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What’s the good word?

Want to know how to pronounce the name of a particular dish or drink?

india Updated: Jul 17, 2010 01:10 IST

I get very confused about the names of Mexican dishes. Items like fajita, enchilada, quesadilla and guacamole are difficult to pronounce. I asked for ‘qwehadilla’, with the ‘D’ heavy as in ‘Delhi’, at one eatery in Connaught Place, and my fiance actually giggled.
— Manira Bhasin, Punjabi Bagh

The menu card in a Mexican restaurant can lead even the most die-hard fans of the cuisine to trip up on the pronunciations. Here's a primer- Fajita - fuh-hee-ta, with the 't' pronounced as it is in the Hindi 'tum' Enchilada - en-she-lah-daa. Quesadilla - kay-sah-dee-yah, with the 'D' pronounced as it it in the Hindi 'dum aloo', not as in 'dumpling'. Guacamole - gwa-ka-mole.

I would like to know if the ‘J’ in mojito is silent or not. According to my friend, the ‘J’ letter is silent. Is she right?
— Arushi Dugal, Noida

Your friend is right! The letter 'J' in 'mojito' is a silent entity. Instead, the name of this extremely popular highball cocktail from Cuba, that's made using five ingredients - white rum, sugar (traditionally sugarcane juice), lime, sparkling water and mint - is pronounced as mo-hee-toh. Mo rhymes with 'so', hee with 'he', and toh again rhymes with 'so', with the 'T' pronounced like it is in the Hindi tum. If you travel to certain regions in Cuba, in fact, you'll find the menu spelling this traditional drink as Mohito.

Want to know how to pronounce the name of a particular dish or drink? Email us at htfoodie@gmail.com and we will tell you how to pronounce it correctly