umphmamisense

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Cuisine

Cuisine is a specific set of traditions and practices for cooking, often associated with a specific area or cultures. A cuisine is primarily influenced by the ingredients that are available locally or through trade.

A traditional cuisine is a coherent tradition of food preparation that rises from the daily lives and kitchens of a people over an extended period of time in a specific region of a country and which has notable distinctions from the cuisine of the country as a whole.

African cuisine reflects multi traditions, as well as influences from Arab, Europeans, and Asians. Africa is the second largest landmass on the earth and is home to hundreds of ethnic. This diversity is also reflected in the use of basic ingredients as well as in the style of preparation.

Traditionally, as in almost all cultures, the food of Africa uses a combination of locally available fruits, grains, vegetables, milk nd meat produce. In some parts of Africa, the traditional African diet has a predominance of milk, whey and curd. In much of tropical Africa however, cow's milk is rare and cannot be produced locally (owing to various diseases that affect livestock). Yet, differences, sometimes significant, are noticeable in the eating and drinking habits across the continent of Africa - African food differs in different parts of Africa, and North, East, West, Southern and Central AFRICA each have their own distinctive foods. They are very well known for their distinctive cooking styles


Asian cuisine styles can be broken down into several regional styles that have roots in the peoples and cultures of those regions. The major types can be roughly defined as East Asian with its origins in imperial chine and now encompassing modern Japan and the Korea; Southeast Asian which encompasses the areas once found in the Khmers includes Vietnam, Laosm Cambodia and Thailand as well as the countries of Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei and Singapore.; Southwest Asian derived the the states that once made up of British India; Burma, India, Sri Lanka & Pakistan as well as several other countries in this region of the continent;Central Asian and Middle Eastern.

Ingredients common to many cultures in the east and southeast regions of the continent include rice, ginger, garlic, sesame seeds, chilies, dried onions, soy, and tofu. Additionally, cooking methods such as stir frying, steaming and deep frying are common across many of theses cuisine styles. While rice is common to most Asian cuisines, different varieties are popular in the various regions; Basmati rice is popular in the subcontinent, Jasmine is often found across the southeast, while long-grain rice is popular in China and short-grain in Japan and Korea. Curry is also a common dish in found in southern and eastern Asia, however they are not as popular in eastern cuisines. Those curry dishes with origins in India and other southwestern countries usually have a yogurt base while southeastern and eastern curries are generally use coconut milk as their foundation.
posted by umphamisense at 8:52 PM 0 comments

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Comfort Food

Macaroni & Cheese, Peanut butter, ice cream, beaver tails, roti, lassi, tourtiere, kadhi khicdhi, ramen, onigiri, balut, mais, bangers & mash, etc ...

What is comfort food?

Science always attempt to explain our need for comfort food as a chemical reaction in the brain. It seems that the brain releases certain "feel good" hormones into the body to compensate for all the different negative feelings that overwhelm us in every day life like: fatigue, stress, illness etc ...

Why do we cherish it, rely on it and need it so?

I dare say that there is a deeper connection to feelings and peoples need for comfort foods. One person's comfort food is another person's dieting nemesis.

Selection and choice of comfort food is a very personal thing, more behavioral and cultural then chemical. Comfort foods usually are tied to times and places in our memories that remind of us of joy, warmth, friendship and comfort.

Some like me find hainese chicken rice to be one of my comfort food because it takes me back in time to the memoirs to family outings in Penang or Perak where its the easiest food to order in one swift order by my dad to the aunties (not many mamaks then) that will take our order. We can see the dishes prepared in once swift stroke. Usually, there will be a commotion in trying to get the best part (breast fer me, alwaysz), somebody will sulk, some will laugh but we do it time after time and we love every minute of it.

During rough times in our lives we seek to ground ourselves and find that sense of self that often gets lost when life becomes hectic and crazy. We may not be able to go to those exact moments in time, but we can have physical foods that mentally bring out those feels of love safety and self.

We don't have just one great memory that helps us cope with lives challenges, which means most of us don't have just one comfort food. I myself have several and depending on how I feel and what's immediately available, will pull from my list of comfort foods:

Maggi Mee (either Asam Laksa or Curry)
Mee Goreng Utara
Mee Kuah
Hot Fried Chicken, right out from the kuali
Hainese Chicken Rice

I can tie each of these foods to many great memories in my life that caused them to become my comfort foods as well as the times in my life when I turned to them when the world was not being kind to me. When I eat these foods they don't necessarily remind me of the events that allowed them to be come my precious comfort foods, but they do make my life a little easier and gets me back to my sense of self.

posted by umphamisense at 6:41 AM 1 comments

Science of Nutrition

The science of nutrition try to understand how and why specific dietary aspects influence health differently. Nutrients in food are grouped into several categories. Macronutrients means fat, protein, and carbohydrates. Between the extremes of optimal health and death from malnutrition and starvation, there is an array of disease states that can be caused or alleviated by changes in diet. Deficiencies, excesses or imbalances in diet can produce negative impacts on health. This may lead to diseases as well as psychological and behavioral problems. As human being, it is our duty to take care of us ...



Well, this blog is not about all this, its about food glorious food ... be it comfort food to fine dining cuisine ...

The are food items and produce that I may not be able to consume but lets take it one thing atta time ... I want to taste the world !!!

We only live once sooo ... LETS EAT!!!
posted by umphamisense at 6:18 AM 0 comments

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Food Quest ...

This is my quest to savor and share with you all (if god willing) the experience of savouring food that is internationally known and also the food that might be in the brink of extinction ...

The world is for me to discover but I still require the people of mother earth to share what they know with me and others so that I can fulfill my quest to eat and to experience the food of the world ...
posted by umphamisense at 1:12 AM 0 comments

Monday, December 1, 2008

Love To Eat ...

Wht can I say, I love to eat ... also I am always curious of the taste and flavour each food gives, its essense, the aroma and of course the nutrition it gives ...

In this blog, there is a quest ... lets embark on the quest and endure the adventure of tasting and savoring what the world got to offer ...
posted by umphamisense at 10:57 PM 0 comments