HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >


Favorite cooking word or phrase?

I've always been partial to "brown bits" and chiffonade. How about you?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
        1. re: BostonZest

          "zest"...probably one of my least favorite...why not just "grated lemon peel"?

          1. re: AnneM

            Because when you twist a well-carved piece of zest, you can watch the essential oils burst from it and fill the air and the food with citrus essence.

            1. re: AnneM

              Because the whole peel is the "peel" and the zest is just the zest? There are culinary uses for the whole peel, after all - marmalade being the most important. And "grated lemon peel" is a lot more cumbersome than "zest."

              1. re: curiousbaker

                And, it takes fewer characters to type, "zest," than "grated lemon peel... "


              1. re: Non Cognomina

                Definitely mise en place. It's a good word to say when you're trying to sound fluent. You just repeat it a few times.

                1. re: southernitalian

                  Mise en place for moi too! And, SI I'm sure your familiar w/ the Italian ones, also -

                  -86 _______
                  -pomme de terre
                  -pasta fazool

              2. re: akp

                Tony Bourdain - "don't F*&* with my mise!"

              3. mirepoix (we made up a word for a recent mirepoix I made using lots of leeks: mirepoireau)

                1. In Spain, when you just put something on hot oil for few second, spanish chefs name it "scare it" and I like this term!

                  2 Replies
                        1. amuse bouche...just rolls off the lips! : )

                            1. potlikker & cornpone, now that's good eatin'

                                  1. For the cooks on here:

                                    "in the weeds"


                                    6 Replies
                                      1. re: swsidejim

                                        Also for cooks,

                                        "Last Order In"


                                        "Break it Down"

                                        1. re: Non Cognomina

                                          Also " I need a ____ RFN"

                                          OTF - On the Fly

                                        2. re: swsidejim

                                          And people who've waited tables, how many times have you had an approximation of this conversation?

                                          MOD: "Diva, James is seriously weeded. He just entered in three orders for X which were 86'd an hour ago on his big table. Could you go offer his ten-top a free round of drinks, ring it on a separate check, and I'll comp it?"

                                          Diva looks mildly annoyed but does it because she's a "team player."

                                          1. "Get out of my kitchen!"

                                              1. Caramelize (not carmelize!)

                                                1. Chiffonade, rollatini, mandolin, and "mangia, mangia!"

                                                  4 Replies
                                                  1. re: MuppetGrrl

                                                    Oh, you've hit mine! Mangia, Mangia! I will NEVER forget listening to my nana saying this throughout every meal I ever ate with her. I now sometimes find myself saying it to my own daughter..."Mangia, little one, you need to eat to grow!" Just like Nana...

                                                    1. re: OrganicGal

                                                      I'll second Mangia. Keep it alive!

                                                        1. re: LNG212

                                                          We got these:
                                                          When it was time to run to the kitchen to eat, "Vien a mangiare!"
                                                          Then, when we started to lag, flag, sag in our eating, Nonna said, "Mangia, mangia, no be shame."
                                                          Oh Nonna.

                                                  2. Saltimbocca ("jumps in the mouth!")


                                                    Coddled (eggs)

                                                    1. There was a uniquely interesting husband/wife team on PBS in the 1970s who had a cooking show called 'The Romagnoli's Table'. The husband, Franco, had a thick italian accent and whenever he decided to add butter to a dish (and he did this quite often), he'd look up from his cooking and command "..amalgamate da baahder..", meaning: mix in the butter. His wife would look lovingly/indulgently over at him, then knowingly at us (into the camera). Since then, I love saying "amalgamate the butter" as a non-sequitor, whenever I'm happily cooking in the kitchen...

                                                      6 Replies
                                                      1. re: silence9

                                                        That's kinda like how I remember Justin Smith talking to his bowls in a Cajun accent. . .I'm often wont to say, "C'mere bowl!" from time to time in the kitchen, but I can't morph my Jersey accent to Cajun. . .:-P

                                                        1. re: Covert Ops

                                                          Was he not the one who used to always say Ah garaaaanteeeee?

                                                        2. re: silence9

                                                          They were good. I wonder where they went. The Romangolis, not Justin Wilson.

                                                          1. re: Candy

                                                            Hi Candy... After a bit of googling, I sadly discovered that Margaret Romagnoli passed away around 1995 R.I.P... Franco Romagnoli is apparently alive and well and writing books and articles about food and life. It saddened me that he re-married in 1998, so soon after his wife's death, given their obvious loving and teasing banter on their short-lived cooking show. I suppose many people 'move forward' as quickly. But yeah, their show was my first introduction to non-red sauce italian cooking...

                                                        3. Zhuzh - as in, put something in a blender. No clue how to spell it.

                                                          1. Affinage.

                                                            "Bob quit Law School to become an affeneur". I'd like to see that phrase used more often.

                                                            1. does this count, "I've made reservations!"

                                                              1. "to taste" What could be more liberating?

                                                                1. Here's a food word I detest: Gastrique. Gastrique always conjures images of stomach acids and burning bile! Whereas I really like the word 'coulis'.

                                                                    1. gribenhes (spelling, its a yiddish word). Those little leftover fried bits (brown bits!) of onion or anything else that's like a crumb, fried, savory. I not only like the word but we fight for the gribs.

                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                        1. re: sivyaleah

                                                                          Schmaltz. There's just no good connotation no matter how it is pronounced.

                                                                          1. re: RGC1982

                                                                            Hahaha! I love the word "schmaltz." My family uses it a lot to joke around.

                                                                            1. re: Chew on That

                                                                              How can you not love the word schmaltz?

                                                                              1. re: bellyspeaks

                                                                                Hey, some use it as hair pomade! A universal element in the universe.

                                                                                Of course, one must be on the watch for chicken hawks.


                                                                        2. re: gabe

                                                                          Interesting, we always pronounced this "gribnitz."

                                                                          1. re: gabe

                                                                            my dad, sister and i used to love this when my grandma made it. we called it 'grieven'. my mom called it heart attack in a frying pan.

                                                                          2. my favorites are taken too, but i always am amused to read old & handwritten cookbooks when they direct you to
                                                                            "cook until done"

                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                            1. re: soupkitten

                                                                              When recounting family recipes to other family members, I still say, "cook it till it's done and smells like grandma's house."

                                                                              1. re: soupkitten

                                                                                In culinary school we always learned to cook things until they were done. And to this day when someone asks me how long to cook something, I tell them "until it's done". After all, you wouldn't cook a chicken breast for 5 minutes or 10 minutes or even 20 minutes. You would cook it until it is done =)

                                                                                1. re: ktb615

                                                                                  That will translate into a "safe kitchen."

                                                                                  "Until it is done," are words to LIVE by, and in more ways than one.


                                                                                2. re: soupkitten

                                                                                  This is the best lesson I ever learned in the kitchen.

                                                                                    1. re: mashpee

                                                                                      Cabrales?!?! Is that you Cabrales?????

                                                                                    2. Cornichon and "Bon Appetite" in Julia Child's voice

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: fryrose

                                                                                        I just tried "bon appetit" in Julia Child's voice. Then I giggled. Then I did the entire process again. Thank you for that!!!

                                                                                        1. re: The Engineer

                                                                                          God bless her soul, may she lie in peace with chocolate, and cream sauce, flowing gently around her.

                                                                                        2. re: fryrose

                                                                                          When Julia died, the bus on the route that ran past her old house in Cambridge changed the electric sign on the front that usually reads the name of the destination to read "Bon Appetit, Julia!" I still get a little misty thinking about it. The only other times I've seen a bus driver change the sign were for St. Patrick's Day and when the Red Sox or Patriots were aiming at championships. Just shows how much she was loved.

                                                                                          1. A friends/family word: yumbies.

                                                                                            The way Julia Child used to pronounce veloute, with a sort of deep in the throat, breathy voluptuousness.

                                                                                            1. When "extras" (actors) have to look as if they are talking to each other (for instance in a brief party or restaurant scene) they simply mouth the words "peas and carrots, carrots and peas" over and over.

                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: blue room

                                                                                                I learned to say "rhubarb, rhubarb, rhubarb" for background noise in crowd scenes.

                                                                                                1. re: blue room

                                                                                                  We'd also throw in a "watermelon" every now and then. ;-)

                                                                                                  1. re: Covert Ops

                                                                                                    I wonder why they're all food names?? Starving artists?

                                                                                                2. Swane. I had a chef-instructor ruin this word for me, however. Used it way too much.

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: rabaja

                                                                                                    Forgive me, rabaja, what is "swane"?

                                                                                                  2. In response to blue room, I believe that rabaja was trying to spell my own personal favorite, "soignee" , meaning "above reproach; impeccable" in French: "We got veeps on twenty-three, fire six dega twos and super-soignee 'em!" ("Oui Chef!")

                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: diropstim

                                                                                                      Thanks for the spelling correction! Yes that's the word, it must be 'cause the hair at the nape of my neck bristled...nice usage!

                                                                                                      1. re: diropstim

                                                                                                        I got most of it but.. Dega twos?

                                                                                                        1. re: laur76

                                                                                                          Dega two= second course (usually cooked fish) of a degustation ( tasting ) menu.

                                                                                                      2. bouchonne bou-SHON-eh ("corked" as in wine) -- so amusingly pretentious!

                                                                                                        1. When the Chairman screams "Allez cuisine!!!" on Iron Chef. Great to yell to put yourself in the mood when heading in to cook dinner.

                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                          1. re: niki rothman

                                                                                                            I thought it was "A la cuisine" (to the kitchen!) which has also been my rallying cry for quite some time (accent intact).

                                                                                                            1. fold



                                                                                                              I love the sensual feel of the food during these techniques

                                                                                                              1. I'll say chiffonade, mirepoix, pfiffling, faison, and forelle.

                                                                                                                1. gratinee





                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                  1. Well, y'all must be perfect chefs. My own favorite, based on repetitive usage, is a four-letter word...recited percussively five times.

                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: Karl S

                                                                                                                      Well, that particular word is a given in the kitchen. ;-)

                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                        REminder: never say audibly within earshot of guests who couldn't understand. those guest do not belong near kitchen anyway. other guests know to keep them away.

                                                                                                                        Have clean damp mop and bucket ready in back entry....

                                                                                                                    2. OMG

                                                                                                                      I can't believe I'm the first or only one that loves the term



                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                      1. re: Davwud

                                                                                                                        Don't forget smothered (as in with gravy)

                                                                                                                      2. "smile" It is used to reference the shiver of movement that you want from a stock that you are reducing. JUST below a gentle simmer.

                                                                                                                        I also like the image of potatoes boiled in their nightshirts (skins, jackets).

                                                                                                                        I also can't help giggling when I describe myself as having the gurbles; that peculiar and vaguely threatening rumble in your stomach after a particularly odd food item. It's something I'm sure we're all used to.

                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: Ernie Diamond

                                                                                                                          At my house we call the gurbles "the bubbleguts"

                                                                                                                        2. unctuous (though more a wine word);
                                                                                                                          also love it when at an ethnic spot or diner or 'older' waiter/ress sets the food down and says 'enjoy'. I know she says it to everyone but to me it is like my grandmother serving me with love. (Hokey, i know!!;)

                                                                                                                          also like chiffonade

                                                                                                                          HATE HATE HATE: 'yum'/'yummy' 'veggies' and 'ressies'

                                                                                                                          11 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: chow_gal

                                                                                                                            I don't drink but I do use the word unctuous when describing food. It means oily or fatty.
                                                                                                                            Words I don't like (perhaps relates to negative feelings about Racael Ray): "sammy", "yum - o!"

                                                                                                                            1. re: niki rothman

                                                                                                                              Ugh, I was at a local fair and I saw a random woman walking around with a shirt that said "Yum-O!"

                                                                                                                              I ran in the other direction.

                                                                                                                              1. re: niki rothman

                                                                                                                                Actually unctuous when used to describe food or drink is totally inappropriate.. Websters says" of oily or greasy character,fat and clammy...a charactreistic of steatite and other minerals,nauseously bland.. oily, fawning" Hardly gets the old gastic juices flowing.
                                                                                                                                My faves

                                                                                                                                1. re: ishmael

                                                                                                                                  I really despise the over use of unctuous. It seems to me impossible for wine to be unctuous. However, some things can successfully be described as unctuous: foie gras or marrow, for example.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Atahualpa

                                                                                                                                    I don't totally disagree, but I do associate unctuous more with sweet dishes, like a proper panna cotta or extra-rich custard, or even whole-fat Greek yogurt with honey, so I could see it being applied to some dessert wines, even though they're not literally oily.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: BobB

                                                                                                                                      I've had dessert wines like that -- they mimic the tongue-coatedness you get from a good piece of pork belly, which is a dish which when properly prepared I have referred to as unctuous. I blame Tony Bourdain, who uses this term frequently to refer to fatty porky goodness :-). And Fage with honey is soooo unctuous, I can't believe I have to wait till March to eat it again (next trip to SF).

                                                                                                                                  1. re: chow_gal

                                                                                                                                    Unctious is great, and it can also describe a sauce, like a good demi-glace--it's what a knob of butter adds. And I like "knob of butter" too.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Covert Ops

                                                                                                                                      dosen't everyone love ganache ??? : - )

                                                                                                                                      1. au jus




                                                                                                                                        foie gras

                                                                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: CDouglas

                                                                                                                                          I also like that word for the vitally important, wonderful brown goodies on the bottom of the pot when you're browning something: "fonde"
                                                                                                                                          but that brings up a couple of word pet peeves.

                                                                                                                                          1)Whatever happened to the very useful term: to "brown" food, or "browning"? Now everyone says "caramelize" I much prefer the honest straightforward non-foody word "brown"

                                                                                                                                          2) People are always saying that "caramelization" happens when the sugars (caramel is a form of sugar) emerge from food when it is being "browned" I disagree. There ARE no sugars that can emerge from meat, fish or poultry - that's why meat is what people eat when on a low-carb diet: it has no sugar at all. Zero. The animal has digested whatever sugar it ate and through the process of digestion turned it into all-protein muscle.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: niki rothman

                                                                                                                                            if anyone uses the word caramelize for meat, fish, or poultry, they are not using the word correctly. But if you caramelize onions, that's what you're doing... you're not really browning them...

                                                                                                                                            1. re: niki rothman

                                                                                                                                              if i have to hear the words "enzymatic browning" or "reducing sugar" again, i might just kill myself.

                                                                                                                                              food science ruins cooking for me..

                                                                                                                                              1. re: niki rothman

                                                                                                                                                There is a word for this meat "caramelization"... I think it's Mercerize, or something close. I learned it from Alton Brown(!)'s show. Still, I'll ignore Brown, and use "brown."

                                                                                                                                                1. re: The Engineer

                                                                                                                                                  The term you are trying to remember is the "Maillard Reaction" (pronounced "my-YARD"). It is still largely a mystery, but research continues to be done on this fascinating chain of culinary science that yields those tasty "brown bits."



                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Non Cognomina

                                                                                                                                                    Thanks, I've been checking back periodically, hoping someone would post the correct term!

                                                                                                                                            2. Throw another shrimp on the barby

                                                                                                                                                1. Not a technique, just a word - Fromage - so soft, just like the cheese :-)

                                                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ML8000

                                                                                                                                                      we tried to literally translate that in French Class....our native speaker teachers looked puzzled and said....Oh! you mean "Le Gross Legume!" (The Big Vegetable is the phrase the French use)

                                                                                                                                                  1. The twins not: "Soupcon" & "Soup's on!"

                                                                                                                                                    1. au jus



                                                                                                                                                        1. Forth


                                                                                                                                                          Cheese cloth

                                                                                                                                                          1. Mine are two: sacrificial pancake!

                                                                                                                                                            1. Au sec
                                                                                                                                                              Au sec
                                                                                                                                                              Au sec
                                                                                                                                                              Au sec
                                                                                                                                                              Au sec!

                                                                                                                                                              Say it!

                                                                                                                                                              Au sec!

                                                                                                                                                              1. Running Clean

                                                                                                                                                                Pass me a cold beer/pour me some wine

                                                                                                                                                                Mise en place

                                                                                                                                                                Porkilicious - which is strange because I hate when words are adulterated

                                                                                                                                                                Friggin Oven

                                                                                                                                                                acidulated - after the wine and dealing with the oven it becomes an adulterated word

                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                1. fold.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. Hi Hounds,

                                                                                                                                                                    What fun! Surprised to see so many Euro words here, tho. I like "86" a lot. What about:

                                                                                                                                                                    finger lickin' good
                                                                                                                                                                    bubble and squeak (sorry, one euro thing)
                                                                                                                                                                    Hen of the Woods
                                                                                                                                                                    boiled in their nightshirts (incredible)
                                                                                                                                                                    hush puppies

                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rico

                                                                                                                                                                      Boiled in their nightshirts! Hysterical. My mother would say baked in their jackets. Always made me giggle.

                                                                                                                                                                    2. chilboust

                                                                                                                                                                      here's one I'm partial to that I made up in a dream:


                                                                                                                                                                      it's what you do to a mess of sliced onions to carmelize them in olive oil.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. persillade

                                                                                                                                                                          1. Oshitashi !!! When I see it on the menu I want to climb on my chair and shout it out!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. Ghee! (which has extra-special resonance in Ireland..)
                                                                                                                                                                              Melt (ditto)

                                                                                                                                                                              - Sean

                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                              1. burrata
                                                                                                                                                                                kremes (nothing like it looks)
                                                                                                                                                                                bubble and squeak!!
                                                                                                                                                                                chewy (for wine)
                                                                                                                                                                                fruit bomb (wine again)

                                                                                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Ciao Hound

                                                                                                                                                                                  My dad and I do our fair share of wine tasting and always have to giggle behind our hands when someone at the winery says "approachable". "Foxy" is a funny one you hear around NY fingerlakes wineries also that I think is funny.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Nosh is a fave food term.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Lazy Susan

                                                                                                                                                                                    Could you proffer a definition for "foxy" in the context of describing a wine?

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Non Cognomina

                                                                                                                                                                                      foxy - A soapy taste of wild and uncultured grapes, applied especially to wines produced from native American grape varietals in New York State, particularly from the Concord grape.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Catawba wines are sometimes described as foxy. Often used for wines that are grapey (like a Niagara) or musky, I think the terms "foxy" is used because these wines are made from reverted to wild or "feral" grapes. In a dry wine it is not good. OK in some sweet wines. Hard to put into words.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Mozzarella di Buffala
                                                                                                                                                                                    Humboldt Fog!
                                                                                                                                                                                    Triple Creme

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. French words and phrases are all fine and dandy, but Gaelic words describing food and dining take, er, the biscuit:


                                                                                                                                                                                      - Sean (Sean-mhadra)

                                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Sean Dell

                                                                                                                                                                                        Why does these sound so... dirty?

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. "Nice and ..."
                                                                                                                                                                                              Cooking instructors often use this phrase when describing the state of a cooking item, as in "make sure you do ... until it is nice and hot." Or any such variation where "nice and" is followed by some other adjective.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Can someone please tell me what the "nice" refers to?
                                                                                                                                                                                              The only sense I can make of the use of this word is the concept of a food mixture being "put together, or composed, in a well-constructed way." Some linguist, please help me.

                                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Chuckles the Clone

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wow, thanks Chuckles. As an editor, I love to learn new words -- now if I can only use this one in a sentence today! :-P

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Ok, so not cooking terms, but --

                                                                                                                                                                                                "I'm hungry."

                                                                                                                                                                                                "I'm ready to order."

                                                                                                                                                                                                Other person saying, "I'll take the check."

                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: chica

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Or, at the end of the meal, hearing the phrase "on the house."

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: The Engineer

                                                                                                                                                                                                    My brother in law is from Sweden. When he and my sister host the first meal of the day (be it breakfast/brunch/lunch) they always ask, "are you coming for smorgas?" I love that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Perhaps because I am super organized, I am a fan of mise en place. I am always scolding Jack for messing mine up.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    The word caramelize just feels good rolling around in my mouth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    For some reason my husband has taken to using a non-cooking term regularly when referring to cooking. Anyone remember that SNL skit w/ Will Ferrell and Christopher Walken, when Ferrell is playing the cowbell? Now Jack is prone to saying “this lavender crème brulee needs more cowbell,” and the like – “cowbell” being shorthand for “intensity of flavor/spice.” It’s goofy but, to me at least, infinitely charming.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: meg944

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi... In keeping with the food theme, the name of the band SNL were spoofing was Blue OYSTER Cult.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: silence9

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hah! I hadn't made that connection! Very cute.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: meg944

                                                                                                                                                                                                          They had a song called 'Tenderloin' and 'Mistress of the Salmon Salt'...Hard Rock Foodies???

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. another vote for mise en place



                                                                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: frankiii

                                                                                                                                                                                                          You know, I disconcerted the server at one of my regular haunts in Naples when I asked for penne alla puttanesca. He rephrased it for me so that I wouldn’t have to sound so crude next time: “Allora, penne con capperi, acciughe, e olive”? (So, that’s penne with capers, anchovies, and olives?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Some of my favorite cooking terms are:

                                                                                                                                                                                                          bard—This evokes a literary experience in the kitchen.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          butterfly—A pretty word for violently hacking, splaying, and pounding poultry.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          fricassée—I’ve always liked the way it sounds.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Some favorite terms for food and wine, all Italian:

                                                                                                                                                                                                          a’scapece—The Neapolitan dish of fried vegetables (like eggplant) that are marinated for a long time in vinegar and garlic.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          sciuè sciuè—The phrase means roughly fast or hurry in Neapolitan dialect: It usually refers to a quick-cooked tomato sauce.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          lacrime di Cristo: “Christ’s tears,” and the name of a well-known wine from the south of Italy.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          una bomba: Kind of a doughnut or fried puff, often filled with chocolate or cream that explodes when you bite into it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          delizia di limone: Literally “a lemon delight,” this is a kind of cream-puff-like treat (or sometimes a cake) filled with cream that’s flavored with those delicious lemons from Sorrento.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MPH

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I learned in Italian class that if you fail to "lean" on the double N in "penne" (pennn-nne") and pronounce it like a single N, you're actually asking for, um, the manly part of a man... "alla puttanesca" would only make it worse (or better, if you like that kind of thing)

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MPH

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I adore the way fricasee sounds but always get so disappointed when I remember it just means stew

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Can I post again/more?

                                                                                                                                                                                                              "More champagne" As either a polite request or a demand.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Terrapin and its southern cousin, cooter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: lahtiji

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I like, "More Champagne?" ("Why yes, please!") :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Scamorza trips off the tongue (thanks to Mario Batali)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Incidentally, my fav Mario story is from his FN show:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Innocent guest: "Mario, what animal does the tongue come from?"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                MB: "Porn star's tongue, whaddya think?!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Bery bery bad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                - Sean

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. haricot vert, crudite and gorgonzola

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Prosciutto
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Amuse bouche
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      and finally...sauté (and no one mentioned this word).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. this is all over the place and not necessarily cooking terms but:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        favorite pasta name: strozza preti (hanged priest)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        pan di spagna
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        jamon iberico

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "red cook" or "hong shao"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "zha de!" (deep fried in mandarin)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "qing man yong" (please use slowly - when food is served in china)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        chi bao le! "im full!"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        chi duo yi dian "eat more!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "ya kin alloy!" (i want to eat tasty - in thai)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        when asians talk about durian by species or strain and describe the flavors as if it were a fine cognac.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "belly cut" - particularly with sushi (as in toro)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        fraises des bois
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "jungle" as in jungle curry, or jungle fruit or nouveau andean jungle cuisine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        no one put seared or artisanal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        one thing that always made me laugh is "the culotte cut"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        i always preferred "sans-culotte"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        estilo "name region here"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        gochisosama deshita!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        kaiseki ryori
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        onegai shimas!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        po jang ma cha

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: modernist

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I was waiting to read Strozzi Preti -- but I think it means Priest Stranglers!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: modernist

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I was 15 and in Viet Nam when I first heard the phrase, "Just eat it, it's Jungle meat!"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Scary, but delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. "Putting fire to pan" - cooking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "The downward arc of my coffee palate is unmistakable" - going from Pete's roasts to Dunkin Donuts as my coffee of choice




                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. I like the word "fillip"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I also like the word that describes both the food and the vessel and/or technique


                                                                                                                                                                                                                              can anyone think of more? does casserole count?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Butter
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Half & Half
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                cream the buttter with .....
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                dark chocolate
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                all butter croissant
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                pain au chocolate
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                cafe au lait
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                etc. etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Candy


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  All kidding asside, an all-butter pain au chocolat noir w/a cafe au lait sounds perfect.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Hot and Bubbling








                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  En Papillote (my fav)


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. it's that French term that translates "cow's drool", to describe a soft oozing cheese or soft scrambled eggs for the inside of an omelette, Oeufs Brouillés.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          what is phonetically "bah-vouz" ? and, correctly spelled is ?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Cow's drool is just so very picturesque.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Fonde (because of what it is)


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Clotted (cream; because it does)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. al dente


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  another vote for amuse bouche

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  and my favorite question after plating a meal...."So what do you think?" I accept moaning MMMMMMM's as a legit response. LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Did someone already mention "spatchcock"?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. ganache: I read somewhere that this name came from what the pastry chef shouted when his new young apprentice accidentally dropped some cream into a pan of chocolate the chef was melting--the word apparently means something like "you idiot!"--but then he discovered it was good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        deglaze: I've been doing this my whole life and had no idea what it was called.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        But my very favorite: Lovely dinner, dear; you go sit down and I'll do the dishes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. dauphinois (I think of an angel made of whipped cream)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ropa viejas (means "old clothes")
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          bouquet garni
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          chinoise (for the sieve thing)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          jezebel sauce
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          huevos revueltos (scrambled eggs in spanish)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          rustica (overused but still a good word)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          garam masala

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Is that too many? Sorry I love this question. I didn't realize I had so many, no one had ever asked..!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I second chiffonade and mire poix too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: cherrylime

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ditto for: ropa vieja; ratouile; and, chimichurri.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'll add: Dump. A very unChowish friend was invited to another very unChowish friend's house for Thanksgiving dinner--with orders to bring a chocolate cream pie for dessert. At the time, she was financially strapped and didn't want to spend money on a store bought pie. I suggested that she make the pie. Being non-Chow, she said she didn't know how. I told her it was simple. I started my directions with something like, "dump the chocolate into . . . " All her friend had to hear was me say "dump." She thought I was being rude and further ordered our mutual friend to ignore my suggestion and buy the pie from Marie Callendar's or House of Pies. I can't count how many times I've heard famous TV chefs use that word!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Kate is always hungry


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              "thought I was being rude and further ordered our mutual friend" -- "thought", "rude" and "ordered" were operative words for me to *think* that you had *some (kind of) friend* there. whew. that hostess was the rude one. whatever happened -- including to the *friend*?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: alkapal


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The hostess was an acquaintance of mine and a friend of my friend. My friend, who moved away from her family in New York to live in California, never hosted a holiday dinner and always relied on being invited to a friend's house. I would get her for Passover, another friend got her for Rosh Hashanah, and the hostess in this case got her for Thanksgiving. Since she was unable/unwilling to host a holiday dinner, she complied with any food assignment demand made.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                As for the hostess with the pie demand, whose rudeness knows no bounds, she never spoke to me again after the "dump" incident.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  thanks for the scenario. i am miss snoopy mcsnooppants! ;-).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  as to rude hostess: no loss, mate! she probably thought she was too sophisticated <ahem!> for your suggestion. LOL! did i peg her right?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    You're welcome and thank you miss snoopy mcsnoopants!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love that Chowhound exists and that you could appreciate my story. You are right about the hostess--"no loss." However, as for sophistication, I'm pretty sure she wasn't aware of the concept. She is a chain restaurant aficianado who really had no appreciation for fine dining (or good eats) whereas I, was always trying to emulate Julia Child or Martha Stewart.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ha, you got me there on the rude hostess. applebees? tgif? olive garden? LOL! she should see how those chains "dump" all kinds of ingredients in pots, on pans, on the plate!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Don't forget Denny's and Hometown Buffet. Are we missing anyone? Anyway, you got the picture. Why would you want any nasty homemade pie that has had the ingredients dumped into it when you could have a mass-produced chain restaurant pie?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Omakase
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Buffet (especially All you can eat!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            When I lived in the South, I was amused to no end by the pronounciation of buffet as "Boooo-Fay" where the first syllable was drawn out. Being a Northerner... I pronouned it as "buf-fay" in a quick 1-2 cadence.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My least favorite is "E.V.O.O." or using "Sublime" to describe the food. Sublime doesn't tell me anything, except you just paid a lot for a dish and you can't describe your disappointment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Cracklins, chitlins, pone, hush puppies, taters, tots, maishe, ahwl (oil). dip fraa yed, lard, dumpluns, chick'n, may-ilk, crawdaddies, ca-it fish, baw buh cue, shreddit park, frowg laigs, an "Buddy, whay'unt ya'all say grace sos we kins all siddown en heats a spell".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. lobstah

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Whie catering here in Chicago, I was working with a gentleman form Boston. We were panning up some mashed potatoes and doctoring them up before service.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Me: I've got the roasted garlic and the salt and pepper- what else do you need?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Him: Pass the HAAAAAAFFFFFFFundHAAAAAAAAAFFFFFFFFF.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It took me several seconds to deciver this strange phonetic onslaught- Half and half.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Five years later:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Asparagi. That's the Italian word for asparagus. Broad "A" only, please.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Clearly many of the prior terms cross over to consumption rather than just tasting

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Crumb (as in bread / cake)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Family favorites:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    "Smithing it" (Named for the family who would serve themselves (perhaps taking the choice selection) along the way when you asked for a dish to be passed)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Love macerate, mostly because of how my Southern Belle mama mispronounces it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Scattered, smothered and covered do it for anyone besides me?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. You've named many of my favorites-how about:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "Come & get it!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Babette

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          "Sex on a fork" can only be used for that perfect bite that combines all of the ingredients of an amazing dish. For example, when a cool, smooth, spicey tuna tartare combines with the cucumber it is wrapped in and the rough texture of the warm rock-shrimp tempura, you're there. Fresh potato gnocci served with peas, truffles and lobster served in a light white cream sauce usually earn this distinction. Maybe I'll start a thread describing bites that are worthy of the "sex on a fork" accolade???

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: BostonBarGuy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            foodgasmic dishes. great thread idea. i like it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. "Refreshments will be served"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          the word REFRESHMENTS has thrilled me since about 3 years old, when I heard this at a ladies aid meeting with my mom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: archangelcat

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            something funny about language usage in these parts that I've noticed. I grew up in Kansas--south of here but still midwestern to some extent, and I never heard this. Around here we don't have "refreshments," we have "lunch." That's not the midday meal, but any time of the day when snacks are served. You can have "lunch" at 9 a.m., midafternoon, or even during an evening meeting. (The midday meal is dinner, and the evening meal is supper--that was the case where I grew up, too.)


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: revsharkie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I grew up i S.Dakota and it's much the same as far as dinner and supper were defined, lunch was the weekday mid-day repast, dinner was Sunday noon after church, or my friends on the farm would have a huge daily noon meal called dinner....probably for keeping up the strength in the field, supper would usually be cold cuts and salad during the summer to keep the kitchen cool without air cond.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My Mom used to call any snack "something to tide you over" until the next meal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. When learning the formal language of bread baking, I rather like gelatinization (of starches) and Coagulation (of proteins).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Other than that:


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Garlicky

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              and any words uttered by Nigella Lawson!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Divamac

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Creme fraiche
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Broasted chicken (peculiar to the midwest, as far as I know. Roasted chicken finished under a broiler)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Shabu shabu

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: diva360

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Salsa (just because it is used so universally now)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Panna Cotta

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: diva360

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I had broasted chicken in Springfield, MA once.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I like to say montepulciano. As Italian-ly as possible.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    And bruschiade, which refers to the burnt corners of any cheesy baked pasta dish. My mom one delivered a lasagna to the table minus the burnt corners, which she had eaten in the kitchen. The best part.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: diva360

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      There are a couple of places here in Phoenix that serve broasted chicken, but they do it in a sort of high-pressure fryer. Like this - http://www.broaster.com/. Super juicy and tender.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. "a pinch"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    "a handful"--but who's hand? How big of a hand?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    bangers and mash(an old British favourite)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    prairie oysters--No comment!!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    cod cheeks(apparently a delicacy in Canadian Maritimes)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: zipper

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Prairie oysters = funny. Also called lamb fries.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Clafouti
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ants Climbing a Tree
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Mother sauce
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      baba ganoush

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: monalisawoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            i love taramasalata! To say and to eat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. immersion circulator, there is something romantic about that thing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. oyster liquor

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ambrosia, my mellifluous favorite

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Spaetzle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Chartreuse (the liquer)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Mise en place
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                fines herbes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                prickly pears

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: femmenikita

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My unfavourites are "jus" and "chevre". The forrmer is applied to just about any sauce, instead of a natural meat juice, as it should be.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And I'll start calling goats' milk cheese "chevre" when people start calling cows' milk cheese "vache".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. I just like the word "blanch." Not that I blanch fruits or vegetables very often....


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chew on That

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Blanche? Really? i hear that word, all I think of are the Golden Girls.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: femmenikita

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Me too! Hilarious! i used to have a foodie roommate who used to declare a well prepared meal worthy of a kitchen floorgasm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Deglaze.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    (random tangent)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The exact moment I fell in love with The Boy happened whilst cooking dinner at his place. As I'm searing a beautiful piece of marlin, he peeks over my shoulder and casually says "Hey, think we should deglaze that with a little white wine?".
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    (/random tangent)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Well, it took me two days but I've read them all up until now. I didn't see
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      creme brulee (conjors up all types of warm gooey things)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: othervoice

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'll second "toothsome" from a pp! LOVE that word...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        But please, do tell, what is spatchcock???!!! Never heard this one before...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: DKS1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A verb, "spatchcock" means to cut a chicken or other fowl along the backbone (or along both sides of the backbone and remove), then spread the bird out flat before cooking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Julienne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Tartar Sauce

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Oh, yes, how could I have forgotten? 'mit schlag.'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: creativeusername

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Any recipe containing the phrase "being careful to avoid" is all right with me. After that, I suppose my favorites are "boilate," "jink-folding," and "serpentane."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. can i add one that i hate?.......i will anyway........ "e.v.o.o." a la rachael ray. drives me nuts!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jessi20

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                another RR one i cant stand is yumm-o.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. chiffonade; and, "move away from the stove!" or "do not touch that"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. "flavor profile" - makes me feel like a culinary CSI
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ca-ram-a-lize - a little family joke.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. forgot to add one linguistic tendency -- esp. on tv chefs -- that bugs me: adding "off" at the end of every verb, e.g., saute off, bake off, fry off, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      agree, that'd be irritating to me as well. luckily, I haven't caught those tv chefs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Am I the only one that notices T.V. chefs using the word "just" in every sentence of a recipe direction? e.g. Just add . . . just stir . . .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        It just drives me crazy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          i'm sure already mentioned here, but the use of "off": bake off, fry off, roast off, tie off, sear off, grill off. to all that, i want to say, flip off!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. macerate
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        or to let the flavors "marry" - cute!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: chef chicklet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            oh and I LOVE to order Camarones Ala DiaB-BLAH! it just rolls off the tongue!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Quaff

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            and my all time fave....


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: purple goddess

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              i have a dear friend that is completly averted by the word Moist..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Fricassee, flambe, gateaux. Spotted dick. Creamed. Blitzed. Resting (of cooked meat).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Caldo. My grandma's word for just about everything.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: WCchopper

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  See 'Posh Nosh' when you can. A takeoff on cooking shows, this British import mangles cooking terms hilariously. The hosts of the mythical restaurant might "interrogate a lemon", their cooked vegetables are not peeled but "embarrassed," and they are then "annoyed" instead of boiled.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. mit schlag
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  and here's one that no one has mentioned: Maybe it's not really a cooking term, but my Sicilian grandma and her family always referred to a dish towel as a "mapine" (ma-peen). As in, "hand me that mapine!" or "stick this mapine in your neck so you won't splash sauce on your nice dress!" Has anyone else heard this or know the derivation?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: phoebek

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    phoebek, absolutely! My 92 year old father still uses a 'mapeen' at the table.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    And sauce is always 'gravy'. Something I found out about at another site, 'scumgullion' was 'jambotta' in our house.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    'cutica' was rolled pig skin in the 'gravy'. 'moodeega' was the middle of the Italian bread. Oh and not food, but 'crystalline' was bleach (we even had a crystalline man in the neighborhood). I have NO idea where this one came from.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    All words above are phonetic, of course!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: dolores

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      interesting! it would be a fun new post to explore those words and phrases, from various cultural backgrounds. any takers? (mine's too boring...)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        alkapal, excellent idea. I'm sure yours are not boring. I'd love to read about cultural food idioms. The entire hoagie/wedge/grinder etc. debate always fascinates.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Another one from my house (Southern Italian dialect) was a'pizza. It was never just pizza, it was a'pizza. Hence Sally's A'Pizza in New Haven CT is familiar to me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: dolores

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My mom's family (Okie via Texas and, earlier, Georgia and Alabama) used the term (I can only spell it phonetically because this is oral tradition and I have NEVER known anyone else who has even heard of it) "POOR-due" to describe a gravy that is just drippings and milk with no thickening.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: dolores

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Whew, I thought I was the only one! However, sauce was never gravy to my nana--only sauce. Never heard of scumgullion, jambotta, cutica or crystalline, but they're all great words! But I do think I remember a'pizza. How about (again this is totally phonetic) coo-gootz for zucchini?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: phoebek

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yes! Only from my yout -- coo-coo-zale. How funny. My grandmother had four foot coocoozales (what can be the correct spelling in Italian for squash?) drying on the door frames. Why, I'll never know. I only know I hated the stuff then and never ate any of her authentic dishes. Boy, did I miss out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Stugotz was something else entirely.......... :O)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. "frenchy....travelin'" (from Rutt's Hut, clifton, NJ)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Bouquetiere
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Rognons Turbigo
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Forno legna

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. " Use your Knob !! " - Emeril

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. doberge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. "Tuti a tavola a mangiare" - Lidia Bastianich

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Hi, Paige checking in here...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm writing a comedy and am looking for cooking phrases to make a spin on. I stumbled upon this site while trying to find something to work with.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I really liked the word "chiffonade" and "fricassee".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    For word choices I like "fondu" and "baked Alaska". For some reason Baked Alaska has always cracked me up. So I'm going to have a chapter in my novel in progress called "Half-baked in Alaska"...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    So, any more words or phases that could be played with like that would be really awesome!


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Jonnycake
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Blueberry grunt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Diplomat cream (pastry cream lightened with whipped cream)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Macerate, caramelize, braise
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Pot likker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Joe Froggers
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Whoopie pies

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Burnt ends
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "The bark of the meat"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "A la plancha"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        al pastor

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. From Germany.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Der Koch ist Verliebet. When things are too salty, you say "the cook is in love", standing over the pot absentmindedly shaking the the salt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Caramelize (as many syllables as possible)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. here's you food sir, free of charge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Joy of Cooking instructions for pate choux, to add the flour "in one fell swoop".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: susabella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  fell swoops were very popular back in the day. i still enjoy a good fell swoop ever now and then!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ok, here's my phrase:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tonnaire mais chien ca c'est bon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    which loosely translates to:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hot dog, that's good!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It's Cajun-French so it won't do anyone any good to try to translate it using a language translator on the Internet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      i still enjoy a good fell swoop ever now and then!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yeah, but it usually hurts like the dickens until you can get up and brush yourself off. ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. 'ala plancha' and 'beat till stiff'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: chowfamily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'm surprised I didn't see this one, but I love...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          en papillote

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Also agree with A la Plancha and Puttanesca!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: JimmyC

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              que? Did I say something wrong? ...I think "shut up and eat" should be the CH motto:-) !

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: SweetPea914

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                then, they couldn't sell ads on the chat boards. ;-).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. What a fun post. I like "let it get/be happy" (from Emeril, when he's simmering food to let the flavors combine)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jcattles

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sand dabs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            meez for mise en place

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            deuce (table for two)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            four etc top (table for four etc)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            dishpig (human dishwasher)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            kin khao (let's eat or bon appetit, literally 'eat rice' in Thai)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            family words: groodles for little snacks, 'erts for dessert (usually yelled loudly at Mum after the meal), snacks for any kind of food as in "Snacks now" when it's time to eat, backsitting (lying on your back on the floor after a particular strenuous bout of snacking), not required if you've had an "elegant sufficiency" instead of gorfing out

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Great thread!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              aglio e olio
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ras al hanout
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yorkshire pudding
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              clam bake

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Kris P Pata

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                One of my favorite terms is presentation or if I feel affected - pree-sentation. I abhor the word gourmet. It means absolute nothing. Gourmet potato chips, gourmet olives, gourmet eating .... It is sooo over-used. The word tapioca is such a warm, sweet word.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Canthespam

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  garde manger, chef tournant, bain Marie, hoppin' john and my all-time fave: asophoetida. I'm forever making a culinary asophoetida out of myself!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. The three words that always grab my attention on a menu are Caramelized, Braised and Marinated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Creme Chantilly (pronounced crem shan-tee-Yee) a fancy way to say loosely whipped cream.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ono (a hawaiian fish, but also means delicious)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Paneed (pronouned pan-aide) a New Orleans or possibly French method of cooking that doesn't seem too different from sauteed. As in paneed veal, or paneed chicken breast.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Po- Boy (I guess I'm on a N'awlins jones right about now...)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Etouffee (pronounced A-Too- Fay) (think it means stuffed...)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Breaded and Deep Fried
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Don't like the following words!!!! Encrusted, Chunks, Tidbits, Gastro (as in Gastro-Pubs; it sounds like a medical procedure...) napped, kissed, enriched, infused (also sounds like a medical procedure....) fusion and infusion while we're at it, medley, melange (same thing), Ok gotta stop before I enter the Bitter Barn. Adam

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: adamshoe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wow, you're right, gastro-pub does sound kind of medical. I don't care for Tower, Stacked and On-a- bed-of...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: adamshoe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      adam, i know you'll find some good company out in the bitter barn! when is our next pot luck? ;-).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: adamshoe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        etouffee means "smothered", not stuffed

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Charcuterie


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        its on the house!:-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: nkeane

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          While I might enjoy it sometimes, offal just sounds, ya' know, like______ fill in blank.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Héliciculture (snail farming, recently learned from chocolateandzucchini)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. "On the house" - they never say that =.=

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I like pretty much all the french terms, make me sound smart XD!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. French:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              a la minute - as in a sauce or preparation done to order
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              pret a manger - ready to eat, usually a presentation like a single bite composed on a fork
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              affinage - sooo snooty, but like good snooty :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              jugoso - pronounced who-GO-so, said with great verve and means "juicy"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              radiatore and harmoniche - similar macaroni shapes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              sottocenare al tartufo - a cheese, this word just jumps up and down in my mouth as it escapes!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              okonomiyaki - just fun to say

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              "fire at will" - when you're beyond weeded and expo knows it
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              "elbows and a**holes" - referring to certain kitchen cultures where people are jerks and like to get overly physical on the line a.k.a hacks... "that place is all elbows and a**holes"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. poutine -- I pronounce it 'pou-tin' as I've heard my Quebecois friends say it. That evokes to me the wonderfulness and origin of this dish. However, you get some askance looks from waiters in Toronto who seem to expect 'pou-teen'.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: JamieK

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  i think i read here on chow that your pronunciation is for something (quite) else...... but i have not a clue. it just always makes me think of vladmir putin. <now, i'll call him poo-teen.>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ah but the emphasis is on the second syllabyl for poutine (pou-TIN) and on the first for Putin (POO-tin). Anyway, that's the way I hear it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: JamieK

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      yes, i know the proper putin pronunciation. <say 3X fast!>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      just thought i'd have a little fun (in my little mind....;-).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: JamieK

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    poutine pronounced like "pou-tin" without pronouncing the 'n' is a vulgar word, so that may explain the looks... make sure you stress the 'n'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. I am partial to "Yumm-o".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Favorite word/phrase/term

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Bain Marie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      "This is good S&it"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. "revisit" as in, have a second taste of a particular wine

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Plonk
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "Add butter."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. I cannot be the first person to nominate "cremolata"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Ravenjon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Is that when when you burn the food?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Paulustrious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  LOL! Perhaps Ravenjon means "gremolata"? But I do love your definition of cremolata, Paulustrious!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. tarte tartin...we were at a cooking school in Provence a few years back and the instructor (we were the only students - the SO and I) told us the menu for the day which included tarte tartin. We looked at each other and realizing neither of us could figure out what he said we asked him to repeat it.....nope, nothing, no idea what he was saying. We did the whole menu with him and saw it was made with apples etc... His wife came in and was quite excited...Tarte tartin! ...We still could not understand. We asked his wife to say it slower...nothing. They acted as if we were crazy. We could not even understand enough to try to find it online.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It was not until we got home to Canada that we figured out what they were saying. Now every time we here it we chuckle. The way the French say it, the phrase just sort of blurs together into an odd sound. It reminds me in that comic character Tintin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The irony is that we do live in a country where we having at least a passing understanding of basic french and we have two kids in French Immersion.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: foodiesnorth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Tarte tatin, to be precise. Except on The Food Network. ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: BobB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    lol...yes and that corrected spelling better reflects the sound...woodpeckers pecking....it just sounded like: tatata...machine gunnish. I chuckle even as I type. Thanks for the correction.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. It's fun to see this thread again,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I'll add another term - "grigne," the raised/ruffled "ears" when french bread dough is scored/slashed/"coupe"d.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  @castorpman on Twitter

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Huh. I always thought the spelling of that word was "nap".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Something I could use right now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sounds the same spelled either way. Funny how I don't remember any cooking show mentioning the proper term. As opposed to "au jus", which gets thrown out incorrectly all the time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. I recently came across Chinchilla! Seems to be an older term "used to mean any dessert made with whipped egg whites" according to Miriam Ungerer in 1966.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I think this predates the chinchilla (fur and pet) crazes that occurred in the '70's iirc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. "Deep-fried." [Wink]


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. 'Tender'... 'Succulent'... 'Melts in your Mouth...Delicious!'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. poolish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Say it with me.