Wondering what I am talking about? Look up the terms below:
Al Dente: A term that is normally used for pasta. It means that food should be cooked until firm and a little chewy. Al Dente foods should not be soft or flimsy.
Bake: To cook in dry heat, usually an oven.
Baste: A term that is normally used in reference to meat. It means to pour a liquid, usually fat or cooking juices, over an item while cooking. This is usually done with something that will add flavor and color to the food while preventing it from drying out.
Beat: To mix vigorously.
Blanch: To cook partially in hot liquid or steam, then to plunge the food in an ice bath. This brings out the natural color of fruit and vegetables.
Blend: To mix together until combined.
Boil: To heat a liquid until it bubbles and releases steam.
Braise: To cook in a slight amount of liquid for a long period of time in a covered dish. Often done with larger pieces of meat.
Brown: To sear on high heat without fully cooking the item.
Caramelize: To bring out the natural sugars in an item by cooking.
Chop: To cut into pieces.
Cream: To beat until airy. Often used in baking recipes.
Cut in: To add solid fat like butter into dry ingredients. This is often done in baking.
Deglaze: To add liquid to a pot/pan to loosen cooking residue and add flavor.
Dice: To cut into little pieces.
Fold: To gently combine ingredients together. This is done in a manner that allows the ingredients to retain their texture (i.e. whipped egg whites into batter).
Fry: To cook in fat.
Glaze: To brush a liquid onto something. This is often a sauce or a liquid that will give shine to the food.
Grate: To use a grater to cut foods into very fine pieces.
Grease: To add a fine layer of fat to a cooking pan or utensil so that food does not stick to it.
Ice: To coat in frosting
Juice: To squeeze the natural liquid from a food.
Knead: A baking technique which is done by pressing the palm of the hand onto dough and turning. This gives the dough a smooth texture.
Marinate: To soak a food in liquid or to let sit with a dry rub in order to tenderize or add flavor.
Peel: To remove the skin from produce.
Pit: To remove a stone or seed.
Poach: To cook in a liquid which is below its boiling point, often a simmer.
Preheat: To heat an oven or cooking apparatus to a specific temperature before cooking in it.
Puree: To mash or process food until completely smooth.
Reconstitute: To add liquid back into a dried or condensed ingredient.
Reduce: To thicken a liquid by boiling. This decreases the amount of water and condenses the flavor.
Roast: To cook uncovered in dry heat.
Sauté: To cook quickly in a small amount of fat.
Simmer: To heat a liquid until it is just below its boiling point.
Whip: To beat vigorously to add air into a food. This causes the food to become fluffy and increase in volume.
Zest: To grate the flavorful, colored portion of the peel of a citrus fruit. The pith (the white portion) is bitter and should not be grated.