“The Teriyaki Effect”

From the jlist blog:

It’s an odd fact about Japan that teriyaki is not that common inside Japan, though the flavoring is used on certain foods like yakitori chicken on a stick without the teriyaki name. It’s similar to the way French demi-glace sauce is extremely famous in Japan as one of the basic flavorings of Western cooking, yet it’s not nearly as common in France proper. Perhaps we should label this strange phenomenon of foods becoming more famous outside their home countries, “the Teriyaki Effect.”

I concur. Let us use that word. I’ll also add that there’s a related phenomenon. People like things from X nation that are extremely, stereo-typically (based on their possibly incorrect stereotypes) X-like. My wife jokes with her other Asian friends about how Asians who are found to be attractive by Americans (欧米人にもてる)are the ones with extremely slanty eyes. Americans like hot dogs and they like pizza, but you really have to go to Japan to find pizza with hot dogs in the crust. Sushi, thought of as very Japanese, is rather popular in America, but dishes that would be closer to the expectations of the American palate such as omelet rice (オムライス) and Hayashi rice aren’t. Let’s call this the Lucy Liu effect.