"I LOVE CAULK FROSTING"
(CAULK pronounced as "COCK")
“As in all petit-bourgeois art, the irrepressible tendency towards extreme realism is countered ... by one of the eternal imperatives of journalism for women’s magazines ... But here, inventiveness, confined to a fairy-land reality, must be applied only to garnishings, for the genteel tendency ... precludes it from touching on the real problems concerning food (the real problem is not to have the idea of sticking cherries into a partridge, it is to have the partridge ... to pay for it).
This ornamental cookery is indeed supported by wholly mythical economics ... an openly dream- like cookery ... a cuisine of advertisement, totally magical, especially when one remembers that this magazine is widely read in small-income groups ... it is very careful not to take for granted that cooking must be economical.”^76
76. Barthes, Roland. Mythologies. New York: The Noonday Press, 1975. Print. p. 79.
4.1.1: COATINGS AND ALIBIS TO DISGUISE BRUTALITY
“The ‘substantial’ category which prevails in this type of cooking is that of the smooth coating: there is an obvious endeavor to glaze surfaces, to round them off, to bury the food under the even sediment of sauces, creams, icings and jellies ... Hence a cookery which is based on coatings and alibis, and is for ever trying to extenuate and even disguise the primary nature of foodstuffs, the brutality of meat or the abruptness of sea- food.”^81
4.1.2: GENTEEL COOKERY IN COATINGS
“But, above all, coatings prepare and support one of the major developments of genteel cookery: ornamentation. Glazing, in Elle, serves as a background for unbridled beautification: chiseled mushrooms, punctuation of cherries, motifs of carved lemon, shavings of truffle, silver pastilles, arabesque of glacé fruit: the underlying coat (and this is why I call it a sediment, since the food itself becomes no more than an indeterminate bed-rock) is intended to be the page on which can be read a whole rococo cookery (there is a partiality for a pinkish colour) [sic].”^82
4.1.3: TWO CONTRADICTORY WAYS OF ORNAMENTAL COOKERY
Ornamentation proceeds in two contradictory ways ... on the one hand, feeling from nature thanks to a kind of frenzied baroque (sticking shrimps in a lemon, making a chicken look pink, serving grapefruit hot), and on the other, trying to reconstitute it through an incongruous artifice (strewing meringue mushrooms and holly leaves on a traditional log- shaped Christmas cake, replacing the heads of crayfish around the sophisticated bechamel which hides their bodies).”^83
81. Ibid., p. 78
82. Ibid., p. 78.
83. Ibid., p.79.