Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Charts, Links and other Reference
Here's a listing of cooking terms that I've accumulated over the years. I keep this for reference.
Al Denté: pasta cooked “to the tooth”, an expression meaning that the pasta is still firm in the center.
Au sec: French term that means “almost dry”, used in reducing liquids in a pan until there is barely any left.
Bake: to cook an item by surrounding it with hot air, usually applied to breads, pastries, vegetables, and fish.
Barding: tying pieces of fat (i.e. fatback, bacon, etc.) over or around a piece of meat with little or no natural fat cover to protect it while cooking.
Batonnet: to cut into a long, thin, shape, ¼ x ¼ x 2 ½”.
Blanch: to briefly cook items in liquid, usually water but sometimes oil, to parcook the food item.
Boil: to cook in a liquid that is bubbling rapidly and is greatly agitated, 212°F (100°C) at sea level.
Bouquet garni: a term generally used for a sachet that contains no spices, just herbs and aromatic vegetables, usually tied into a bundle.
Braise: to cook an item is a small amount of liquid, usually after browning it first.
Break: usually applied to a sauce or emulsification, meaning that it the fat has separated from the liquid.
Broil: to cook with radiant heat from above.
Brunoise: 1/8” dice.
Chiffonade: to cut leafy herbs and leafy greens, by stacking in a pile and rolling into a cigar shape, then slicing as thinly as possible.
Chop: to cut into irregular shaped pieces.
Chow: to stir-fry, Chinese style.
Dice: to cut into a cube shape.
En Papillote: to cook a food, wrapped tightly in paper or parchment, so that it actually steams in it’s own vapor.
Deep-fry: to cook a food submerged in hot fat.
Deglaze: to swirl a liquid in a saute pan, roasting pan, or other pan to dissolve cooked particles (fond) remaining on the bottom of the pan.
Fond: cooked particles or liquids coating the inside of a pan in a “glaze”.
Glaze: to give shine to the surface of a food by applying a sauce, aspic, sugar, or icing, and/or by browning or melting under a broiler or in an oven.
Grill: to cook with dry heat from below, on a grid.
Griddle: to cook with dry heat from below, on a large solid metal surface.
Julienne: to cut into a long, thin, shape, 1/8 x 1/8 x 2 ½”.
Larding: inserting strips of fat with a larding needle into meats with little or no marbling.
Marinate: to immerse a food item into a seasoned liquid to allow the liquid to penetrate and flavor the food.
Mince: to cut into very fine pieces.
Mirepoix: a 1:1:2 mixture of chopped celery, onions, and carrots, respectively.
Napé: a liquid thickened just enough to cover the back of a spoon.
Pan-broil: same as griddling, except done is a pan.
Pan-fry: to cook in a moderate amount of fat.
Parcook: to briefly cook a food item, for some purpose, to either help in preparation, or to reduce a cooking time later.
Parboil: to partially cook an item in a boiling or simmering liquid.
PDC: abbreviation that stands for “Peeled, Deveined, and Cooked”, usually used for shrimp.
Poach: to cook in a liquid, usually a small amount, that is hot but not actually bubbling, 160 - 180°F (71 - 82°C).
Pomme-frite (French Fry): 1/3 - ½” square x 3” long.
Pressure-frying: to deep-fry an item in a specially designed covered fryer that will trap the steam and hold it under pressure.
Reduce: to cook by simmering or boiling until the quantity of liquid is decreased, often to concentrate flavors.
Roast: to cook an item by surrounding it with hot air, applied to meats and pouTRFy.
Sachet: a small bundle of whole herbs and spices, tied loosely into a piece of cheesecloth.
Saute: to cook quickly in a small amount of fat.
Sear: to brown the surface of a food quickly at a high temperature.
Simmer: to cook in a liquid that is bubbling very gently, 185 - 205°F (85 - 96°C).
Steam: to cook food by exposing it to direct contact with steam, either in a pressurized steamer, or over a kettle of boiling water.
Stew: to simmer a food or foods in a small amount of liquid, which is usually served with the food as a sauce.
Sweat: to cook slowly in fat without browning, sometimes under a cover.
Foreign names of foods:
Béchamel: classic white sauce, based on milk that has been seasoned and thickened.
Beurre manie: a mixture of cold butter and flour, uncooked, used to thicken a sauce.
Bisque: a thickened soup made from shellfish.
Broth: flavorful liquid obtained by simmer meats and/or vegetables. This is different from a stock, in that a stock uses bones.
Cellophane noodles: made from mung beans. A.k.a. glass noodles, Sai Fun, or bean threads.
Chile garlic sauce: hot Chinese condiment made from red chiles and garlic.
Chile sauce: bottled condiment, find near catsup in the grocery store.
Chung choy or Preserved Turnip: used in soups or steamed dishes. Available in sheets or balls. Use 1 ½ oz of the sheet for one ball. Needs to be rinsed before using.
Compound butter: butter that has been softened, with flavorings and seasonings added, then formed and chilled.
Consommé: a rich, flavorful stock or broth that has been clarified to make it perfectly clear and transparent.
Demi-glace or Demi-glaze: classic sauce of half Espagnole and half brown stock, reduced by half. In modern times, it’s usually a well-flavored brown stock that is reduced by half.
Dow See: Chinese fermented black beans.
Emulsion: a mixture of liquid fat and water-based liquid, bound together by egg to prevent it from breaking.
Espagnole: thickened brown stock.
Fines Herbs: a blend of parsley, chervil, tarragon, and chives. Very mild, used in French cuisine.
Fond Lié: brown stock thickened with cornstarch.
Galangal: young, mild, gingerroot.
Glace or Glaze: a stock that is reduced to Napé, or until it coats the back of a spoon, usually reducing by ¾ or more. It will be solid and rubbery when refrigerated.
Glace de Poisson: a glace made from fish stock
Glace de Viande: a glace made from brown stock.
Glace de Volaille: a glace made from chicken stock.
Gumbo Filé: ground sassafras leaves, a.k.a. Filé or Filé powder.
Hoisin sauce: soy/pepper condiment common in Chinese recipes. Find in the International section of a grocery store.
Herbs de Provence: a blend of basil, thyme, rosemary, oregano, sage, and marjoram.
Hollandaise: classic butter/egg sauce, usually used for vegetables and breakfast foods.
Jaggery: Palm sugar, usually found in a pressed cake. Available in Asian grocery stores.
Kaoliang: grain liquor from China.
Lace Fat or Caul Fat: peritoneum or abdominal lining of a pig. Special order from a butcher. An excellent wrapper for fried foods that almost disappears during cooking, but leaves a great flavor and crunch.
Lot Mein See: hot bean sauce.
Mein See or Miso: chinese condiment, the remains of making soy sauce.
Oyster Sauce: chinese cooking sauce, made from oysters, but no fishy taste.
Pesto: a sauce from Italy, pureed basil, garlic, cheese, and pine nut or walnuts, emulsified in olive oil.
Rendered chicken fat: use the skins and/or fat from the body cavity of a chicken. Cook the fat until the pieces are crisp and dry (just like making lard). Strain and store in the fridge. Use for Chinese dishes.
Roux: a mixture of equal part by weight of flour and fat. It should be stiff, not pourable or runny. You can make a roux in a pan using fat from the cooking process, but it probably won’t be as stiff.
Star Anise or Bot Gok: a licorice-like spice that resembles an eight-pointed star about ¾” in diameter.
Stock: flavorful liquid obtained by simmering bones and vegetables.
Slurry: a mixture of water and cornstarch.
Tahini: a paste made from sesame seeds and sesame oil. Used in mid-east cuisine.
Tofu: a.k.a. bean curd. Available in the produce section of a grocery store. Looks like a soft, white cheese.
Velouté: “White Stock” (chicken, veal, or uncaramelized pork stock), that has been thickened a bit. When properly seasoned, that can be used as a basic gravy.
Whitewash: a thin mixture of flour and water.
Zaartar: a blend of sumac bark, thyme, and chick-peas (garbanzo beans) or sesame seeds, common in mid-east foods.
Peace, Love, and Vegetable Rights!
Eat Meat and Save the Plants!