Last Updated 14  April 2007

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This is an earth oven inside a home in the southern part of Russia what is, now, known as the Ukraine.  

The home was original built by German-Russian colonists in the 1800s.  

This photo is #258 from the Collection of Alfred Hein who visited the area in 2006.  

Definitions are:

A la mode:  a dessert toped with a heaping mound of ice cream on it

Appetizer:  Beverage and or a food served before the first course of a meal

Aspic:  (1) A food, with exception of dessert, which has been thicken with gelatin by cooking or stirring into the food.  (2) In the olden days it meant that the stock of a meat [red meat, fish and chicken] was boiled down so that it was thicken and then set in a cold place until it took a gelatin form.

Au gratin: (1)  Food toped with butter and bread crumbs then baked or broiled until it forms a crust on top of the food; (2) Food topped with butter, bread crumbs and cheese then baked or broiled.   (3) Food toped with butter and cheese which melts down into the food when baked.

Barbecue:  To cook over an old fire on a spit or grill.  This includes all kinds of foods from meats to fruit.  Usually basted with a sauce.

Baste:  To take the liquid, which could be the drippings from the meat your are cooking to a mixture of liquids, which is placed over a food by spoonfuls, a brush or a baster, to add favor to the food you are cooking.  Example:  Baking a chicken, the drippings from the chicken can be mixed with butter and used for basting the chicken to prevent it from getting dry while baking.

Batter:  A thicken mixture of liquid and flour mixed with other ingredients.

Batter with Eggs [Egg Batter]:  A thicken mixture of liquid and flour with eggs.  Other ingredients can, also, be added.

Beat:  With a fork spoon whisk or electric mixer one mixes something such as thick cream,  or eggs, or a batter.

Bisque:  (1) A rich creamy shellfish soup.  (2) A rich creamy fish soup.  (3) Frozen whipped cream or cream desserts is sometimes used today by a few.

Blanch:  Food is immersed in boiling water for a brief time, drained, and immediately rinse in icy cold water.

Boil:  To cook a liquid to the point of the heating process that it bubbles in a rolling motion.

Botulism:  Poisoning by a bacillus which may infect preserved food, especially canned meat, vegetables, and poultry.  This toxin can be destroyed in high heat for 5 minutes, cooled, and repeated once or twice.  My advise is:  If you suspect the food is contaminated, it is best just to throw it away.  Be safe rather than sorry.  This can kill.  Beware!

Bullion:  (1) A clear brown stock made either by boiling meat with water and seasoning.  (2) Most of us today buy commercially prepare bouillon cubes made from chicken or beef.  It can be used to enhance the favor of liquids such as gravy, sauces, or, simply heated in water to make a simple consomme [clear soup].

Braise:  To cook meat at a low moist heat with fat and a liquid (could be just water).  Brown the meat at high heat then add water.  Be careful of the steam that will rise up off the hot pan or roaster.  Add seasoning.  Place heavy lid onto the pan or roaster. Reduce the heat to low.  May need to add liquid. Cook until meat is as you like it.

Breading:  To bread food (1)  Cover the top of food with bread crumbs.  (2) Sometimes a food, like a pork chop,  is dipped [dredged] in a liquid, such as beaten raw eggs, then placed or rolled into a plate with fine or course dried bread crumbs before placing the food into a frying pan which has melted butter, olive oil or something used to fry the food.  Bread crumbs can be made from old dry bread that is broken down into crumbs.  If you don't  have any old bread,  take slices of break and toast it until brown.  Then break it up by placing in a liquid and then pour over a food and bake. 

Broiling:  To cook food by directly exposing it to heat in an oven under the burner at the top of the oven.  

Broth:  Clear soup, which was taken from the original pot of soup in which one has cooked meat and or vegetables  of some kind and strained to be free of of any bites and pieces of the original and leaving just the liquid form.

Browning:  The surface [the outer part of the food] is browned during the process of sauteeing, frying, broiling, baking or toasting.

Canape:  This is a food served as an appetizer consisting of a bread (toasted or not) or a cracker (usually crisp) toped with a spread of fish, meat, cheese, even a vegetable and or a combination.

Caramelize:  To melt sugar and heat it until it become a golden brown liquid. This can be used to favor soups to a processed on top of a dessert.

Chop:  Cut meat with a knife in a up and down motion rather than slicing the meat.  This is usually done to make the pieces small and not uniform.

Chowders: Soup made of fish and other foods such as vegetables and other ingredients.  White chowder is made with milk and cream.  The red chowder is made with tomatoes without milk and cream.

Clarify:  To make liquids such as soups completely transparent by the addition of egg white or other agents, and, then the liquid is strained, leaving the liquid completely free of bites of food and looks clear.

Cobbler:  Form of a deep fruit pie.  It may be free of a crust on the bottom, however, it will have some kind of flour, sugar and buttery crumb topping on the top.  Or a soft biscuit dough which has been enriched with a few teaspoons of sugar and butter,  dropped in dabs on top or rolled out and place on top of the fruit.

Confections' sugar:  The finest form of cane or beet sugar used for frosting and dusting desserts.

Consomme:  A clear soup made of meat or chicken.

Core:  When look at a piece of fruit,  as an example an apple, follow the stem down into the fruit and one will see the center  pocket which is made of seeds. This is the core of the fruit.  This is removed.

Creaming:  (1) To soften fat, which has sugar added, by beating until it's thick and smooth.  (2) The cream from the milk of an animal that produces a high fat contents in it's milk can be whipped with sugar until smooth and forms peaks. This can be used for desserts and  topping for drinks.

Croquettes:  Food, raw or cooked, hashed fine, held together by a thick sauce or egg, shaped into small forms (ball, cylinders, cones, cubes..) and cooked in deep hot fat.

Cut In:  Means to work fat, shortening or butter into flour or corn meal with the fingers or pastry blender until the mixture has the texture of course meal.

Cut and Fold:  Generally this is referring to the blending of stiffly beaten egg whites with a liquid or other mixtures by turning the spoon sideways as it goes into the mixture as one would cut with a knife then moving it away toward the opposite edge and then bring up the spoon and repeat this in a slow motion. This combines the ingredients without losing the body [volume] of the egg whites.  It is the air in the egg whites that causes the mixture to be cooked and remain light and fluffy.  If the body is lost the mixture will become heavy and thick.  Once the volume is lost,  the mixture cannot fixed.  Better luck is needed for the next try.

Cutlets:  A cut of meat from the leg or rib of an animal.  Often known as a "chop" as in pork chop.

Deep Fat Frying:  In a large kettle 3/4 full of animal or vegetable liquid fat that has been heated to a degree to cook the food prepared,  one places the food into the kettle with great care because it will bubble the oil and can bubble over the edge of the kettle if you have too much oil in the kettle.  Besides the mess, it can be dangerous and burn someone or cause a fire if cooking with a gas flame. So BEWARE!!  Once the food is in in the kettle it may not float but sink to the bottom, however, it will rise and float where it will brown.  Some foods need to be turned so it browns on both sides.  This usually takes but a few minutes.  Remember not to crowd your foods so it will cook freely.  Just about every food, accept something like watermelon with a high water content,  can be deep fried.

Demitasse:  Just means a half cup of after- dinner coffee.     The hostess may have half cup size china called demitasse cups.

Deviled:  Food which had been highly spiced

Dice: To cut into small cubes or pieces.

Draw:  Refers to poultry which is freshly killed and has not been cleaned.  To do so, one pulls/ draws out the entrails.

Dredge: To coat a food by dipping it into a mixture and surrounding it before cooking.  The mixture can be just about anything from brad crumb or flour or just sugar.

Dressed:  This varies in meaning.  In some countries this means a foul has been cleaned of it's feathers and gutted, however,  the  head and the feet have not been removed or it means the foul has been gutted cleaned of it's feathers and the head and feet were removed.  In either case, the foul is ready to be cooked.  Same with other meats.  Only instead of feathers, the hide is removed.  

Dressing:  (1) Stuffing made outside the meat with which it will be served.

Drippings:  This is the juices, including the fat, which has cooked out of the beef, veal, pork, lamb and poultry while they are being baked, broils or fried.

Entree:  The main dish of a meal.  Or if other servings are presented, it is the food between the soup and the main course which is meat or fish.

Escallop: Means to bake any food with a sauce  and toping.

Espagnole: Spanish-style because if often means cooking with the addition of tomatoes with onions and spicy seasonings.

Eviscerate:  To removed the entrails of a fowl or game animal.

Filet mignon:  Small choice section of the most tender part of the beef tenderloin

Fillet: Piece of meat, chicken or fish which has been boned or it may already be without bones.

Flake:  To break into small  thin sections with a fork or spoon.

Flour Browned:  Flour which has been placed in a pan without fat and over low heat is browned.  Be careful it will easily burn.

Fondant:  A sugar mixture which has been mixed and kneaded into a smooth filling for a candy or dessert.

Fondue:  (1) Applies to the pot with a heating candle/oil or electric heat in which is placed cheese.  A person then spears a cube of bread with a fondue fork [long handled fork with a small frans, and dip the bread into the cheese and then it is eaten. (2) Same dipping process can be done with variety of things such beef to prawns.  One can dip the meat into a batter first and then deep fry in oil instead of cheese. (3) One can have melted chocolate in the pot and dip in fruit, such as strawberries.

Frappe:  A mashed mixture of fruit or juices which were frozen placed in a glass and then a liqueur is poured over it and served or it can just be liqueur poured over ice.

French:  (1) To trip the fat off the meat.  (2) To flatten the meat with the flat side of a clever. (3) Green beans cut in slivers lengthwise. (4) When food is immersed in deep hot fat until the surface is brown, such as "french fries".

Fricassee:  Cooking small pieces of meat in liquid or fat.

Fritters:  Food is dipped into a batter and deep fried in hot oil

Frost:  To spread icing over a cake, cookies or other foods.

Garnish: To add decorative color to a food dish such as placing parsley around a fish on a platter to be served or placing whipping cream on top of a dessert.

Giblets:  The heart, gizzard and liver of a bird.

Glaze:  Food is given a shiny coat, such has brown sugar mixed with ham drippings spread over a ham or a thin coating of sugar over a donut or a aspic  gelatin or honey over carrots.

Gravy: Sauce made with the juices of a meat in the pan in which the meat was cooked and to this is added liquids, maybe season, possibly flour or corn starch for thickening.

Grease:  Means to rub inside and or outside of a food, surface of a pan or dish with fat/ butter.

Grill: To cook food on a rack which is under or over an open flame [heat].

Hors d'oeuvre: French word for an appetizer served before a meal.

Ice:  (1) Liquid water which is frozen. (2) A fruit juice mixture frozen until firm and smooth. (3) To ice means to chill the food. (4) To ice a cake means to spread frosting to a cake.

Infusion:  A brew of tea, coffee, and/or herbs steeped through a cloth or paper and then brought to a near boil or can be boil  and served as a beverage.

Jelly: Fruit liquid which is free of bites and pieces of fruit  which has been cooked with sugar and gelatin.  When it has cooled it becomes a spreadable form for toast and other foods.

Julianne:  Cutting food into long slender pieces and usually is applied to that of vegetables but it can refer to cheeses and meats.

Knead:  Means to work dough with one's hands until the mixture is a smooth pliable mass.

Lard: Fat [bacon is often used]  is placed between sliced openings made in meats. Or one can just coat the outside of the meat before cooking.

Leaven:  To make a food rise with banking power or soda or eggs.

Legumes:  Vegetables of the pod family such as pea and includes beans, lentils and peanuts.

Liquor:  (1) The liquid in which food is packed. (2) Liquid from fruit. (3) Liquid from a pot in which vegetables had been boiled. (4) Term used for all alcoholic beverages.

Lukewarm:  A temperature around 100 to 110 degrees F.

Marinate:  (1) To cover food with any liquid to give it flavor. (2) A dressing for vegetables and meat such as vinegar or lemon juice plus various seasonings. (3) Fruit juices, wine, milk or other liquids used to treat food.

Melt:  Means to liquefy by heat.

Meringue:  A mixture of stiffly beaten egg white to which is folded in sugar then placed on  wax paper or on top of a pie and baked until the surface is lightly brown.

Mince:  To cop up a food into very fine pieces.

Mocha:  Coffee flavor which is usually mixed with chocolate.  Added to this may be sugar and cream/ milk.

Mousse:  It is a favored fruit, sweet sauce, wine or  cordial  whipped with cream and gelatin and then frozen, baked or steamed.

Pan broiled:  To cook in a pan with little or no fat under a heat.

Pan fry:  To cook in a pan that can be placed on a stove to be heated and cook the food with fat.

Parboil:  To cook in boiling water a food that will bring it pass hard but not soft.



....To Be Continued....