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French Culinary Terms Cooking Explained

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This is a follow up to my recent article Culinary Cooking-Catering Culinary Terms and I hope this helps you budding culinary chefs out there more for education purposes all about French Culinary. As a culinary chef myself I know how difficult it was for me to learn. So please take the time to learn and come back as many times as it takes to start remembering French culinary terms. Enjoy!!

a la carte: Dishes on a menu prepared to order and individuallypriced.

anglaise: Beaten egg with oil and seasoning.

au bleu: “Blue”. When applied to meat it means very underdone. When applied to trout it is a specific dish -truite au bleu.

au gratin: Sprinkled with breadcrumbs and/or cheese andbrowned.

le bain-marie:

a. A container for keeping foods hot without


b. A shallow pan of water for cooking foods in the

oven without them burning or boiling.

c. A deep narrow container for storing hot soup,

sauces and gravies.

Bien Cuit: Well cooked.

la blanquette: A white stew cooked in stock from which the sauce is made eg Blanquette de veau.

la bouchee: Small puff pastry case.

le bouillon: Unclarified stock.

le bouquet-garni: A faggot or bundle of herbs, usually parsley stalks, thyme and bay leaf, tied inside pieces of celery and leek.

brunoise: Small neat dice.

le canape: A cushion of toasted or fried bread on which food is served. It is used as a base for savouries. When served cold as canape Muscovite the base may be toast, biscuits, short paste or puff paste pieces with savoury food on top and glazed with aspic.

Chantilly: Sweetened whipped vanilla flavoured cream.

le chateaubriand: The head of the fillet of beef.

le chaud-froid: A creamed veloute or demi-glace with gelatine or aspic added, used for masking cold dishes.

Cloute: Studded, as with a clove inserted in an onion.

la cocotte: Porcelain fireproof dish.

la compote: Stewed fruit eg compote de poires.

concasse: Coarsley chopped, eg parsley and tomates.

le consomme: Basic clear soup.

le contrefilet: Boned sirloin of beef

le court-bouillon: A cooking liquor for certain foods eg oily fish, calf’s brain, etc. It is water containing vinegar, sliced onion, carrots, herbs and seasoning.

Crapandine: Birds split down the back and laid out flat for cooking.

la dariole: Mould shaped like a small flower pot.

degorger: Using salt to draw out the moisture from food. Also to draw out bitter juices as in the case of aubergines.

demi-glace: Half glazed – reduced espagnole. Equal quantities of brown stock and brown sauce reduced by half.

emincer: To slice thinly or to cut into small pieces.

l’entrecote(f): A steak from a boned sirloin.

en branche: Vegetables cooked and served as whole leaves.

l’escalope (f): Thin slices of meat

espagnole: Spanish sauce; brown sauce.

etuver: To stew, braise or steam in its own juice.

farce: Stuffing.

farci: Stuffed.

le foie gras: Fat goose liver.

le fricassee: A white stew in which the poultry or meat is cooked in the sauce.

fume: To smoke eg salmon, ham, etc.

fumet: Concentrated stock from fish, game or meat.

glace: Iced.

hors d’oeuvre: Preliminary dishes of an appetising nature, some kinds are served hot.

jardiniere: Cut into batons.

julienne: Cut into fine strips.

le jus lie: Gravy thickened with arrowroot or cornflour orfecule.

le jus roti: Roast gravy.

la liaison: Name given to yolks of egg and cream when used as a thickening agent.

macedoine:A mixture of vegetables cut into 5mm dice, or a mixture of fruit.

le marinade: A richly spiced pickling liquid for enriching the flavour and tenderness of meats before braising.

les mille-feuilles: “Thousand leaves”, a puff pastry cream slice.

migonette: Coarse ground pepper.

la mirepoix: Roughly cut onions, carrots, celery and a sprig of thyme and bay leaf used for flavouring soups and sauces.

mis-en-place: Basic preparations prior to serving.

navarin: Brown lamb or mutton stew.

la noisette:

a. A small round cut of meat, usually lamb or mutton.

b. Shaped or coloured like a nut, eg noisette potatoes, noisette butter.

noix: Nut, also the cushion piece of leg of veal.

l’oeuf sur le plat:

Egg cooked in an egg dish.

papillote: Cooked in a paper bag or buttered paper to preserve moisture and flavour.

la pate: A dough, paste or butter.

le pate: A pie or pastry; also a savoury meat or fish paste cooked in a piece dish.

la paupiette: A strip of fish, meat or poultry rolled round a stuffing and usually poached in a stock.

paysanne: “Country style”. Usually vegetables cut into thin 15mm round or square shapes.

printaniere: “Springtime”. Generally a garnish of spring vegetables.

rechauffer: To reheat leftover cooked foods.

le roux: Flour and fat cooked together for thickening.

le sabayon: Yolks of egg and a little water cooked until creamy.

saute: To cook quickly in a shallow pan with the minimumof fat.

le souffle: A light aerated dish, sweet or savoury hot or cold. Whites of egg are added to the hot basic preparation and whipped cream to the cold.

le supreme: Most delecate fillet cut, especially of chicken and fish.

table d’hote: A meal of several courses, which may have a limited choice srved at a fixed price.

le troncon: A steak of large flat fish cut with the bone, after the fish has been cut in half lengthways.

le veloute:

a. Basic sauce.

b. The basis of a soup of creamy consistency.

le vol-au-vent: A puff pastry case.

I hope you find this hub helpful if you require more Culinary Cooking-terms please click  to view my other hub on Culinary Cooking-Catering Culinary Terms.

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