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Glossary - Foods And Recipes

A-k, L-Z

LYCHES: Are small round fruit with a rough red skin, soft white flesh and a large brown seed. Peel rough skin, discard seed. Lyches are available canned in syrup.

MANDARIN SEGMENTS: Are canned in a light syrup.

MANGOES: Cheeks of mangoes can be obtained canned in a light syrup.

MELON, HONEYDEW: Is an oval melon with delicate taste and pale green flesh.

MILK: Cream homogenized milk, should be used where specified. Evaporated milk is fresh cows milk with 60% of the water removed by evaporation. Full cream milk powder is made from cow's milk from which all the water is removed.

MUSHROOMS: Both fresh and Chinese dried mushrooms may be used. Chinese dried mushrooms have a unique flavor; soak them first in hot water, covered, for about 20 minutes, drain, discard stems, use caps as directed. Straw mushrooms are available in cans.

NUTMEG: Is the sweetly smelling seed of the fruit of a South East Asian tree; it is available in ground form or you can grate your own with a fine grater.

OYSTERS: Are bivalve shellfish available in the shell or in bottles.

PEPPERS: Capsicums or bell peppers.

PRAWNS: Most of the recipes use fresh, uncooked (green) prawns; peel and de-vein before use.

PUFF PASTRY: Is available frozen in blocks and ready-rolled sheets.

RICE: Use long grain white rice.

SALT: Use fine table salt seasoned to taste, except for Beggar's Chicken where coarse cooking salt is required.

Barbecue Sauce: is based on tomatoes, sugar and vinegar.
Chilli Sauce: Use a hot Chinese variety consisting of chillies, salt and vinegar.
Hoi Sin Sauce: is a thick, sweet Chinese barbecue sauce made from salted black beans, onions and garlic.
Oyster Sauce: is a rich brown sauce made from oysters cooked in salt and soy sauce, then thickened with different types of starches.
Plum Sauce: is a dipping sauce which consists of plums, preserved in vinegar, sweetened with sugar and flavored with chillies and spices.
Sate Sauce: is a spicy sauce based on soy sauce; it contains sugar, oil, chilli, onion, garlic and shrimp.
Soy Sauce: is made from fermented soy beans.
Worcestershire Sauce: is a spicy sauce used mainly on red meat.

SCALLOPS: Scallops with coral (roe) can be used.

SESAME OIL: Is made from roasted crushed white sesame seeds; is an aromatic golden-colored oil with a nutty flavor. It is always used in small quantities, and added mostly towards the end of the cooking time. It is not the same as the sesame oil sold in health food stores and should not be used to fry food.

SESAME SEEDS: There are two types, black and white; we used the white variety in this book. They are almost always toasted. To toast sesame seeds, stir over heat in a heavy pan; the natural oils will brown the seeds. 

SHALLOTS, GREEN: Known as spring onions in some Australian States, scallions in some other countries.

SNOW PEAS: also known as mange tout, sugar peas or Chinese peas. 

SPINACH: Prepare by removing coarse white stems, cook green leafy parts as individual recipes indicate.

SPRING ROLL WRAPPERS OR PASTRY: These are sold frozen in several different sizes. Thaw before using, keep covered with a damp cloth until ready to use.

SQUID: is a type of mollusk; also known as calamari. Buy squid hoods to make preparation easier.

Brown Sugar: a soft fine granulated sugar with molasses present which gives it its characteristic color.
Castor Sugar: Fine granulated table sugar.
Sugar: Coarse granulated table sugar.

SULTANA GRAPES: Seedless white grapes.

TAHINIA: Tahina is made from ground sesame seeds.

TOMATO PASTE: A concentrated tomato puree used as a flavoring. 


VEGETABLE SHORTENING: Solid white vegetable shortening based on coconut oil known as Copha; available in Australia. Kremelta or Palmin can be substituted.

VERMICELLI: Also known as rice noodles.

VINEGAR: Exists in both white and brown (malt) vinegar.

WATERMELON: Large green-skinned melon with crisp juicy red flesh.

WATER CHESTNUTS:  Small white crisp bulbs with a brown skin. Canned water chestnuts are peeled and will keep for about a month, covered, in refrigerator.

WITLOOF:  Belgian endive or chicory.

WOK: is a Chinese cooking pan shaped like a large bowl with a rounded base. Flat-based woks are available for electric hot plates. To season a new wok before cooking, wash well with hot water and liquid detergent to remove any grease, wipe dry. Place wok over heat, add 2 tablespoons oil, 4 chopped green shallots and 1 clove crushed garlic. Swirl mixture over entire surface of wok, place over medium heat for 5 minutes. Discard mixture, rinse pan under warm water, wipe dry. Do not scrub wok with any abrasive. Always wash in warm water, then wipe dry; this will protect the wok from rusting. Wipe over inside of wok with lightly oiled cloth, cover with plastic wrap to prevent dust settling on the surface during storage. Always heat wok before adding oil, then heat the oil before adding food to prevent food from sticking.

WONTON WRAPPERS: Are squares or rounds of fresh noodle dough, yellow in color. They are sold fresh or frozen; cover with a damp cloth to prevent drying out while using.

ZUCHINNI:  Courgettes

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