If you saw a dish called Rice and Peas on a restaurant menu, would you order it? If it were me, I’d say, “Why would I pay good money for this dish when I could make it tomorrow with my eyes shut?”
But what if it were called Risi Bisi or Risi e Bisi? I might be intrigued enough to order it. I like Italian food so Risi (rice) e (and) Bisi (peas) could be a thrilling discovery. Maybe I’d be convinced that it contained some special ingredient that justified the price.
For adventurous eaters, exotic-sounding dishes like Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine Sauce), Boeuf Bourguignon (Beef Stew), Sopa de Albondigas (Meatball Soup) and Weinerschnitzel (Fried Veal Cutlets) sound much tastier in their native language.
Next time you cook a boring-sounding dish, give it a French, Italian, Spanish, German or other foreign name. Everyone will be eager to try it, even you.
Risi Bisi – serves 4
2 cups cooked rice1/2 cup cooked peas
Combine the rice and peas, heat until hot and serve as a side. What could be easier?