Relish vs. Relish

When I hear and see the word relish the first thing I think of is, green topping for a hot dog. Which, to me, presents a negative connotation to the word. I am not a fan of the chunky green pickle substance. But oddly enough, the alternate definition of relish is actually: liking or enjoyment of the taste of something; to take pleasure in; enjoy.

But let me tell you, I do not relish that condiment we know as relish.

Okay… you got me…I’ve never even had relish. But it looks kind of scary…

green-relish

Maybe now that my palette has expanded I’d be willing to give this one a go.

quick-pickle-jalapeno-relish-1
Jalapeno Relish from Souffle Bombay … It might be worth a try.

But we’ll see if I relish for more relishing of the relish after I finally try it.

What I have found I definitely have relish for, is the learning of linguistics and how our beautifully complicated language works.

Today I focus on this particular homonym, relish. 

Relish has over time become a homonym, it originated from the Old French word reles,  meaning scent, taste or aftertaste. Then moved to meaning “the enjoyment of the taste or flavor” and finally in 1797 the “condiment, which imparts flavor” was born. So now, we can relish something, have relish for something…or we can simply eat relish.

A relish, in the food form, can also mean something other than the pickled surprise we can order on our Chicago hot dog. Relishes are common among Indian and African cuisine. For example a jam or a chutney, made with chopped vegetables or fruits…It’s sort of similar to a salsa but is usually spread on top of a meat as opposed to being dipped into by a chip or a cracker.

And Also! There are relish trays, which usually includes a variety of savory veggies, such as pickles, olives and beets.

Relish is one of the many homonyms in our language.

I relish for knowledge! I plan to do more simple research on, not only English and language, but the habits, customs and traditions we’ve established over the years.

This year I’ve been especially fascinated by the words we use and where they come from. The Great Courses offer very in-depth information about linguistics and vocabulary…and so many other things. But I found these topics make my brain work, I’ve never been so aware of my speech and the discourse habits we’ve collectively created among regions and social groups.

“Relish everything that’s inside of you, the imperfections, the darkness, the richness and light and everything. And that makes for a full life.”
-Anthony Hopkins

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