Simple cooking terms to take you from Cook to Chef:
cooked foods, usually pasta or vegetables that are prepared to be
a bit firm to the bite, not soft and mushy.
a food added to a dish to enhance the flavor and aroma, includes
herbs and spices as well as some vegetables.
a bundle of seasonings, usually bay leaf, peppercorns, thyme and parsley stems tied in a leek leaf or a piece of cheesecloth used to flavor foods cooked in a liquid base. Parsley stems are used instead of leaves because they have terrific flavor and they will never be seen. (Save the leaves for garnish). The bundle is tied in cheesecloth so that it can be removed from the stock.
a liquid enriched with simmering meat, poultry, fish or vegetables. A broth can be served as a finished dish
the process of cooking sugar until it begins to color. Also, while slowly cooking some vegetables e.g. onions, root vegetables, the
natural sugars are released and the vegetables will caramelize in their own sugars.
to cut food into cubes. The cubes can be small about 1/4 inch, medium
about 1/2 inch or large, about 3/4 inch
Herbes de Provence
a European blend of herbs consisting of chervil, tarragon, chives and parsley.
to cut into matchstick-sized strips. To julienne, first cut the vegetable into 1/8 inch slices. Then stack the slices and
cut them into 1/8 inch strips. Trim them to the desired length.
a coarse salt that does not contain magnesium carbonate.
Marinade the seasoned liquid used to marinate food. The marinade usually
contains herbs, spices, an acid such as wine, vinegar or lemon juice and oil
to soak a food usually meat, in a seasoned liquid in order to
tenderize and flavor the food.
a mixture of vegetables, primarily 3 parts onion, 2 parts celery, 1 part carrots and 1 part assorted other vegetable trimmings
a cooking method in which food is wrapped in paper or foil
and then heated so that the food steams in its own moisture.
checking to make sure that yeast is not dead by combining with
warm water and a pinch of sugar. After ten minutes a thick foam should
as a sauce cooks, moisture is released in the form of steam causing
the remaining ingredients to concentrate, thickening the sauce and strengthening
the flavors. This process is known as reduction. Many sauces are finished
in this manner because it is not necessary to add starches to thicken the
sauce. Keep a close eye on the sauce as it reduces until it reaches the desired
a cooked mixture of flour and fat used to thicken liquids
the temperature at which a fat begins to break down and emit smoke.
a sword shaped tool used to hone or straighten knife blades
a preparation of simmering bones in water to achieve flavor. Stocks are generally used in the preparation or finishing of other dishes.
to cook vegetables and seasonings over low heat in a small amount of fat to release their moisture and flavor.
a sour juice made from unripened grapes, used as a substitute for vinegar.