Astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) have been feasting on gourmet food designed by top French chef Alain Ducasse, the European Space Agency (ESA) reported Friday.
Ducasse, working with ESA and France's National Centre for Space Studies (CNES), created special dishes that could be used for "celebratory meals" for long-term missions in space.
Last Sunday, the ISS crew got their first taste of the five-star offerings, which were packaged in tins and prepared to strict hygiene standards, ESA said in a press release. All the crew had to do was heat the tins in the ISS' oven.
The main dishes included quails roasted in Mardian wine, red tuna with candied Menton lemon, "Riviera-style swordfish" and breast of duck with capers.
For dessert, Ducasse came up with semolina cake with dried apricots, rice pudding with candied fruit and a "space" version of a cake called far Breton, which originates in France's western region of Brittany.
German astronaut Thomas Reiter, who arrived aboard the orbiting outpost five months ago, said the food was exquisite, and pointed out that good meals provided astronauts with an important morale boost.
"Food is something which gives us a break. It is something where we find some joy and we are really trying to take some time for our meals," said Reiter.
He regretted, though, one missing item: "It would taste much better if we had some wine with it as well!"
Ducasse's menus contrast with the first food consumed in space by Soviet cosmonauts and US astronauts around 45 years ago, which were bland mixes squeezed out of aluminium tubes like toothpaste. (AFP)
1. quail n.
鵪鶉 (an1 chun2)
例: If you go quail hunting, be sure to shoot carefully.
2. exquisite adj.
精緻的 (jing1 zhi4 de5)
例: The Christmas dinner was an exquisite meal, with dozens of dishes.
3. consume v.i. /v.t.
消耗 (xiao1 hao4)
例: I will try to consume as little electricity as I can.
4. bland adj.
枯燥乏味的 (ku1 zao4 fa2 wei4 de5)
例: The decorations in the room were bland, and quite boring.
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