Banh mi is now officially in the American Heritage Dictionary, reports the Boston Globe.
Each year new words are added to the dictionary. Often times they are words originating from pop culture. Other times, as with banh mi, the words reflect the increasing diversity of America.
The Vietnamese sandwich served on a baguette has become increasingly popular. Even the Pepsico company recently opened up a restaurant dedicated to the sandwich.
Another word influenced by Asian Americans to be added to the dictionary this year is mochi. This surprised me. I’m surprised not because it was added, but because it took this long.
The Japanese rice cake has been a standard in Japanese restaurants for a long time. An editor with American Heritage explained why it took so long to be added.
“If it’s a Chinese food dish and it’s only appearing at Chinese restaurants, it’s probably not going to get added yet,” said Emily Neeves, AHD assistant editor in charge of food words. “But if it’s appearing in a cookbook for everyday recipes you can make at home, that’s something that’s moved into the widespread usage.”
You can read about some of the other words added this year in the Boston Globe.