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Dessert is a course that typically comes at the end of a meal, usually consisting of sweet food but sometimes of a strongly-flavored one, such as some cheeses. The word comes from the French language as dessert and this from Old French desservir, "to clear the table" and "to serve." Common desserts include cakes, cookies, fruits, pastries, ice cream, and candies.

The word dessert is most commonly used for this course in U.S., Canada, Australia, and Ireland, while sweet, pudding or afters would be more typical terms in the UK and some other Commonwealth countries, including Indiamarker. According to Debrett's, pudding is the proper term, dessert is only to be used if the course consists of fruit, and sweet is colloquial. This, of course, reflects the upper-class/upper-middle-class usage. More commonly, the words simply form a class shibboleth; pudding being the upper-class and upper-middle-class word to use for sweet food served after the main course, sweet, afters and dessert being considered non-U. However, dessert is considered slightly better than the other two, owing to many young people, whose parents say pudding, acquiring the word from American media.

Desserts are often eaten with a dessert spoon, intermediate in size between a teaspoon and a tablespoon.

References

  1. Watching the English by Kate Fox. ISBN 0-340-81886-7
  2. Class by Jilly Cooper



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