Belcher Gastronomique

A cheerily unalphabetical dictionary of food terms


Calpains are a family of calcium-dependent, non-lysosomal cysteine proteases (proteolytic enzymes) that are expressed ubiquitously in mammols.

“At the lower temperature muscle proteins contract and squeeze out water far more slowly, which is crucial to keeping the meat moist. But it also needs to be tenderised, which at this temperature is done by enzymes, particularly calpains and cathepsins that weaken or break down collagen and other proteins. Calpains stop working at 40°C/105°F, cathepsins at 50°C/120°F, but below these cut-off points, the higher the temperature, the faster they work. Heating the meat slowly means these enzymes can perform their magic for several hours before denaturing, effectively ageing the meat during cooking. The result is the tenderest, tastiest meat imaginable.”

– Heston Blumenthal, In Search of Perfection, p. 166


January 6, 2010 Posted by | c, Ca, Cal | , , , | Leave a comment

Have an offal Christmas and a Wurst New Year

“Have an offal christmas and a wurst new year” was the greeting in a christmas card sent by Jonathan Lynn and Antony Jay’s Jim Hacker, Minister of Administrive Affairs to Maurice, the EEC Agricultural Commissioner in Brussels. The message was an allusion to moves towards standardisation of the euro sausage and, as a consequence, to rename the British sausage an “Emulsified high-fat offal tube”. The Christmas card was the first step in a series of events which led to Hacker being promoted to the office of Prime Minister.

December 10, 2009 Posted by | Of, Off | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment


Histadelia is the term used to describe an excess of Histamine in the body. This condition is often caused by Gut Dysbiosis and an excess of histamine-producing bacteria such as the Proteus family, the E.coli family and Staphylococci. Though histamine is produced by certain bacteria present in a healthy gut, the overgrowth of opportunistic bacteria can lead to excess histamine production in a way that cannot be adequately regulated. When this happens a number of symptoms are common. These include allergies, low blood pressure, excessive production of body fluids such as saliva, dysfunction of the hypothalamus, hormonal changes and PMS, emotional instability, sleep abnormalities and addictions. Histadelia was found by Dr Carl Pfeiffer to be common in many people with depression, schizophrenia, addictions and autism.

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Hi, His | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Iron-loving bacteria

“Most people with abnormal gut bacteria have various stages of anaemia. It is not surprising. They not only can’t absorb essential for blood vitamins and minerals from food, but their own production of these vitamins is damaged. On top of that people with damaged gut flora often have a particular group of pathogenic bacteria growing in their gut, which are iron-loving bacteria (Actinomyces spp., Mycobacterium spp., pathogenic strains of E.coli, Corynebacterium spp. and many others). They consume whatever iron the person gets from the diet, leaving that person deficient in iron. Unfortunately, supplementing iron makes these bacteria grow stronger and does not remedy anaemia.”

Gut and Psychology Syndrome, Natasha Campebell-McBride

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Ir, Iro, Quote as gloss | , , | 1 Comment


Cyanocobalamin is another name for vitamin B12.

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Cy, Cya | , | Leave a comment


Pyridoxine is another name for vitamin B6.

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Py, Pyr | , | Leave a comment


Niacin is another name for vitamin B3.

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Ni, Nia | , | Leave a comment


Thiamin is another name for Vitamin B1.

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Th, Thi | , | Leave a comment

Faecal compaction and Over-spill Syndrome

Faecal compaction and over-spill syndrome is a common condition found among children with neurodevelopmental conditions such as autism. It exists in children where old stool is compacted and adheres to the walls of the digestive tract where it may stay for many months providing an environment where parasites, harmful bacteria, fungi and viruses may breed and thrive, producing toxic substances which may pass into the bloodstream. New food, meanwhile, passes through a narrow channel in this stool and passes as over-spill, failing to empty the bowel.

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

Quote of the Day 26-11-09

“The primary seat of insanity generally is in the region of the stomach and intestine”

– Phillipe Pinel, 1807, quoted in Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Natasha Campbell-McBride

November 26, 2009 Posted by | Quote of the Day | , , | Leave a comment