Word of the Day - Tuesday, October 6th

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Word of the Day


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ALA (AH-luh)

A la: In the style or manner of

Common clues: In the style of; _____ king; Menu phrase; Words on a menu; Pie ___ mode

Crossword puzzle frequency: 5 times a month

Frequency in English language: 44729 / 86800

News: The Fan: Booing a la carte

This expression is a shortening of the French expression a la mode de (for “in the manner of”), and has been used in English since the late 1500s.

Common food categories using the term a la:

a la Bourgeoisie (French) The style of the family (family style).

a la Broche (French) Cooked on a skewer over a flame.

a la Carte (French) Each menu item is priced separately: Foods prepared to order.

a la King (French) A Bechemel sauce containing mushrooms, green peppers, and red peppers or pimentos.

Chicken Strata A La King

[Courtesy: American Egg Board]

According to Linda M Braun, Consumer Services Director of the American Egg Board, “The 'original' chicken a la king was a dish of diced chicken flavored with mushrooms, green pepper and/or pimiento (red pepper) in a cream sauce and was often served on toast.  We took this classic flavoring combo and turned it into a strata, a dish that combines flavoring foods, dry bread (our substitute for the toast) and custard to form a main dish pudding.  The word strata itself means layers and the dish is often made by alternating layers of bread slices or cubes with the flavoring ingredients and then pouring on a mixture of eggs and milk which form the custard, our replacement for the original cream sauce.  Once the dish is baked, the custard holds everything together but is largely invisible, as the bread soaks it up.” 

a la Mode (French) Refers to ice cream on top of pie.

a la Florentine Literally French for "in the style of Florence". In Italian its "alla Fiorentina". It refers to dishes served on a bed of spinach and topped with mornay sauce.

a la Provencale (French) Dishes prepared with garlic and olive oil.