Words Beginning with the Letter G



A cold dish which may be made of veal, chicken or duck, boned and spread with various farces. It is poached, roasted or braised and then lightly pressed and coated with chaudfroid or aspic. May be of forcemeat alone, and is often rolled tightly in a cloth for cooking.



A flat, round cake of flaky pastry. Galette des rois (made in France for Epiphany) is of rich yeast pastry and contains a hidden bean, the finder of which becomes King for the evening. By extension, a round flat cake of vegetables, etc.



The term is applied to all wild animals and birds protected by law. Rabbit and pigeon are not protected, but are hunted in the same way and for con­venience are sold on the same counter and often prepared like game. The open seasons during which game may be shot, are as follows:

August 12-December 10­-Grouse and black game.

September 1-February 1-­Partridge.

September 1-February 20­-Teal, widgeon.

October 1-January 31­-Capercailzie, woodcock.

October 1-February 1-Pheasant.

Late June to January-Red, roe and fallow deer.

Late June to late September-Buck venison.

Rabbits are at their best from September to February, pigeons from March to October and hares from August to February. (The dates given here may vary from time to time; they may also be different in Scotland.)


Game chip [see Chip]



The cured foreleg of a pig smoked or green; the hindleg, provides the ham. See also Bacon.



A thick vegetable soup or purée made in the region of Béarn in France.


Garlic (Allium sativum)

A very pungent, onion-like root consisting of 6-8 sections called cloves. Dried like an onion, has a white root and is so strong that it will spoil the flavour of many dishes unless used sparingly; said to be very wholesome.



A trimming which adds to the flavour as well as the appearance of a dish and is therefore important from a culinary point of view. It is often the garnish that gives its name to the dish, eg. parisienne, meaning the garnish is of cream sauce with the small mushrooms known as champignons de Paris.



A traditional, heavily flavoured Spanish soup, usually served ice cold. Made of onion, tomatoes and cucumber with a strong dose of garlic, it is sometimes thickened with white breadcrumbs soaked in olive oil.



A rich cake, usually pastry based with a heavy cream filling and served as a dessert. May also be applied to a very rich, iced cake.


Gaufre [see Waffle]



A French wafer biscuit; the name comes from the pattern on it, a gauffering iron being one used to stamp patterns on velvet.


Gefillte fish [see Carp]



A substance used in cookery as a setting agent. It is obtained from animal or fish bones or tissues by a process of prolonged boiling and is usually sold in leaf or powder form. A good quality should always be used, the quantities needed usually being shown in recipes. See also Isinglass.



A type of whisked sponge in which soft, creamed butter is added to the whisked sugar and egg mixture with the flour. Victoria sponge is a type of Genoese. Genoese is widely used in continental pâtisseries, particularly in France.



A fat used in Indian cooking; looks like oil but in fact is butter made from buffalo milk and then clarified.



A miniature cucumber, the best being about 1½ in long grown for pickling and used in cocktail savouries and garnishes.



Rabbit, bacon and onions combined in a savoury stew.



The general term for the edible internal parts of poultry, that is the liver, heart, gizzard and neck. With the exception of the liver, the giblets make a good stock for gravy or soup; the stock is improved if the feet are added. Giblets should be well washed before cooking, and the gizzard divested of the thick membrane with grit in it. The feet should be scalded and the outer skin removed. The gall bladder should be carefully removed from the liver without being broken open; the liver is generally used for stuffings or savouries.



The French name (also used in Scotland) for a leg of mutton or lamb.


Gill [see Measures]



A spirit distilled from grain and flavoured with juniper berries. A corruption of the word genièvre, French for juniper. Geneva, another name for gin, is also a corruption of the original word. Originally gin was distilled in Holland and was known as Hollands. Next London became the centre and nowadays it is made all over the world, although much is still called London gin. The base of many aperitifs, its smooth, dry flavour goes well with lemon, tonic water, bitters, etc. Damson or sloe gin may be made at home by infusing berries in gin.



Ginger comes from the rhizome of the plant of the same name and is grated or ground as a flavouring for curries, sauces or chutnies, the Jamaican dried white being the most highly regarded. It may also be bought as stem ginger, preserved in syrup, or crystallised for serving as a dessert. At certain times of the year Britain imports green ginger (the fresh root) from the east.



Some parts of northern England still use this old name for ginger cake.


Girdle [see Griddle]



French, meaning glazed, or may also be applied to iced dishes. Fruits are said to be glacé when they are covered with a syrup which has been boiled to the point at which it will harden when cooled. See also Syrup and Icing.



1. A strong gravy or bone stock boiled and reduced to a brown syrup which is clear and sets firm on cooling. A mock glaze may be made by stiffening the stock with gelatine. The glaze, or mock glaze, is used to brush over meat, galantines, cold tongues, etc., to improve their appearance. Glaze will also add flavour to a sauce or gravy.

2. Fruit flans, cakes and pastries are glazed by brushing them with a glaze made from red currant jelly or apricot jam.

Used as a verb the word means to make shiny by using a glaze similar to those already mentioned, or with water and sugar, or egg or milk.


Globe artichoke [see Artichoke]



Powdered glucose is now well­-known medicinally and is made from carbohydrates; it is also called dextrose or grape sugar. A clear syrup form is used in cookery, known as American corn syrup (it can be made from maize or any starch). This is of value in making confectionery since it does not crystallise and will prevent a sugar syrup from graining when it boils.



The strength of a flour depends on the amount of a substance called gluten, which is in the grain of wheat, left in it after milling. It can be given a high gluten content (called springs) by certain processes; this sort of flour is preferred by bakers for making bread because it pro­duces a good elastic dough, and is called 'strong' flour.



A syrupy liquid used in some forms of royal icing, or in commercially made cakes to keep them moist.



Although not strictly a pasta, gnocchi are usually referred to under this heading. There are three main sorts:

Gnocchi romana are made with a maize meal called polenta (semolina may serve as a substitute), cooked in water and flavoured with cheese.

French gnocchi are made with choux pastry, with a cheese flavouring.

Potato gnocchi are made from potato mixed with butter, flour and egg. The two first-named are usually served as a separate course with a sauce, whereas potato gnocchi are an accompaniment.



Before the turkey was introduced to Britain, roast goose was the dish with which great feast days like Christmas, Michaelmas and harvest time were celebrated. Roast goose should be accompanied by apple sauce and have a stuffing of sage and onion. The meat is rich and tasty.



Green gooseberries are one of the most useful and delicious of summer fruits, and make ideal preserves and fools. They may be found from late May or early June to August. There are also red and amber coloured varieties, and all varieties may be cooked or preserved; an ideal dish is made of gooseberries poached with elder flowers, chilled and served with cream.



A blue cheese, made in Italy.


Goujon [See Gudgeon]


Goulash or Gulyas

A Hungarian stew, highly seasoned, usually with paprika and certainly with a large quantity of onions; can be made with veal, beef or lamb.


Graham flour or bread

A coarse wholemeal flour or bread named in honour of an American dietitian: it is the American equivalent of the Grant Loaf or granary loaf.



When sugar syrup is boiled beyond a temperature of about 245-250°F, it forms small crystals if stirred or agitated in any way. A small quantity of cream of tarter or liquid glucose added to the syrup will delay or stop this graining, or 'cut the grain', as it is called.


Grant or Granary loaf

A loaf of coarse wholemeal bread which may be made at home by mixing yeast, flour and liquid together and putting the mixture straight into the baking tin to rise; it is then baked. The recipe, which eliminates the sponging and proving usually carried out, gets its name from its inventor, Doris Grant. See also Bread.



The fruit of the vine, used for wine-making and as a dessert. Vines are cultivated in the warmer parts of Europe and other parts of the world. In Britain they are often grown under glass. Different sorts of grapes are grown for different purposes and many are dried as raisins, currants and sultanas.



A large citrus fruit with a very distinctive flavour that allows it to be used either as a starter or dessert in a meal. The heavier a grapefruit is com­pared with its size the more juice it is likely to contain. See Shaddock, of which the grape­fruit is an improved strain.


Gratin, Au Gratin or Gratiner

The verb gratiner means to brown the surface of a dish with crumbs, butter and per­haps cheese as well. Cooked food coated with a cheese sauce and browned quickly (eg. cauliflower au gratin). Fish may be cooked au gratin by covering it with a béchamel or thick white sauce, then browned crumbs and grated cheese (or butter) and baking it. The sauce becomes of a flowing consistency when the juices of the fish mix with it. A fireproof dish with handles on each end is called a gratin dish.



Because they are heavier than fat, the juices which flow out of a piece of meat or poultry while it is roasting sink to the bottom of the roasting tin and may easily be recovered by pouring off the liquid fat above them. They may then be diluted with stock, thickened and per­haps coloured according to the dish. Normally served in a sauce boat.



A freshwater fish not sold commercially; similar to a trout in appearance and size.



A fruit of the plum family, dark green in colour, round but slightly flat at the stalk end. The flesh, which is honey sweet and with a distinctive scent, is gold as it becomes ripe. It may be distinguished from the green­gage plum, which is a similar fruit, by its round, not oval stone.



A small round, about 1 in thick, cut from a leg of veal and cooked in the same way as a fricandeau.


Grey mullet [See Mullet]


Griddle or Girdle

A thick iron plate used on top of the cooker for baking soda bread, oatcakes and scones. Some have a handle in the shape of a half-hoop.



One of the most important methods of cooking, in which food (particularly steaks, chops, etc.) is subjected to the radiant heat of electric or gas grills, or outdoor barbecue charcoal fires. Spit roasting is often done under a grill.



Grilse are small Salmon that have returned to their rivers after being down to the sea for the first time.



Italian bread sticks, long, slim and of a rusk-like, crisp nature, usually put on the table in tumblers.



Another name for oatmeal.


Groundnut oil [See Oil]


Ground rice [See Rice]



A small game bird found on the heathery moors, particularly in Yorkshire and Scotland. It feeds on the tips of the heather. In season from 12 August to 10 December. Grouse should be hung before roasting. Serve with browned crumbs, game chips, strong gravy and red currant jelly.



Oats, barley or other meal made into a thin porridge; once highly regarded for invalids. In Victorian times it was also served in the workhouse.



A hard cheese from Switzerland, one of the most valued in cookery. Like Emmenthal, a similar Swiss cheese, it has characteristic large holes, although those of Gruyère are the larger; on being cut, these should be moist. Gruyère comes from rich cow's milk and is traditionally used in a fondue. Mixed with Parmesan, it is ideal in a gratin or mornay sauce.



Small fruit from the tropics, the size of a small apple and with an acid but not unpleasant flavour. Has pulpy red flesh and yellow rind. May be bought canned or fresh.



Small, freshwater fish cooked like a whitebait, but rarely seen nowadays. The French borrowed its name to describe small strips of sole or plaice, fried, as being cooked en goujons.


Guinea fowl

The name given eventually to an African bird introduced into England in the first half of the 16th century, when it was called ‘turkie-henne’. About the size of a large pheasant, it has similar-tasting flesh, but is a domestic bird, dark grey with white spots and dark flesh.


Gull's egg

The egg of the gull, usually bought ready hard-boiled from the fishmonger, is in season for only a few weeks in late April and early May. It became popular after the taking of plovers' eggs was prohibited by law. The gull's egg, served as a starter with brown bread and butter and rock salt from a grinder, has a taste which is similar to but not quite as delicate as that of the plover.


Gulyas [See Goulash]



A fish found off the Cornish coast. It is spiny and bony and may be red or grey, like the mullet.