sabayon – The French word for a velvety Italian custard called
zabaglione. See Zabaglione.
Mexican sabayon – Mexican sabayon differs from the classic Italian
version in that it is not cooked. The egg whites are whipped until stiff and
then carefully folded into the yolk mixture.
Sachertorte, Sacher Cake
(SAH-kuhr-tohrt) – Sacher Torte is a famous Viennese cake, probably the most
famous chocolate cake of all-time. It consists of chocolate sponge cake cut
into three layers, between which apricot jam are thickly spread between the
layers and on the top and sides of the cake. The whole cake is then iced
with a velvet-like chocolate and served with a side dish of whipped cream.
To learn about the history of the
History of Cakes.
Sachet d’ Epices – The term
means “bag of spices” and consists of whole peppercorns, parsley stems, bay
leaves, whole thyme leaves, and fresh garlic (wrapped in a bag of
cheesecloth and suspended in the pot with butcher’s twine). The amounts vary
according to the amount of stock.
– Oil made from the seeds of the safflower and contains more
polyunsaturates than other oils. Because of its high cooking temperature, it
is good for deep frying. It is also good for salad dressing because it is
almost flavorless and colorless and does not solidify when chilled.
saffron (SAF-ruhn) - Saffron,
the yellow-orange stigmas from a small purple crocus, is the world's most
expensive spice. That's because each flower provides only three red stigmas
and it takes approximately 14,000 of these tiny threads for each ounce of
saffron. One ounce of saffron equals the stigmas from approximately 5,000
crocuses. It takes an acre of flowers to produce a pound. It is imported
History: Peter, one of Christ's
Apostles, used saffron in soups, porridges, and in gravies (the saffron he
used was the gold colored pollen from wild flowers). Ancient Greeks and
Romans scattered Saffron to perfume public baths. The 13th century Crusaders
brought Saffron from Asia to Europe, where it was used as a dye and
condiment. In Asia, Saffron was a symbol of hospitality. In India, people
used Saffron to mark themselves as members of a wealthy caste.
sake (sah-kee) - It is an
alcoholic beverage produced from rice in much the same way that beer is
brewed from wheat and barley, but is termed a rice wine because its alcohol
content is similar to strong wines. It is served either hot or cold.
History: Sake has been known since the
dawn of civilization, and probably since rice was introduced to Japan from
the Asian continent about 2000 years ago. Sake has had an honored role
throughout the evolution of Japanese society. In early times, sake drinking
was an integral part of celebrating the harvest and was offered to the gods
when praying for peace and prosperity. The name was derived from "sakaeru."
which means, "to prosper or flourish," In toasting, sake signifies "the
water that will bring you prosperity." Today's sake has changed much from
early times. It was centuries before they discovered yeast, which greatly
increased its alcohol content. The Second World War also altered the recipe.
Rice shortages forced brewers to develop new ways to increase their yields.
By government decree, pure alcohol and glucose were added to small
quantities of rice mash, increasing the yield by as much as four times.
Ninety-five percent of today's sake is made using this technique, though
connoisseurs say that the best sake is still made with just rice (koji rice)
and water only. As wine is used in French cooking, sake is often used in
Japanese cooking. For cooking purposes, inexpensive sake of any brand will
do just as well.
salad – Comes
from the Latin word “herba salta” or “salted herbs,” so called because such
greens were usually seasoned with dressings containing lots of salt.
History of Salads and Salad Dressings.
salad days –
It refers to a time of youthful inexperience, a term coined by Shakespeare,
whole Cleopatra characterizes her long-ago romance with Julius Caesar as one
occurring in “my salad days, when I was green in judgment, cold in blood.”
salad dressing - A sauce for a
salad that are usually based on vinaigrette, mayonnaise, or other emulsified
History of Salads and Salad Dressings.
Salisbury steak (SAWLZ-beh-ree)
- A beef patty that is broiled or fried with onions and served with gravy.
History: Salisbury steak was named for
Dr. James H. Salisbury (1823-1905), a 19th
century nutritionist, who thought that everyone would be healthier if they
ate lots of beef, more specifically 3 pounds per day washed down with quarts
of hot water. During World War II, when patriotic Americans objected to the
German term "hamburger" (the hamburger sandwich was also called liberty
sandwich, but that term didn't catch on). Salisbury steak stuck because it
was already in existence (first recorded in 1897), but the term "hamburger
steak" was known in America at least a decade earlier than that. Salisbury
steak was originally more of a fancier version of hamburger "used on menus
in the sort of restaurants that would not own up to selling hamburgers."
learn about the Salmon, check out
Story of the Pacific Salmon.
salsa (SAL-sa) – Mexicans define
a salsa as a sauce, and all sauces as salsas. In Mexico sauces are a
combination of fresh ingredients in which many are uncooked and served
separately, to be added according to individual tastes. Salsas can be a
mixture of raw or partially cooked vegetables and/or fruits, herbs, and, of
course, chiles. Anything from vegetables, fruits, and nuts, to fish and meat
can be used to make salsa, as long as the flavors blend well. The combined
ingredients are not a puree, but are distinct pieces, and are often
uncooked. This definition would also include chutneys and fruit or vegetable
relishes. If the salsa is uncooked, as in "pico de gallo," it is referred to
as salsa cruda or salsa fresca. If cooked it is usually called picante.
Many countries have similar dishes that are
used to accent meals in tropical areas of the world: sambals in Indonesia,
chakalaka in South Africa, chutneys from India, the fruit and chile mixes
from the West Indies, and piccalillis of the American South.
salt - Common salt is a rock,
the only one we eat (an mineral composed of 40% sodium and 60% chloride,
joined by one of the strongest chemical unions there is, an ionic bond). One
of the four elemental components of taste, along with sweet, sours, and
bitter. Salt sharpens and pulls together other tastes. It comes from two
primary sources; mines on land and water from the sea. Salt is also
essential to our health. Without it, our cells cannot function properly and
if we do not get enough of it, we will crave it until our physical need is
kosher salt -
It is pure refined rock salt, also known as coarse salt or
pickling salt. It has larger crystals, which adheres better to food.
Because it does not contain magnesium carbonate, it will not cloud items in
which it is added. Kosher salt is required for “koshering“ foods that must
meet Jewish dietary guidelines.
canning salt – It is a fine-grained additive-free salt used to make
brines for pickles, sauerkraut, etc.
rock salt or
halite - It is mined from natural deposits and varies in color from
colorless when pure, to white, gray, or brown. It is not as refined as other
salts and comes in chunky crystals. Rock salt is used predominately as a bed
on which to serve baked oysters and clams and in combination with ice to
make ice cream in crank-style ice cream makers.
sea salt –
Sea salt generally comes from coastal marshes, basins, and other areas where
seawater has been trapped and is allowed to evaporate naturally. It is
grayish in color and contains traces of minerals.
table salt and
iodized salt – It has additives added that prevent caking and may make
the brine cloud. Iodized salt may also darken pickles.
History: Salt has always been among
the world's most important commodities and the human need for salt has
shaped history. It was in general use long before recorded history.
Civilizations rose in Africa, China, India, and the Middle East around rich
salt deposits. About 2,700 B.C. (about 4,700 years ago) there was published
in China the "Peng-Tzao-Kan-Mu," the earliest know treatise on pharmacology.
A major portion of this writing was devoted to a discussion of more than 40
kinds of salt.
Salt played a crucial role in religion. Homer
called it divine and Plato described it as a "substance dear to the gods."
The Israelites were required to include salt with all offerings, and ancient
Jewish temples included a salt chamber. For hundreds of years, Roman
Catholic priests would place a pinch of salt on a baby's tongue during
baptism and say, "Receive the salt of wisdom." There are more than 30
references to salt in the Bible. Jews and Christians, among others, shared
the custom of rubbing newborn infants with salt (a symbol of long life).
Arabs made peace and declared friendship with the phrase "There is salt
between us," and considered it treacherous to harm someone with whom they
had shared salt. To ensure a long marriage, a Swiss groom would put bread in
one pocket and salt in the other. A German bride would put salt in her shoe.
Spilling salt, a superstition that brings bad luck, was immortalized in
Leonardo da Vinci's painting The Last Supper, where Judas has knocked
over the saltcellar.
The appetite for salt pushed Phoenician trade
ships into the Mediterranean and camel caravans into the deserts of Africa
and across the Ruphrates Valley. The trade of salt for slaves in ancient
Greece gave rise to the expressions, "not worth his salt." Special salt
rations given early Roman soldiers were known as "salarium argentum." The
forerunner of the English word "salary."
When Julius Caesar invaded Britain in 55
B.C., he found the natives making salt by pouring brine over hot sticks and
scraping off the leftover glaze (a practice that helped confirm them in his
mind as barbarians). Caesar always traveled with "salinators" who were
skilled at making salt for his troops.
Marco Polo discovered that Tibetans used salt
cakes stamped with the imperial seal of the great Kublai Khan as money. The
Erie Canal, which opened in 1825, was known as "the ditch that salt built."
This was because salt, a bulky product presented major transportation
difficulties, originally was it principal cargo.
Salt had military significance. It is
recorded that thousands of Napoleon's troops died during his retreat from
Moscow because their wounds would not heal as a result of a lack of salt. In
1777, the British Lord Howe was jubilant when he succeeded in capturing
General Washington's salt supply. During the Civil War, Northern generals
targeted the South's salt-production facilities, knowing that armies and
civilians required salt to maintain health, preserve meat, and tan leather.
– Salt rising bread is a bread that originated in the 1830s and 1840s. This
was before yeast leavening was readily available. It relies on the
fermentation of warm milk or water, flour, cornmeal, sugar, and salt to give
it rising power. It has a very smooth texture with a tangy flavor and aroma.
sandwich - A sandwich is two or
more slices of bread with a filling, such as meat, cheese, jam or various
mixtures, placed between them.
and Legends of Sandwiches.
Young herrings are frequently labeled and sold as sardines.
(sah-shee-mee) - It is Japanese for “raw fish in slices.” Sashimi consists
of the freshest, top-quality fish. In Japan, it might be fillets of tuna,
bonito, salmon, halibut or whatever is in season. It is sliced into
bite-size portions and dressed into different shapes. Usually served with
soy sauce and horseradish.
sauerbraten - German for "sour
roast." Describes a beef roast marinated for five days or more in a
sweet-sour marinade and braised. It is best made from the bottom round.
History: Charlemagne who died in 814
A.D invented Sauerbraten. It was invented as a way of using up left over
roasted meat. Later in the 13th century, Albert of Cologne used the recipe
with fresh meat. The original sauerbraten never contained such things as
tomatoes, gingersnaps, sour cream, bacon, or pork as many recipes do today.
sauce - It is a French word that
means a relish to make our food more appetizing. Sauces are liquid or
semi-liquid foods devised to make other foods look, smell, and taste better,
and hence be more easily digested and more beneficial.
To learn about the history of Sauces, check out
sauerkraut (SOW-uhr-krowt) -
Sauerkraut, also known as
sourcrout, is a chopped cabbage that is salted and then fermented in its
own juice. Sauerkraut is made by placing salt between layers of finely
shredded cabbage and then subjecting it to pressure, which bruises the
cabbage and squeezes out its juices. It then ferments.
History: Chinese cooks were pickling
cabbage in wine (as early as 200 B.C.) and using it as an accompaniment to
meals. The slaves who built the Great Wall of China were fed on cheap rice
and cabbage, but when winter came, rice wine was added to the cabbage.
Genghis Khan substituted salt for the wine
and carried this "sauerkraut" (as it is now called) to the eastern edge of
Europe. It was the Austrians, not the Germans, who made the most of it by
shredding cabbage, allowing it to ferment in salt, and then flavoring it
with caraway seeds and juniper berries.
The word, which in German means "sour
cabbage," is first mentioned in American English in 1776 and the dish, was
long associated with German communities in the United States. Sauerkraut was
also a Pennsylvania Dutch specialty. The Dutch explorers carried barrels of
sauerkraut with them on their ship. The properties in sauerkraut helped
(saw-TAY) – A cooking technique which means to cook a food quickly in oil
and/or butter over high heat. You can use a skillet or sauté pan, but make
sure it is big enough to comfortably contain what you are cooking.
History: The Chinese community introduced us
to the improved method of cooking, which we call “sautéing” and the Chinese
call “chowing.” Their Chinese cooks influenced the meals and diets of
hundreds of California families. Although the Chinese cooks were seldom
permitted to prepare Oriental meals, they held to their art of cooking and
serving vegetables, a contribution that eliminated English overcooking of
vegetables and contributed to the cuisine of the West Coast.
savories – Small dishes served as the last course of a meal. They are
similar to appetizers.
savory (SAY-vuh-ree) – There are two types of savory
- summer and winter. Both of which are closely related to the mint family.
It has an aroma and flavor reminiscent to a cross between mint and thyme.
Summer savory is slightly milder, but both are strongly flavored so use this
herb with discretion.
Savarin – It is a large, ring-shaped,
spongy cake made from a rich yeast mixture, soaked in a rum-flavored syrup
and filled with fruit and cream.
To learn about the history of the
History of Cakes.
Sazerac A drink made with
whiskey generally associated with the Sazerac Bar at the Fairmont Hotel. The
bartender coats an Old Fashion glass with herbsaint, pours out the excess,
pours in the Sazerac mix and tops off the drink with a twist of lemon.
History: This drink is reported to be
the first cocktail ever invented (at least in America). The drink was
developed in 1850 at an Exchange Alley bar. In the early days, the Sazerac
Cocktail was made with cognac or brandy, but as American's taste changed to
whiskey, the liquor was changed to rye whiskey. In 1949, the bar was moved
to the Roosevelt Hotel (now the Fairmont), which pays an annual fee to
Sazerac Co. Inc. That company owns the rights to the formula and bottles the
drink in a New Orleans suburb called Metairie.
scald – (1) to dip
into boiling water. (2) To heat milk to just below the boiling point. (3) To
dip fruits, vegetables, or nuts in boiling water to facilitate removing the
skin or shell.
scale – To remove
the scales from fish with a knife or a fish scaler.
scallion (SKAL-yuhn) - The name
scallion applies to several members of the onion family including a distinct
variety called scallion, immature onions (commonly called green onions),
young leeks, and sometimes the tops of young shallots. In each case the
vegetable has a white base that has not fully developed into a bulb and
green leaves that are long and straight (both parts are edible). True
scallions are generally identified by the fact that the sides of the base
are straight, whereas the others are usually slightly curved, showing the
beginnings of a bulb. All can be used interchangeably, but true scallions
have a milder flavor than immature onions. Scallions are available
year-round, but are at their peak during spring and summer. At their peak,
scallions are crisp with bright green tops and a firm white base. Mid-sized
scallions with long white stems are the best. Scallions can be cooked whole
as a vegetable much as you would a leek. They can also be chopped and used
in salads, soups, and a multitude of other dishes for flavor.
scallop (SKAHL-uhp) - Although
hundreds of different species of scallops exist in our oceans worldwide,
only a few of these species are harvested commercially on a large scale. The
three you're most likely to find at a fish market are Atlantic sea scallops,
Atlantic bay scallops, and calicos.
(skah-loh-PEE-nah) – An Italian term for a thin, pounded piece of meat.
Usually prepared by dredging the meat in flour, then sautéing and serving
with a wine, lemon, or tomato sauce. Also called piccata.
scant – Scant means
lacking a small part of the whole; not quite up to full measure. In other
words, one (1) scant teaspoon means not quite a whole teaspoon but a little
less. Scant is a very bad term to use in writing a recipe. The recipe should
give the exact amount or say “to taste.”
schnapps (shnahps) - Schnapps is
a generic term for strong, colorless alcoholic beverage distilled from
grains or potatoes and variously flavored. Peppermint schnapps is the most
common, but other flavors include cinnamon, vanilla, root beer, blackberry,
raspberry, peach, and mango.
(SHNIHT-suhl) – In German the word means “slice” and usually refers to veal
dishes. It is a cutlet of veal which is beaten out until it is thin.
scone (skon) - A Scottish quick
bread that has a texture half way between cake and biscuits (harder than a
cake but softer than a biscuit). Scones are best served warm from the oven
and should be eaten on the same day they are made.
History: It is thought that the name
comes from the Stone of Destiny (or Scone). Scottish kings have been crowned
upon this stone for more than a thousand years. The present British Queen
Elizabeth II was crowned on the Stone in 1953. The original version of
scones was made with oats and griddle baked. Today they are flour-based and
baked in the oven and come in various shapes (triangles, rounds, squares,
score – (1) To
cut narrow gashes in fat to prevent the meat from curling when cooked. (2)
To cut narrow crisscross lines on the fat of a ham or a roast. (3) To cut
even shallow lines in cucumbers with a fork or scoring knife for
– Scoville unit is the thermometer of the chile pepper. Established by
Wilbur Scoville, these are the units of heat of a chile pepper. Units rank
from 0 to 300,000.
scrod - Scrod is not a type of
fish. The term originated in the Boston area to describe the catch of the
day. It is also used as a general label for small members of the cod family,
including pollack, haddock, hake, and whiting. In most New England
restaurants, scrod is loosely defined as "catch of the day," which allows
the restaurants to offer whatever fish is available and call it scrod on the
History: Some historians think that
scrod is a contraction of Sacred Cod, the name of the 4-foot-tall wooden
sculpture that has been in the Massachusetts State House since 1748. Others
think that Boston’s famous Parker House Restaurant coined the word as a
generic term for their “fish of the day,” not knowing in advance what to
print on their menus.
sea cucumber - It is
cylindrical, cucumber or sausage-shaped, hence its name sea cucumber. It is
found in all seas of the world, at all depths usually lying on the bottom on
one flattened side, abounding on the British and European coasts, and from
Nantucket northward to the rocky coasts of northern Massachusetts and Maine.
It is definitely not a plant, but a marine animal - the same class as sea
urchins, sea lilies, sea stars, brittle stars, or starfish. It can grow 3 to
4 inches thick, ranging in length from 1-inch to almost five feet, often
brownish, but may range in color from black to bright yellow and red
stripes. There are more than 500 species of sea cucumbers, and some of the
larger species are considered delicacies in the Orient and are used in the
preparation of soups and some other delicate specialty dishes. When cooked,
it is soft, cartilaginous, almost transparent, absorbing all the flavors of
the sauce and the other ingredients. Sea cucumbers are available frozen or
searing – The
browning (caramelizing) of a food surface at high heat. Little fat is used
when searing. Searing brings out the flavor and creates a fond at the bottom
of the pan which is used for making sauces.
season – (1) To add flavor to foods (such
as adding herbs and spices). (2) To coat the cooking surface of a new pot or
pan with vegetable oil and then heating in a 350 degree F. oven for about a
hour. This smoothes out the surface of new pots and pans, particularly
cast-iron, and prevents foods from sticking.
seaweed – Seaweed is also called sea
wrack. It has been used, as food, for hundreds of years by people in
northern Europe, especially in Japan. It is used to thicken soups and
sauces, and in making sushi.
semifreddo – Semifreddi are chilled
creams which are typical Italian desserts. They are also called spumoni.
They are prepared with an egg-based custard and whipped cream. No ice cream
machine is needed to make semifreddo (the basic mixture can be poured
directly into the mold and put in the freezer for a few hours). Chilled
creams may be used as filling for casate and bombe, or can be prepared with
fruits, syrups, chocolate. Etc.
semolina (she-muh-LEE-nuh) – A grainy,
pale yellow flour that is coarsely ground from hard wheat (like durum). It
has a very high protein content. Used primarily for pasta and polenta.
Serrano pepper – Meaning “from the
mountains.” It is native to Mexico and southwest America, and is widely
believed to be the hottest chile by many Americans who adore it in its red
or green form. Serrano peppers are quite small (about 1 ½-inches long). A
larger, double-sized species called largo is only found in Mexico.
sesame oil – (SEHS-uh-mee) – Sesame oil
ha been used in cooking in Africa and the Far East for many centuries. The
main advantage of sesame oil over other oils is that it does not turn
rancid, even in hot weather. For this reason, it is very popular in tropical
regular or light sesame
oil – This light-colored oil is made from untoasted sesame seeds and is
used in most Chinese cooking. It adds distinctive nutty flavor to foods. It
is especially good for frying and it is also very good in salad dressing.
dark or Asian sesame oil
– This amber-colored oil is pressed from toasted sesame seeds. It’s a
strong-flavored, aromatic oil that is used in Oriental cooking. This oil is
used as a seasoning and not used as a cooking oil, but is added at the last
minute for flavor in hot cooked dishes or in marinades. The thicker it is,
the better the flavor.
seviche (seh-VEE-chee) – See ceviche.
scalloppine (skah-luh-PEE-nee ska-luh-PEE-nee) - Scalloppine is an
Italian term for a thin cutlet of meat (small thinly-sliced pieces of meat),
shallot (SHAL-uht) – Has a flavor more subtle than that of the onion and less
pungent than that of garlic. The shallot is the most refined member of the
onion family. They look more like garlic than onions.
Shio Koji (Salt Koji) - It is a fermented mixture of rice inoculated with the special mold called Aspergillus oryzae, sea salt, and
water as a seasoning in place of salt to draw out the flavors of umami. It is used just like other Japanese seasonings in sautéed dishes.
The fermenting process, it increases the amount of vitamin B1, B2, B6, H and Pateton acid.
shortening - A solid fat made
from vegetable oils, such as soybean and cottonseed oil. Although made from
oil, shortening has been chemically transformed into a sold state through
hydrogenation. Vegetable shortening is virtually flavorless (has a bland,
neutral flavor) and may be substituted for other fats (such as butter,
margarine, or lard) in baking of pie pastry, cookies, and cakes. Shortening
is ideal for pastry, since it blends well with the flour. It can be stored
at room temperature for up to a year.
shred – To use
a knife or a shredder (a cutting tool with round, smooth, sharp-edged holes)
to cut food into long, thin strands.
– Means to remove a natural outer covering from food, such as shells from
oysters or husks from corn.
sifter – A
flour sifter is a sieve that is especially adapted for use with flour. It is
commonly built in the form of a metal cup with a screen bottom and contains
a mechanism (wires that either revolve or rub against the screen being
operated by a crank or a lever) to force the flour through the mesh.
simmer – To
cook submerged in liquid just below a boil, a temperature of 180 degrees F.
to just short of the boiling point. A simmering liquid has bubbles floating
slowly from the bottom to the surface.
simple syrup –
It is a solution of sugar and water that is boiled over high heat. Most
simple syrups contain a ratio of one cup water to two cups of sugar. The
longer you boil the mixture, the thicker it will become.
skillet – The
term skillet once applied to any metal cooking vessel that had a handle, but
the term has come to apply (in the U.S.) to the metal frying pan
(cast-iron). Also called spider.
skim – (1) To
remove floating matter from the surface of a liquid with a spoon or ladle
which is usually perforated. (2) To remove a top surface of fat, cream, or
scum from the top of liquid.
skirt steak –
It is a boneless cut of beef from the lower part of the brisket. Cut from
the beef flank, the skirt steak is the diaphragm muscle (which lies between
the abdomen and the chest cavity). It’s a long, flat piece of meat that’s
flavorful but rather tough. Properly cooked, skirt steak can be quite tender
and delicious. It can either be quickly grilled, or stuffed, rolled and
braise. Recently, skirt steak has become quite fashionable becaue of the
delicious Southwestern fish called fajitas.
sliver - To cut
food into long, thin pieces or thin strips.
slurry – A
slurry is a mixture of a starch and cold water. You can use cornstarch
(preferred for thickening milk or dairy sauces), arrowroot (great for
defatted meat sauces or broths because it gives a wonderful glossy sheen),
potato starch, rice flour, or regular flour. Proportion is one (1) part
starch with two (2) parts cold liquid. Remove from the heat before you add
the slurry, or you’ll end up with dumplings.
smoke – To
expose fresh food to smoke from a wood fire for a prolonged period of time.
Traditionally used for preservation purposes, smoking is now a means of
giving flavor to food.
– The point when a fat such as butter or oil smokes and lets off an acrid
odor. This is not good since this odor can get into what you are cooking
and give it a bad flavor. Butter smokes at 350 degrees F., vegetable oil at
445 degrees F., lard at 365 to 400 degrees F., and olive oil at about 375
Smorgasbord - A
Swedish buffet of many dishes served as hors d'oeuvres or a full meal.
Similar buffets are served throughout Scandinavia, as well as the Soviet
Union. Common elements of a smorgasbord are pickled herring, marinated
vegetables, smoked and cured salmon and sturgeon, and a selection of
Snickerdoodles - Traditional
snickerdoodles cookies are coated with cinnamon sugar before being baked.
To learn about the history of
Snickerdoodle Cookies, check out
History of Cookies.
sno-ball - This is a New Orleans
creation. A machine that turns blocks of ice into sno-balls makes it. Most
"sno-cones" are made of crushed ice; this machine shaves a block of ice,
giving it an extremely fine texture. "Shaved ice" in Hawaii is the closest
thing to the sno-ball. A sno-ball isn't an Italian ice, nor is it a crushed
ice abomination. Once the ice is shaved, it's collected into a cup, paper
cone, bowl, plate, or even a container akin to the things that you get at a
Chinese take-out place. Then syrup is poured over the ice. Some people
continue the process, adding cherries, ice cream, ice milk, condensed milk,
or other toppings. Most sno-ball stands have anywhere from 30 to 70 flavors
available from which to choose. Sno-balls are a summer creature.
soda bread - This is traditional
Irish bread that is made with whole-wheat flour or white flour or oatmeal
(sometimes raisins are included). It is round loaf with a cross cut in the
top and it has a velvety texture and unusual smoothness quite unlike yeast
bread. It is sliced paper-thin and buttered. Traditionally, soda bread was
baked over a peat fire in a three-legged iron pot that can be raised or
lowered over the fire. Glowing peat sods put on top of the pot gave an even
heat for baking.
soffrito - (1) The Italian
soffrito normally consists of a little handful of fragrant herbs (parsley,
dill, thyme, savory, and rosemary), and aromatic vegetables (onion, leek,
garlic, and carrot) very finely chopped, simmered in oil before the meat,
beans, fish or vegetables is added. It is used as a base in soups, sauces,
casseroles, omelet’s and so on, and it imparts a lovely color and wonderful
taste to the finished dish. This blend is a fundamental of Italian cooking.
Also called "battuto." (2) Soffrito is also what the sautéed onions are
called to which you add to arborio rice when making risotto.
– A Spanish term for a blend of seasonings and vegetables used to flavor
many Puerto Rican and Cuban recipes. The vegetables are usually cooked in
olive oil to release the flavor before being added to a dish. This blend is
considered the foundation of a dish. Sofrito is not only a common seasoning
in many Puerto Rican dishes, but it is also frequently served at the table
as a condiment.
sole - Sole is a member of the
flatfish species that consists of sole, flounder, and halibut. It is
significantly superior in flavor and texture to the flounder. This is why
the fish markets and restaurants deceptively call much of the flounder sold
in America “sole”. Gray sole, lemon sole, rex sole, and the Dover sole of
the Pacific are all flounders. Genuine sole are the true Dover sole, English
sole, and turbot.
solferino vegetables - A blend
of tomatoes and potatoes that commemorates the red on white motif of the Red
Cross. The garnish (sometimes accompanying other dishes) of carrot, potato,
and other vegetables scooped out with a parisienne baller represent the
cannon balls from the battle.
History: - Solferino, a town in
Lombardia, Italy, famous for the battle in 1859 that was fought there and
more specifically since this was where Henri Dunant founded the
International Red Cross.
A sonker is a deep-dish pie or cobbler
served in many flavors including strawberry, peach, sweet potato, and
cherry. I’ve also read this
same dish is
called zonker (or sonker) in
Surry County, North Carolina. It seems to be a dish unique to North
community of Lowgap at the Edwards-Franklin
House, hold an annual Sonker Festival.
See History of Cobblers
for more information.
An Italian compressed cured pork (all-pork dry salami). It is a salame
(salami) made from pork meat and fat, usually from the head of the hog. The
mixture is then mixed and spiced with red pepper for the spicy version, and
with black pepper for the sweet version. The gentle entrails is covered by a
layer of fat, hence a longer maturity is requested. This also gives to the
product a particular softness. After seasoning and ripening (5 months) it
can be kept, covered with pork fat, in glass jars.
sorbet (sor-BAY) - Sorbet is the
French word for sherbets.
Sorbets were introduced (along with ice cream) to Europeans by the Arabs,
who learned to make them from the Chinese. Originally sorbets were a cooling
drink with a base of fresh fruit that was sweetened, diluted, and chilled
(possibly with snow). The ideas were copied later on throughout Europe with
sherbet powders, which were used to make drinks. A sorbet is a light, frozen
mixture of diluted pureed fruit, fruit juices, sugar, water, and egg white.
In France, they are usually served in the middle of the meal as a "palate
sorghum - It
is different from molasses, although many people use the terms
interchangeably. Sorghum is made from the juice of the sweet-sorghum cane
stalk, sorgos, and has no sugar removed and thus is significantly sweeter
than molasses. Sorgos, a tall cereal grass resembling corn is sometimes
called “brown corn,” and can be used as fodder. It can be used
interchangeably with sugarcane molasses.
souffle (soo-FLAY) - Souffle is
taken from the French word "souffler" meaning to "blow or puff up." It is a
light, foamy concoction made from egg whites, which are folded into a sauce
of egg yolks, milk, and sometimes flour. The air beaten into the egg whites
expands in the heat of the oven, making the soufflé light and puffy. They
are either baked or steamed. It is usually a dessert, although there are
also fish, meat, poultry, and vegetable soufflés.
soup - The word "soup" was
originally "sop" and it literally meant dipping a slice of bread into a
broth. "Potage" was a word for the contents of the soup. Today the word
"soup" describes both broth and contents as it means any combination of meat, fish or vegetables, cooked in water
or in any other liquid, and intended to be eaten. It may be thin (like
consommé), thick (like gumbo), smooth (like bisque), or chunky (like chowder
or bouillabaisse). Most soups are served hot, but some (like
vichyssoise and fruit soups) are served cold.
sourdough - Bread that has been
leavened with a fermented starter.
History: The ancient Egyptians made
sourdough bread, having discovered that fermented dough would rise in the
oven. Thousands of years later (in our frontier days), a sourdough starter
was the most important personal possession, something to be guarded at the
expense of everything else.
The American pioneers jealously guarded their
starters, as freshly baked bread, biscuits, and pancakes often provided the
only variety in the wilderness diet. They usually carried their starters in
wooden pails, which became permeated with the culture and which would retain
the life of the yeast even if the starter spilled.
The prospectors of the Yukon during the
Alaskan Gold Rush of the 1890s were nicknamed "sourdoughs" because of the
sourdough starters that they usually had hidden under their jackets to keep
warm. In addition, there was the alcoholic by-product called "hooch," the
clear liquid that rises to the top of the starter and had its own uses.
soy flour – It is made up of ground
roasted soybeans processed into flour to use in baking. By itself, it makes
a heavy bread, so it is usually combined with other flours. It can also be
used to thicken gravies and sauces.
soy milk – Soy milk is rich and creamy
and has a taste distinctive from cow’s milk. Most often it is sold in
aseptic (non-refrigerated) packages that can be stored at room temperature
for several months. Once opened, it must be refrigerated and will stay fresh
for about five days. Soy milk can be used the same as cow’s milk in recipes.
soy sauce - Soy sauce is a
staple condiment and ingredient throughout all of Asia. It is a salty, brown
liquid that is made from fermented soybeans mixed with a roasted grain
(wheat, barley, or rice are common), injected with a special yeast mold, and
liberally flavored with salt. After being left to age for several months,
the mixture is strained and bottled. The sauce's consistency can range from
very thin to very thick.
sauce – Japanese-style soy sauce, such as Kikkoman, is suitable for most
Chinese soy sauce
– The Chinese use both light (thin) and dark (heavy) soy sauces. Dark soy
sauces are fermented longer with molasses added during the process. They go
best with spicy dishes and red meats. The light soy sauces are used in
dipping sauces or vegetable and seafood dishes.
Tamari – A
dark soy sauce brewed with wheat. In the United States, tamari refers to a
Japanese-style light soy sauce with a slightly smoky flavor.
History: Soy sauce
was developed over a thousand years ago in China as a way of preserving
SHPEHT-sehl; SHPEHT-slee) - Literally translated from German as "little
sparrow," spaetzle is a dish of tiny noodles or dumplings made with flour,
eggs, water or milk, salt, and sometimes nutmeg. The spaetzle dough can be
firm enough to be rolled and cut into slivers or soft enough to be forced
through a sieve, colander, or spaetzle-maker with large holes. The small
pieces of dough are usually boiled (poached) before being tossed with butter
or added to soups or other dishes. In Germany, spaetzle is served as a side
dish much like potatoes or rice, and is often accompanied by a sauce or
gravy. The cooked spaetzle can also be pan fried with a little butter and
onions (usually a good left-over idea).
Spam - It is considered a food
that changed the course of history. It is a canned ground pork and ham
product that does not need to be refrigerated until opened. Originally sold
in 12-ounce cans and since 1960, it was been available in 7-ounce cans and
even smaller varieties.
History: It was the Hormel Company
that developed Spam, a canned meat product that did not need to be
refrigerated, in about 1936. It was originally named and marketed it under
the name Spiced Ham. As this was a rather uninspiring name, Hormel would
decide to give the product a new name. They had a contest and offered $100
dollars (this was a lot of money in those days) to come up with a suitable
name. The winning name was the name it goes by today and that is the world
Hormel mounted a large advertising campaign
in 1937 and called their product the miracle meat and promoted it for use at
anytime of the day. The first singing commercial was done to the tune of "My
bonny Lies Over The Ocean." It was advertised as the meat in a can that
saved time and tastes fine.
During World War II, sales skyrocketed. Not
only was Spam great for the military, as it required no refrigeration, it
wasn't rationed as beef was, so it became a prime staple in American meals.
Even the Russians gave Spam the credit for the survival of the Russian Army
during World War II.
(spatch-kok-king) – It’s a French technique of butter-flying a whole chicken
by removing the backbone so you can open it up flat, like a book, and cook
it using direct heat. Because the spatchcocked chicken cooks over fiery hot
coals, the process cuts the grilling time almost in half and helps keep the
spelt - Spelt is an ancient
cereal grain that is native to southern Europe. It was widely grown until
the beginning of the 20th century, but can be difficult to find now. After
threshing, spelt is cooked like rice and can be found as an ingredient in
certain country soups, especially in Provence. Spelt has a mellow nutty
flavor, and spelt flour can be substituted for wheat flour in baked goods.
spider – A spider is a cast-iron skillet
or frying pan. At one time, this cooking vessel had three long metal legs
(enabling it to be set directly over the coals of a hearth fire). It was
from these legs (since discarded) that the utensil received its name.
Thought the legs were discarded with the coming of the range, the name has
remained in many locations, referring to the cast-iron vessel only.
Spiedie Sandwich (SPEE-dee) –
The name comes from the Italian spiedo
meaning “kitchen cooking spit.” Originally made from lamb, they are now made
with virtually any meat. It is chunks of lamb, pork, chicken, beef, or
venison that has been marinated for days in a tart sauce and then grilled on
a metal skewer, usually over charcoal or gas. The traditional way of serving
is between sliced Italian bread with extra sauce poured on top. The Spiedie,
skewer and all, is then inserted in sliced Italian bread. The bread is used
as a sort of mitt, wrapping around the meat. Pull out the skew and you then
have a wonderful and delicious hot sandwich. Spiedies are a specialty of
Broome County, New York. People who live in the area eat them at
restaurants, from street vendors, buy from supermarkets, and even make their
own at backyard cookouts. They even hold an annual Spiedie Cook-Off with a
They originated with Binghamton’s Italian immigrant population in the 1920s.
Augustine Iacovelli from Endicott, New York is believed to have popularized
the Spiedie by introducing them in his restaurant in the 1940s.
and Legends of Sandwiches.
sponge cake -
They are similar to angel cakes in that they use many eggs and no shortening
or leavening. Sponge cakes use the whole eggs, while angel cakes use only
To learn about the history of the
History of Cakes.
– A springform pan not only has sides that can be removed but the bottom
comes out tool Used mostly in baking, this unusual pan has a fastener on the
side that can be opened to remove the rim after the cake is cool. They are
available in a number of sizes, 9- and 10-inch being the most common.
Cheesecakes and tortes are usually baked in this type of pan.
springerle (SPRING-uhr-lee) -
These have been and still are traditional Christmas cookies in Bavaria and
Austria for centuries. Springerle cookie molds and rolling pins are carved
to create a series of small cookies, each with a different design. Although
there are lots of variations, springerle cookies typically are light-colored
and anise-flavored. Hartshorn is the traditional leavening (it is an ammonia
sprouts - A sprout is produced
when a seed starts growing into a vegetable. Sprouts can grow from the seeds
of vegetables and the seeds of grains (such as alfalfa and buckwheat, and
from beans). Sprouts vary in texture and taste. Some are spicy (radish and
onion sprouts), some are hardy and are often used in oriental food (mung
bean), and others are more delicate (alfalfa) and are used in salads and
sandwiches to add texture and moistness.
History: While most Americans believe
"sprouting" (growing sprouts) began with the Hippies, the Bible actually
mentions it in the Book of Daniel. It is believed that Chinese physicians
prescribed sprouts for curing many disorders more than 5,000 years ago. The
ancient Chinese used sprouts both nutritionally and medicinally—for year
round food in colder regions of the country and for curing many disorders.
In the 1700s, Capt. James Cook had his sailors eat limes, lemons and
varieties of sprouts (all abundant providers of vitamin C) to help prevent
scurvy on long voyages. Sprouts first grabbed attention in America during
World War II, when Dr. Clive M. McKay, Professor of Nutrition at Cornell
University wrote an article praising sprouts as quick and easy to grow in
nearly any climate (and without soil or sunshine!) and of significant
Spudniks or Sputniks – An American nickname for potatoes. This term was
popular after the Russian space satellites
of the late 50's and early 60's. Sputnik ushered in a new era of space
exploration. This term is not used much anymore.
Squab - Doves
and pigeons belong to the same family of birds, the Columbidae. Squab is
just a fancy name for pigeon. It is a fattened pigeon that is not allowed to
fly (so it's tender rather than sinewy) and are processed at four weeks old
and at about 1 pound. The meat of Squab is distinctly different from that of
any other domestic poultry, while being milder than that traditionally
associated with game meats. Squab is probably the gamiest of the domestic
birds. It has a full rich flavor like black berries.
History: Pigeons have been bred for food for centuries dating
back to early Asian, Arabic, and European traditions. The history of the
squab is lengthier than even the current domesticated chickens and turkeys.
It was a popular special-occasion dish in Victorian England.
To learn all about the different
types of Squash (Summer and Winter),
All About Squash (Summer and Winter).
St. Louis style ribs - Style of
ribs that got its name from the city of St. Louis. A meatier rib than baby
back ribs; trimmed evenly and squared off.
star anise - Named (both in
English and in Chinese) for its distinctive shape. Its Mandarine name,
bah-jyao, means "eight points." Star anise is the dried fruit of an
evergreen tree that is a member of the magnolia family and grows wild in
southern China, reaching a height of about 25 feet. The tree starts to bear
fruit at about six years of age and can continue to produce over the next
one hundred years. In spring, the tree blooms with yellow flowers, from them
emerges the brown fruit that assumes a star shape as it ripens. In cooking,
the dried star and seeds can be ground up as seasoning or simmered whole in
liquid mixtures to enhance broths and syrups. It is a key ingredient in
Chinese five-spice powder.
star fruit - Other names for the
star fruit are carambola (Indian name for it), five-angled fruit, and
Chinese star fruit. Look for a star fruit that is from 2 to 5 inches long
with juicy-looking ribs. Avoid fruit with browned, shriveled ribs. They can
be purchased green, and then allowed to yellow at room temperature before
eating. There are a few varieties of star fruit. One variety is sour/tart in
flavor and has narrow ribs, the sweet variety has thick fleshy ribs, and
there are two varieties of white star fruit marketed that are both
considered sweet. Use sour/tart variety in place of lemon or lime slices
with fish, poultry, and mixed drinks. In the east they are pickled. Sweeter
varieties are ideal for fruit salads and purees (alone or with other
fruits). You do not have to be peeling them. You can simply rinse, slice, or
eat them whole. Appearance can be improved by shaving off darker skin with a
- Thin tenderloin steak sautéed
with shallots, thyme, mustard, mushrooms and cream. Normally it would be
prepared tableside by a Captain in a grand hotel dining room.
Check out my recipe for
History: Supposedly named
after the Roman goddess, Diana or Diane. Diana was the Goddess of the Hunt
and also Goddess of the Moon. Steak Diane was originally a way of serving
steam – To
cook with steam, usually in a steamer or on a rack over boiling water.
Steaming retains flavor, shape, texture, and nutrients better than boiling
or poaching. In this method, steam is the heat conductor. If it is under
pressure, as it is in a pressure steamer, the temperature is hotter than a
water-based liquid can ever be.
Steelhead -They are Rainbow
Trout that has returned from the sea. Steelhead closely resemble rainbow
trout with a life cycle similar to that of a salmon. They are an anadromous
species: born and reared in freshwater streams, as juveniles they migrate to
estuaries, adjust to saltwater and then migrate to the ocean to mature into
adults. As they begin to sexually mature they return to the streams of their
birth to spawn and then attempt to return to the ocean to repeat the cycle.
Unlike juvenile salmon that typically migrate to the ocean after just a few
months of freshwater rearing, juvenile Steelhead resides in our rivers from
1 to 3 years. As such, they require cool, clean water year round to sustain
steep – To
soak herbs, spices, raisins, etc. in a hot liquid to extract or intensify the flavors
and also the color.
Stevia is used as a dietary supplement and
sugar substitute. It has no calories, no carbohydrates, and a zero glycemic
index which makes it a great natural alternative to sugar and chemical
sweeteners. Stevia is up to 300 times sweeter than sugar.
Read the interesting article called,
A Natural and Healthy Sweetener.
stew – It is
the name of any dish which results from the action of stewing. Stewing is
the method of cooking which tenderizes tough pieces of meat. It is a method
by which meat and (usually although not always) vegetables are slowly
simmered ion liquid for a substantial period of time so that the meat not
only becomes tender enough to chew but all the ingredients blend into a
sticky rice –
The defining element of sushi is not raw fish as many thin, but the rice.
Sushi to the Japanese is synonymous with seasoned sticky rice. In Japan, the
correct preparation of the rice is so important, that in their finest
restaurants there are chefs whose sole responsibility is to cook the rice.
The proportions of vinegar and sugar can very by season, chef, or even by
the type of sushi you are preparing.
Stilton cheese - Stilton is a
fine English blue cheese made from whole cow's milk. It is considered by
many people to be one of the world's best cheeses. Stilton acquired its name
in the 18th century because it was first sold in the small English village
of Stilton in Hungtingdonshire. Today it is made in parts of Leicestershire,
Derbyshire, and Nottinghamshire. Stilton is farm-made cheese and is at its
best from autumn to spring. It is allowed to ripen for 4 to 6 months, during
which time it is skewered numerous times to encourage the growth of
penicillium Roquefort mold (also present in Roquefort cheese). Stilton
cheese is best eaten by itself with a glass of port or a full-bodied dry red
White Stilton - In addition to the better-known mature version, there is
also young white Stilton that is marketed before the colored veins develop.
The white Stilton has a mild, slightly sour flavor.
It is a cooking technique that requires brisk cooking of small cuts of
ingredients in hot oil over intense heat. Three elements are crucial to
stir-frying: (1) Proper preparation, wherein the ingredients are conditioned
through small cutting, marinating and partial precooking to respond to the
fast cooking; (2) thorough organizing, in the sense that everything needed
is measured out and within reach so no interruption will disturb the cooking
once it starts; and (3) Vigilance from the cook – you must be ready to
adjust timing and volume of heat instantly, not just by following recipe
guidelines, but intuitively by the smell, look, and feel of the food and the
sound of the cooking.
strawberry - Sixteenth-century
author William Butler wrote, "Doubtless God could have made a better berry,
but doubtless God never did." Juicy and red, the strawberry is a member of
the rose family and has grown wild for centuries in Europe and America. The
cultivation of strawberries goes back to the 1600s when early settlers
enjoyed strawberries grown by local Native Americans. Todays strawberries
are a cross breeding of the Virginia strawberry (Fragaria virginiana), the
native wild strawberry of the eastern seaboard (which was introduced into
Europe around 1610), and the Chilean strawberry (Fragaria chiloensis) which
made the voyage a century later. Today, about 70 percent of America's fresh
strawberries are grown in California. Strawberries vary in size, shape and
color and, in general, there is no direct relationship between size and
flavor. Fresh strawberries are available year-round with the peak season
from April to June. Choose brightly colored, plump berries that still have
their green caps attached and are uniform in size.
learn all about Strawberries, check out
Hints and Tips.
strudel (STROO-dal) - It is a
dessert with a delicate casing made of paper-thin layers of filo pastry,
each of which is brushed with butter. The Austrians say the pastry is so
thin that you can read a love letter through it. The strudel usually has a
filling consisting of cooked and diced fruit, chopped almonds, a little
cinnamon, and sometimes a little brandy.
History: the invading Turks first
brought a dessert that is famous in Austria, to central Europe in the 16th
Submarine Sandwich – Also know
as a Hero Sandwich. It is a king-sized sandwich on an Italian loaf of bread
approximately 12 inches long an 3 inches wide, filled with boiled ham, hard
salami, cheeses, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and sometimes flavored with
garlic and oregano. This sandwich is simply a takeoff on the famous Po Boy
Sandwich invented in New Orleans.
To learn about the history of Submarine Sandwiches, check out
History of Hoagies, Submarine, Po'boys, Dagwood, and Italian Sandwiches.
suet (SOO-iht) - Suet is the
white fatty casing that surrounds the kidneys and the loins in beef, sheep,
and other animals. Suet has a higher melting point than butter and when it
does melt it leaves small holes in the dough, giving it a loose soft
texture. Many British recipes call for it to lend richness to pastries,
puddings, stuffings, and mincemeats.
shredded suet - It is suet that has been shaved, grated, or cut into long
sugar - Sugar or sucrose, is a
carbohydrate that occurs naturally in every fruit and vegetable in the plant
kingdom. It is the major product of photosynthesis, the process by which
plants transform the sugar energy into food. Sugar occurs in greatest
quantities in sugar cane and sugar beets from which it is separated for
Barbados sugar – See raw sugar
brown sugar –
It is made up of sugar crystals coated with varying amounts of molasses to
obtain dark or light brown sugar. This lends a slightly grainy, moist
sugar – The spelling, castor sugar, used to be the prevailing one, but
caster sugar seems to be more usual now, perhaps because it is used by some
sugar manufacturers on their packaging. See superfine sugar.
coarse sugar –
Also known as pearl
or decorating sugar. It is shaped into small pearl-like balls that
are several times as big as granulated sugar crystals.
– See powdered sugar.
date sugar – Date sugar is more a food than a sweetener. It is ground up from dehydrated
dates, is high in fiber. Its use is limited by price and the fact it does
not dissolve when added to liquids.
demerara sugar – See raw sugar.
– Also called table sugar
or white sugar. It is the most common form of sugar and the type most
frequently called for in recipes. Its main distinguishing characteristics
are a paper-white color and fine crystals.
sugar cubes – They are made from moist granulated sugar that is pressed into molds and
Muscovado sugar – Also called
or moist sugar. Muscovado sugar, a British specialty brown sugar, is
very dark brown and has a particularly strong molasses flavor. The crystals
are slightly coarser and stickier in texture than regular brown sugar. Light
and dark brown muscovado sugars contain molasses; the darker the color is,
the more molasses and therefore the stronger the flavor.
powdered sugar – Also called
confectioners’ sugar. In Britain it is called icing sugar and in
France sucre glace. It is granulated sugar ground to a powder,
sifted, and a small amount (3%) cornstarch has been added to prevent caking.
The fineness to which the granulated sugar is ground determines the family
“X: factor: The “X: designations are derived from the mesh sizes of the
screens used to separate powdered sugar into various sizes. Thus, 4X would
have a larger particle size, whereas 10X would have a smaller particle
size.14 X is finer than 12X, and so on down through 10X, 8X, 6X, and 4X (the
coarsest powdered sugar). Confectioners or powdered sugar, available at
supermarkets, is usually 10X. Always sift it before using.
raw sugar – It is essentially the product at the point before the molasses is removed
(what’s left after sugarcane has been processed and refined). Popular types
of raw sugar include demerara sugar from Guyana and Barbados sugar,
a moist, fine textured sugar. Turbinado sugar is raw sugar that has
been steam cleaned to remove contaminates., leaving a llight molasses
flavored, tan colored sugar.
– Sometimes called bar sugar
and known as castor or caster sugar in Britain, and berry sugar
in British Columbia.. It is similar to granulated sugar except that it has
very tiny crystals. Since it dissolves quickly and completely, leaving no
grainy texture, it’s the perfect choice for caramel, meringues, drinks, and
– See raw sugar.
sukiyaki (soo-kee-yah-kee) -
Known in Japan as the "friendship dish" because its appeal to foreigners.
History: Nobody really seems to know
the origins of sukiyaki. One theory is that in the old days, farmers slipped
a little meat into the vegetarian diet imposed by Buddhist.
It is thought that the Dutch introduced their
version of this dish to the Japanese in the early 17th century. Because the
dish was a beef preparation, the Japanese would serve it only to foreigners.
In 1873, Emperor Meiji declared that beef was acceptable for consumption,
and from that time on it became part of the Japanese diet, although
traditional dishes continue to use small quantities of meat.
vegetables – A corruption of the correct term “solferino.” Sometimes
used on menus to describe the vegetable dish. See solferino.
– This oil is made from sunflower seeds. It is pale yellow and has a bland
flavor. It is a good all-purpose flour that is low in saturated fat and high
in polyunsaturated fat.
supreme – (1)
To remove the flesh sections of citrus fruit from the membranes. (2) The
wing and breast of the chicken or game bird. (3) A fillet of sole or fish.
sushi (soo-shee) - It is a
Japanese word, which originally meant "sour" or "vinegary" and later came to
mean "pickled fish." Sushi is sometimes called "the Japanese sandwich."
Contrary to popular American belief, sushi does not mean "raw fish," but
actually means "with rice." Sushi is small cakes (shaped into various
bite-size forms) of cold cooked rice (sticky rice), flavored with sweet rice
vinegar, and typically garnished with strips of raw or cooked fish, seafood,
cooked egg, vegetables, etc. They are then wrapped in seaweed to make a
shaped package. It is usually served with a green horseradish (wasabi) and
soy sauce. The "proper" way to eat sushi is in a single bite.
History: Japanese sushi has a history
and tradition of over a thousand years, beginning as a way of preserving
fish. It was not until 1824, when Hanaya Yohel of Japan conceived the idea
of sliced, raw seafood at its freshest to be served on small fingers of
learn about American-Style Sushi, check out Linda Stradley's web page on
California Rolls - American Style Sushi.
– To cook vegetables in fat over gentle heat so they become soft but not
brown and their juices are concentrated in the cooking fat. If the pan is
covered during cooking, the ingredients will keep a certain amount of their
natural moisture. If the pan is not coverer, the ingredients will remain
sweetbreads - Sweetbreads are
the thymus and pancreas glands of animals. They are light meat that is
firmer in texture than brains. The sweetbreads of veal are considered the
best. Beef sweetbreads are rather fatty and coarse, but if well prepared,
they will taste almost the same as veal. No on bothers with pork
sweetbreads. Such foods, along with other internal organs are called
"Offal," meaning, literally, the "off-fall" or off-cuts from the carcass;
many call these items "variety meats."
Now days, these foods are considered a
delicacy by the people who enjoy them. They are highly prized by chefs and
connoisseurs for their mild flavor and velvety texture. They are the most
versatile of offal meats and can be prepared using virtually any cooking
method. They can be sautéed, braised, poached, grilled, fried, and even
History: Up until the time that
America starting enjoying the luxury of large supermarkets (mid-1940s),
people would butcher their own cattle for consumption. As times were hard
and money was scarce, nothing was wasted. This included all parts of the
animal butchered. Everything was used and eaten by the family.
Swiss cheese - It is also called
Emmentaler cheese. Switzerland is famous for this cheese and a large part of
the milk produced there is used in its production. It was first made around
the middle of the 15th century in the Canton of Bern in the Emmental Valley
(which accounts for its native name of Emmentaler). It is a large, hard,
pressed-cured cheese with an elastic body and a nut-like flavor. It is best
known because of the holes (eyes) that develop in the curd as the cheese
ripens. The eyes are often 1/2 to 1 inch in diameter and from 2 to 3 inches
apart. It is considered one of the most difficult kinds of cheese to make.
syllabubs - (SIHL-uh-buhb) -
Syllabub is softly whipped cream that is flavored with wine, sweetened
cider, and sometimes brandy. The froth is skimmed off and served in glasses.
It is a very light and fragile dessert. It is closely related to eggnog, but
less potent because no strong spirits are used. Syllabubs comes from the
early English word "silly" meaning "happy" plus a dialect word "bub,"
History: Originally an English recipe
from the 17th century, the first syllabubs were made by diary maids who
would direct the warm milk straight from the cow to a pal containing sherry
or cider. In their heyday, they were as popular as ice cream is today. These
are known as the oldest of all English desserts. They have been especially
popular in Maryland, Virginia, and other parts of the South since the first
American colonies were established.
Szechuan peppercorns - Also
called Szechwan pepper, Nepali pepper, or Timur pepper. Timur
pepper/Szechwan pepper (pimpinella anisum) is native to the Szechwan
province of China. Though it bears some similarity to black peppercorns,
they are not actually of the pepper family, rather the dried berry of a tree
in the prickly ash family. The Szechwan pepper is one of the few spices
important for Tibetan and Bhutani cookery in the Himalayas, since very few
spices can be grown there.
Fruits are globose and are encapsulated in a
grayish, pimpled purse-like jacket when young but splits into two halves
upon maturation of the seed. A mature seed is oval and jet black in color
with a highly wrinkled surface, hence often mistaken for a pepper as the
English name indicates.
The rural people apply the powder of its
seeds on their legs to get rid of leech infestation while crossing a forest
in the rainy season. The seed emits a characteristic pungent odor so strong
that even the stickly leech loses its foothold! It can be verified by a
locally popular maxim, which goes - "Timur in the mouth of a leech is like a
hammer on the head of a nail." It also possesses formidable disinfectant
properties and is used largely as a safety measure as well as a flavoring
essence during wild mushroom cooking.
The seeds possess several medicinal
properties like curing stomach aches and toothaches; but in heavy dosage it
may prove toxic. People make tasty curries just by mixing it with a pinch of
salt and piece of green chile.