Tag Archives: Crudite

Back to the basics…

3 Nov


Today we are going to go back to the classroom to familiarize ourselves with some of the culinary terminology that I have used, or may use in the future.  Every so often we will have to take a step back to take a lesson on the basics.

We are going to focus on some of the vocabulary that may come up that I will like you to have at your disposal.  In the article “Put a Staple in it!”  I gave you some of the basic staple items that you should have in your refrigerator, pantry or cupboards.  Today I will like to give you some of the basic culinary jargon that I may use from time to time.  This will give you a better understanding of some of the recipes and that I already have and may share with you in the future.  Last week for example, I left you with a recipe for Gandules, also known as stewed pigeon peas.  The recipe called for “green seasoning”.   If you are not familiar with green seasoning, you may have been a thrown off.  Today’s main purpose is to bring about clarity.

Let’s get started…

Stock– a combination of bones, vegetables, seasonings, and liquids.  The commonly used stock is chicken stock which is a basic recipe of chicken bones, cold water, mirepoix, bay leaves, dried thyme, peppercorns, and parsley; simmered for 5 to 6 hours, strained and cooled.

Miripoix– a mixture of coarsely chopped onions, carrots, and celery used to flavor stocks, stews, and other foods; generally a mixture of 50% onions, 25% carrots, and 25% celery, by weights is used.

Au Jus– roasted meats, poultry or game served with their natural, unthickened juices.

Roux– a cooked mixture of equal parts flour and fat, by weight, used as a thickener for sauces and other dishes.

to Deglaze– to swirl a liquid (usually wine or stock) in a sauté pan or other pan to dissolve cooked food particles remaining on the bottom; the resulting mixture often becomes the base for a sauce.

Crudite– generally refers to raw or blanched vegetables served as an hors d’oeuvre and often accompanied by a dip.

Green Seasoning– a combination of minced chive, scallion, thyme, parsley, celery, garlic, recao or cilantro, and ginger in a mix of vinegar and water.

Sofrito– a combination of tomatoes, garlic, and onions that is sautéed in olive oil and used as a base for many Latin dishes.

Curry Powder– a blend of ground spices such as fenugreek, coriander, turmeric, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, mustard seed, and chilies.

Jerk Seasoning– a marinade of hot peppers, garlic, chive, cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, salt or soy sauce.

We have only scratched the surface of some of the culinary terms that are used.  If you ever have any questions about a term or anything culinary for that matter, feel free to leave a comment here, or send me an email at simplyhershey @gmail.com.


Fondue for Two +

20 Oct

The weather is not as warm, and it’s about that time to move the parties indoors.  The holidays are soon approaching, and get togethers are the name of the game.  Everyone wants their party to be unique and fun.

Let’s consider fondue.  There are so many different kinds of fondue that you can get pretty creative.  Fondues can be served during cocktail hour, or even as dessert.  Either way they are usually tons of fun. The thing about fondue, is that it is so easy to make, and it is also a conversational piece.  Fondues are so quaint, the way that they are set up, can make a big difference in your parties décor, giving it a hint of elegance.

You can serve your fondues with all kinds of dippers such as breads, fruit, and crudité (raw or blanched vegetables served as an hors d’oeuvre and often accompanied by a dip).

Here is a tasty and unusual fondue recipe.  I hope you enjoy it!

Smoked Salmon Fondue

For the Garnish

1Tbl        Capers

1Tsp       Minced Chive

1Tbl        Chopped Fresh Dill

For the Fondue

¾ Cup    Dry White Wine

¾ Cup    Water

2Tsp       Lemon Juice

2Tsp       Juice from Capers

1Tbl        Cornstarch

1Tsp       Freshly Ground Black Pepper

8oz         Smoked Salmon

8oz         Havarti, Cubed

8oz         Cream Cheese

In a separate bowl, mix together capers, chives and dill.  Set aside.

Place all ingredients in blender.  Run for 3-4 minutes until mixture is smooth.  Pour mixture into fondue pot.  Stir garnish into mixture.

The Dippers

Cubed country French bread, onion bagels, steamed or grilled asparagus, cubed avocado, cucumber sticks, radishes and Belgian endive leaves.

Mmm take a bite out of that!