7 easy French cooking terms translated

Want to up your cooking game with some fancy French cooking terms? Jamie's Ministry of Food has you covered! We describe 7 easy French cooking terms for you below to impress your friends and family with! 

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Bouquet Garni

Pronounced: Boo - kay Gar - nee 

A bouquet garni, French for 'garnished bouquet' is a bundle of herbs, tied together using string. This is used to fragrance stocks, soups or stews. The bouquet is cooked along with the other ingredients, but removed prior to serving. Since the bouquet is tied together it is easy to remove.

There is no standard recipe for a bouquet garni, but most French recipes use Thyme, Bay leaf and Parsley. However other herbs, vegetables even orange peel have been added.

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Concasse Pronounced: Con - cass 

Concasse originates from the French term concasser 'to crush or grind' and it used to describe roughly dicing vegetables, typically for tomatoes, which have been peeled and seeds removed. The most popular use for tomato concasse is to make Bruschetta, with small diced concasse tomatoes mixed with olive oil and fresh basil.

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Cartouche Pronounced: Car - toosh 

A cartouche is a round piece of parchment or baking paper, which is used to cover the surface of a stock, stew, sauce or soup to reduce evaporation, keeps ingredients submerged and prevents a skin from forming on the top. A dinner plate, slightly smaller than the diameter of the pan can also be used for this purpose.

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Bain Marie 

Pronounced: Bay Mah - ree 

Bain Marie is also commonly known as a water-bath, cooks food by lowering a cooking dish into a bath of boiling water (100 deg C), creating a heat source. The heated water creates a hot bath causing the temperature of the contents in the dish to rise as needed. The insulating action of the water helps to keep contents of the inner pot from boiling or scorching.

Foods normally cooked Bain Marie: baked eggs, custards and sauces

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En Papillote

Pronounced: Un Pap-i-loat

En Papillote translates from French to 'in parchment' and is a cooking method where ingredients are placed into a folded pouch of parchment paper (baking paper), paper bag or aluminium foil then baked. The parcel is folded and sealed closed, this holds all the steam in during the baking process containing all the moisture. A papillote should be opened at a table for a touch of drama, revealing the beautiful aroma and perfectly cooked dish inside.

Foods normally cooked En Papillote: Fish and vegetables are most common, but chicken and lamb can also be cooked en papillote.

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Julienne  Pronounced: Joo - lee- en

Julienne is a French culinary knife cut where the ingredient is cut into long matchsticks. The usual measurements for julienne is 2mm x 2mm x 5 cm. Trimming the ends of the ingredients helps create uniformity.

Ingredients normally cut julienne: Carrots, celery, potato, ginger, capsicum, onion

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Pronounced: So - tay

Saute comes from the French term for 'jumped/bounced' which refers to the tossing of ingredients during the cooking process. Saute quickly cooks ingredients in a shallow pan with a small amount of oil (only covering the bottom of the pan) over a high heat. All ingredients are heated at once and cooked quickly, this is achieved by moving ingredients around the pan or by tossing ingredients in the pan.

To learn more great cooking tips and Jamie's Oliver hints book into a Jamie's Ministry of Food Cooking course!


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