Thursday, April 12, 2007

Decadent ? A Word for a Food Blog?

I saw a Choclate Cake on a blog! Oh yeah it was Shaheen's blog. "Decadent" came to mind. I know it is used for describing Desserts, really delicious ones but I wanted to be sure and checked the exact meaning. So I flipped through the dictionary and here is the meaning "characterized by or given to decadence" and the meaning for decadence "the act or process of falling into decay, moral degeneration".

Now I started having serious doubts and did a google search on "decadent desserts" and got numerous hits on TV Shows, Gourmet Magazine all called Decadent Desserts.

So what gives why are desserts being called Decadent but their dictionary meaning says something else totally. Here now I am having sleepless nights over this so please can somebody help me put this to rest?

I used "decadent" to describe Manisha's latest Post on some really delicious Bedouin dish , hoping she will set me right if I used the wrong word to describe it.


  1. I think its the same reason why we say that Chocolate Cake is "Sinful"

    Someone thought like you. Your question answered

  2. Hi,
    Checked the meaning of Decadant in MS word and here they are:
    Corrupt, debauched, depraved, disollute, self-indulgent, profiligate, degenerate, immoral. I definitely doubt if we can use this to describe food. Let's see what others come up with.

  3. UH OH!!:D

    I will go check now,meanwhile I will use "delectable"!:))

  4. Another trick, ISG? :-D You're the Queen!

    It's a shock to read that definition, isn't it?! I felt the same way the first time I looked it up, too! But it appears that the most commonly used definition is Marked by or providing unrestrained gratification; self-indulgent. See here and here.

    That Bedouin dish? Definitely self-indulgent. Definitely decadent. Who says decadent is reserved only for desserts?! I will spice up the mensaf more when I make it next time and find goat meat, even if I have to trek to Denver to make it.

    Shaheen cake is definitely drool-worthy! That first picture is great!

  5. You are right!!!Very very strange!!I am scared to use that now to describe anything.I don't want to diss pple!:)

  6. i guess it is the moral degeneration part that led to the usage of the word with desserts..haven't u heard of sinful desserts? does it mean u are sinning? it just means it may lead u to ruin.(ur waist.)

  7. now you got me thinking there!
    decadent desserts - so it corrupts your mind to indulge without thinking of the consequences (decay eh? ) i don't know, but it sure is a much used word in describing ultra rich (and maybe ultra calorie foods!!!)
    but what do i know!!

  8. I think websters dictionary gives the appropriate meaning. It looks like it is a case of the same word having multiple meanings. Here is what the dictionary said.

    "characterized by or appealing to self-indulgence decadent pleasures"

    Here is the link to the dictionary.

  9. Sandeepa, that was an article that really helped me clean this stuff up.

    Aaahaar Vihaar sorry for turning you against the word for good.

    Asha, thats what I thought, don't want to offend people but looks it is indeed a 21st century word to describe food.

    Manisha Honest (picture a hand on the chest) this was a sincere doubt not a trick Question!

    Shaheen you do understand that it was your Chocolate cake that took me in this road right?

    Richa I guess we could use that word to describe any food that tastes great but we know for sure will cause ----- decay fill the blanks with teeth,stomach,heart anything.

    Chaithra sure the new lexicon ought to carry this "food meaning" too.

  10. Well, Shaheen's chocolate cake is so decadent that it will stir some evil thoughts in you - like, you will want to eat the whole chocolate cake yourself; you won't share; you'd even kill, to eat that all by yourself..

    All, to say, that the dessert is that good.


    All hail chocolate cakes!

  11. what a path my cake took u on..

  12. see, anything that is super yummy has to be either illegal or fattening. that's probably why it's called 'decadent'.

  13. When"decadent" is used to describe food it is lke using an anthonym to describe the opposite of what we want to say. For instance: The chocolate cake is "hooooorrible". but we really want to say that it's very delicious. So "decadent", that means immoral suggests that the food is immoral because we could do anything for a slice or a portion of it. Now it makes sense., isn't it?

  14. As mentioned on Wikipedia - "a luxurious self-indulgence".


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