Ephemera

All the Recipes We've Described with the Most Universally Hated Word

May  5, 2016

There’s a word that is universally loathed—scientifically supported as terrible. Can you guess it? It’s not phlegm or curd or mucus. It parades all over this fine website.

It’s moist.

Don’t stop reading. Look at these (moist) cakes:

New research presented in a scientific paper cringingly called “A Moist Crevice for Word Aversion” suggests that it’s less the sound of the word that grosses us out but rather its association. “Moist” is a word you can use to describe your favorite cake and also the wettest, dampest, dankest…parts.

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If you’ve made it this far—we almost didn’t—let’s keep you uncomfortable and run through all the times* we used “moist” to describe a food.

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Top Comment:
“or grass (usually in the morning, when heavy with dew - nothing wrong with that) and then there is the occasional reference in literature to a character's eyes being moist (emotion). So much ado about nothing, really. ;o)”
— AntoniaJames
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*Okay it's a curated list. How many times, really? One editor guessed 50. The real answer: 728. One day we’ll know better.

These cakes (and 118 others) are moist.

These breads—and 50 others—can be, too.

We also have moist biscuits.

Moist muffins—what an alliteration.

Moist meatloaf.

Then, we have chicken. Moist chicken.

Moist pork.

Moist fish.

Moist eggs.

Moist cheese.

Moist, hard root vegetables (?)

And moist balls and buns (I'm sorry).

12 Comments

Emily L. May 9, 2016
hahaha I used to hate the word so much before I started baking frequently. there is no good synonym!
 
Risottogirl May 9, 2016
Darn I thought the word was GENIUS.
 
Risottogirl May 9, 2016
Darn I thought
 
foofaraw May 6, 2016
Nooooo!!! I cannot unsee this in my mind now!
 
Taste O. May 6, 2016
Moist is good! What's the alternative? Dry? Concrete-like?
 
Corina N. May 6, 2016
HhAHAHAH i'm still laughing with this post!! Never thought about moist foods but it is kind weird lol
 
bookjunky May 5, 2016
So funny! Yes it's true that the word moist grosses out many of us in association with some things (particularly bodily functions) but everyone loves a moist cake. Carry on!
 
AntoniaJames May 5, 2016
Oh, heavens. I for one have no bad associations with that word. In my life, it's been used more often than not to describe cake (mmmmm!), or grass (usually in the morning, when heavy with dew - nothing wrong with that) and then there is the occasional reference in literature to a character's eyes being moist (emotion). <br />So much ado about nothing, really. ;o)
 
Stephanie May 6, 2016
Agreed! I have a friend who maintains that anyone who truly loves cooking can't possibly have an aversion to the word moist.
 
AntoniaJames May 6, 2016
Is there any better word to describe the meat of a perfectly roasted turkey or chicken? Or muffins or quick bread or meatloaf? I don't think so. (Or, I challenge the editors to make the case for a more effective alternative.)<br />How silly this all is, really. ;o)
 
The A. May 5, 2016
love it.
 
Carmen L. May 5, 2016
You're not sorry at all...