Questions about naming and translation of culinary terms and phrases.

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93
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6answers
17k views

Translating cooking terms between US / UK / AU / CA / NZ

This post is an attempt to keep track of the terms that differ between dialects of English or exist in some dialects but not others: British / Australian / Canadian / American / etc. Please note that ...
31
votes
1answer
1k views

What does “do.” mean in old recipes?

I'm reading through a book of cocktails from 1865 and I often seen the measurement for a given ingredient listed as "do.". What does this mean? Examples: 40 1/2 ounces of roast and ground cocoa. ...
25
votes
2answers
30k views

What's the difference between a cupcake and a muffin?

I was debating with someone today whether what we were eating was a cupcake or a muffin, but realized we didn't really know the difference. So what's the difference between a cupcake and a muffin in ...
19
votes
1answer
1k views

What is a liqueur?

I was sitting in a hotel bar sipping cocktails with friends last night, and as one of the less well-versed of us was casting an eye over the cocktail list, he idly asked "is vermouth a liqueur?". "Of ...
19
votes
1answer
567 views

What is this French cuisine technique called, where “a piece of pheasant meat is cooked between two slices of veal, which are then discarded?”

A famed physicist Murray Gell-Mann compared a theoretical machinery in high energy physics theory to a technique in French cuisine, which he described thus: ... a method sometimes employed in ...
17
votes
7answers
5k views

What is ground beef?

I keep hearing about Ground Beef, but I'm from Australia and I've never actually seen it before. Is it the same thing as Minced Beef? Or different? Is Minced beef an acceptible substitute if they're ...
17
votes
1answer
1k views

What international cooking terms sound similar but have different meanings?

I am not the only international user here, and I bet that others are just as confused as I am when we read something on an American-centric resource and the corresponding translation in our language ...
15
votes
9answers
19k views

Difference between soup and stew

What are the technical differences between a soup and a stew. Specifically, I've always had some confusion on the differentation of stew and soup. For the most part, you can tell the difference by ...
15
votes
10answers
109k views

Is granulated sugar (American) the same as caster sugar (UK)?

I have an american cake recipe which includes 'granulated sugar', would this be uk caster sugar? It is for the stage when you beat in with the butter?
13
votes
1answer
982 views

Japanese term for when the Sushi chef prepares meal for you

What is the Japanese term for when the sushi chef prepares a sushi meal for you based on what the sushi chef deems to be fresh and good, as well as what you would be interested in eating? I believe ...
12
votes
3answers
26k views

What is the formal definition of savory?

What is the formal definition of "savory" when used in cooking? I hear a lot about things coming in either sweet or savory forms — e.g. crepes — but in context it doesn't seem that savory ...
11
votes
9answers
9k views

What is slow cooking and what it is good for?

I've read several question about slow cooking, but I don't know what is it and what it's good for. Can someone explain it? Thank you!
10
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the difference between grits and polenta?

I've eaten both and except for the fact that sometimes polenta is a little bit more firm, they taste the same...Any southerners out there that can help?
10
votes
4answers
6k views

What is the difference between quick bread and cake?

Quick breads, like banana or zucchini breads, seem to be assembled in an identical method and with similar ingredients as cake. Many recipes have comparable quantities of fat and sugar. So what is ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

What does it mean for something to be broiled?

In particular, how does it compare to it being boiled?
9
votes
2answers
653 views

What is the difference in blanching and parboiling?

From the time I was very young and just beginning to cook, I always heard about blanching but never heard of parboiling. I learned how to blanch vegetables to prepare for freezing, removing skins from ...
8
votes
4answers
9k views

What is “hand hot”?

How hot is "hand hot"? Should it be about the temperature where you can stand leaving your hand in the water ... but any degree hotter and it wouldn't be tolerable? Or is that way too hot? For ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

Is the “gamey” taste of venison just a polite name for “rotten”?

I have had a theory for a long time that it is the blood in the deer which causes the gamey flavor. Hunters gut the deer soon after a kill, but they don't bleed it or chill it for hours or days. It ...
8
votes
5answers
5k views

What is the difference between roasting, baking, and broasting?

For example, when making a turkey for Thanksgiving, I generally place it in the oven (covered in foil or a turkey bag), and cook it for many hours at the recommended heat setting. I can crock-pot a ...
8
votes
5answers
255 views

Name of an Indian dish with stuffed whole potatoes

I had a lovely Indian meal which I would like to find the name of. There were small whole potatoes with a little hole cut into them and filled with spices and (I think) some lamb mince. They were ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

What is Zwieback toast and where can I find it?

I am baking a black forest cake and it calls for zwieback toast. I cannot find this anywhere. Does anyone know what this is or where I can find it?
7
votes
3answers
5k views

What's the US equivalent of double and single cream?

I can find whipping cream, half and half, and even clotted cream where I'm staying in the US but not double or single cream, are these familiar terms or is there a US equivalent term?
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Is wasabi considered to be spicy or to be a spice?

I was just talking to a friend about what to eat for dinner and he said he didn't want anything spicy. He then mentioned that Japanese food doesn't have anything spicy and I said "Wasabi". ...
6
votes
6answers
3k views

Is there a difference between seasoning and flavouring?

I find the meaning of the word 'seasoning' slightly elusive. Before I started to take cooking seriously, I'd have said that any herb or spice used in cooking could be called a seasoning. Without ...
6
votes
3answers
21k views

Converting teaspoon/tablespoon measurements to mL? [duplicate]

I have been looking at curry recipes on an American web site and it gives measurements in teaspoons and tablespoons. I am not familiar with these measurements as we do not use them locally. Does ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

Is there a difference between green and spring onions?

I've seen some recipes call for green onions but always use spring onions? Is there a difference between them? Is there a better substitute?
6
votes
2answers
987 views

What does “curd” mean in a South Asian recipe?

I've seen the word "curd" used in a few South Asian recipes (like, notably, some "Butter Chicken" recipes). In one video, it kind-of looks like it might be cottage cheese (or something like that), ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

How many different varieties of 'pancake' are there?

I'm not talking about ingredient differences like adding blueberries or chocolate chips, or even buttermilk or cooked pumpkin to the batter ... How many fundamentally different regional types of ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

“Pie” vs “Tart”?

I've been told that there are some differences between a "pie" and a "tart". What's the difference, and when do I call it a pie, and when do I call it a tart? Sorry for my English!
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What are the Standard Terms Used to Describe Liquid Viscosity in Cooking?

When describing the thickness of a sauce or other liquid when cooking, what are the standard terms that should be used? I've heard things like "gravy-like" or talk of coating metal spoons, but I'd ...
5
votes
4answers
866 views

What do you call a scrambled omelette?

I sometimes fry vegetables and chicken, crack a couple of eggs into the pan and stir it all for a while. Serve as is, or with fried rice or noodles. Does this dish have a common name?
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Is there a difference between Stew and Casserole?

Is there a proper distinction between a slow cooked meat dish labelled a casserole and one labelled stew? And if there is a traditional distinction would it be fair to say that the distinction is no ...
5
votes
2answers
152 views

Is there a term for the differentiating effects on loaves of bread?

Say you make several loaves of bread which look very similar. You can put oatmeal on the white whole wheat, sesame seeds on plain white, poppy seeds on gluten free and cross hatches on rye. Is there a ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What is wok hai and how do I get it in my food?

There is something special about food cooked in a wok called wok hai? What is it and how do I get my food to have it?
5
votes
2answers
237 views

Why is fish not considered as meat?

While reading a thread on cooking.SE an old question popped into my head: I am an Asian and had no problems with dishes with both meat and “fish”. But some of my elder German friends say that meat and ...
5
votes
4answers
418 views

What is the egg mixture used in gratins called in English?

This is one of these weird cases of synchronicity. I was wondering today how it is called in English. Then I answered a question, and needed the word for the answer. The dishes I mean may not always ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

How many milliliters is a “pinch?”

I found a recipe in English that mentions a "pinch" of something. English is not my first language, and Google shows that "pinch" has many meanings. Do I have to pinch it with my fingers, or can i ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Are 'sweet' and 'mild' - Italian Sausage - the same thing?

Do they refer to the same kind? Or is there a subtle difference? And what essentially encapsulates the concept of a sausage being sweet? Is it typical sucrose driven sweetness inherent to the ...
4
votes
3answers
572 views

What is this cooking method called

Whats this cooking method called where you bury the food (potato, sugarbeet, guava, corn cobs)in hot charcoal ashes?
4
votes
4answers
862 views

What makes a hot dog a hot dog?

I like hot dogs, but I'm always conscious that they are a means by which unspeakable bits of meat can be made appetising, even when they get a fancy name like bockwurst to cover the fact. So I bought ...
4
votes
2answers
523 views

What does 6% acidity taste like?

A friend and I have been doing research on a recipe and he encountered a statement to the effect that the result should be around "6% acidity." I am not familiar with what this would mean in the ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Explanation of the phrase “Eye of Round Roast”

I need to translate the type of meat called "Eye of Round Roast" to Danish. It would be extremely lucky, if anyone here speaks Danish as well as having a quite good English cooking technical ...
3
votes
2answers
173 views

How can I specify the correct type of bacon in the US?

I'm in the US, looking for bacon like they have in the UK and (possibly?) Canada. However, if I ask for Canadian Bacon, I receive what is basically a processed ham product that I find far less tasty. ...
3
votes
4answers
23k views

What is curried tapenade?

I have just watched the A-Team film and B.A. seems to have an obsession with something called Curried Tapenade? My experience of Tapenade is that it's a Olive based dish and making a curried version ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the English name for Chitra Rajmah?

What is this variety of kidney beans called in English? We call them "Chitra Rajmah" in Hindi. http://www.helloorganic.com/Rajma_chitra.html
3
votes
4answers
279 views

Cookies called monte cows?

A family member recently inherited a recipe for some simple but delicious crumbly cookies from her grandmother. They consist of flour, sugar, and canola oil with cinnamon on top. The grandmother in ...
3
votes
3answers
5k views

Where can I find buttermilk in France?

The translation for buttermilk is given as babeurre, but this doesn't correspond to anything I can find in grocery stores or cheese shops here. I suspect that the word means something in Quebec but it ...
3
votes
2answers
411 views

How can I word “add bread crumbs until it feels right”?

I'm writing a recipe for publication on a site not written for expert chefs. It's a contest with a very nice cash prize. One of my recipes includes meatballs. My final ingredient is dry commercial ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

What makes white chili white?

What makes white chili white; is it just the lack of tomatoes, substitution of broth for tomato base? I am working on a vegan mushroom based chili and am wondering if it would technically be a (chili) ...
3
votes
1answer
149 views

What is the difference between noodles and pasta?

Is pasta just a fancy name for noodle? Or is pasta always an Italian style noodle? Is all pasta noodles? Or the other way around? This may be more of a language question than an actual food ...