Food Dictionary

Eatin' irons
An old Western term for utensils; fork, spoon and knife.
Eau de framboise
A raspberry brandy or spirit. As well as a drink, eau de framboise is often used in cooking to flavour sweet and savoury dishes.
Eclair
A small finger-shaped bun made of puff paste with a glace icing, filled with custard or whipped cream.
Edam Cheese
This mellow, savory Holland cheese has a pale yellow interior and a paraffin coating. Made from part-skimmed cow's milk, it is Holland's second most exported cheese ("Gouda" is number one).
Eel
A long snake-like fish with smooth scaleless skin and a rich, sweet, and firm flesh. Eels, which are considered a fatty fish, are very popular in Europe and Japan.
Effiler
To remove the fibrous string from a string bean; to thinly slice almonds.
Egg
Most eggs come from hens, but duck, goose, and quail eggs are also available. Eggs should be refrigerated in the original container, large end up. Because the yolk is high in cholesterol, imitation eggs come from egg whites and additives.
Egg Noodles
Well-stocked Asian markets usually offer a selection of dried and fresh egg noodles, both thin and thick. Although they are often neon yellow, some of the dried varieties are made without eggs. If you can't find Chinese egg noodles, substitute fresh or dried Italian pasta. To cook egg noodles boil fresh noodles for 2 1/2 to 4 minutes or dried noodles 4 1/2 to 5 minutes.
Egg roll
Usually served as an appetizer, this small, deep-fried Chinese pastry is filled with minced or shredded vegetable and often meat. Egg roll skins are available in Asian markets and most large supermarkets.
Egg thread
Lightly beaten eggs that are poured slowly into a hot broth, creating irregular shaped threads used to garnish soups.
Egg White Powder
Spray dried egg albumen, which can be used in most recipes requiring egg white. It produces an exceptionally high volume, stable egg white foam for use in angel food cakes, chiffon pies, meringues, and divinity. Use egg white powder for uncooked foods such as marzipan and buttercream icing, or foods which are lightly cooked (pie meringues), without the worries associated with fresh egg white, because it is heat treated to meet USDA standards for being salmonella negative.
Egg Yolk
This part of the egg contains all of the fat in an egg. Yolks are a good source of protein, iron, vitamin A, vitamin D, choline, and phosphorus. The egg white is a good source of protein and riboflavin.
Eggnog
A traditional Christmas beverage, eggnog is a smooth, cold drink containing beaten raw eggs, sugar, milk or cream, and flavoring. Brandy, rum, or whiskey is often added.
Eggplant
Another name for aubergine.
Eggwash
Beaten egg mixed with water and a little salt, used for glazing pastry or bread.
Elderberry
The purple-black fruit of the elder tree. Used to make jams, jellies, and the famous homemade elderberry wine--a spicy brew that can become as potent as its maker desires.
Elephant garlic
Elephant garlic is not true garlic but a form of leek. Its white- or purple-skinned cloves are the size of Brazil nuts, and their flavor mild enough to not require cooking. Peel the cloves as you would an onion and use as you would garlic.
Elk
A large member of the deer family. Elk meat is called "venison." Antelope, caribou, elk, deer, moose and reindeer meat is also classified as venison, the most popular large animal game meat in the U.S.
Emmental cheese
Named for Switzerland's Emmental valley, this mellow, sweet but nutty cheese is the best Swiss cheese you can buy. It has big holes and a natural, light-brown rind.
Empanada
Large rectangular pies of olive-oil pastry with meat or fish filling, served as tapas in Spain. The classic empanada comes from Galicia in north-west Spain and is made with chicken, onions and peppers.
Empanaditas
Tiny turnovers; traditional New Mexican Christmas food when filled with a Southwestern version of mincemeat.
Emulsify
To combine fats such as butter or oil with vinegar or citric juices into a smooth and even blend using an emulsifier such as an egg yolk which binds to each set of ingredients and prevents them from separating. Hollandaise is a classic emulsified sauce.
Emulsion
A mixture of two or more liquids that don't easily combine, such as oil and vinegar.
Encebollada
A dish, often meat, covered with cooked onions.
Endive
This salad green is related to the chicory. Belgian endives are grown in darkness and never turn green. Curly endive has curly leaves and a slightly biter taste. Escarole is the mildest variety of endive.
English chop
A double-rib lamb chop.
English Walnut
Also called the "Persian walnut," this nut is widely available and features a plump, crispy meat.
Enoki
A slender Asian mushroom sold in small packages; good raw in salads or cooked as a garnish. To use, just trim off the spongy base and separate the strands.
Enriched
Resupplied with vitamins and minerals lost or diminished during processing of food.
Entrecote
Boneless beefsteak cut from the sirloin, also known as a sirloin steak.
Entree
a. The main dish of a meal. b. A dish served in formal dining immediately before the main course or between two principal courses. In America, the term entree refers to the main course of a meal. In parts of Europe, it refers to the dish served between the fish and meat courses during formal dinners.
Epazote
Strong, bitter perennial herb used primarily to flavor beans; also known as Mexican tea, stinkweed, pigweed, wormseed or goosefoot; occasionally mistaken for lamb's lettuce; grows wild in the United States and Mexico; flavor is intense, reminiscent of eucalyptus; used for tea, stews, soups, green pipians and moles; cooked with all types of beans to reduce their gaseous qualities.
Escabeche
A spicy cold marinade (of olive oil, vinegar and herbs) that originated in Spain and is used for preserving cooked foods. It is mostly used for small cooked fish which are de-headed, fried or lightly browned and then marinated for 24 hours. The fish en escabeche are served as an hors d'oeuvre.
Escalope
Thin slice of meat, often beaten thinner for quick cooking. The classic method of preparing veal escalopes is to coat them with breadcrumbs. Americans call this cut a "scallop."
Escargot
An edible snail. It is the common name for the land gastropod mollusk. The edible snails of France have a single shell that is tan and white, and 1 to 2 inches diameter.
Escarole
Escarole is a variety of endive with broad, slightly curved leaves. It has a milder flavor than Belgian or curly endive.
Espagnole
(a la). a l'espagnole is the name given to several ways of preparing food inspired by Spanish cuisine. The main ingredients are tomatoes, sweet peppers, onions and garlic, usually fried in olive oil.
Espagnole Sauce
This is the foundation of all of the brown sauces. A number of modifications have been made of this sauce since its conception. The sauce is now made of a rich brown veal stock thickened with a brown roux. The sauce is then simmered with a mirepoix, bouquet garni, and wine. The long, slow cooking help to purify and concentrate its flavor. It is finally strained through very fine muslin. Demi-glace and glace de viande are all structured around a fine espagnole sauce.
Espresso
This thick, strong coffee is made from French or Italian roast - beans with a shiny, dark oily surface.
Essence
Extract. While the words may be used interchangeably US-Great Britain, all essences are extracts, but extracts are not all essences. A stock is a water extract of food. Other solvents (edible) may be oil, ethyl alcohol, as in wine or whiskey, or water. Wine and beer are vegetable or fruit stocks. A common oil extract is of cayenne pepper, used in Asian cooking (yulada). Oils and water essences are becoming popular as sauce substitutes. A common water essence is vegetable stock. A broth is more concentrated, as in beef broth, or bouillon. Beef tea is shin beef cubes and water sealed in a jar and cooked in a water bath for 12 to 24 hours. Most common are alcohol extracts, like vanilla. Not possible to have a water extract of vanilla (natural bean) but vanillin (chemical synth) is water solution. There are also emulsions lemon pulp and lemon oil and purees (often made with sugar) Oils, such as orange or lemon rind (zest) oil, may be extracted by storing in sugar in seal ed container. Distilled oils are not extracts or essences. Attar of rose (for perfume) is lard extracted rose petal oil.
Estouffade
A beef stew made with red wine.
Eulachon
A rich and oily mild-flavored variety of smelt fish. The eulachon is also called the "candlefish" because Indians sometimes run a wick through their high-fat flesh and use them for candles.
European Turbot
A highly prized flatfish found in European waters. This fish has a lean, firm white flesh and a mild flavor. Turbot is also the market name for several varieties of flounder fished from Pacific waters.
Evaporated milk
Unsweetened milk concentrated by partial evaporation.
Extender
An additive that increases the weight and changes the texture of meat and poultry products, e.g., cereal, starches, etc.