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I was looking for the word of the pie Pascualina in English , and google translator gave me "paschalilla". I dont think that's the right translation because I made a google search for images for that and I come with no photo of a Pascualina. Then I found another translation which says "spinach and egg pie".

Not sure if you can make a Pascualina with that but the most common ingredient in many places is chard. Does Pascualina have an English name or should I simply call it "chard pie" or something like that? Or perhaps I should use the original name Pascualina? Other usual ingredients are onion, garlic, cheese, pepper and ham

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  • I don't know what it's called but I want some. :) Seriously, though -- as others have pointed out, in English we have perhaps thousands of dishes that are called the exact same name as in the original language of the culture they come from -- spaghetti bolognese, sushi, burritos, etc. including the somewhat ironically named chop suey which, in the dialect of the people who invented it, means "miscellaneous leftovers". – Andrew Aug 5 '17 at 22:56
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Pies like that are not commonly eaten in Britain (and probably not in other English speaking countries). A quick check of the dictionary confirms that the word "paschalilla" is not used in English. So you have one of the common translator's dilemmas: a concept that does not exist in the target language.

Here you should consider your audience. Are they people who are interested in Latin American cuisine? If so then use "pascualina" but explain its meaning the first time it is used. For example from recipe book:

The Pascualina pie or chard pie is simple to make, delicious and very healthy. This Pascualina is typically Argentinean...

On the other hand, if your readers are not likely to be interested in Latin American food, you can just describe:

Maria cut each of them a slice of spinach and egg pie as the Church bells rang out for Easter...

This is a matter for your judgement.

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You shouldn't translate it at all. If you do, you're taking away from the uniqueness of the pie to the area that it comes from.

Many foods with names that come from a foreign language are not renamed, such as Italian dishes.

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  • It's not quite the same, because everyone is familiar with spaghetti or pizza, but not everyone is familiar with Pascualina. When words are left untranslated it creates a sense of "otherness" that is not present in the source text. Thus it should be a judgement of the translator when to describe, when to leave untranslated. – James K Aug 5 '17 at 23:44

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