Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

Pen Point – What is an Appetizer?

pen point 03KENTUCKY (7/4/13) – SurfKY News is pleased to introduce a new weekly column to our readers. This column, Pen Point, is authored by Rita Dukes Smith, and covers a variety of subjects with various angles. Some will be amusing, some inspiring, and others intriguing and informative. Without further ado, we present this week’s Pen Point.
 
Why do cooks, chefs and restaurants continue to have an appetizer category when most items on the menu are not "appetizing?" Now, I don't mean they don't taste good. They do.
 
Anything covered with cheesy goodness is delicious to me. I'd probably eat grasshoppers if they were covered in asiago cheese. Really, would you ever consider eating macaroni by itself? Not me. Cook it with some cream cheese, a little cheddar and throw in some Swiss for good measure, and I'll go back for seconds.
 
Today's appetizers, however, are quite filling.
 
Fried calamari, spicy chicken wings with blue cheese dipping sauce, crab cakes or mini hamburgers is more filling than appetizing to me. In fact, if you batter dip and deep fry anything, it becomes very filling.
 
I believe when the concept of the meal courses were conceived back in the early ages, the appetizer round was likely something like a cup of broth or celery with lemon juice and a sprinkle of garlic salt. Now, that will make you hungry.
 
Celery with lemon wakes up the taste buds and makes you want more. It gets the stomach engine started. It's one of those zero-calorie foods that takes more energy to digest than ingest. Now, that's an appetizer.
 
I was thinking about this last night as I was watching "Chopped", on the Food Network. It was an episode featuring a contest between home cooks instead of professionals. In the show's competition, each contestant must create a dish starting with the appetizer and ending with the dessert using the surprise basket ingredients they've been provided. Therein lies the rub. Try to make something appetizing out of a guppy and some marshmallows.
 
While some would malign their school lunches to being that bad, I only have knowledge of my alma mater's dining experience.
 
At Bremen High School, in Muhlenberg County, KY, we had some of the best cooks in the world. We ate high on the hog, so to speak. BHS's turkey and dressing dinners were regionally famous and during a fall festival, and people would line up down past the gym waiting to get their take out plates.
 
I can only remember having the now standard "pizza slice" a couple of times when I went to high school. We feasted daily on meatloaf with stewed potatoes, cornbread, peas and peach cobbler, all freshly made each day. Those are comforting childhood memories of a bygone era.
 
Yet the school lunch menu terminology lives on and is even seen on shows like "Chopped" and on some restaurant menus.
 
Take "banana halves". That's a fancy way of saying, "Half of a banana."
 
Gelatinized Fruit Nectar with Peach Slices — translation: Jell-O with some peaches cut up in it. Hey, I like it, but it is what it is.
 
I once created a dessert for an Italian themed office pot luck. I used my own strawberry dessert creation that I had never given a name. So for the dinner, I asked my Italian friend to translate my concoction into Italian. Of course, she needed me to give it a name to translate, so I said, "Oh, it's a strawberry situation."
 
Thus was created the fancy-sounding name for one of my family's favorite dishes — Fragola di Situazione, or, in English, "A Strawberry Situation."
 
Sounds good, no? It's really just angel food cake with white chocolate pudding, strawberries in glaze with whipped topping and nuts.
 
Admittedly, a rack of lamb sounds fancier than sheep ribs, and professionals and amateur chefs like to put their slants on the names.
 
"I have made for you today, a pan-seared capon with potatoes and asparagus tips with a citrus sauce." Translation = "We're having chicken and fried potatoes; asparagus with lemon juice."
 
If you weren't particularly hungry when you started reading this column, maybe you are now.
 
A quick trip to most American refrigerators can result in a nice little cold, summer meal to satisfy that urge.
 
Most of us keep some "hip of pig" in the refrigerator, some cheese slices and wheat bread. Add to your plate some celery sticks, julienned carrots and banana half or halves and you've got lunch.
 
Enjoy.
 
Rita Dukes Smith
Pen Point
 
 
Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources.

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Posted on 2/2/14
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week

October 17, 2014 11067

UK Women's Soccer Welcomes Ole Miss, No. 5/4…

in General Sports For All Sites by UK Athletics
October 14, 2014 3643

Man Tries to Beat Train, Two Life-Lined to…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Hopkins County Sheriff’s Office
October 15, 2014 3106

Family Business, Graphics Pros to Open Friday

in Top News For All Sites by Shawn Freels
October 14, 2014 3082

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Oct. 14, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
October 15, 2014 2997

Chamber Meeting and More Announced

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Dorothy Walker
October 14, 2014 2827

Hopkins County Traffic Advisory

in Hopkins News by Keith Todd
October 15, 2014 2753

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Oct. 15, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
October 15, 2014 2736

Woman Arrested for Domestic Dispute in the Street

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
October 17, 2014 2697

Single Vehicle Collision Results in One Injury

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper S. C. Recke
October 17, 2014 2457

Woman Arrested at Taco Bell for DUI

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department

Trending Now

October 18, 2014 1983

Muhlenberg County Celebrates New Farmer’s Market

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
October 19, 2014 1684

Kentucky Energy Department Releases Virtual Solar…

in General News For All Sites by Dick Brown
October 18, 2014 1522

Happenings and Meetings - Hopkins County

in Hopkins News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
October 18, 2014 1474

Grace Warehouse Hosts Singing Benefit for a White…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
October 18, 2014 1465

Hooked on Science - Bloody Handprint

in General News For All Sites by Jason Lindsey
October 18, 2014 1464

Research Important When Choosing a Charity

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
October 18, 2014 1455

Kentucky's Jobless Rate Plummets to 6.7 Percent;…

in General News For All Sites by Kim Brannock
October 18, 2014 1435

Keeping the Faith - 'Dancing, not Marching'

in General News For All Sites by Ronnie McBrayer
October 18, 2014 1386

How Senior Donors Can Avoid Scams

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
October 18, 2014 992

Ladies Night Out - West

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss