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Great British Kitchen - Food index
Category: Food and Drink
Date & country: 27/05/2010, UK
Words: 221

A shallow-sided container which is half-filled with water kept just below boiling point. Containers of food are placed in it to keep warm or cook without overheating. A bain-marie is used for cooking custards and other egg dishes and keeping sauces warm. No special container is needed; a roasting tin will do.

Cooking in the oven using dry heat.

Baking Blind
Method used for cooking flans and tarts without their fillings. Line with greaseproof paper and fill with baking beans or rice.

Baking powder
A raising agent consisting of an acid, usually cream of tartar and an alkali (bicarbonate of soda) which react to produce carbon dioxide. This expands during baking and makes cakes and breads rise.

Covering dry meat or the breast of poultry or game birds with pieces of bacon or fat to prevent the flesh drying out during roasting.

Pouring the juices and melted fat over meat, poultry or game which is being roasted to keep it moist. Use a large spoon or a special bulb baster.

A method of incorporating air into an ingredient or mixture by agitating it vigorously with a spoon, fork, whisk or electric mixer. Also used to soften ingredients.

Bicarbonate of soda
Sometimes used in baking to act as a raising agent.

Immersing food quickly in boiling water to whiten it, as in sweetbreads, or to remove skin, e.g. peaches and tomatoes. Vegetables which are to be frozen and kept for a certain length of time are blanched to destroy enzymes and preserve the colour, flavour and texture.

An electric machine usually consisting of a goblet with rotating blades in the base. Used for purÈeing wet mixtures and grinding dry ingredients. Ideal for making fresh breadcrumbs.

Cooking in water or stock at 100'C (212'F).

Taking the bones from meat or poultry, cutting the flesh as little as possible, so that it can be rolled or stuffed.

Term used for preserving food or preserves in glass jars under sterile conditions. This is the final stage for home wine making.

Consommè, unclarified, or beef broth, veal broth.

Bouquet garni
Bunch of herbs used for flavouring, parsley, thyme and bay, tied together or wrapped in muslin for easy removal before serving.

Cooking method used for cuts of meat, poultry and game which are too tough to roast. It is also good for some vegetables. Use a pan or casserole with a tightly fitting lid so that little liquid is lost through evaporation. Place the meat on a bed of chopped vegetables (called a mirepoix) add sufficient liquid to cover the vegetables and cook on the...

Immersing food in a strong salt and water solution.

The liquid produced by boiling meat or fish bones in water for a long time. Also sometimes called stock.

Searing the outside surface of meat to seal in the juices.

A scientific term used in dietetics to measure the heat and energy producing quality of a food.

Method of impregnating pieces of fruit or peel with sugar to preserve them.

A substance gained by heating sugar syrup very slowly until a rich brown colour.

To change sugar into caramel by gentle heating so it dissolves and turns brown.

A rich stew or braise of meat including beer.

A dish with a well-fitting lid used for cooking meat and vegetables, also applied to food cooked this way.

Also known as Centigrade. A scale for measuring temperature in which the freezing point of water is 0ƒ and the boiling point is 100ƒ. Now used for the oven settings on electric cookers, replacing the Fahrenheit scale which is gradually becoming obsolete in Europe.

A hot or cold moulded dessert. For a hot charlotte the mould is lined with bread and for a cold charlotte it is lined with sponge fingers.

Cooling food without freezing.

Severing the rib bones from the backbone by sawing through the ribs near to the spine. Joints such as loin or neck of lamb, veal or pork are best chined as this makes them easier to carve into chops or cutlets after cooking.

Cutting food into small neat pieces without damaging the tissues.

The process of extracting sediment or impurities from a food. Butter and dripping may be clarified so that they can be used for frying at higher temperatures.

A gentle heat applied to cream which results in the thick clotted cream of the south-west of England.

A method for soft boiling eggs.

Perforated metal or plastic draining basket.

A mixture of fruit stewed in sugar and water.

Literally to pound, crush or grind. In cookery, to chop roughly. It is most often applied to skinned, seeded and chopped tomatoes.

Jam containing whole fruits.

Term used to describe the texture of a mixture, e.g. firm, dropping or soft.

Concentrated stock which has been clarified.

Corned beef
Pieces of beef cured in salt and sugar, pressed together into blocks and canned.

Flour from maize. Also known as cornstarch.

The crisp skin on roasted pork.

Cream of tartar
Raising agent which is an ingredient of baking powder and self-raising flour.

Cream, double
Double cream is the name in Britain for a very rich cream - containing 48% butterfat. Whipping cream in the US, by contrast, contains between 30% and 40% butterfat. Double cream is so rich that it is easy to overwhip it and get it too thick. Some cooks add a tablespoon or so of milk to 8 to 10 ounces of double cream before whipping it to keep it lo...

Cream, single
Single cream in Britain is comparable to American half and half (and may also be called pouring cream), with between 10% and 12% fat. Lower fat content than double cream and should not be used for whipping

Beating together fat and sugar until the mixture resembles whipped cream in texture and colour (pale and fluffy). Used in cakes and puddings which contain a high proportion of fat and require the incorporation of a lot of air.

Decorating the edges of a pie, tart or shortbread by pinching it at regular intervals to provide a fluted effect. Also using special icing tools to decorate fondant iced cakes.

Minced food, coated with egg and breadcrumbs, shaped into a roll and fried.

The parts of milk which coagulate when natural fermentation takes place, or when a curdling agent, such as rennet or an acid is added. The term also refers to a creamy preserve made from fruit (usually lemon or orange) and sugar, eggs and butter.

To separate fresh milk or a sauce either by adding an acid such as lemon juice or by over heating. Also used to refer to creamed mixtures which have separated when the egg has been beaten in too quickly.

To preserve fish, meat or poultry by salting, drying or smoking.

Individual cup shaped mould used for making puddings, sweet and savoury jellies, and creams.

Frying food by placing it in deep hot fat or oil.

Brown sauce, semi-clear and syrupy in texture.

To cut food into small cubes.

A thick mixture of uncooked flour and liquid, usually combined with other ingredients. The term is used to refer to mixtures such as pastry, scones and biscuits as well as those made with yeast.

Removing the entrails from poultry and game.

To cover generously with sifted flour or sugar.

Plucking, drawing and trussing poultry and game. Garnishing a dish. Coating a salad.

Fat obtained from roasting meat or pieces of fat which are rendered down deliberately (see also Rendering).

To slowly pour a liquid mixture in a very fine stream over food.

Dropping consistency
A term used to describe the correct texture of a cake or pudding mixture prior to cooking. Test for it by taking a spoonful of the mixture and holding the spoon on its side above the bowl. The mixture should fall off its own accord within 5 seconds.

Preserving food by dehydration. This is usually done commercially (e.g. dried milk granules, dried peas) but it is possible to dry herbs and fruit at home.

To sprinkle lightly with flour, cornflour or icing sugar.

Egg wash
A term given to a mixture of egg and salt used for glazing pastry, bread and buns when a shiny surface is required.

A mixture of two liquids which do not automatically dissolve into each other, e.g. oil and water. They can be made to emulsify by vigorous beating or shaking together, as when combining oil and vinegar in a French Dressing.

Substances present in all foods which have not been subjected to processing and which work within them continuously. Most enzymes are killed by cooking.

A slice of meat such as veal, turkey or pork cut from the top of the leg and normally egged and crumbed, then fried.

Concentrated flavouring which is used in small quantities, e.g. meat extract, yeast extract.

A mixture of pork offal, onion and breadcrumbs which is baked and eaten with gravy. The term is also used to describe a small bunch of herbs tied like a miniature faggot of wood, such as a bouquet garni.

System of measuring temperature which is being replaced with Celsius. Its freezing point is 32ƒ and boiling point 212ƒ.

A name given to the undercut of a loin of beef, veal, pork or game, for boned breasts of poultry and for boned slices of fish.

Fines herbes
A mixture of chopped herbs, normally parsley, tarragon, chives and chervil.

Alcohol, usually brandy or liqueur, poured over a dish and set alight, as a flavouring.

Open tart, cooked in a ring.

Decorating the edges of a pie, tart or shortbread by pinching it at regular intervals to provide a fluted effect. Also using special icing tools to decorate fondant iced cakes.

Folding in
Method of combining a whisked or creamed mixture with other ingredients so that it retains its lightness. Used mainly for meringues, soufflÈs and certain cake mixtures. Folding is best done with a metal spoon.

Cold dessert consisting of purÈed fruit with whipped cream or custard blended into it.

Stuffing for meat, fish or vegetables.

Dredging the surface of roast meat, usually game, with flour and heating to a brown colour in a hot oven.

Method of cooking food in hot fat or oil. There are various methods: shallow frying in a little fat in a shallow pan; deep frying where the food is totally immersed in oil; dry-frying in which fatty foods, such as bacon and sausages, are cooked in a non-stick pan without extra fat.

A dish of white meat which has been boned, sometimes stuffed, rolled, cooked, pressed and glazed with aspic to be served cold.

Game chips
Potatoes sliced very thinly and fried.

The small ornamental items that can be eaten and that give colour and attraction to a dish, e.g. small glazed onions or carrots, sliced sautÈed mushrooms and so on, or for a fried dish, fried parsley. Often a dish will be named after the garniture.

An animal-derived setting agent sold in powdered form in sachets, and as leaf gelatine.

A liquid measure equivalent to 150ml (º pint).

French word meaning iced or glossy e.g. Glacé Cherries and Glacé Icing.

Foods used to give a glossy finish to sweet and savoury dishes to improve their appearance and sometimes flavour. Ingredients for glazes include beaten egg, egg white, milk and syrup.

A constituent of wheat and other cereals. The amount present in varying flours produces the different textures of cakes and breads.

Shredding cheese, carrots and other hard foods with a grater or food processor attachment.

A flat, heavy, metal plate used on top of the cooker for baking scones.

Cooking beneath direct heat, also called broiling.

Reducing foods to small particles in a food mill, pestle and mortar, electric grinder or food processor. Foods ground include coffee beans, nuts and spices.

To clean out the inside of a fish, removing all the entrails.

Leaving meat or game suspended in a cool, dry place to allow air to circulate around it to tenderise the flesh and develop the flavour.

Hors d'oeuvre
Often used as a term for a starter but, really means a selection of cold foods served together as an appetiser.

Removing the stalk and leaves from soft fruits, e.g. strawberries.

Method of transferring flavour to a liquid. Flavouring, herbs, spices or coffee beans are soaked in milk or water.

Refers to dishes garnished with mixed fresh spring vegetables or green peas and sprigs of cauliflower.

Traditional method of cooking hare in a tall covered pot until very tender and rich dark brown in colour. The blood is added at the end of the cooking time.