Inspiration From The Distant Past

Inspiration From The Distant Past
Found note in an old book... warms the cockles of my bookish heart...

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Dinner Dictionary; Napoleon’s biscuits

Well, you know a girl's far from home when she has to make her own Bisquick. And it didn't end really well, but some people don't know any better and others are too smart to say anything.

And that brings us to Dinner Dictionary. We had an Australian at the table, one who hasn't been to America. For Aussies 'biscuit' means 'cookie' while 'scone' means 'biscuit'. So Jack was a little puzzled when I said we were having biscuits for dinner, but he had thirds, so must have been converted.

During the meal he asked how they could be called biscuits when they weren't twice cooked. He maintained that the word comes from bi (twice) and cuit (French for cooked). So biscuits are supposed to have a firm texture, like hard tack for the armed forces. And the Online Etymology Dictionary agrees with him.

He also said that Napoleon commissioned the development of margarine, and I added that he supported the invention of canned foods. A Food Lover's Companion backs up the margarine claim, except that it was Napoleon III.

You just never know where the dinner chat will lead you.


  1. I made biscuits last night to go with my stew. I will re-heat them tonight, so I guess I can call them biscuits.

    I love dinner conversations like this. Of course I love learning new things all the time.

  2. They look beautiful. What makes you say it didn't end well?

  3. Well, SariJ, I guess what you had last night was just scuits. ;)

  4. Tracy, those are NOT my biscuits! I posted sans photos. Either our administrator is procrastinating from paperwork or she just couldn't stand a text-only post.

    I'm sure unlike SariJ's, my biscuits were photo worthy, but for all the wrong reasons.

    And Kathy, you're funny!

  5. yes, I am the sneaky photo culprit-- and they aren't my bisquits either-- they are public domain bisquits. DeLynne is right, I couldn't stand a naked post. ;o)

    and I was curious too see what Napoleon III looked like...

    Kathy: hahahahahaha

  6. ah... aside from the need to giggle, I feel the need to help. What can I do?! I know! French bread! problem solved...


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