I often hear positive comments about the “authenticity” of a particular restaurant. This usually relates to the types of ingredients that you find at that restaurant. For example, you’ll find an authentic Chinese restaurant that serves chicken feet or a French restaurant that serves bone marrow. When Karen and I were in France, we were served a complete pig.

But the truth is that there’s a reason that we don’t often see these ingredients. It’s because they are pieces of the animal that we no longer need to eat. Historically, these pieces were consumed because people didn’t want to waste any bit of the animal. And that tradition has lived on in many countries that have existed for much longer than the youthful USA. But how often have you had chicken feet or bone marrow and said, “gosh, I wish I ate that every day?”

So in some ways it’s good that a lot of restaurants are not “authentic.” Now, don’t take this too far; I don’t want sweet and sour everything. I just don’t want tons of cartilage and bone with my meat, thank you.

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