From Piping Hot to Chopped Liver: Food Idioms, Explained

From Piping Hot to Chopped Liver: Food Idioms, Explained

Cambria Bold
Nov 19, 2012

Ever wondered where the expression "piping hot" comes from? Or maybe "easy as pie?" The Village Voice recently dug into the history of these expressions, and here are their (somewhat inexact but plausible) origins for 10 common food idioms:

According to Robert Sietsema of The Village Voice, "piping hot" was an expression used in late medieval times, and referred to "the steam that shot out of a spouted tea kettle, a device in use at least since ancient Mesopotamia." The phrase "done to a turn" probably originated in the Middle Ages, when meats were cooked on rotating spits over an open fire. The origin of the idiom "salad days," however, can be pinpointed exactly. It's from Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra (1606): "My salad days/When I was green in judgment: cold in blood/To say as I said then!"

Read the whole list of idioms and their origins over at The Village Voice!

→ Read more: 10 Food Idioms Explained at The Village Voice

Related: Use Your Bean: The Origins of Food Idioms

(Image: Flickr member Marco Armant licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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