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7 Terrifying cooking terms - decoded

Don't get in a panic when you see these words in recipes...

05 Oct 2018
whipped cream in a bowl

(image: iStock)

If you're unfamiliar with reading recipes, it can often be often quite confusing (and perhaps a bit alarming) when you're not used to the jargon. We've selected a few cooking terms that might seem rather bestial and cause you to raise your eyebrows - so before you find yourself getting all flustered, take a look at what they actually mean!

1. Bruise
This is done to get the flavour aroma out of an ingredient by giving it a forceful bashing. A common ingredient you would bruise would be lemongrass. 

TRY:  Poached fish with lemongrass and ginger

2. Whip 
Some might have images of a Fifty Shades of Grey scenario but no! This is a common verb that often refers to cream. The action involves beating it ferociously to incorporate air. 

TRY: Zucchini cake with whipped cream

3. Sweat 
To sweat something means to soften it gently without browning it. A gentle sauté, in other words. Commonly referred to chopped onions. 

sweating onions in a pan

4. Coddle 
And no, this isn't the wrong spelling of 'cuddle'. To coddle means to heat in water but below boiling point. A classic Caesar salad calls for a coddled egg in its dressing.  

TRY: Chicken Caesar salad

5. Grunt 
Probably the worst name for a dessert but it is what it is... a grunt refers to a pudding, not unlike a cobbler (batter or dumpling-topped stewed fruit), however instead of being baked, grunts are cooked on the stovetop. 

6. Macerate 
This is the process of soaking food in a liquid to either soften it and/or provide flavour. 

TRY: Strawberry pistachio tart

7. Weep 
Weeping generally refers to unattractive liquid oozing from cooked meringue. 

ALSO READ: How to win at Scrabble - 6 food words you need to memorise

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