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TermDefinition
ricotta cheese An Italian cheese similar to cottage cheese but slightly grainy and sweet. Used in dishes such as lasagna and manicotti. Low fat recipes often call for cottage cheese or a combination of cottage and ricotta as a substitute.
rose hip The reddish-orange fruit of the rose (after the petals have fallen). High in vitamin C, they are used to make jellies and jams, syrup, tea and wine.
rosewater A perfumy flavored and fragrant distillation of rose petals often used in the cuisines of the Middle East, India and China.
Rotel Tomatoes A brand of canned tomatoes preseasoned with chopped green chili peppers, salt and spices. They now come in a number of variations including Mexican and Extra Spicy. Most common recipe is to mix 1 pound of Velveeta cheese and a can of Rotel tomatoes and some chopped fresh cilantro, heated together and served with tortilla chips. These add zest to any number of recipes.
Scald Plunging foods with skins, such as tomatoes, into boiling water. This loosens and splits the skin, so it can be removed easily.
Scalding milk Heat milk to just below the boiling point. This can slow the souring of the milk.
scant Not quite up to full measure. For example: a scant teaspoon of an ingredient would be less than a teaspoonful as opposed to a level teaspoon, rounded teaspoon or heaping teaspoon.
shallots Herb of the lily family whose root forms small clusters of bulbs with a mild garlic flavor. Used in soups, salads, sauces, etc., the shallot has a brown papery skin as opposed to the whitish skin of the garlic.
snow crab A type of crab found in the North Pacific region, may be cooked by frying or broiling but the easiest way is to steam them in a large pot with a little boiling water until they turn a nice orangey color. Live crabs should be cooked the day they are purchased and refrigerated until cooking. Cook raw crabmeat within 24 hours of when the crab dies. Crab can then be shelled and used in recipes or dipped in drawn butter as with lobster.
soft crack stage In candy making, the test for sugar syrup describing the point at which a drop of boiling syrup dropped in cold water separates into hard though pliable threads. On a candy thermometer, this is between 270 degrees and 290 degrees.
spiedini Italian for small pieces of meat and other foods grilled on a skewer (i.e. shish kabob which is Turkish).
stick of butter one stick or cube of butter equals 1/2 cup.
stock A strained broth made by cooking any vegetable, meat, seafood, or poultry in water. Used for soups and sauces.
sweat, to to cook (usually vegetables) over low heat, causing their juices to be released and their sweetness enhanced while becoming translucent rather than colored
T. In a recipe T. is the abreviation for 1 tablespoon as in 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.¨
Tabasco (Sauce) Sauce made from the tabasco pepper, vinegar and salt and trademarked by the McIlhenny family since the mid-1800s. It's very hot and spicy.
tahini Sesame seed paste used in Middle Eastern cooking.
tamarin French for the tamarind, a tropical tree and its acid, pod-like fruit. The leaves and flowers are eaten as a vegetable; the pulp used to make preserves, sauces and chutneys largely in Eastern cooking. The seeds are ground into a meal and baked as cakes. The fruit has laxative properties.
tapas Appetizers popular throughout Spain.
tart Pastry shell with shallow sides and no top crust that is filled with a savory or sweet filling.
Tempe Fermented soy beans, like tofu. Used in Indonesian cooking. Quite a distinct taste, as opposed to tofu. Also spelled tempeh.
tempering Process of heating and cooling chocolate which improves the malleability and gloss. Typically used for chocolate candy dipping or decorations.
tempura Japenese style of batter dipped and deep fried fish or vegetables.
Teppanyaki cooking Japanese cooking on a grill.
Tex-Mex Food derived from the combined cultures of Texas and Mexico. Burritos, nachos and tacos are considered Tex-Mex dishes.
thyme Herb of the mint family that is native to southern Europe. It is a basic herb of the French cuisine where its minty, light-lemon aroma enhances vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, soups and cream sauces.
timbale Describes both the drum-shaped, high sided cooking mold and the custard, vegetable and meat casserole that is baked in the mold.
tofu Also know as bean curd, white tofu is made from curdled soy milk. Popular in Asian cooking, tofu itself has a mild nutty flavor but will readily take on the flavor of the food in which it is cooked.
tomatillo Similar to a small green tomato and from the same nightshade family, tomatillos are distinctive in their thin paper like covering. Typically used green they have a lemon herb flavor and are found in Southwestern and Mexican dishes.
tournedo Beefsteak cut from the tenderloin. Because they are very lean it's common to wrap them in bacon or pork fat for cooking.

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