no man's land

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fadeout32811!!!

Senior Member
french
Hi,

I am watching "The Great British Bake off" and there is a line that I don't understand.
In a challenge, they have to make meringues.
When one of the participants is trying to boil meringues in milk, she says that she will have it on quite a moderate heat, because you'd normally do meringues in the oven at quite a low heat.
And she says, "I feel like I am in meringue no-man's-land right now"

What does this mean?
Does this mean that she never boiled meringues in milk, so she doesn't know how the meringues are going to be?

Thank you!
 
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    Does this mean that she never boiled meringues in milk, so she doesn't know how the meringues are going to be?
    Yes, but also that she has never even read of, or seen anyone doing this.

    It is not a good use of "no-man's-land" - she should have said "unexplored territory", which would have been clearer. "No-man's-land" = an uncontrolled area or territory, and can be used figuratively.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    I don't have the difficulty with the "no-man's land" that Paul has.

    This from WIKI:
    No man's land - Wikipedia

    No man's land is land that is unoccupied or is under dispute between parties who leave it unoccupied due to fear or uncertainty. The term was originally used to define a contested territory or a dumping ground for refuse between fiefdoms.[1] In modern times, it is commonly associated with the First World War to describe the area of land between two enemy trench systems, which neither side wished to cross or seize due to fear of being attacked by the enemy in the process.[2]



    The area under "dispute" in this case is the pot (which she is attempting to use) and the oven which is more commonly used. She wants to be in the oven camp but she is forced to work in the pot (stove top) camp.

    The idiom I would have used in this case is, "I feel I am trying to teach a race horse to run on his hind legs." Meaning: It is something that can be accomplished but the race horse (the pot) is not properly being utilized. The oven would be the preferred cooking equipment.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    Addendum:

    The idiom I used ("I feel I am trying to teach a race horse to run on his hind legs.") may in fact not be an idiom, but merely a catchy phrase I once heard. A quick Google search finds no references to this. The "idiom" is not of my own making, but it appears that it is not commonly used at all.
     

    Sparky Malarky

    Moderator
    English - US
    Addendum:

    The idiom I used ("I feel I am trying to teach a race horse to run on his hind legs.") may in fact not be an idiom, but merely a catchy phrase I once heard. A quick Google search finds no references to this. The "idiom" is not of my own making, but it appears that it is not commonly used at all.
    Glad you said this because I've certainly never heard it before. Catchy, though.
     
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