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Culinary dictionary

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All words: 25

Ice - 
n. Called granite in France and granita in Italy, an ice is a frozen mixture of water, sugar and liquid flavoring such as fruit juice, wine or coffee. The proportion is usually 4 parts liquid to 1 part sugar. During the freezing process, ices are generally stirred frequently to produce a slightly granular final texture. ice v. 1. To chill a food, glass or serving dish in order to get it icy cold and sometimes coated with frost. 2. To spread frosting over the surface of a cake.

Ice cream - 
Ice cream is made with a combination of milk products (usually cream combined with fresh, condensed or dry milk), a sweetening agent (sugar, honey, corn syrup or artificial sweetener) and sometimes solid additions such as pieces of chocolate, nuts, fruit and so on.

Ice wine - 
A rich, flavorful dessert wine, which is made by picking grapes that are frozen on the vine, then pressing them before they thaw. Because much of the water in the grapes is frozen, the resulting juice is concentrated - rich in flavor and high in sugar and acid. Ice wines are renowned in Germany, where they`re called Eiswein (pronounced ice-vine).

Icing sugar - 
The British name for confectioners' sugar.

Idaho potato - 
The Idaho is considered by many to be the best variety of America`s most popular potato for baking, the russet. Though some russets grown elsewhere are commonly called Idaho potatoes, many Idaho government officials are pushing to make the name exclusive to spuds grown in local soil.

Immersion blender - 
This handheld blender is tall, narrow and has a rotary blade at one end. It has variable speeds, is entirely portable and may be immersed right into a pot of soup (or other mixture) to puree or chop the contents. Many immersion blenders come with a whisk attachment (good for whipping cream), and other accoutrements such as strainers or beakers for mixing individual drinks. Some also come with wall mounts.

Indian pudding - 
This hearty, old-fashioned dessert originated in New England. It`s a spicy, cornmeal-molasses baked pudding that can sometimes include sliced apples. Indian pudding is usually served with whipped cream, hard sauce or ice cream.

Indian rice - 
Another name for wild rice.

Indienne, a l` - 
[ah lahn-DYEHN] A French term describing Indian-style dishes flavored with curry and served with rice.

Infusion - 
[ihn-FYOO-zhuhn] An infusion is the flavor that`s extracted from an ingredient such as tea leaves, herbs or fruit by steeping them in a liquid (usually hot), such as water, for tea. In today`s culinary parlance, sauces that have been variously flavored (as with herbs) are also called infusions.

Insalata - 
[ihn-sah-LAH-tah] The Italian word for "salad", with insalata mista being a "mixed salad" and insalata verde referring to a salad of tossed greens.

Irish breakfast tea - 
A strong, robust black-tea blend that includes the superior Ceylon tea.

Irish coffee - 
Guaranteed to warm the cockles of anyone`s heart, this hot beverage blends strong coffee, Irish whiskey and a small amount of sugar. It`s usually served in a glass mug and topped by a dollop of whipped cream.

Irish mist - 
A liqueur made from a blend of Irish whiskey and heather honey.

Irish potato - 
A round, white, thin-skinned potato whose origin is actually South America. It`s good for boiling, frying and pan-roasting.

Irish soda bread - 
This classic Irish quick bread uses baking soda (as the name implies) as its leavener. It`s usually made with buttermilk and is speckled with currants and caraway seed. Before baking, a cross is slashed in the top of the loaf. The purpose of the cross, legend says, is to scare away the devil.

Irish stew - 
A traditional layered dish of equal parts seasoned lamb or mutton chops, potatoes and onions. Water or stock is poured over all, the pot is covered tightly and the stew is cooked slowly for 2 to 3 hours. It`s best made the day before to allow the flavors to blend.

Irish whiskey - 
Made in Ireland, this light, dry whiskey is distilled from a mash of fermented barley and other grains.

Ironware - 
Pots and pans made from iron or cast iron, both known for excellent heat conductivity. Modern-day ironware is either preseasoned or coated with a thick enamel glaze. The advantage of the enamel coating is the ease with which it cleans. Old-fashioned unseasoned iron pots and pans must be seasoned before using.

Isinglass - 
[I-zuhn-glas, I-zing-glas] Transparent and pure, this form of gelatin comes from the air bladders of certain fish, especially the strugeon. It was popular 100 years ago, particularly for making jellies and to clarify wine. With the convenience of today's modern gelatin, isinglass is rarely used.

Italian bread - 
Almost identical to French bread, with the exception of its shape, which is shorter and plumper than the French baguette. The top of Italian bread is sometimes sprinkled with sesame seed.

Italian dandelion - 
Although not a true dandelion, this green looks almost identical to its namesake. The main difference is that the jagged-edged leaves are a deeper green and slightly larger. The Italian dandelion has a tangy, slightly bitter flavor. It can be cooked as well as used in salads. Refrigerate, tightly wrapped in a plastic bag, up to 5 days. Wash thoroughly just before using.

Italian dressing - 
A salad dressing consisting of olive oil and wine vinegar or lemon juice, seasoned variously with ingredients including garlic, oregano, basil, dill and fennel.

Italian meringue - 
A creamy meringue made by slowly beating hot sugar syrup into stiffly beaten egg whites. Because the sugar syrup is cooked to the soft-ball stage, the resulting meringue becomes very dense, glossy and smooth. The same method is used to make boiled icing. Italian meringue is used in souffles, to frost cakes and pastries and to top pies (in the last case it`s usually lightly browned in the oven before serving).

Italian sausage - 
This favorite pizza topping is a coarse pork sausage, generally sold in plump links. Italian sausage is usually flavored with garlic and fennel seed or anise seed. It comes in two styles - hot (flavored with hot, red peppers) and sweet (without the added heat). It must be well cooked before serving, and is suitable for frying, grilling or braising.

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