Kitchen

Food, Fitness, Health
Food is an important part of a balanced diet (Fran Lebowitz)

Actually, we’re having Ethiopian Hen this year

Thanksgiving turkey boy vintage

There’s nothing like a Meleagris Gallopavo with all the trimmings for Christmas (or Thanksgiving). That’s a turkey to you and me. Or a twrci if you’re Welsh and like spelling things oddly for the sake of it.

I’m sure you know why turkeys are called turkeys. They came to England from America, so they should really be called Americas. But they looked a bit like Guinea Fowl, which came not from Guinea but from Madagascar, via Turkey. So the English decided to call turkeys Turkey Fowl … then dropped the fowl. And the Americans followed.

But that’s nothing compared to continental Europe where the Greeks call turkeys ‘French Chickens’ and Croatians call them ‘Peruvians’.

In some versions of Arabic, turkeys are ‘Ethiopian Hens’. But they’re ‘Dutch Chickens’ in Malay.

No wonder your typical turkey looks a bit manic.

Talking of its appearance, the turkey is known as a ‘Seven-faced Bird’ in Japanese, because it allegedly has seven facial expressions. That’s quite a few more than some Hollywood actors I could name.

Over in China, they call it a ‘Fire Chicken’ because of its orange head. But it’s not a chicken, obviously, despite the Tamils, who call it a ‘Sky Chicken’ and Urdu speakers, who see it more as an ‘Elephant Chicken’.

Meanwhile in Swahili, the poor thing is a ‘Great Duck’.

Thankfully, some languages are more sensibly onomatopoeic. The Persian word is ‘Booghalamoon’, which does sound a bit like a turkey gobbling. Sort of.

And in Geordie and Scots, it’s a ‘Bubblejock’ (or ‘Bubblycock’ I’ve since discovered).

Yes – it does sound like a terrible Grindr pseudonym, but it’s for real, as in: Her Grace turned to him and said, ‘Rax me a spaul o’ that bubbly jock.’ (1862)

I have no idea what that means and I’m not sure I want to.

As for the Turkish word for turkey (the bird), well, it’s ‘Hindi’. No idea why. And the Hindi word for turkey is ‘Tarki’, which sounds more like an otter to me.

Pass me another chocolate liqueur.

Jalapeño Question

Q – Why did the jalapeño wear a jumper? A – Because it was a little chilli.

Self-Indulgent Health Update

As part of an occasional series, which prevents me from boring you in real life, here’s an exciting health round-up. I had my annual Harefield check-up the other day and the consultant said my heart is sounding ‘beautiful’. I do…

Tarte au Chat

‘That looks like a nice tart,’ beamed the nice French lady in Maison Bertaux looking at my iPhone wallpaper pic. ‘Did you bake it yourself?’ ‘No,’ I replied. ‘It’s my cat.’ On closer inspection, she realised that it was indeed…

Breaking News – Kermit Ousted

Thanks for your concern about the Kermit kitchen kerfuffle. You’ll be pleased to know it’s now restored to tasteful olive green.

My Kitchen Looks Like Kermit

As you know, I have an olive-coloured kitchen. And I decided I’d give it an extra coat today. So I bought some matt Olive paint, which had an olive-coloured tin with an olive-coloured sample on it. But was it olive-coloured?…

The Great Air Freshener of Huddersfield

Thank you to my friend Loz for alerting me to the fact that I’m not the only person with a frightening air freshener. Apparently, he was on Huddersfield railway station recently and noticed what appeared to be smoke billowing from…

New Pet

The new pet arrived last week and lives on a shelf in the kitchen. It is ….. an Air Wick Freshmatic – an automatic air freshener, which sprays once every 18 minutes and also when you walk through the door.…

Where’s The Sonic Food Mixer?

food machine in early Dr Who episode I was watching Dr Who with Mum the other day. And, totally out of the blue, she asked whether the TARDIS had a kitchen. Weirdly, just a few seconds later, Matt Smith told…

Spag Blog

Major bust-up in the literary world this week. I almost came to blows with my novelist pal Henrietta Bond about a reference to Spaghetti Bolognese in her new book Control Freak, out soon. As far as I’m concerned, the correct…

Worst Cold Ever

I’ve just had the worst cold ever. Literally. It was literally the very worst cold anyone has ever had. It was, indeed, the worst cold ever, ever, ever. Never has there been a cold worse than it. It was the…

Gelling

I was out for dinner the other day and my friend K observed that a nearby couple had gelled as soon as they’d sat down. ‘Yes – they do seem very close,’ I said. ‘No,’ said K. ‘I meant they…