actively destroyed book stores

    Has he contacted the police? This sounds at best like serious criminal damage.

  43. If I am right in believing food and cuisine to be an expression of culture, then Britons are European.

    They really are this unbelievably shallow. They’d sell their country (or rather give it away) in exchange for foreign food., even though the food would be there regardless.

  44. @Rob

    And we know, of course, that book stores are quite free to set up on-line branches on Amazon.

    As, of course, is any small business.

    It’s a complete lack of understanding of how Amazon works to think that Amazon makes everything that gets sold on Amazon.

  45. MC in NZ,

    “More importantly I have discovered that they make some fantastic Chardonnays, and excellent Bordeaux- and Rhône-style reds. Far better than the more familiar Sauvignons.”

    NZ makes a lot of classy wine now. I used to drink Burgundy on special occassions, but the price has just gone crazy. £20 gets you something pretty average. Same money on an NZ Pinot Noir gets you a much better wine.

    Julicher Pinot Noir from Martinborough, if you can find it.

  46. Amazon is a market place, just like the cobbled square outside my flat. But we all know Tuppence doesn’t like markets.

  47. Chris Miller,

    “WTF is ‘European’ food and cuisine? Practically every nation (nay region) has their own distinct cuisine. I’m familiar with Italian, French, Spanish, … but there isn’t much overlap, nor would anyone want there to be.”

    I would say there are overlaps because cuisine is generally about what is available and what’s available 5 miles either side of the German/Danish or French/Belgian border is rather similar.

    But this also makes “European cuisine” a nonsense. There’s some overlaps between Greek and Turkish food, Moorish influences on the food in Southern Spain.

    When people ask me to explain why I want to leave the EU, I can’t really produce numbers, but my gut feeling is that we’ve moved from being Eurocentric to more global and this really shows in our food. In the 70s and 80s we saw a larger influence on our cuisine by France and Italy, but we now have Japanese, Thai. In the not-especially-cosmopolitan Swindon, there’s a Brazillian, Nepalese, Japanese, Moroccan, Indian* and a Caribbean restaurant. And our wine comes from all over the world now, not France and Germany. It might have once fitted a lot of our trade, but it doesn’t feel like it now. It actually feels quite parochial.

    * as in, actually Indian food rather than Bangladeshi.

  48. @Rob “Worst case scenario if the EU insist on being cunts is you’ll pay 10% more.”
    No, it’ll take your own bunch of cunts to achieve that. But, then, the same bunch of cunts make a bottle of plonk twice the price I can buy it for.

  49. Parmesan, Parmesan?

    Try Idiazabal from the Spanish Basque Country. Made from the milk of local Latxa sheep.

    Young, mature, or Parmesan mature. Natural or smoked. 100% delicious everytime. I mill it instead of Parmesan.

    http://www.idiazabalturismo.com/es/la-tienda-de-idiazabal-turismo/product/43-queso-idiazabal-j-aranburu-elkartea.html
    (You can get it cheaper). I bought there last time.

    The cheese is protected by a Denominación de Origen.

    Al the producers here:
    https://www.quesoidiazabal.eus/

    Many are shepherds or small producers. Big producers are still small.

    Wicked!

  50. “I would say there are overlaps because cuisine is generally about what is available and what’s available 5 miles either side of the German/Danish or French/Belgian border is rather similar.”
    #1 son currently lives about that far on the German side of the German/French border, and insists that the food on the French side is vastly better. He speculates that it’s not just the cooking, but that the French are willing to spend more on better quality ingredients. And you should hear him go on about the poor quality of the veg in the German shops.

  51. @NDReader

    Interesting. I guess Aldi & Lidl UK sell better quality food than their German parents.

    Does your son agree?

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