Food is a language, therefore, it’s translatable!
Don’t we all feel a certain way when eating specific dishes?
For example, gratin is my awe dish, for it reminds me of the time I was punished for not eating it when young.
“Kousa mahshi » is my happy dish, because it’s what my late grandmother always cooked for me.
Pomodoro pasta is my love dish for it is the dish that I always share with my loved one.
Each dish makes me feel something; therefore, eating it is a language. My favorite language, may I say!
Words in a pot, the translation broth
Translation, on the other hand, is what guarantees that any message in any language reaches all people around the globe.
And if cooking is a translation, then Lebanese are the biggest target-oriented translators, for they adapt and mold the foreign dish, until it suits their taste buds.
However, this form of translation happens everywhere. For instance, « to please American audiences, cream and butter, two staples of traditional Indian cooking, have been cut from recipes to make food less heavy and more « light » and « low fat. ».
Confined, but always refined
Now that we’re all in confinement, and with most imported products going extinct in our supermarkets due to the economic crisis, I’m sure that all of you, little chefs-wanna-be, know what I’m talking about; unless you didn’t go the extra mile and stuck to baking cinnamon rolls.
From Turkish Shawarma with “extra toum (i.e. garlic)”, to Italian pasta “Kattir (i.e. lots of) shredded mozzarella”, and cookies with Tahini instead of softened butter; we’re doing it all wrong!
Can you guess what dish is the biggest victim of the Lebanese target-oriented translation and also the topic of my next article?
Hint: It is round, triangular, and square-shaped, all at the same time!