Dictionary of Food: International Food and Cooking Terms from A to Z 2nd Edition by Charles Sinclair, ISBN-13: 978-1408102183


Dictionary of Food: International Food and Cooking Terms from A to Z 2nd Edition by Charles Sinclair, ISBN-13: 978-1408102183

  • Publisher: ‎ Bloomsbury Reference, Second Edition (2009)
  • Language: ‎ English
  • 640 pages
  • ISBN-10: ‎9781408102183
  • ISBN-13: ‎978-1408102183

The language of English cuisine is unusual in that it uses many words of foreign origin, often in their original spelling. The purpose of this dictionary is to give short definitions of these words so that both the practising chef and the amateur enthusiast, the gastronome and the student may quickly determine the meaning. It is not a recipe book or a repertoire, but it does give the ingredients of classic and well-known dishes, together with a brief summary of the cooking processes. A picture of a chef’s hat indicates dishes that the professional or amateur cook could, after a little experimentation, roughly reproduce.

As in all dictionaries, the compiler has had to be selective in the words chosen for inclusion. Even so, the dictionary lists over 24,000 words, of which very few are not in current use somewhere in the English-speaking world. Some entries have been included for historical reasons and the browser will find much of interest. Classic dishes, ingredients, cooking processes, cooking implements and equipment, descriptions of function and details of service are included as well as scientific, botanical, medical, technological, hygienic and nutritional terms. Many single words appertaining to the catering industry from the countries of the European Union are translated, and the dictionary is of use in translating menu items not included. Drinks, wines and spirits are not included except where they are used as flavourings in food and food preparation.

All words are listed in strict alphabetical order, ignoring spaces or hyphens. Accented characters are assumed to follow the unaccented characters which they resemble.

The names of many items in the French repertoire have been taken over wholesale into the English language.

In some of the entries, outline recipes are given together with quantities of key ingredients. The usual method of giving quantities is to give the relative proportions by weight in brackets after the list of ingredients. Thus for example is defined as ‘Flour, butter, caster sugar and eggs (2:1:3:5) made up…’ This could be 4 oz of flour, 2 oz of butter, 6 oz of caster sugar and 5 eggs (recalling that a standard egg weighs 2 oz or 60g), or alternatively in metric measure, 24g of flour, 12g of butter and 36g of caster sugar to each egg. All cooking temperatures are given in °C (degrees centigrade or Celsius). Equivalents in other units (°F or gas mark) can be found in any reasonable recipe book.

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