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Vacherin

A seasonal cheese that is made in the winter months in France and Switzerland.

Vanilla pod

The sweetly fragrant dried pods of the vanilla orchid, a native of Mexico, which can be used either whole or split to reveal the aromatic seeds, and then stored in a sugar jar to impart its flavour, or used directly in custards, creams and milk puddings.

Vanilla pod

The sweetly fragrant dried pods of the vanilla orchid.

Vegetable shortening

An vegetarian alternative to lard often used in baking and when basting meat.

Velvet

A term used in Chinese cookery: meat strips to be stir-fried are coated first in cornflour, or egg white and cornflour, to protect them while frying.

Verjus

A sour grape juice which can be used in cooking.

Vermicelli

Pasta made into long thin strands, often used in soups. The name means ‘little worms’ in Italian

Vichyssoise

A soup made from potatoes, leeks and cream, served cold, garnished with chopped chives.

Vinaigrette

A cold sauce made from a mixture of vinegar, oil, pepper and salt, to which various flavourings can be added.

Vodka

An eastern European spirit distilled from grain.

Vol-au-vent

A round case of puff pastry with a pastry lid which is filled after baking and served as a hot starter or hors d'oeuvre. The filling is made up of meat, seafood or vegetables in a sauce.

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