Is there any link between the word Cajun as in Cajun cuisine and Cayenne as in Cayenne pepper?
#102341. Asked by flem-ish. (Jan 15 09 11:37 AM)
The etymologies of the two words are independent. The similarity of sound (especially considering the common use of cayenne pepper in Cajun cooking) is a coincidence. Perhaps this could be considered an example of convergent evolution of words!|
"The Cayenne is a red, hot chili pepper used to flavor dishes, and for medicinal purposes, named for the city of Cayenne in French Guiana. ... Cayenne is a popular spice in a variety of cuisines. It is employed variously in its fresh form, dried and powdered, and as dried flakes. It is also a key ingredient in a variety of hot sauces, particularly those employing vinegar as a preservative."
"Cajuns (IPA: /'keʒən/; French: les Cadiens) are an ethnic group mainly living in Louisiana, consisting of the descendants of Acadian exiles (French-speaking settlers from parts of what is now Canada) and peoples of other ethnicities with whom the Acadians eventually intermarried on the semitropical frontier. Today, the Cajuns make up a significant portion of south Louisiana's population, and have exerted an enormous impact on the state's culture. ... The word 'Cajun' is a variant of Acadian, combining aphesis (dropping of the leading letter) with slurring the final syllable (as with the American pejorative 'Injun' for 'Indian')."
"The aromatic vegetables bell pepper, onion, and celery are called by some chefs the holy trinity of Cajun cuisine. Finely diced and combined in cooking, the method is similar to the use of the mire poix in traditional French cuisine — which blends finely diced onion, celery, and carrot. Characteristic seasonings include parsley, bay leaf, 'onion tops' or scallions, and dried cayenne pepper."
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