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Help me with this term please, 'a muse bushe'

iL Divo Jun 24, 2007 07:53 AM

My question is, what is it? I think I know but can not find a single thing on the Internet where it describes the term. Maybe I'm spelling it incorrectly but still google should be able to identify it and pull up pages but no luck.

Is there a place where I can read about it. If so please post, sorry for my stupidity but this is driving me bats.

TIA

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  1. Cheflambo RE: iL Divo Jun 24, 2007 07:57 AM

    Amuse bouche is a French expression loosely translated (like everything else in that language) as an appetiser, or something to "amuse" your "bouche" (mouth).

    3 Replies
    1. re: Cheflambo
      maria lorraine RE: Cheflambo Jun 25, 2007 05:34 PM

      This started me wondering the difference between amuse bouche and amuse geule, both
      French expressions for the same thing. Sort of.

      In French, amuse bouche means literally "it amuses the mouth." The French were using amuse-bouche as a word for appetizers when English speakers embraced the culinary term almost a quarter of a century ago.
      The French are more likely to use their term amuse-geule for those tasty tidbits, however.
      In English amuse-bouche has a special meaning. It's not just any appetizer! Typically, it's a tiny complimentary one...a tiny beet-puree-filled taco; a tiny square of halibut-and-salmon cake; fig molasses on a tiny cube of goat cheese."
      http://www.spellingbee.com/glance/for...

      1. re: maria lorraine
        AnneInMpls RE: maria lorraine Jun 25, 2007 06:10 PM

        I was taught that "bouche" is the refined word for mouth, and "guele" is a less polite synonym (it's more like "gullet"). But I'm not a native speaker, so take my comment with un peu du sel.

        In any case, it's a tasty little tidbit that usually makes my mouth smile!

        Anne

        1. re: AnneInMpls
          maria lorraine RE: AnneInMpls Jun 25, 2007 06:31 PM

          The difference between polite and not being so is that when the words amuse and geule are *combined* the expression means little appetizer, but for the French this has a special connotation different from the [implied free] amuse bouche.
          More info at: http://fodorstravel.com/forums/thread...

          Will Owen has more to say below. Scroll down.

    2. bitsubeats RE: iL Divo Jun 24, 2007 08:10 AM

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amuse_bo...

      you have to spell it correctly, first (:

      also, exactly what cheflambo said...its something to amuse the mouth and it's usually ONE bite of food

      2 Replies
      1. re: bitsubeats
        monavano RE: bitsubeats Jun 24, 2007 04:14 PM

        Well I think the OP recognizes that the word may have been misspelled, so no need to rub it in. While we're in the mood for corrections, it is not one bite; although it may be that size it is not defined as such. It is, in its' most pure form, a little tease from the chef. The amuse should give the diner a sense of anticipation for what's to come. It should showcase the talent of the chef.

        1. re: monavano
          bitsubeats RE: monavano Jun 24, 2007 04:46 PM

          I wasn't rubbing it in...thats what the smile was for, I was being sarcastic

          see? (:

      2. flourgirl RE: iL Divo Jun 24, 2007 09:18 AM

        Don't feel bad. Many years ago, my husband and I ate at a friend's new restaurant, along with some other family members. So we're all presented with this little plate with this one teensy tiny little bite of food on it. None of us knew from an "amuse bouche" at the time and we were all puzzled and, well, amused, at the gesture. I can still hear us all going on about it, with comments like "what the heck is this?", "what's the point?" and "why bother?" It wasn't until quite a long time later that I learned what an amuse bouche is, and I still get a little uncomfortable when I think about that memory.

        4 Replies
        1. re: flourgirl
          w
          witnessprotection RE: flourgirl Jun 24, 2007 10:17 AM

          And here's some pronunciation help: ahmewse booosh, where the "ah" is short and the "ooo" is long. They're usually complicated and wonderful treats, prepared at the whim of the chef, to get you rolling on the meal to follow.

          1. re: witnessprotection
            l
            Luwak RE: witnessprotection Jun 25, 2007 05:59 PM

            And how does one pronounce "geule?"

            1. re: Luwak
              Will Owen RE: Luwak Jun 25, 2007 06:14 PM

              Kinda like "gyull", only subtler and more French. "Gyull" will do if nobody expects you to have a good French accent.

              My wife, who DOES expect me to have a good accent whether I can speak it or not, insists that "amuse bouche" is borderline offensive, as polite French people don't talk about their mouths. Geule refers to the face, which is mentionable. Things have probably loosened up a bit nowadays, though.

              1. re: Will Owen
                s
                Steve RE: Will Owen Jun 26, 2007 06:15 PM

                I disagree with your pronunciation help. I wouldn't add the 'y' at all. Without being able to hear a perfect pronunciation, it's best to keep it simple and just say 'gull,' or if you want to be perfect, imitate the 'u' in 'put.' This gives you the 'eu' combination, as in 'un peu,' meaning 'a little.'

                My own translation of the French word 'geule' is the slang English word 'mug.' It is sometimes used in French to describe some an anonymous guy loitering on the street or hanging around the bar - just like the word 'mug' in English has both meanings: 'face' as well as a neighborhood toughie. As a term, amuse geule is a bit more clever and whimsical than amuse bouche. I had never heard the latter until restaurants in the US started using it widely.

        2. formerlyfingers RE: iL Divo Jun 24, 2007 03:56 PM

          Chef Rick Tramonto from Chicago, of Tru Restaurant, most notably, has a cookbook available called "Amuse Bouche". He describes it simply and effectively as "a little bite of delight before the meal begins."

          1. rworange RE: iL Divo Jun 24, 2007 04:43 PM

            Here are some articles on Chow, The first link has pictures
            http://www.chowhound.com/stories/10122
            http://www.chowhound.com/stories/10288

            1. alanstotle RE: iL Divo Jun 24, 2007 09:28 PM

              Although it was probably not an amuse bouche in the technical sense, I recall once having lunch at a tea room somewhere in the suburbs north of Dallas, Texas that served, before the meal, an espresso cup filled with a small amount of a warm, somewhat-spicy, beef broth & tomato juice mixture. It probably acted on the palate much like an amuse bouche does.

              2 Replies
              1. re: alanstotle
                yayadave RE: alanstotle Jun 24, 2007 09:58 PM

                I think you had the real thing - amuse bouche.

                1. re: yayadave
                  Debbie M RE: yayadave Jun 25, 2007 12:35 PM

                  Although sometimes they just call it "a gift from the chef"!

              2. Amuse Bouches RE: iL Divo Jun 25, 2007 04:51 PM

                Usually a small bite served before the meal, and often my favorite part!

                1 Reply
                1. re: Amuse Bouches
                  b
                  beevod RE: Amuse Bouches Jun 26, 2007 05:59 AM

                  It's the culinary equivalent of a French kiss.

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