"That's not what I ordered"

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Hillbilly
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2003/10/30 15:31:37 (permalink)

"That's not what I ordered"

Sundancer's post regarding "Philadelphia Gravy" brought to mind some surprises when I misinterpreted the menu.
In the North Carolina mountains, we referred to the root portion of turnips as "turnips", and the above ground part as "turnip greens". I dearly love both with a good slab of corn bread, pinto beans and some skilet fried potatoes. I was overjoyed when we went into a restaurant in Mississippi and saw "turnips" on the menu. The waitress delivered the "greens" part with my meal and when I asked where my turnips were, she informed me that that serving of greens is what they call turnips in Mississippi. It seems that they call the below ground part "turnip roots" and the above ground part "turnips".
Have you guys had any similar surprises in your travels?
#1

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    berndog
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/30 16:25:49 (permalink)
    Not our misunderstanding of the menu, but the wife and I were quite surprised when dining at a local Chinese restaurant one evening. She ordered a special shrimp dish and the waiter brought what looked like Butterfly Shrimp. We asked if this was correct, and a minute later, the manager rushed up, apologized for the mistake and said her dish was coming soon. He then took her plate, removed the shrimp she had taken (without the rice) back into the serving plate, and removed it from our table. She saw him take it to another table and serve it.

    I thought that was poor mannners to remove food once it was served, and most places would likely have said to enjoy the dish compliments of the house. But to serve it to someone else? Even though she had not eaten any, this is a violation of the health codes for restaurants.

    We won't be eating there any more, although it wasn't a favorite we dined at often. We just thought we'd try it since we hadn't eaten there in so long. Wasn't quite long enough.
    #2
    Mayhaw Man
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/30 17:09:21 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Hillbilly

    Sundancer's post regarding "Philadelphia Gravy" brought to mind some surprises when I misinterpreted the menu.
    In the North Carolina mountains, we referred to the root portion of turnips as "turnips", and the above ground part as "turnip greens". I dearly love both with a good slab of corn bread, pinto beans and some skilet fried potatoes. I was overjoyed when we went into a restaurant in Mississippi and saw "turnips" on the menu. The waitress delivered the "greens" part with my meal and when I asked where my turnips were, she informed me that that serving of greens is what they call turnips in Mississippi. It seems that they call the below ground part "turnip roots" and the above ground part "turnips".
    Have you guys had any similar surprises in your travels?


    Just for the record, I grew up in the Mississippi River Delta in Louisiana and it was always "........greens" for whatever kind of greens, turnip, mustard, etc. and "turnips" meant the root. I do not believe I ever heard it phrased turnip roots. This would cover all cultures that I came into contact with.

    Anyway, call em what you want to, just call me when it's time to eat them. I won't be able to talk, it's poor manners to talk with your mouth full.
    #3
    Liketoeat
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/30 17:55:30 (permalink)
    I'm really shocked to read the response you got from the Mississippi waitress about turnips and turnip roots, Hillbilly. She and/or the restaurant owner must have been from some other part of the world. I have somewhere, maybe in the midwest or northeast, heard those terms used as she used them, but I've never heard anyone in the midsouth (AR, LA, TN, MS, AL) use any terms other than" turnip greens" for the greens and "turnips'" for the root. As you said, both of them are fine eating (as long as you have cornbread to go with them), but it is nice to know what you are going to get when you order something specifically.
    #4
    Spudnut
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/30 18:26:51 (permalink)
    When I was about six, my parents and I visited Montreal. We were in a restaurant, and the waitress appeared very confused by my mom's request of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for me. Eventually, the waitress said something to the effect of "OK", and headed for the kitchen. A few minutes later, the owner came to our table, laughing. He had spent time in America, and understood our order. His waitress, meanwhile, did not and was in the process of requesting a peanut butter and Jello sandwich.

    Which I would have eaten, by the way. Doesn't sound that bad.
    #5
    jgleduc
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/30 18:39:48 (permalink)
    quote:
    Liketoeat writes I have somewhere, maybe in the midwest or northeast, heard those terms used as she used them, but I've never heard anyone in the midsouth (AR, LA, TN, MS, AL) use any terms other than" turnip greens" for the greens and "turnips'" for the root.


    I've never heard of turnip greens being called turnips in the northeast. I'm really shocked that in the south, a region that I've always thought consisted of connoisseurs of greens, such a locution was found. Whatever you wanna call the greens, though, I'll eat 'em.
    #6
    Hillbilly
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 10:03:07 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Liketoeat

    I'm really shocked to read the response you got from the Mississippi waitress about turnips and turnip roots, Hillbilly. She and/or the restaurant owner must have been from some other part of the world. I have somewhere, maybe in the midwest or northeast, heard those terms used as she used them, but I've never heard anyone in the midsouth (AR, LA, TN, MS, AL) use any terms other than" turnip greens" for the greens and "turnips'" for the root. As you said, both of them are fine eating (as long as you have cornbread to go with them), but it is nice to know what you are going to get when you order something specifically.

    After reading the responses, this must have been unique to this little restaurant in Bay Springs, Mississippi (north of Laurel on highway 15). Come to think of it, I never had occasion to order turnips or turnip greens anywhere else in Mississippi, but I sure ate some good greens on the buffet line at "Vic's" in Laurel.
    #7
    dendan
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 10:21:18 (permalink)
    Imagine the surprise when ordering greens in western NC and discovering a pile of ramps. Now ramps are at best the stongest form of stringy onion-like things you will ever try. Plus., they stay with you for a loooong time. Anyone had ramps?
    #8
    kland01s
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 10:37:14 (permalink)
    In my neck of the woods, a root beer float is called a Black Cow. Went to a drive in in eastern Tennessee and ordered a Black Cow. I got a very puzzled look back "you want to buy a cow?"
    #9
    Liketoeat
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 10:53:44 (permalink)
    Hillbilly, since you, too, enjoy and appreciate greens, if you are ever traveling I-40 between Memphis & Little Rock, stop at the Sawmill Cafe in Forrest City for some of the best greens you'll ever eat, even better than most fine homecooked greens I've had. I know the greens come from some commercial source, but they are good greens, tender, not bitter, not tough stem parts, and guess its the way they season them which make them so especially good - with peppers and plenty of meat.

    I like greens of all types but just plain old turnip greens are my favorite. Did any of you ever eat beet greens? I remember as a kid they were occasionally served around here, but I've not seen or heard of beet greens in years.
    #10
    lleechef
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 11:50:10 (permalink)
    A friend of mine from France was in the US, I think it was his first trip and his English was minimal. He went into a restaurant for lunch, ordered something to eat and pointed to a tap that looked like it was dispensing some lovely porter beer. He took one sip and spit it out.......it was ROOT BEER!! He was mortified to think that we would brew something so foul tasting.....until I explained.
    Liketoeat, I picked beets several times this summer and always cooked the greens.....they are delicious! And I agree with the rest of you.......never met a cooked green I didn't like.
    #11
    dendan
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 11:51:38 (permalink)
    Meet a ramp and I bet you would change your mind.
    #12
    Sundancer7
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 11:53:42 (permalink)
    . Anyone had ramps?


    Does it hurt?

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #13
    dendan
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 11:56:36 (permalink)
    Some info on ramps for the un-initiated.
    The potent mountain ramp, "the sweetest tasting and vilest smelling vegetable in Mother Nature's bounty." An edible member of the onion family, the ramp is alternately called the wild leek, taking its name from a similar plant, the rampion, which also has a fleshy tap-root. Believing the ramp to possess the revitalizing power of a spring tonic, the mountain folks looked forward to the return of the ramp after a winter of eating mostly dried foods. The ramp's flavor, though sweet with a hint of garlic, is accompanied by a potent odor so objectionable school children with "ramp odor" were known to have been excused from school for a few days. - source = http://lcweb.loc.gov/bicentennial/propage/TN/tn-1_h_jenkins5.html
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    baybey
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 13:05:50 (permalink)
    Ramping back to the topic, two thoughts. Who out there has ordered crab in a Chinese restaurant and been served surimi-imitation crab made from pollock-instead;and who has ordered beef, be it hamburger staek or prime rib, rare or med. rare, and been served it medium well or well done?
    What do you you usually do , accept, send it back , complain??
    #15
    EdSails
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 13:37:31 (permalink)
    If it's steak or even a burger----it goes back. If I didn't specify rare/medium rare, then I keep quiet and eat it. These days when I order sushi------I always make sure it's real crab. In vietnamese or chinese soups, if I didn't ask----again, I just eat it------and chalk it up to "shoulda known better".
    #16
    howard8
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 14:07:23 (permalink)
    The first time I was in London, my girlfriend ordered shrimp scampi. We are use to NJ shrimp scampi which would be shrimp swimming in an oil, butter, garlic sauce. Shrimp scampi across the pond apparantly is simply battered, fried shrimp.
    #17
    Michael Hoffman
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 14:44:08 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by dendan

    Meet a ramp and I bet you would change your mind.


    I love ramps.
    #18
    Lone Star
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 15:48:52 (permalink)
    We had to travel a lot as I was growing up, and I will never forget the first time I ordered myself a meal in a London hotel. I ordered beef and Yorkshire pudding, and then could not understand what that dough thing was they brought to me.
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    Oneiron339
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 16:57:17 (permalink)
    Being from PA, the first time I ate breakfast in a restaurant in Atlanta, when the grits came out I asked for some milk and sugar for what appeared to be cream of wheat. I nearly got laughed out of the place. Then they told me you put butter and salt and maybe cheese on them. I eat them like a native now
    #20
    EdSails
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    RE: "That's not what I ordered" 2003/10/31 17:38:30 (permalink)
    Years ago I had a sushi bar which I went to with business associates who spoke fluent Japanese. The employees at the restaurant spoke little English. On of my favorite dishes was a squid dish, sort of like little slices with a zingy sauce. One day I was in the area and decided to try the place myself. First thing I planned on getting was that dish, which I thought was either called pickled or marinated squid. Feeling sure of myself I ordered thew marinated squid. The waitress, in her few words of english, said "are you sure?" I said yes. A couple minutes later the manager came over to ask me the same question. I said "of course, I've had it several times and it's really good." A few minutes later the waitress brought out a dish for me. I knew then that I had the name wrong, but figured it would still be ok. It looked like sliced squid in yellowish mayonnaise. After two tastes, I asked the manager what it was. I was told, "they take the insides out of the squid, whip them up until they are creamy, and use it as the sauce". I said I would gladly pay for the dish-----but they could remove it from my presence now. I did learn on that one!
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