Cooking Glossary


Cabanossi: A salami type sausage popular in Southern Europe.

Café Noir: Black coffee.

Canadian Whisky: A distilled spirit made from a blend of rye and corn. It is lighter than bourbon or rye whiskey and is aged in charred oak casks.

Canapé: A tiny piece of bread or a cracker, which is topped with an appetizer.

Capons: A castrated male chicken, which grows large and has tender meat.

Capsicum: Another name for red/green/yellow bell peppers.

Caramelize: Cooking sugar and water together will result in them turning a golden brown, or caramelizing.

Carbonated Water: Water that has had carbon-dioxide, or carbonic-acid, gas forced into it. The soda water used at soda fountains is an example of this variety. Carbonated water is bottled and sold for various purposes.

Castor/Caster Sugar: Somewhat finer than US granulated sugar. Similar to US superfine sugar.

Champagne: A highly effervescent wine, white or pink, originally from the Champagne region of France. Today however, sparkling wines from many regions of the world are called "Champagne"

Chicken Maryland: In Australia, refers to chicken leg with both thigh and drumstick attached. In the US, refers to any parts of chicken, crumbed, browned in hot fat, baked and served with cream gravy.

Chill: To allow to become thoroughly cold.

Chinese Parsley: Also called cilantro and coriander.

Chop: To cut into fine or coarse pieces.

Cider: A drink (almost) always made from pressed apples, to many people but not all it is alcoholic. In the US usage is typically that 'cider' is not alcoholic and 'hard cider' is.

Cilantro: The leaf of the coriander plant. Also called Chinese/Thai/Mexican parsley, and green coriander.

Civet: A game stew.

Clean: To remove oil, grease, dirt and debris using water or soap and water.

<>Chaud-froid: Literally, hot cold. A jellied sauce.

A greenish yellow, poisonous gaseous element used as a disinfectant or sanitizer. Usually used in a liquid form for disinfecting food contact surfaces and the sanitizing sink in 2 and 3 sink dishwashing systems.

Chou-fleur: Cauliflower.

Chutney: A sweet pickle from East India.

Clotted Cream: Traditionally served with tea and scones; a 55% (min) milk fat product made by heating shallow pans of milk to about 82 degrees C, holding them at this temperature for about an hour and then skimming off the yellow wrinkled cream crust that forms.

Coat: To cover with a thin film, e.g. flour, crumbs or crushed nuts.

Cockles: Clams or donax. (Any of various bivalve molluscs having a shell closed by two muscles at opposite ends).

Coconut milk/Santen: Coconut milk is known as narialka ka dooth in India, santen in Indonesia and Malaysia. Best made from fresh coconuts: Grate the flesh of 1 coconut into a bowl, pour on 600 ml/1 pint/2-1/2 cups boiling water, then leave to stand for about 30 minutes. Squeeze the flesh, then strain before using. This quantity will make a thick coconut milk, add more or less water as required. Desiccated (shredded) coconut can be used instead of fresh coconut: Use 350g/12 oz./4 cups to 600 ml/1 pint/2-1/2 cups boiling water. Use freshly made coconut milk within 24 hours. Canned coconut milk is also available.

Cognac: The finest grape brandy made. This name is only given to brandy coming from the Charente region of France.

Consommé de volaille: Chicken soup.

Compote: A dessert of fresh or dried fruit cooked in syrup, usually with spices and citrus zest.

Contamination: Introduction of micro-organisms or disease agents into food.

Cool: To let stand at room temperature until no longer warm.

Confectioner's sugar: Same as powdered sugar or in the UK icing sugar.

Consommé de volaille: Chicken soup.

Cordial: In the US, a synonym for liqueur in UK, NZ, Australia, a thick syrup (which may or may not contain real fruit) which is diluted to give a non-alcoholic fruit drink.

Cornmeal: Ground corn (maize).

Corn flour: Cornstarch. Used to thicken sauces etc.

Courgette: A long, green squash, in the US called zucchini. 

Couscous: It is the separated grain of the wheat plant. When dried and milled, it becomes semolina flour, which is what pasta is made out of. However, as a grain, it makes a terrific rice substitute that has the advantage of being more flavorful (nutty with an interesting texture as long as it is not over cooked) as well as about five times quicker to make than rice.

Creme Fraiche: Pasteurized cream to which a lactic bacteria culture has been added. Used in French cooking, it is thick and slightly acidic without actually being sour.

A tomato sauce with the addition of celery, onions, green peppers, and spicy seasonings etc. in the style of cookery.

Cross Contamination: The introduction of micro-organisms or disease agents from raw food into safe or ready to eat food making the ready to eat food unsafe.

Croutons: Cubes of toasted or fried bread used in soups, salads or for garnishes.

Cube: Cut into pieces with six equal square sides.

Curry powder: A yellow powder containing tumeric.

Cooking Glossary