Treat Yourself To The Origins Of Food Toponyms

Few things cross borders in the same way as food recipes and their ingredients. It should, therefore, come as no shock that so many dishes are named by the country they originate from. Sometimes, the name derives from a specific ingredient, such as an ingredient produced in a particular area, such as Sichuan peppers or Fuji apples. Other times, the term originates from a particular culture or food, like the pad Thai and Boston Baked Beans.

They are also known as toponyms that are named after the name of a location. Toponyms are plentiful in the food industry. All you need to do is walk through a supermarket aisle or browse restaurant menus to find the most prominent names. Then, there are the food names that are less apparent these days. They feel like they are hidden in some mysterious etymological element.

From hamburger to turkey. Here’s the way 11 different foods were named after them.


The idea behind hamburgers is that hamburgersr is a sandwich (more on them later) composed of a ground or cooked beef patty sandwiched between a bun or roll and various toppings.

What a hamburger doesn’t have is Ham.

The name is derived from Hamburg, the German Hamburg city. Hamburg and hamburger was originally a short form for Hamburger Steak (as in the steak made according to the method they are made at home in Hamburg).

Legend says the name originates from sailors who arrived in Hamburg’s port Hamburg with fresh steak tartare from Russia. They cooked the meat and turned the chopped beef Russian food into a typical hamburger. Hamburgers came into America. United States during the St. Louis Louisiana Purchase Exposition in 1904 and grew from there.

The latter part of the burger phrase is now shorthand for any patty between buns. Cheeseburgers, vegetarian burgers, portobello mushroom burgers, Impossible Burgers, you know what you’re looking for, it’s likely to have one that’s a burger.

Are you aware of National Hamburger Day? This is the perfect time to find out more.


SEE DEFINITION Turkey can be described as located on a peninsula that extends towards the Mediterranean Sea. The word Turkey is the giant bird that Americans usually eat at Thanksgiving (and they have such a position in American customs that President Obama pardons the pardon of one or two turkeys each year). On first look, the two terms, although identical, have the same ring. Turkeys are originated from America!

Turkeys (the bird) belong to the Meleagrididae bird family. They are both tame and on the open plains. The term could be used to refer to the meat of an animal that is cooked in contrast to the beef that comes from cattle and the pork from pork pigs. The American breed is named for an area in the Middle East because of a classification error. It was in the early 1500s that many people living in Western Europe received edible guinea fowls from Turkish merchants. The bird was usually called “the Turkey bird, also known as the cock and the Turkey chicken. Shakespeare even made mention of the word turkey in the 1590s. When Europeans first began to give the names of their animals from the Americas, they mistakenly thought of turkeys as guinea fowl.

In the United States today, guinea fowls don’t feature in discussions about the turkey discussion. When people discuss turkeys, most likely, they’re talking about the mainstay at your American dinner table at Thanksgiving.


 Scallions are onions that don’t grow into giant bulbs that grow underground. They are small-sized bulbs with large leaves. They can be used to flavor everything from omelets to salads. Certain varieties of scallions are ordinary onions that are picked early before the bulbs have fully developed. Some are varieties that are grown specifically to be picked early.

The name originates from Ascalon, a Palestinian port city of Ascalon that is now in the coastal region of Israel, situated about 30 miles south of Tel Aviv. Scallions have been spotted all over the world and are a common ingredient in many dishes across the globe. You might also see them listed as green onions, as far as you can be from the toponym that initially came into existence.


 The likeness is simply an ordinary hot dog with a different name. In the US and Canada, the word refers to smoked beef or sausage made from pork. Sausage is similar to hamburgers; unlike hamburgers, the name is derived from the German-speaking city of Europe.

Wiener is a contraction of wienerwurst. It is German for Vienna sausage (the W sounds like a V in German)–Wiener is the name of the Austrian capital city of Vienna and Wien in German and wurst in sausage. Americans later twisted the name into variants such as weenie and wienie.

Nowadays, you can find wieners available under a variety of names. They are Vienna sausages and a different popular name: frankfurter, which is named for Frankfurt, Germany. There are also hot dogs, which is the most popular name and could be derived from the thin and long sausage-shaped dachshunds immigrants took from Germany (though it is important to note that the meat of dogs was never included in the hot dog).


 The cantaloupe is a kind of melon belonging to the gourd family of plants. It has a hard exterior and a light-orange interior. There are two theories of the way that the fruit earned its name. One possibility is that it came directly from the Papal Estate Cantaluppi, close to Rome, and is believed to be where the first European varieties of melon were cultivated. But a French term was used for the fruit at first, suggesting that a French town located in Cantaloup in Languedoc could be a different reason for the name.

Expect different fruits to be served as cantaloupe in Europe as when the fruit is served as cantaloupe in North America. However, they share the same name; two distinct varieties of cantaloupe are performed on two continents. The North American variety is Cucumis Melo Reticulatus, which is less pronounced in taste than the European variation Cucumis Melo var. cantalupensis, which is more sour. Both are different varieties of Muskmelon.

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