The Use of Food Terms in Medicine

Who would have thought a significant link between food and doctors has existed for decades? Granted, food is an essential part of life, is partially responsible for shaping our day and is of course also clearly correlated with health. As food and it’s appearance seem to be something everyone knows about and can relate to, instead of challenging the brain with confusing latin names, the medical world has been kind enough to supply laypersons (and medics) with less technical, descriptive food related, terms. It is great for describing findings! If I told you a manifestation of Kawasaki’s disease and Scarlet Fever is an erythematous tongue with hyperplastic fungiform papillae your brain would probably process this: ?!*?!*?!*?!*?!*. If I told you that basically means the tongue looks like a strawberry, your brain could cope. In 1979 the British Medical Journal published a Review titled: Gastrology: the use of culinary terms in medicine (woopwoop research skills put to excellent use). I even found a blog solely dedicated to this! Anyways, here is a list of a few day brightening medical food terms:

  1. Cherry Red Epiglottis – occurs in epiglottitis, an infection of the small flap stopping your food from going down the wrong tube.
  2. Pancake Brain – radiologic description of alobar holoprosencephaly, where your forebrain does not separate into two halves at all during in-utero development.
  3. Salt and Pepper Retinopathy – when affected by the rubella virus, the back of your eye (retina) can show lots of small dark and light spots (like salt and pepper).
  4. Corkscrew Oesophagus – radiologists description of DES (diffuse oesophageal spasm), where the contractions of your oesophagus are uncoordinated and result in a pretty xray
  5. Apple-Peel Intestines – malformation of the intestine with either absence or narrowing of a segment, looks like apple peels
  6. Strawberry Tongue – Scarlet Fever or Kawasaki Syndrom
  7. Cherry Red Spot – seen on the Retina/back of the eye after occlusion of the supplying artery
  8. Peau D’orange – Manifestation of inflammatory breast cancer
  9. Fig Warts – Condylomata acuminata (HPV …. ewwwwww genital warts)
  10. Redcurrant Jelly – Stool of child with intussusception, when one part of bowel invaginates into another.. ouch
  11. Pea Soup – Appearance of stool when a patient suffers Typhoid Fever (an evil version of Salmonella)
  12. Rice Water – Appearance of stool when a patient has Cholera
  13. Honeycomb Lung – Lung fibrosis looks like honeycomb…. Yum!
  14. Maple Syrup Urine Disease – Genetic disorder affecting amino acids which makes the child’s urine sweet like maple syrup… but please don’t pour over your pancakes
  15. Chocolate Cysts – A manifestation of endometriosis (migrating of uterine lining cells) of the ovaries… cysts that oooze out chocolate (actually very old blood and debris)
  16. Port Wine Stains – Capillary Hemangioma, I’m sure you have all met someone in your life with a red birth mark
  17. Café au Lait – no this is not coffee, but Neurofibromatosis has spots which are coffee coloured!
  18. Nutmeg Liver – Congestive hepathopathy; can happen when your heart pumps less and blood collects in the liver
  19. Cauliflower Ear – never eating cauliflower again
  20. Bread and Butter Pericarditis – an infection of the sac enclosing your heart
  21. Sunflower Cataracts – Wilson’s disease (Copper Metabolism Issues)
  22. Coffee Bean Sign – a radiologists description of a twisted sigmoid (segment of the large intestine)
  23. Cottage Cheese Discharge – Thrush….nasty
  24. Apple core sign – when your colon’s lumen is compressed by a large colorectal carcinoma
  25. Omental Cake – Not from Hummingbirds sadly: Invasion of the omentum majus (fatty tissue within your abdomen) by a tumor, usually related to ovarian cancer
  26. Butter Stool – can happen when fat absorption/digestion becomes impaired through liver/pancreatic/gall diseases….your stool becomes greasy and fatty.

I’m sure you could all picture something under these terms. Today’s recipe is semi-related to the number 26: Butterzopf. It is a Swiss Sunday breakfast classic, made with lots and lots of butter. Lucky for you it doesn’t cause butter stools in the average healthy individual. Definitely a must try for your next Sunday family breakfast!

Butterzopf

IMG_2094

 You’ll need
500g flour (either plain white or a mix of 2/3 white flour with 1/3 spelt flour)
1.5 tsp salt
20g fresh yeast (=1 sachet of dry yeast = 7g)
1 tsp sugar
100g unsalted butter
300 ml milk, lukewarm
1 egg yolk, to brush

  1. Dissolve the yeast with the sugar in your lukewarm milk.
  2. Sift together your flour and salt in a large bowl. Melt your butter in a small pan and stir in the milk/yeast mixture.
  3. Pour this into you flour and bring together until you have a moist dough. Knead the dough for about 10-15 minutes until it is soft and forms a few bubbles. Return the dough to your bowl, cover with a warm moist kitchen towel or cling film and let it rise in a warm space until doubled in size (about 2 hours).
  4. Divide the dough into two and shape your Zopf/braid (check out this link!)
  5. Place onto a baking try lined with baking paper and let it rise for about another 15-30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 200°C.
  6. Brush the Zopf with your egg yolk and bake for about 30-40 minutes. If you feel it is getting to brown half way through, simply cover with a sheet of aluminium foil to prevent it from burning.
  7. Let it cool completely on a cooling-rack before serving for breakfast or brunch. It also freezes well once sliced 🙂

Rating: 8/10

Almost as good, but not quite as good, as the fresh Butterzopf from the Landfrauen in Saanen, CH

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s