All posts tagged: Food is Culture / Comida é Cultura

Kampot Pepper / Pimenta de Kampot

English: KAMPOT PEPPER There is no spice like pepper and there is no pepper like Kampot Pepper. Lush mountains, tropical sea, rich soil and a history of over seven hundred years of cultivation makes this pepper farming region in southern Cambodia a unique combination of terroir, microclimate and traditional know how. Pepper has been cultivated in Cambodia since the times of the Khmer Empire and traded over the centuries with sea merchants from as far as Europe. The production and trade of Kampot pepper peaked with the French colonialists in the 1930s and 1940’s. After a tumultuous period of near extinction in the 1970’s, during the brutal Khmer Rouge regime, Kampot pepper plantations slowly recovered in the 1990’s experiencing a revival in the early 2000’s. Today Kampot pepper has the recognition of a Protected Geographical Indication from the European Union. The Kampot Pepper Promotion Association’s Book of Specifications regulates production methods, farm plots, processes, hygiene and traceability and forbids, for example, the use of chemical fertilisers. Kampot Pepper is an organic and origin designated product highly …

Pâtisserie Française

English: PÂTISSERIE FRANÇAISE Savouring sweets, deserts and pastries in France is a cultural affair. From Alsace to Normandy, from Paris to Provence, local pastry chefs master their craft and orchestrate their expressions to a local audience. There is traditional and modern, old and young. Perfectly baked pastries with carefully balanced custards and crèmes, generous amounts of cream and butter, fresh fruit, wild berries and an unconditional commitment to palate, texture and aesthetics. It was from as early as the middle ages that the pastry kitchen took its own path within the culinary arts of France. During the 17th and 18th centuries the pastry craft developed a wide range of techniques. Many pastries, cakes and confections from this period are still celebrated today. French patisserie is delicate and complex and requires specialised skill to execute and time for preparation. Freshness is never compromised. Reputation is earned, mastery respected.   Português: PÂTISSERIE FRANÇAISE Em França saborear doces, sobremesas e pasteis é um assunto cultural. Da Alsácia à Normandia, de Paris à Provença, pasteleiros locais produzem a sua …

Po Cha

English: PO CHA Po Cha is made from churning tea, salt and yak butter. The type of tea used is usually black brick tea from Pemagul. A portion of this brick tea is crumbled into water and boiled until producing a smoky, bitter brew called chaku. The chaku is poured in a wooden cylindrical churn with a hunk of yak butter and salt and churned for a few minutes before serving. Lhagang (Tagong in Chinese), at the edge of the Tibetan plateau, is surrounded by grasslands where Tibetan nomads graze their herds of yaks. Po Cha is drunk several times a day by Tibetans, its calories and warming qualities help keep energy levels up in the harshness of the cold, high altitude environment. Mount Yala, at an altitude of 5,820m, is covered with snow all year round and is worshiped by the Tibetan people. At the foothills of the sacred mountain, in honour of the Living Buddha, the Muya Golden Pagoda has a 100-kilogram pure gold roof in the center of the monastery’s towers. There has …

Tartufo Bianco d’Alba

English: TARTUFO BIANCO D’ALBA – White Truffle There is serious sniffing by chefs and truffle aficionados at the Alba International White Truffle Fair in the Italian town of Alba, in Piedmont. This ‘diamond’ of the culinary world takes great expertise to find in the wild beneath the surface of the soil among the roots of certain species of trees. Traditional truffle hunting was done by female pigs drawn to the truffles due to a compound in the truffles that resembles a pheromone produced by boars. Truffle dogs, used today, have to be trained to detect truffles, but they are easier to control and less likely to eat the truffles they find. Ancient Romans believed truffles had divine powers and aphrodisiacal properties. The ancient Roman cookbook Apicius compiles truffle recipes from texts dating as far back as the 1st century. The winter white truffle of Alba has an intense aroma and is mostly used uncooked to best preserve the fragrance. These are very rare truffles that can only be hunted and harvested in the wild and …

Sea Celebration / Festejo do Mar

English: SEA CELEBRATION South Koreans are passionate about seafood. Their appreciation of what the sea offers is a serious and respected activity. The seafood markets are a great theatre of the traditions of handling the sensitive ‘fruits of the sea’ in a fine balance with modern technology. Sitting around a table sharing seafood with South Koreans is like opening a cultural window into this distinctive north Asian nation. The South Koreans are amongst the greatest aficionados of the sea ingredients. Fun loving and outgoing, they are also always ready to celebrate!   Português: FESTEJO DO MAR Os sul-coreanos adoram marisco e peixe e têm uma grande apreciação e respeito pelo que o mar oferece. Os mercados pesqueiros são um grande teatro das tradições de manuseamento dos sensíveis ‘frutos do mar’ com um uso refinado de novas tecnologias. Sentar à volta da mesa partilhando marisco com sul-coreanos é como abrir uma janela cultural desta nação do norte da Ásia. Os sul-coreanos são dos povos mais fascinados com os ingredientes do mar. Extrovertidos, festivos e amantes do …

Peking Duck / Pato à Pequim

English: PEKING DUCK The Peking Duck takes careful preparation, cooking and handling. Traditionally is carved in front of the diners and served with steamed pancakes, spring onions, sweet bean sauce and cucumber sticks. The crispy flavoursome skin dipped in sugar and garlic sauce takes the experience to new heights and the succulent meat and fat is so tender that it feels like it melts in the mouth. In this Peking Duck specialty restaurant in Beijing, China, the traditional craft of preparing, cooking and serving this iconic dish started in 1864 during the Qing Dynasty. Like many things in China this operation is enormous, but heritage is not compromised with each stage carefully choreographed to recreate accurately the traditional way. Judging by the satiated faces and glances of adulation in the dining room, from a full house of local pekinese, this is the way Peking Duck is meant to be.   Português: PATO À PEQUIM O Pato à Pequim requer um processo cuidadoso de preparação, cozedura e manejo. É tradicionalmente trinchado em frente dos clientes e …