Elen sila lumenn omentielvo!

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

You learn something every day!

Whilst on break at The Store today, we observed our coffee bar employee making a smoothie that looked particularly tasty. When we asked her what flavor it was, she told us, "Peach and raspberry. It's a Peach melba". This got us on the topic of the word "melba". What does that mean? Is there a flavor called "melba" that pairs particularly well with peach? And is this flavor any relation at all to those little slices of dried bread, called "melba toast"?

So in a moment of downtime later on, we did some Googling and found out that in the late 1800s, there was an opera singer -- a soprano -- named Dame Nellie Melba. Apparently Dame Melba had quite the career, and she was especially beloved in her native Australia, as she was that country's first international music superstar. A French chef invented four foods in her honor, including a dessert called "Peach Melba", and, believe it or not,  Melba toast (which he created for her during a time of illness, when her diet was restricted).

Here is what Dame Nellie Melba looked like:

And there you have it. There really was a person named Melba, much beloved in the musical realm in her time, but whose name lives down to us today in culinary terms.


Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

She 'invented' Melba Toast? No, she toasted bread and cut it into smaller pieces and let those dry out. It's not a unique food...it's neglect.

Andy said...

HEY!!! I work with a Melba but she is a FLIPPIN' IDIOT!!!! Your Melba sounds YUMMY IN MY TUMMY!!!

M. D. Jackson said...

Thank you, Jaquandor, for this edifying epistle.