The Food Almanac: August 17, 2012

orange-infused flan

In The Food Almanac, Tom Fitzmorris of the online newsletter, The New Orleans Menu notes food facts and saying.

Gourmet Gazetteer
Cream Creek disappoints in that it pours water, not cream, into the Madison River. Its source is among the most remote headwaters of the Mississippi-Missouri rivers, in the little panhandle in extreme southeastern Montana. Cream Creek ends six miles from the Wyoming state line, and just west of the west entrance of Yellowstone National Park. So what Cream Creek lacks in creaminess it makes up for in scenery. Quite a few restaurants are two and a half miles away in West Yellowstone. The one that grabs me is the Running Bear Pancake House.

Deft Dining Rule #124
If a restaurant has caramel custard instead of crème brûlée, and it's well made, the place is more interested in flavor than in style.

Edible Dictionary
flan, n. — The word flan has two meanings. The most common in this country these days is the caramel custard very commonly served as a dessert in Hispanic restaurants of all stripes, from Spanish to Central American, Caribbean, and South American. It is typically baked a little harder than a French-style caramel custard, resulting in a firmer texture and a more pronounced caramel flavor. The second sense of flan is French in origin, referring to a wide, shallow pastry, usually with a crust, with a custard filling. This kind of flan usually has a topping, with berries and other fruit being the most familiar. These are more often found in French bakeries than in restaurants.

Annals of Dishwashing
Hazel Bishop, a chemist, invented a lipstick that would remain on the lips far longer than previous formulations. It was advertised as being "kissable," because it wouldn't leave a mark on the kissee's lips or cheek or whatever. Hazel Bishop's name became a major cosmetics brand. A side effect to her invention: no dishwashing machine yet produced can get lipstick off a wine glass.

Food Namesakes
Vince Marrow, a professional arena football player, was born today in 1968. . . Dottie Mochrie Pepper, a professional golfer teed off her life today in 1965.

Words Not to Eat By
"Custard: A detestable substance produced by a malevolent conspiracy of the hen, the cow and the cook." — Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary.

I guess he was a chocolate lover.

Words to Eat By
Today is the birthday of Mae West (1892), who was far ahead of her time in her attitudes about just about everything. She uttered quotably on a few matters that concern us here:

"I never worry about diets. The only carrots that interest me are the number you get in a diamond."

"Too much of a good thing is wonderful."

"Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before."

Check out other Food Almanac columns by Tom Fitzmorris.