Cooking Terms

Beat – To briskly whip with a wire whisk or electric mixer.

Blanch – To submerge vegetables into boiling water for a few seconds – 2 minutes and cooked quickly, then cooled by putting them into ice water to stop the cooking process.  This seals in colors and flavors.

Boil – to cook foods in pots on top of the stove with liquid where bubbles rapidly form and come to the surface.

Brine – A salt solution used to marinate and preserve foods.

Cream – Mixing together sugar and fat, such as butter or shortening until it becomes light and fluffy.

Cut in – to incorporate fats such as butter or shortening into dry ingredients such as flour or sugar by using a pastry cutter, fork, or knives.  You know you are done when the fat is in small pieces the size of peas.

Fold – To lightly incorporate a light mixture into a heavy mixture.  An example of this would be  folding egg whites into a cake batter.  Place a small amount of egg white on top of the cake batter and with a plastic spatula; fold the batter over and over to gently mix in the egg white.  Then repeat this step until all of the egg white has been folded into the batter.  This makes the batter lighter.

Flake – Use a fork to break off small pieces

Mix – To beat, whip, and combine ingredients.

Puree – any food that is mixed in a blender or food processor until it is smooth.

Roux – A mixture of flour and fat such as butter or shortening and cooked over low heat.   A roux is used to thicken soups, casseroles and sauces.

Sauté – cooking food in a small skillet or sauté pan on top of the stove on medium high heat.  This method is used to cook foods faster and preserve their moisture.

Score – Scoring is making small cuts into foods to serve as venting for pastries and to help meats absorb marinades more easily and also to look decorative.

Simmer – to slowly cook foods on top of the stove on low heat.

Sweat – Cooking foods over a low heat so that they release their juices.

~More to come so check back soon!