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Misleading Names of Certain Preparations

johnb Mar 30, 2014 05:57 AM

Some traditional dishes have names that lead those not in the know to try them and reject them because, based on the name, they expected something different. For example, any time there appears a thread about Cincinnati chile, some joker will post that he once tried it and it was terrible since it wasn't at all like chili. Well folks, Cincinnati chili is quite different from Texas (or "normal") chili, but that isn't a valid basis to say there's anything wrong with the one you tried.

Another example is New Orleans BBQ shrimp. There is very little if anything that BBQ shrimp has in common with what most people think of when they think BBQ (although I have stumbled across some ghastly versions where somebody actually dumped "BBQ sauce" on cooked shrimp and claimed it was BBQ shrimp -- blech!)

Are there any other examples you can think of where the name of the preparation connotes something unlike what the dish actually is?

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  1. phofiend RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 08:21 AM

    Rocky Mountain oysters
    Chicken oysters
    Welsh rabbit
    Canadian bacon
    Long Island iced tea

    11 Replies
    1. re: phofiend
      kitchengardengal RE: phofiend Mar 30, 2014 10:42 AM

      My sister was at lunch with friends and ordered iced tea. The waiter brought Long Island Iced Tea. It's bad enough when you order iced tea and swig a mouthful of (not - ordered) sweet tea, but this was sweet AND boozy. That was a surprise. She never would try a Long Island Iced Tea after that. I think she was traumatized.

      1. re: phofiend
        Steve RE: phofiend Mar 30, 2014 12:24 PM

        It's Welsh Rarebit, not rabbit. It is sometimes called rabbit either as a mistake or a joke.

        1. re: Steve
          monavano RE: Steve Mar 30, 2014 12:40 PM

          I think that rabbit has been perpetuated for so long, it's acceptable.

          1. re: Steve
            phofiend RE: Steve Mar 30, 2014 02:13 PM

            Not really. The first cited instance of Welsh rabbit is 1725. Rarebit came much later, in 1785, probably a corruption of rabbit. Granted, this is a Wiki article, but it says it better than I can:


            1. re: phofiend
              Steve RE: phofiend Mar 30, 2014 05:59 PM

              Ah, I must be thinking of the places i've eaten since 1785.

              1. re: Steve
                phofiend RE: Steve Mar 30, 2014 06:22 PM

                ;-). Aw, I'm not THAT old.

                1. re: Steve
                  MamasCooking RE: Steve Mar 30, 2014 11:47 PM

                  Thanks for the belly laugh:)

                2. re: phofiend
                  jmckee RE: phofiend Apr 2, 2014 07:56 AM

                  Jane Grigson's "English Food" lays this question to rest. It was originally rabbit, and rarebit became used later. It was a joke at the expense of the Welsh, because apparently the English didn't think they were good hunters, so a Welsh rabbit would have no rabbit at all. "Scotch Woodcock" is a similar jest from a time, she says, that we weren't so aware of other people's feelings.

                  1. re: jmckee
                    flavrmeistr RE: jmckee Apr 2, 2014 08:56 AM

                    That's pretty much what I always heard, that it's pronounced "rabbit". Haven't had it in years.

              2. re: phofiend
                Nayners RE: phofiend Mar 30, 2014 06:52 PM

                I've always known headcheese as hog headcheese. But there's nothing cheese-like about it.

                1. re: Nayners
                  paulj RE: Nayners Apr 2, 2014 10:24 PM

                  Sure there's a similarity. Compare how curds are packed in mold with how the chunks of meat are packed.

                  Most of these names are 'misleading' only to people to take things too literally. Most make sense if you have a bit of imagination or sense of word play.

              3. r
                ricepad RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 09:48 AM

                Shrimp with lobster sauce.

                1. k
                  kagemusha49 RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 09:57 AM

                  Spotted dick
                  Toad in the hole

                  1. kitchengardengal RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 10:44 AM

                    Some people in Indiana call a Sloppy Joe a 'Barbecue'. It's made in a crock pot, for cryin' out loud. How can it be Barbecue?

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: kitchengardengal
                      melpy RE: kitchengardengal Mar 30, 2014 02:21 PM

                      In Central PA pulled beef with BBQ sauce is called beef BBQ.

                      1. re: melpy
                        Nayners RE: melpy Mar 30, 2014 06:56 PM

                        I think once bbq sauce is added, it's called bbq beef, pork, etc. Although not everyone likes barbecue sauce on their barbecued meat. The other thing people confuse is barbecued meat vs grilled.

                        1. re: melpy
                          kitchengardengal RE: melpy Mar 30, 2014 07:52 PM

                          This is made with ground beef and a tomato sauce, not actually BBQ sauce. Like Manwich.

                      2. c
                        ChiliDude RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 10:46 AM

                        I must be the one you're referring to about that Cincinnati abomination.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: ChiliDude
                          johnb RE: ChiliDude Mar 30, 2014 03:23 PM

                          I don't think so. You may not like it, but at least you know what it is. I was talking about folks who order it expecting it to be somewhat like "regular" chili, and are taken aback when they get it and it isn't.

                          1. re: johnb
                            nlgardener RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 06:33 PM

                            It's an unfortunate name for a very savory, wonderful concoction of slurpy goodness. I've been making the same recipe to the letter for 30 years. My only detour is breaking the spaghetti in half before cooking it. Firm, dark red kidney beans a must.

                            Call it anything but don't you "dare" it chili lol!!

                            Feel sorry for anyone who can't get past the nomenclature.

                            Yum. More for me :o)

                            1. re: nlgardener
                              jmckee RE: nlgardener Apr 2, 2014 07:57 AM

                              Oh, nonsense. It's chili. There is no "one" chili.

                              1. re: jmckee
                                monavano RE: jmckee Apr 2, 2014 09:06 AM

                                It's funny to me, that there's so much attention paid to being cosmopolitan when we're abroad, but we're xenophobes in our own country.

                        2. f
                          flavrmeistr RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 02:26 PM

                          An egg cream. There's no egg or cream.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: flavrmeistr
                            firecooked RE: flavrmeistr Mar 30, 2014 06:55 PM

                            Johnny Marzetti.. No Johnny or Marzetti. I hope.

                            1. re: firecooked
                              kitchengardengal RE: firecooked Mar 30, 2014 07:54 PM

                              Comfort food from Marzetti's in Columbus, Ohio. Love that stuff.

                              1. re: kitchengardengal
                                firecooked RE: kitchengardengal Mar 31, 2014 09:04 AM

                                I have only seen it in cafeteria steam trays, where most things are hard to love.

                                1. re: firecooked
                                  kitchengardengal RE: firecooked Mar 31, 2014 05:09 PM

                                  I make my own, so it's delicious!

                            2. re: flavrmeistr
                              melpy RE: flavrmeistr Apr 2, 2014 07:22 AM

                              I would not order one for years because Indidnt know what it was.

                            3. n
                              nosey RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 02:56 PM

                              Maryland Crab Cake or Chicken Maryland (found overseas).

                              1. monfrancisco RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 03:05 PM

                                Yorkshire pudding. Which I love, so it was more puzzling than disappointing.

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: monfrancisco
                                  PhilD RE: monfrancisco Apr 2, 2014 03:49 PM

                                  Not certain what is wrong with Yorkshire Pudding, it's from Yorkshire and is a pudding like a Steak & Kidney pudding or a Pease Pudding. Desserts can be puddings, but not all puddings are desserts.

                                  1. re: PhilD
                                    monfrancisco RE: PhilD Apr 2, 2014 03:57 PM

                                    Turns out I don't know all the pudding permutations in our common (!) language. Thanks for this; I'm going to go take a look at S&K (followed by Pie in my parts) and Pease (unknown except for the nursery rhyme and maybe some Shakespeare).

                                    1. re: monfrancisco
                                      PhilD RE: monfrancisco Apr 2, 2014 04:33 PM

                                      Most savoury puddings in the UK use suet pastry if it's shortcrust it's a pie. That said suet is also used in desserts like "Jam Roly-Poly", Spotted Dick, Sussex Pond Pudding, and boiled sponge puddings with syrup/treacle or fruit in the bottom. Here is a link to lots of recipes:

                                      1. re: PhilD
                                        monfrancisco RE: PhilD Apr 2, 2014 05:56 PM

                                        Thanks again! Much more informative than my wanderings have been . Incidentally, my "unkown" above should have been followed by "to me."

                                2. s
                                  small h RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 04:00 PM

                                  Hot dish is way too vague. An awful lot of things can be served hot in a dish, but most of them are not hot dish.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: small h
                                    sandylc RE: small h Mar 31, 2014 09:02 AM

                                    You must be from Minnesota.

                                    1. re: sandylc
                                      small h RE: sandylc Mar 31, 2014 09:11 AM

                                      No, I'm East Coastern. College roommate was from Mpls, though. Her mother gave me a recipe for tuna hot dish that involved lemon slices and Bisquick. I made it once; it was pretty good.

                                      1. re: small h
                                        flavrmeistr RE: small h Mar 31, 2014 10:10 AM

                                        Hot dish is basically any type of a casserole, usually involving Campbell's Cream-of-what-have- you Soup(aka "Lutheran binder"), and any combination of canned vegetables, hamburger, tuna fish, potatoes, potato chips, noodles...you get the idea. Keeps body and soul together during those long winters.

                                  2. Ruth Lafler RE: johnb Mar 30, 2014 11:47 PM

                                    Chicken fried steak

                                    1. monavano RE: johnb Mar 31, 2014 05:48 AM

                                      Speaking of chicken oysters, how about the Pope's nose?

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: monavano
                                        foodieX2 RE: monavano Apr 2, 2014 10:58 AM

                                        In my family we fight over who gets the popes nose!

                                      2. RUK RE: johnb Mar 31, 2014 06:17 AM

                                        Mincemeat Pie, I don't think Suet is used much as one of the ingredients.

                                        Leberkäse at the German butcher contains neither Liver or Cheese, it is Veal loaf.

                                        1. monavano RE: johnb Mar 31, 2014 06:33 AM

                                          Golabki (Polish stuffed cabbage) = little pigeons.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: monavano
                                            flavrmeistr RE: monavano Mar 31, 2014 06:59 AM

                                            There are these traditional French Christmas cookies my friends' grandmother makes. I can't remember the French, but it translates as "little assholes". They look like tiny cinnamon rolls, quite tasty despite the name.

                                          2. dave_c RE: johnb Mar 31, 2014 11:00 AM


                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: dave_c
                                              monavano RE: dave_c Mar 31, 2014 11:19 AM

                                              You can call it anything and I'll still eat it!
                                              I think diner lingo really fits into this category.

                                            2. q
                                              Querencia RE: johnb Mar 31, 2014 08:09 PM

                                              Do google around for hilarious foreign product names eg soft drinks called Pschit, Pet Sweat, and Pee Cola.

                                              1. b
                                                BuildingMyBento RE: johnb Mar 31, 2014 09:25 PM

                                                rock cake

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: BuildingMyBento
                                                  monavano RE: BuildingMyBento Apr 2, 2014 09:07 AM

                                                  Dirt cake.

                                                  1. re: monavano
                                                    DockPotato RE: monavano Apr 2, 2014 01:46 PM

                                                    Fly Cemetery, pronounced "flea symetry" in Scotland.

                                                    Cookies with raisins as I recall.

                                                    1. re: DockPotato
                                                      kagemusha49 RE: DockPotato Apr 2, 2014 02:29 PM

                                                      Flies graveyards or squashed fly biscuits - aka garibaldi biscuits.

                                                2. k
                                                  kagemusha49 RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 10:27 AM

                                                  Bombay duck

                                                  1. Veggo RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 10:40 AM

                                                    Mississippi mud pie, shoo fly pie, dirty rice, pico de gallo.

                                                    1. k
                                                      kagemusha49 RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 10:53 AM

                                                      Squashed fly biscuits

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: kagemusha49
                                                        chefj RE: kagemusha49 Apr 2, 2014 01:06 PM

                                                        Cat Head Biscuits

                                                      2. Ruth Lafler RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 10:56 AM

                                                        Hot dogs! And hamburgers!

                                                        1. greygarious RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 11:31 AM

                                                          Boston Bluefish - it's pollock, not bluefish

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: greygarious
                                                            Veggo RE: greygarious Apr 2, 2014 12:05 PM

                                                            In Mexico, I prefer to order boquinette rather than what Americans call hogfish!
                                                            My favorite.

                                                          2. c
                                                            chococat RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 04:01 PM

                                                            City Chicken. Just because it's shaped like a drumstick doesn't mean it came from a bird.

                                                            1. Karl S RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 04:08 PM

                                                              Girl Scout cookies. Not made with Girl Scouts.

                                                              1. b
                                                                BuildingMyBento RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 09:39 PM

                                                                popular in Japan: langue de chat

                                                                1. k
                                                                  kagemusha49 RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 09:43 PM

                                                                  Soylent Green - it's made from people!

                                                                  1. chartreauxx RE: johnb Apr 2, 2014 10:16 PM

                                                                    elephant ear
                                                                    ants climbing a tree
                                                                    ants on a log
                                                                    puppy chow
                                                                    pigs in a blanket
                                                                    duck sauce
                                                                    black pudding

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