Have you ever had an amuse-bouche (pronounced aˌmyzˈbuʃ)? I am sure you have, though you may not have realized it is the name given that small hors d’oeuvre you received in a restaurant, but did not order.
Amuse-bouche is one of those French phrases that pervade our American food lexicon. The English translation would be: “mouth amuser and it usually delights the mouth as well as the mind, because it arrives unexpected at the table, compliments of the chef.
You are being invited to taste (usually in one or two bites) a sample of a new dish, or something the chef felt would delight your taste buds or go particularly well with a particular type of wine.
There are a few restaurants in Bay Ridge that give patrons this unexpected treat. However, it is poor etiquette to request the amuse-bouche, even if you have come to expect it at a particular restaurant.
If a spoon or fork is not brought with the saucer, it is meant to be a ‘finger food’ and should be eaten as such. Do not request utensils if they do not accompany the delicacy.
It is usually brought to the table in complete form, for each guest to enjoy. Return your compliments to the chef after enjoying your amuse-bouche. Sometimes, the best things in life are indeed free.
Beauty Tips: Beauty author Myra Cameron tells the story of George, a man in his late forties who decided to join his wife in her nightly ritual of facial rejuvenation, using facial exercise and massage. Within two weeks he realized that his skin had increased in smoothness and elasticity, and shaving was much easier as a result.
Here is the exercise that worked for George and his wife.
Tone the under chin area by using the back of your hand. Create a “fish mouth” and use the back of your hand to tap the underside of your jaw lightly, up to 30 times. Tap lightly at a fast pace.
Part your lips slightly and move your jaw from side to side as far as possible. Relax for a few seconds between 10 repetitions. Press your tongue against the roof of your mouth with comfortable force for a slow count of six. Relax and repeat three times.
Exercises should never be done on dry skin. Moisturize with lotion or olive oil.
Phillipa Morrish is the president of Etiquette Training International.