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Opinions Wanted

What do you think of adding an ingredient project to Home Cooking to help people new to cooking XX cuisine?

Something along the lines of

Ingredient Name (in XXX language), English name or translation, a brief description of the ingredient and some examples of usage, where to find in general, etc

Most important a picture of the ingredient.

The Thread(s) could be titled "The Ingredient Project - XXX Cuisine"

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Example: The Ingredient Project - Korean Cuisine

    Galchi 갈치
    Hairtail, Beltfish, Cutlass fish

    A firm fleshed, moderately fishy, low oil fish that becomes tender when cooked. Popular grilled, fried, or braised.

    Galchi can be found in most Korean markets and many Asian markets in the frozen foods section, and in the fresh seafood section of larger Korean markets.

    1. While I think it's a nice idea, I can see it/them easily becoming overwhelming- like those "whats for dinner" threads that I LOVE but have difficulty ever being able to go back and actually find the recipe I am looking for because the threads are massive!

      1 Reply
      1. re: foodieX2

        That is one of the concerns with this.

      2. I think that this board already takes care of that.

        1. I think it would be great! I have a decent number of specialty grocery stores in my area and there are always many more mystery products than known ones for me. It would be nice to speed up that learning curb a bit!

          I lurk on the cookbook and the dish of the month threads. I tend to be ingredient oriented when deciding what to cook,/buy/eat so I seldom coincide with the monthly project.

          I've often thought a seasonal ingredient of the month would be a fun collaboration too!

          The only negative I see could be a thread getting off focus about sustainability/country of origin, etc.

          1. It would be nice to have language translation for products that are not written in a language we speak. Then, we'd know not only what the product label says but how to use it.

            I also enjoy trying new products and would be more opt to buy something new if I new what it was, how to use it and how it can enhance a dish.

            1. I notice that the Tags feature that used to be accessible via the red box at the foot of the page is gone. That, or something like it, would take care of profiling ingredients. I guess its existence was not well-known and it was not used much. Any feature of this sort would need to be prominently-featured so users know it is there.

              Since there are ingredients which are fundamental to cuisines which are otherwise quite disparate (e.g. salt cod),
              this should not break down along specific cuisine lines. Instead, which cuisines use the ingredient should be included with its description.

              5 Replies
              1. re: greygarious

                I remember the tags and referred to them quite often before they disappeared. The latest redesign appears to have streamlined a great deal of reference type areas that made navigating and pinpointing information easier and faster to access.

                1. re: greygarious

                  What I'd really like to see is the Chow ingredients section brought back into play, with a way for users to contribute to expanding it.
                  It's still here, just impossible to find unless you know where it's at.

                  But if that's not going to happen then something like what I suggested may work, if it doesn't bloat past usability. The bloat factor is what I was thinking of in using a "by cuisine" listing.

                  1. re: hannaone

                    Good job finding that link! It's certainly not readily apparent but it covers just about everything you are proposing, doesn't it? Maybe the only fix needed is to make it really stand out on the main pages of the General Topics and Home Cooking boards.

                    1. re: greygarious

                      Yeah, this section is a very good start to what I would like to see.

                      1. re: hannaone

                        Since it is so hidden away it makes me wonder if Chow has leased it from elsewhere and is going to drop it eventually. Sort of like the restaurant database (if I remember the reason correctly). I'd hate to see a lot of energy put into enriching it and then go through the angst of loosing data again.

                2. It's an interesting idea, and something that has been done elsewhere on the web, but I fail to see how it would fit into the Home Cooking forum or any other forum. You would end up with hundreds of threads or threads with hundreds of posts. It would also be impossible to search.

                  If you're talking about creating a section on Chow, something like the restaurant database, I think that would be a bit perilous since a) nobody goes on Chow and b) look what happened to the restaurant database.

                  There are already lots of resources out there to learn about ingredients. Cook's Thesaurus, Wisegeek, Cooksinfo (formerly Practically Edible) and Gernot Katzer's Spice Pages come to mind.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: SnackHappy

                    Ditto. It wouldn't be utilized here, there are many many places on the internet to learn about/identify ingredients, & it would end up as useless clutter.

                    In addition, let's face it. Chowhound hosts a larger-than-life number of posters who tend to disagree on points of view outside of their own, & there easily could be arguments & disagreements on ingredient descriptions/uses.

                    Not worth it, IMO.

                  2. It sounds like a good idea