Bright and sunny here in the World Capital of Insurance on what looks to be a beautiful New England day after heavy rains yesterday afternoon. I have to say, New England is beautiful in the spring and summer, probably moreso than the last equivalent area in the US I'd lived in, Northern Virginia.
The wonderful day I had planned appears to be ruined by my company's stupidity. Last night, my company laptop died. I called our tech support and they will be sending a vendor to repair it on Monday (at my client's site) as it still has 24 days of warranty! When I explained that I was in the second week of a four week engagement and that being without it for even a day would jeopardize this client, the cultural gap became apparent as the techie refused to fed ex me a loaner or, better, a new one. So, I'm off today to try to get my data dumped so I can at least take over a client desktop and get some work done tomorrow.
This inconvenience is going to cut into the time I have to cook today, as I'll need to go to 'burbs to find a CompUSA or equivalent to do the work on a Sunday. I'd planned to try three-cheese bread today along with a coq-au-vin. As it is, we have some kabobs from Whole Foods that I'll probably pop into the oven along with making some risotto and that'll be it!
The thought of my coq-au-vin, along with a comment made by Lurk a while ago regarding threads about dark and light chocolate has inspired the thread today. At the time I remarked that one of the distinguishing taste-based features between Americans and Europeans seemed to be their preference for light and dark chocolate respectively.
This distinction was also brought up to me last weekend when my girlfriend's Eastern European colleagues remarked that they had toned down the spices in the ćevapčići since there would be a mixture of Americans and Europeans at their gathering. While I found this amusing as I've eaten Tandori Chicken in Jubail that would make most Europeans blanche, I also realized that it is a perception shared by many Europeans, particularly Mediterraneans. I also remember that when I was growing up, spices in my household consisted of salt, pepper, and, if we were really getting exotic, oregino.
Moreover, since the amusing "I hate me" thread and its offshoots seem to have run their course, I thought we might slide into one that's not so controversial :D. All of which leads to the...
TOTD: Do Americans prefer their food less spicy than other peoples? And by spicy I don't just mean hot, but rather with less spices.
Note several considerations when answering. Traditional American cooking, i.e., WASP cooking, is primarily derived from Northern European styles and selections -- beef, pork, chicken, root vegetables -- and traditional British, for example, cooking is not heavily spiced. Also, with the advent of rapid transportation of foodstuffs, local dependence upon certain menu items is waning, so that all cuisines are becoming "globalized" to some extent (although we will see how the price of oil affects that trend in the short term). Finally, "traditional American" cooking, deriving as it does from multiple European and non-European sources is more diverse than the traditional cuisine of many more singularly-ethnic countries.
However, given all these considerations, we report, you decide...
While you're deciding, instead of that bland white sugar in your coffee, spice it up with a little brown sugar.