alt. translation: what people order when a soy-hater is listening and might understand the words, "tofu" and burger"
za'atar - a Middle-Eastern spice staple starring ground sumac mixed with sesame seeds, thyme, salt, and possibly a few other spices or herbs
alt. translation: "Where's your favorite spice market in Tel Aviv? Oh. You haven't been?"
labneh - full-fat yogurt, strained overnight to make it thicker and more tangy.
alt. translation: I forgot to put away the yogurt last night so here's some improvised veggie dip.
hawaij - Yemenese spice blend with a hefty dose of ground cardamom, black pepper, cumin, and cloves often used on meats, vegetables, in stews, and even in rice or (if you're Molly Yeh) hot chocolate!
alt. translation: a classy blend starring a spice almost none of your friends will correctly identify the first taste
bahn mi - a kind of Vietnamese sandwich, traditionally of some variation of pork adorned with fresh cucumber, pickled carrots, cilantro, and shredded radish, often served on a baguette or flat bread-style wrap with spicy mayonnaise.
alt. translation: What they tell you they're serving when making a real dinner was just too much work.
soba - a thick, chewy Asian noodle made of buckwheat flour. See also, udon.
alt. translation: "My noodle-vocabulary is cooler than your noodle vocabulary, so I won't just call these noodles. What a waste of my knowledge."
confit - a French method of preparing meat (most often goose or duck legs) which cooks the meat by submerging it in oil or fat and frying it over low heat, then storing meat in the fat to cure. Originally a method to preserve meats, now to create a velvety, melt-in-the-mouth texture to meats. The full process is described extensively at Serious Eats.
alt. translation: a method for creating fat-inception
kimchi - a Korean condiment made of vermented vegetables and spices, most notably napa cabbage, radishes, scallions, or ginger.
alt. translation: Sauerkraut fights in the Pacific theatre
sushimi - not to be confused with sushi, sushimi is plain and simplly very fresh (raw) fish sliced thinly and served without adornment.
alt. translation: perfect breakfast for your resident Gollum
What food trends have you stumped? Do you have any embarrassing, "I didn't know what this was and made a gaff" stories? I want to hear all of them, so let's chat about it. You might spare me further embarrassment by educating me now in this very safe space where we can all admit, "Yeah, I didn't know that."