Sunday, January 07, 2007

food, art, ketchup and psychology

watching television the other night, i saw something that made me wonder. the show was about expressing oneself artistically and what meanings can be derived from that expression — what secrets are revealed about a person through one's artwork.

as this is a foodblog, i thought about something similar to tie it in. does the way we arrange our food say something about our personalities? do you bother to take time to arrange things artistically or thoughtfully [everyday, or at least more often than not] to make things appetizing or do you just throw things on a plate? does placing things nicely make you feel better or say something about you? or do you save it for special occasions? does it even matter to you?

i think it does.

apparently, so does a certain psychologist [this is to be taken lightly and is purely for fun!]:
*If you want to learn the more about a person, look no further than how they pour their ketchup. From dippers and squirters, to sprinklers and smotherers, psychologist Donna Dawson has identified seven "sauciological" types.

*Those who dunk into a well of ketchup are methodical and trustworthy. But they may also be control freaks who are afraid of change. Ambitious people splodge their sauce in the middle of their food. Creative types squirt and swirl their sauce in thin lines. But deep down they are impatient and do not tolerate fools or time wasting. Those who dot their ketchup are friendly, but live conservatively and dream of adventure holidays. Smotherers are the life and soul of the party, while artists who draw faces and words on their food have an easy-going approach to life. And gourmets who keep ketchup in a cruet appear charming, but deep down may be snobbish social charmers.
fact or fiction? who knows. i thought it was amusing.

also from the same site the above was quoted, read the fascinating history about ketchup! some more here, too.

also take a look at all the different kinds of ketchup packets at the condiments packet museum. [the things you find on the internet ;p].

i don't know about you but i love ketchup! also don't know about going through 3 bottles a year though, as the article contends. here are some other ketchups from around the world.

look at some nonfood uses for ketchup.

lastly, don't spill it on you or have a disaster next time you open it. learn the right way to do it.


TopChamp said...

LOVE ketchup :) I'm a squiggly line drawer wheras my boyfriend's a big fat blobber and the personality bit seems to match pretty well!

I'm just sat here scratching my head over the pros and cons of slow cookers. Have you used one? Do you like them?

I saw a recipe for curry done in a slow cooker so tried it yesterday. Thing is I'm new to the game (xmas gift from mother) and it has come out very thin. I'm guessing flouring the meat like you would in a stew would have helped. Flavour's good & meat's tender.

burekaboy — said...

hey topchamp - you know, i asked some friends about this ketchup thing and after laughing about it, we decided she may be on to something! lol

as for slow cookers, i have one and i think they're great. only thing with using them is that you need very little liquid. any liquids which try to escape do not - they form droplets and steam which become reintegrated into the dish — therefore you use little (liquid), or at least much less than any conventional recipe will call for. if you're using a slowcooker recipe then follow those directions [though i've found some of them don't always turn out the way they say they will].

if you end up with too much, you can always remove the meat. then strain the liquid and boil it down on high heat to reduce it to the consistency you like. the flavours will be much more concentrated, too. question - did you cook it at the right temperature (high vs low)?

aja said...

Hey BB,
So... what kind of ketchupper are you??? 8^)

burekaboy — said...

AJA! - welcome back to the side of the living! :) [eventhough sniff, sniff]

umm.... you already know the answer! LOL. need i say more?

beenzzz said...

Hey BB,
I'm not a ketchup person, but I do use it in certain recipes. I tend to by the squeezy bottles and enjoy squeezing the ketchup into the bowl. I guess it's pent up aggression....or maybe the inner child in me who likes to play with my food!:)) I guess I'm a creative type??

burekaboy — said...

beenzzz - what?! no ketchup!?! LOL. creative you are, of course!

Pammie said...

Hi Burekaboy,

You don't go through three bottles of ketchup a year? Crikey, what size bottles are you buying, 44 gallon drums? 'Cuz I've only been here in Vancouver five months now and I've already burned through two bottles of Heinz! Okay they are the smallest ones they sell. I just shook the heck out of the last bottle this morning, making Boston Baked Beans, and I am on my way to the shops to get some more!

Also you have possibly freaked me out a bit because I do all those ketchup styles, which makes me wonder if I really do have that multiple personality disorder everyone's been talking to me about....

TopChamp said...

Nope - used the wrong setting. On purpose to see how it turned out. Had tried 'auto' previously and this was only the second use. The 'auto' beef stew thing was AMAZING - esp. as I had flu so wasn't up for doing much standing over a stove stirring.

annie said...

To me a french fry is simply a vehicle to get the ketchup to my mouth!

burekaboy — said...

pammie - no, no! no vats but the largest of bottles. not sure what size they were referring to. prob either standard or family. i'm sure i got through at least 2 a year, prolly more.

baked beans sound good! haven't had those in years. here they have something called "feves au lard" -- obviously i'm not using the lard part. hehe. i remember my friend's parents had this special ceramic brown "bean pot" they used.

tc - oh ok! hope it wasn't ruined though. beef stew is always great. you should post your recipe on your blog! hope you're feeling better now. lots of people all over are getting this flu.

annie - i'm with u! ketchup straight to the gullet via french fries. lol.

The TriniGourmet said...

her description hit the nail on the head where i'm concerned. and that's all i'm sayin' :)

Derrick said...

What if you use Barbecue Sauce instead of Ketchup? And what about Catsup? :)

burekaboy — said...

sarina!! - LOLOL ... i'm NOT goin' there! :OO

derrick - excellent point! you never know, it may change the whole framework for her sauciological diagnosis!! lol. thanks for dropping by and your comment :)

Coffee said...

I am methodical and trustworthy!!!!! :) But I don't really agree with the kind of person and they way they arrange their food........

for example.... if I have having guests at home... or if making somehting for the blog then I will take my own sweet time to arrange everyhting...... but if I am just making somehting for the usual everyday dinner.... then I dont think I bother too much..... So what do you think about this?????

Ostara said...

I've been known to employ all those methods. Guess that makes me one for the sauciology textbooks. LOL

Lilandra said...

I do ketchup by mood.
Some days (and some foods) I want it in a big blob at the side. Other days I want my fries smothered in ketchup.

Some days it's ketchup alone. Some days it's with mustard and pepper or pepper alone. Some days I mix them all up before dipping and some days I don't.

Some days I dot because I don't want to overpower the poor macaroni and cheese with ketchup...but those days I usually end up having to put more because this dot dot is insane and ridiculous. Then I do squiggly lines to get maximum coverage and then mix it all up.

Analyse me!

Princess Jibi said...

your right who knows. I know my dad for a fact wont eat a food if its dished out any how. And you have to sprinkle ketchup all over in his plate, in a circle like...

I love ketchup also, when am cooking stew, instead of using the tomatoe paste, I use the ketchup, I dont like the sour taste that tomatoe paste have. Instead the ketchup gaves it a sweetish different taste.

I remember this one time we were in Suriname by some family friends, I was about 6 or 7, when the people made french fries, I was left to take some ketchup on my own, being so little I spilled like half of the bottle out. I was sure I was going to get a good spanking. When there son took the blame for me, he was like my heroe. He was too old to get spanking anyways but he got a lecture. And when there is little at the bottom and you want ketchup its so frustrating. When I know mommy is cooking maccaroni for breakfast I would leave the bottle upside down in a bowl all night so morning I can have ketchup..

Your right the things you find online...I have to try this method.

Trupti said...

I'm a dipper. Just in case you wanted to know. (hehe).
Nice post bud...hey, i read one of your older comments and you asked if Indian groceries were readily available here in NL...well, a really nice doctor has collaborated with Sobeys to bring us all our daals, rices and spices in a separate section of the store...we even have a separate freezer for veggies, paneer and all the other good it's good. Limited choices...but hey I am NOT gonna complain..I'll take whatever i can get.I always stock up when I come to Toronto anyway..
A question for you.. Have you been to this restaurant called "Brar's" in Brampton?? I give it 10/10.
A MUST for Indian food lovers...will tell ya more about it if you wanna know.
Sorry this is so long,- Trupti

burekaboy — said...

coffee - hey there, i think most people will arrange things with more care in those kinds of situations. there are cultures though, like the japanese, where this attention to detail is part of their everyday food preparation. from the cutting up of vegetables, to cooking and serving, how food is presented plays a very significant role. i imagine, however, things have changed over the years with the way society has become extra quickly paced.

ostara - good choice! a little of this and a little of that...why peg yourself into one category, right?!

lilandra - lol, i'm not even gonna ATTEMPT that one! :))

pj - love your comments, you always have a story to go with things :) we used to add some vinegar to the bottle to thin it down a bit when it got to the end. glad you didn't get into trouble!

trupti - hi there. figured it must be some special arrangement to get the things you need/use. i can't imagine those items being readily available in newfoundland! haven't been to the restaurant you mention. (btw...i'm in quebec!) but i'll take your word that it's a good place to visit.

aria said...

oh god i love ketchup. i'm a dipper, an uptight conrolling dipper! :)

burekaboy — said...

aria- LOL :))