Category: <span>Cultural Perspectives</span>

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Essence and Simultaneity
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Essence and Simultaneity

William Blake once referred to “essence” as a quality of experience that can only be captured by symbolic means. The term “essence” may allude to inner life; ours or that present in the natural and man-made forms that surround us. We select objects to share our ambient spaces carefully,

Sichuanese Culture-Taste Sensations
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Sichuanese Culture-Taste Sensations

Sichuan (Szechuan) is a landlocked province of approximately 81 million inhabitants in southwest China. The region occupies most of the Sichuan Basin and the easternmost part of the Tibetan Plateau. Its population speaks an unusual form of Mandarin, originating as a variation during the province’s repopulation under the Ming Dynasty.

Panis Focacius
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Panis Focacius

Unleavened breads with toppings are characteristic of many cultures. Citizens of ancient Greece produced a flatbread called plakountos that was enlivened with herbs, onion, cheese, and garlic.
Persian soldiers baked flatbreads with cheese and dates on top of their battle shields. A precursor of pizza was probably focaccia, a Roman unleavened bread known as panis focacius, to which toppings were added.

A Banquet of Temperament
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A Banquet of Temperament

By Tim Hazell Italian scholar and Catholic priest Marcilio Ficino (1433-1499) embodied the ideals of a Renaissance man of his time. His “Book of Life” published 500 years ago advocated simple decisions associated with choices of foods, clothes, ointments, and travel, compatible with each person’s specific histories and needs. It honored individual temperament and the...

Burrata Salad with Stone Fruit and Asparagus
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Burrata Salad with Stone Fruit and Asparagus

By Tim Hazell Romans, Greeks and Persians were fond of mixed salads; combinations of greens tossed with olive oil and vinegar. Layered and dressed salads have been popular in Europe since the Roman imperial expansions. Mary Queen of Scots enjoyed boiled celery root over greens covered with creamy mustard dressing, truffles, chervil and slices of...

Ratatouille – Mediterranean Nuance
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Ratatouille – Mediterranean Nuance

By Tim Hazell Ratatouille is a French Provençal stewed vegetable dish sometimes referred to as ratatouille niçoise. Recipes and cooking times differ widely, but common ingredients include tomato, garlic, onion, courgette (zucchini), aubergine (eggplant), bell pepper, and any combination of leafy green herbs common to the region. The word ratatouille derives from the French Occitan...