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I do a lot of my own cooking and I particularly love baking my own cakes, biscuits and bread. But I'm getting heartily fed with Americanisms and other U.S. ways of doing things being foisted upon me. If I wanted to say diaper, not nappy; purse not handbag; pants not trousers, or eat pancakes with maple syrup and bottomless cups of weak, tasteless coffee for breakfast instead of eggs, bacon, toast, marmalade washed down with a good old English cuppa, I'd go and live in New York not London.
For example, whenever I search for recipes on the Internet, or in books that are sold in English book stores, I'm increasingly finding that the ingredient measurements are in American cup sizes instead of metric measurements or better still, my beloved and much preferred imperial measurements, which are as extinct now as Aztec bars, Omo and dinosaurs. What on earth is a 'cup' anyway? Cups, as you know, come in all shapes and sizes; they're not a standard size. So how much is a cup of flour for example, for cooking purposes? A tiny espresso cup or a flippin' great mug?
I suppose there must be a standard weight measurement for an 'America's cup', but that's not much help if I'm having to translate a cup, a half cup a quarter cup into a measurement mode that I can identify with so that I can weight my ingredients more precisely on my weighing scales so that my cakes actually do rise like the phoenix from the ashes instead of winding up like round slabs of burnt biscuit and heading straight for the bin. So why don't cookbook writers print comprehensible measurements in the first place instead of forcing me to translate what to me are meaningless American cup sizes.
That won't do at all. Tut, tut!
Now that I'm back home in good old blighty and isn't the weather dreadful at the moment...etc.. I am reminded of one of Agatha Christie's mysteries, where Miss Marple quite rightly says over afternoon tea at Bertram's Hotel, when her companion tells of a recent trip to America where she was served 'muffins' but not English muffins as we know them to be: split unfruited teacakes, toasted and spread with butter; instead they were large blueberry cup cakes (like those awful spongy things you can buy in Starbucks). Miss Marple responds reproachfully' "Well, well, the Americans have a lot to answer for."
They sure do ma'am...
By: Grumpy xx