Food's Most Misused Word
Food's most misused word is Gourmet. Not only is it misused, it is overused. As Americans, we think of Gourmet food as something prepared by a 5-star chef, or at least a professional. Mostly we just imagine gourmet food as being expensive. Just thinking about the word Gourmet makes me think of the Mansion at Turtle Creek Restaurant in Dallas. Very fine food, excellent service, and a big bite out of my wallet. Now that food was gourmet. Let's see some definitions to find out this mystery.
So we have two basic definitions: a noun and an adjective. A gourmet is a person of discriminating taste. Gourmet food is one prepared to the highest quality or using special efforts or presentation. And here is why I think that this word is misused.
By those definitions, I am a gourmet when it comes to Barbecue and Mexican food. I am extremely discriminating when it comes to barbecue, especially brisket. I know what's good and what's bad, and I know what is the best. By this definition, almost everyone is a gourmet. Heck, someone could be gourmet on fast food french fries.
Not only am I a gourmet, I cook gourmet food, especially my barbeque. According to the definitions, gourmet food is any that is prepared to highest quality or using special presentation. Both of those are very subjective. If I cook a chicken fried steak and I think it's delicious, then that is gourmet food prepared to its highest quality ... mine. The wiki definition talks about using special efforst or art in presentation or preparation. Hell, it takes me 12 hours to cook a brisket with constant maintenance and observation on the temperature, smoke, and glaze. That's pretty special, if you ask me. And it's darn special when you put it in your mouth.
But when it comes to ... oh let's say ... cakes and cookies, my food is definitely less than gourmet. But I am a gourmet when it comes to eating cakes and cookies. Very discriminating.
So what's your gourmet food? Everyone has one.