The Café's STAFF Q&A

Swiffix

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:swirlix:The Café's STAFF Q&A:vanillite:

We're back with another staff Q&A! This time, we're showcasing the wonderful staff of The Café, who have answered a variety of questions asked by the room's regulars.

How about you? Are you curious to know whether the people running Café behind the scenes can actually cook? Ever wondered if there was a food combo out there that could possibly beat ketchup on pizza? Or perhaps you would like to know what dishes and cuisine each of us recommend. Well, stick around and find out!

Participating Staff
fart
Pyro
Zalm
Aelita
Amaluna
Celine
Laguna
Queeni
Swiffix
Briewear
javitu
TheJ3estPenguin
PressPlayBrenden
MC Princess Pearl

In the above order, here’s our participants’ avatars for this round:

Breloom_-_fart.pngTrubbish_-_Pyro.pngWeedle_-_Zalm.pngPorygon-Z_-_Aelita.pngMeloetta_-_Amaluna.pngLucario_-_Celine.pngAzurill_-_Laguna.png
Vaporeon_-_Queeni.pngPiplup_-_Swiffix.pngBewear_-_Briewear.pngHoundoor_-_Javitu.pngEmpoleon_-_Jay.pngSalamence_-_PPB.pngGlaceon_-_MCPP.png

GENERAL QUESTIONS

Do you have a culinary background?

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Laguna
I don't have any, tbh. But I love to try out new stuff and learn the traditional way of cooking in different cuisines. My passion to share comes from the way we generally eat most of the time: fast. And there is so much more to cooking. I wish for everyone to experience the joy of making great food on their own. Even if it takes time.

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Queeni
Never had professional experience, except maybe the one time I got into a basic cooking course when I was a teen, but it wasn’t anything big. I am just a simple home cook that grew up with a mother that likes to cook. I come from a Turkish family that lives in a multicultural city and I’ve been exposed to a lot of different cuisines since childhood this way, so I know first-hand how exciting it is to explore other cuisines – which makes me super excited to share about the cuisine I grew up with, too!
(Also, food talk is just fun and connects every person, so here I am).

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javitu
My mother has always been a really good cook and loves to cook for my family. My two grandmothers taught her many good recipes that she has perfected along the years. Since I was little, I liked helping her in the kitchen and she encouraged me to learn and be able to cook for myself the dishes that I love

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TheJ3estPenguin
I was in a culinary academy for 4 years (and planned on going to culinary school) until I changed career paths.

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PressPlayBrenden
I don’t have a real culinary background, but I love food and love Gordon Ramsay, so I guess that's where my inspiration to learn more and share my love for food comes from.
Does pineapple belong on pizza?

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Pyro
Pineapple is my absolute favourite pizza topping, so I'll go with a firm 'yeah'.

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Aelita
Yes, why not? They add a dash of sweetness into a possibly savoury dish, and they actually complement tomatoes and cheese quite well! I've been a fan forever.

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Celine
Absolutely.

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Laguna
As a German, who likes pineapple on different stuff. Toast Hawaii is very famous here. I have to say: it tastes actually good, but from a culinary background I would say: hell no! But I am not from the Pizza-Police, so put on pizza what you like!

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Queeni
Since I hate pineapples on their own, I would not ruin a perfectly good pizza with them. But otherwise just pick whatever you like and don’t let other people’s opinion ruin your fun – unless it’s ketchup on pizza, that’s wrong (shoutout to Swiffix).

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Swiffix
I'm a huge fan of sweet and savory combos, so this is an absolute yes from me.

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Briewear
For me? No. Do I care if others eat it? Not at all, it's not like it's disgusting, but I can understand Italians being so against it lol

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TheJ3estPenguin
Absolutely the fuck not.

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PressPlayBrenden
Yes, but only if its balanced out by something like ham. Cannot be the only topping (also ketchup should never go NEAR pizza)

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MC Princess Pearl
Nope! I’ve tried it, and I don’t find them enjoyable. If you like it, you’re not a psychopath, just don’t try and make me eat it pls and ty
Are you actually able to cook? What’s the hardest thing you’ve been able to cook? And would you consider yourselves good cooks?

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fart
I am, to a degree. I like preparing foods in different unique ways that aren't all considered cooking; I've done ferments (e.g. yogurt), pickling (e.g. dilly beans), curing (e.g. lox), and dehydrating (e.g. beef jerky). I don't know if this is the hardest thing, but one thing I've been doing recently but finding somewhat difficult is homemade crunchwraps, like you'd get at Taco Bell. I think for an untrained home cook, I do pretty well.

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Pyro
I'm not the best cook by any means - my presentation skills are weak and am always at risk of over-seasoning the things I make. My hardest cooks (or bakes, in this case) have all involved pastry, simply because I can't pull it off to save my life, so I've struggled with things like mille-feuilles and baklavas.

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Zalm
Cooking is probably my biggest passion in life. I love cooking, sharing my food, researching different kind of foods/preparation methods/cuisines etc. As a homecook without a professional background I wouldn't consider myself to be as good as I could be with the proper training, but I definitely feel like my skills are above average. As for the hardest thing to cook, it might be something like porchetta or just a whole roasted chicken, but I'm not quite sure. Those are the dishes I feel the most accomplished about after making them, but I'm not sure if they are easy to mess up, so idk if they are hard dishes ^^;

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Aelita
I think I can cook but I love following recipes, so I'm rarely one to experiment unless I want a certain flavor that's not within the recipe itself. I make a mean stir-fried tofu dish, or fajitas to be eaten with tacos. I've made some damn good mac and cheese too. I consider myself a decent cook overall - I know how to judge and adjust flavor.

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Amaluna
I am an awful cook. I studied at a culinary school as a waitress, where I was mixed with the chefs. There I learned to poach eggs and that's a technique I'll never use ever again anyways. Aside from that, let's just say I'm very grateful I have an automatic egg cooker and a toaster that ejects the bread on its own.

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Laguna
Cooking became one of my biggest passions over the last years. I try to learn and experiment as much as possible. Does that make me a good cook? - Maybe, test my food and tell me then The hardest dish I've ever cooked was Beef-Wellington, but I nailed it.

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Queeni
I often cook for my family and myself, though I keep it simple for a regular day, like usually rice and a protein (like chicken, beef or beans) works fine enough while still being delicious and cheap. I don’t consider myself a chef, but I certainly can create tasty dishes, though I like to stick to recipes myself. It’s hard to decide what has been the hardest thing to cook for me, but it might actually have been sushi just because I struggle with the techniques and getting the taste quite right. It’s absolutely harder than it looks like, although I got better at it, so at least it’s edible.

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Briewear
Eh... I guess so. Probably the chocolate babka I made once? I usually just go for recipes with lots of ingredients, I don't think any of them were that technically difficult. I don't consider myself a good cook no.

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javitu
Yes, I am! And I must say that I love it. To me it's a way to relax and enjoy my time finding new things I like. The hardest thing I have cooked is probably a "Moussaka" since it involves many different elaborations when cooked traditionally. And yes, I think I am a good cook, although I'm still learning and trying to expand my cooking knowledge.

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TheJ3estPenguin
Yes, I am actually able to cook. The hardest thing I had to cook probably are crepes. I never did get the batter mixture just right. I would consider myself a good cook if I tried.

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PressPlayBrenden
I can cook well enough for myself, but I am still learning how to truly cook properly. Haven’t really tried to cook anything notably difficult before, but I’ll say a full meal for my family cooking with large portions of food I am comfortable with like chicken and vegetables.

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MC Princess Pearl
I would say I can actually cook, yes, at least halfway decently. The hardest thing I’ve successfully “cooked” is fried Oreos, not because that was super hard, but because I burnt myself two times before I finally got through them without injuring myself (proud of that! Kinda).
What weird flavours do you like that nobody else likes, and what flavours do you hate that everybody else loves?

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fart
I don't know if it's weird but I love foods that are highly acidic. I'm a fan of every citrus fruit I've tried; limes and grapefruit are my favorite fruit overall. I sometimes drink lemon or lime juice straight from the bottle if I need a kick. As for flavors I hate, I'm not good with bitter foods. I get very sick when I eat arugula (or rocket) and other leafy greens besides spinach. I hate coffee. I hate hate hate tea. Dirty leaf water.

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Aelita
I really like bitter food. Bittergourd, for example, is one of those things in Indian cuisine that everyone stays far FAR away from, but when cooked right, it's SO good. Everyone else seems to like popcorn - butter popcorn, cheese popcorn and such. I find that disgusting, chewing styrofoam-like vaguely salty pieces just never appealed to me. If the caramel flavoured ones are hard and not as textured as styrofoam, then I'll eat those. Disneyland does an excellent one.

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Amaluna
This question is made for me, I can feel it. I seem to be known for my hottakes in the culinary department. So let's get this show on the road:
I __dislike__ rice - it is awful and people that like it are crazy. Rice is never good. If something REQUIRES a sauce or anything on the side, ask yourself if it's the 'main ingredient' you like, or the additions to the dish. Nobody eats rice on its own and that says enough! Also, liquorice - even as a Dutch the flavor really puts me off. My brain always associates licorice with chocolate and I wish I knew why. It's the purest form of self betrayal.
I __like__ canned / instant foods - I have always claimed that certain instant / canned foods are better than homemade versions of the same food. And I will proudly stand by this claim. Pancakes, noodles, lasagna, all are better instant than they are fresh. Fight me.

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Celine
I don't know if I like anything that is particularly unordinary. I do really like Calamari tho, and Broccoli is one of my favorite vegetables. As for things I don't like, the biggest one is seafood. There are a few exceptions such as Calamari, but I have yet to taste a fish that I've liked.

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Laguna
I like the taste of iron, that metallic taste. There is a volcanic spring of water where my grandparents live that tastes like licking on metal. I enjoy drinking it whenever I visit them. It is not dangerous. The famous "Geroldsteiner" carbonated water comes from that spring. They just filter out some of the iron.

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Swiffix
Hmm, so it's not exactly because of their flavor and more due to their texture, but I HATE toasted chestnuts. Everyone I know seems to love them, but I don't get it. It has such a gross, squishy yet crumbly texture. I do like frozen chestnuts in desserts, and chestnut flavoring. Just keep the squishy stuff away from me. As for stuff I like that most don't, there's nothing specific that comes to mind - I like trying all sorts of foods and rarely dislike anything. Except blue cheese, keep that abomination away from me.

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Briewear
Not sure what this is referring to specifically, but I like ketchup and Cheddar on pancakes (the ones here are similar to crepes but thicker), that's my go to when I have savoury ones for dinner. Very tasty!

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javitu
I really love acid flavors, I like acid citrus a lot and enjoy those flavors in the fruit that I eat. On the other hand, I really hate the fishy flavor from canned tuna or seaweed, I can't even smell those products

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MC Princess Pearl
For the first part, ketchup on eggs. It isn’t the best food to ever grace mankind (that would be tonkatsu ramen), but it’s not actually that bad. For the second part, most of seafood (the non-fish tasting foods, like scallops, are an exception) and pickles (which are just gross).
What's your favourite cuisine?

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fart
I like Japanese food. I have a fish- and seafood-heavy diet, which fits in well with foods from Japan. I've tried half a dozen or so different kinds of seaweed and try to get creative in consuming more fish and aquaculture-based meals.

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Pyro
I love pretty much all Asian food, in particular Japanese and Malaysian cuisine. I'll also shoutout British food, which is absolutely not the bland, tasteless mess that it has the reputation of.

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Zalm
Hard question, as I really enjoy elements from most cuisines. I'd say somewhere Asian, but Asia is huge :')

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Aelita
Unbiased opinion for sure, but Indian in general. North Indian has curries and the typical tandoori flavours that most of the world knows, South India has plainer, simple, less heavy homestyle foods, West India has sweeter and more savoury dishes and street food, and East India has Chinese-inspired dishes. There's not any other place with this variety!

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Amaluna
I assume the most common answer for this will be Italian. And as much as I hate following the masses, I too am going to be boring and say Italian. You just can't beat lasagna or spaghetti.

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Celine
This is a tough one. So many different cuisines are amazing, but I think if I was forced to choose, I'd probably go with typical American. It's probably the most comfortable to me. Things like bbq ribs, hamburgers with fries, and grilled + seasoned pork chops are hard to beat.

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Queeni
I will always have a soft spot for Middle eastern cuisines, especially Turkish cuisine, since these are the ones I am most exposed to. But I also love exploring Asian cuisines, especially Vietnamese and Chinese since I particularly love their flavors a lot. I really want to get into Indian and Nigerian cuisine the time I have the option – really invested in the dishes I had!

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Briewear
I'd say Chinese, I love things that are variants of sweet chilli, and I had this kung po chicken that was like that once (even though I know traditionally it isn't like that) and the place closed quite a few years ago now, never had better Chinese food since :(

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TheJ3estPenguin
I gotta say I don't have a favorite but you can't go wrong with Japanese, Korean or Italian.

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MC Princess Pearl
Italian. I’m super biased due to my heritage, but I’ve never had a bad Italian dish. Also, they have eggplant parm, so it’s automatically elevated because of that.

INDIVIDUAL QUESTIONS

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Why do you dislike tomatoes so much? What do you substitute for tomato sauce?
I just think they're gross. They don't have a good taste or texture at all. It ruins everything it's in. I don't really "substitute" tomato sauce per se, I just use different sauces to make different dishes. One thing I do like tomatoes in is actually vodka sauce, so that's a good choice. I like pesto, alfredo, and simple butter sauces with my pasta. When I make chicken parmesan, I skip the sauce entirely - it's basically just breaded chicken and cheese.

If you could only have one genre of food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
When I use the word genre when referring to food, I mean it in a sense of what category would it belong to on a menu. Appetizers vs sides (sometimes combined) vs soup vs salad vs entrees. And while I'd say soups are my favorite, I think if I were to have to restrict myself to one, I would pick appetizers. There's too much variety there to really let go of. US Thanksgiving appetizers are some of my favorite things to make and eat. Then you have variety with appetizers like dumplings, tempura, nachos, deviled eggs, chips and dip, pigs in a blanket, the list goes on. It's too much to give up, even if the alternative is soup.
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What do you think of Spicy Foods?
I really like spicy food as long as it actually has flavour rather than just spiciness. I go through a lot of hot sauces and chilli peppers, however I'm really bad at handling heat so I look like I'm dead while I'm eating it lmao.

What food from Pokemon would you love to try the most?
Probably Gummis (Mystery Dungeon) - I think it'd be interesting to find out what flavour each type would have.
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Thoughts on Salmon? What about other fish?
I really love salmon. Like, a lot. Like, a whole lot. You have no idea. I love salmon so much that it's inexplicable. No matter what I do, I am constantly thinking about salmon. When I wake up, it's the first thing on my mind. When I go to work, I can only focus on salmon. When I go come home, I go to the groceries to buy some more salmon. When I go to sleep, I dream of preparing salmon and living a happy life. Salmon is my passion and joy. I like Eel better though.

Favourite Drink?
Whiskey :)
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What country has the best food?
If I had to pick a single country, I'd say India because of the sheer variety as within my favourite cuisine response. I do enjoy a lot of traditional Chinese, Mexican and Middle Eastern food too so the single country isn't very accurate. In fact, if given the choice between Indian and Chinese food, I would pick Chinese food because Indian food is more readily available to me., for example.

If all the beaches were sugar, and all the trees were cakes, if all the mountains were rock candy, and if all the grass were taffy, what would we have left that is safe / healthy to drink?
Everything, actually. Vegetables would still grow, wheat can still grow, so we'd have carbs and possibly spices, we could live off of curries and rice for ages.
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Who is your favourite staff member and why?
I don't really have a favorite tbh... Everyone here is great and deserves some love!

How many desserts have you tried?
A lot, but not as many as I would like. I have quite the sweet tooth so I'm open to most desserts. The issue is turning down those I love for something new. I am definitely open to suggestions tho!
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What's your favorite lecture you did?
The one about pasta
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How big should a bowl of nachos be?
Can a bowl of nachos ever be too big? As long as it has enough for everyone and enough guac, sauce and jalapeño count me in. Have too much left? Just seal it and eat the next days, always my plan.
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Favorite kind of alcohol?
Definitely rum, though I am partial to a good bourbon. Also sake, sake is amazing. I can drink it hot or cold, but I prefer it warm.

When are you NOT drunk?
No one likes a hangover. Never stop drinking, never get a hangover. Easy W

Do you really like ketchup on pizza?
Listen. I'm lactose intolerant, but I like the occasional pizza. Now, when that pizza is from a traditional place and has top quality ingredients and thin dough, I don't feel the need to add ketchup to it. However, fast food pizza that's drowning with cheese would instantly make me sick if I didn't trick my body into focusing on the tomato flavor instead, which is where the ketchup comes into play. It's also really not that bad lol. I'm not a ketchup freak tho, literally only have it in burgers, with fries, and on pizza - don't particularly like it otherwise.
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Favorite kind of cheese?
I'd say Parmigiano-Reggiano, it's the cheese i'd have the most if it wasn't as expensive as it is, very tasty and I love hard cheeses. Contradictory to my name, I know.
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What do you have for breakfast?
This is an easy one since I always have the same. My breakfast consists of yoghurt with oat flakes, blueberries or raspberries and honey. And of course a good coffee to start the morning with some energy

What is your favorite place to buy ingredients?
Well, I love cooking from scratch and, since I am a student, I love cheap products. Therefore, I do most of my groceries in the local market since they offer fresh product for really low prices
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How did you come up with your username?
I saw someone on a website a long time ago, I'd say in middle school, with the J3est thing and I love penguins so I just ran with it lol
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Do you like Italian food?
Yes! Its probably my favorite kind of food. My family has Italian roots so we get a lot of good Italian food, especially around the holidays.

How many different things would you put in a hotdog if it was just hotdog and bun, and what would they be?
Traditional Detroit Coney Dog. Steamed bun, specialty hot dog, beanless beef chili, mustard, chopped white onion.
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What is your least favorite type of food?
My least favorite “type”? I’m interpreting that as flavor, and that would be sour foods (not tart, sour). Tart flavors can enhance a dish amazingly, but whenever I eat something that’s too sour, my mood is sufficiently dampened (soured, ba dum tss) and it sometimes just simply hurts my whole mouth (and soul) to eat.
 
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