Words Beginning with the Letter H



Meat, herbs, etc., minced or chopped and then mixed; used in forcemeats.



A fish weighing 1½-6 lb, round, and rated one of the best white fish; has a black smudge behind each gill which is called St. Peter's Mark, a grey skin and a black line running down each side.

Sold fresh or smoked. Fresh haddock, because of its firm white flesh, lends itself to cooking in numerous ways, including whole with a stuffing of forcemeat and herbs, roasted like a joint of meat with gravy from the juices, poached with a sauce, or fried. The smoked haddock, which originated in the village of Findon, or Finnon, near Aberdeen, ranges from cured fillets of the large fish down to small whole fish known as smokies.



Haggis is as Scottish as bag­pipes and tartans, but as well as being traditional is also a good warming dish for a cold day. It is a rich forcemeat of liver, heart and tongue with oatmeal, stuffed into small bags made from the paunch of a sheep and boiled gently for 2-3 hours before being sold in the shop. At home a haggis should be simmered for another hour. Traditionally it is served hot on a napkin, the skin split and the stuffing spooned out, with boiled potatoes and mashed turnips.



A large white fish not unlike a cod in appearance and weight, but with a rough grey skin. Mostly found off the coasts of south-west England, it is popular and its white, easily digestible flesh is good for creams and mousses.



A huge type of flat fish which, because it might weigh anything up to 100 lb, is sold by the piece for boiling or in steaks for grilling. Has a high food value but lacks the delicate flavour of turbot; its firm white flesh is somewhat coarse.



A confectionery made in the Middle East with sugar, butter, nuts and ground sesame seed or semolina and a saffron or rosewater flavouring. Also made in India.



The cured hind leg of a bacon pig. There are many sorts of hams, some smoked, some just cured, the best known of the latter being the English York Ham, large and with a very delicate flavour. Bradenhams, from Norfolk, and imported Virginia hams, are special cures. Less expensive than these and smaller are the 10-12 Ib smoked hams from Denmark and Ireland, while many Continental countries have their specialities (Parma, Bayonne, Prague) sliced thin and eaten without cooking. See also Bacon.



Minced raw beef shaped into individual round cakes and dry-fried in the pan. Fried onion is the normal accompaniment.



Highly flavoured game, excellent eating, open season September to end of January. Of the two varieties brown hare is better than the blue or mountain hare. A hare is at its best up to 2 years old; the French call a young leveret up to 3 months a financier, up to 6 months a trois-quarts and at 1 year a capucin or lièvre pit. Young hare should be sautéd or roasted, but older hares need long, slow cooking, such as jugging, in stock or wine. If freshly killed a hare should be hung, head downwards, for 8-12 days so that the blood can collect in the rib cage and paunched (insides removed) after 4 days. Care must be taken not to break the membrane across the rib cage until a container is ready to catch the blood, which is used in the cooking. The blood is kept in the refrigerator while the hare is marinating prior to cooking, and then used to thicken the sauce.



1. A bean, usually dried. See also Bean.

2. A brown stew of mutton, carrots and onions. See also Navarin.


Hâtelet [See Attelette]



Sometimes called a Barcelona, small, round and grown on the hazel tree. The kernels of the nuts are generally toasted or lightly baked before use, making it easy to remove their skins. Used ground or whole in making confectionery or cakes.



Edible offal, the best being that of the sheep; usually stuffed with a good herb stuff­ing and braised until tender.



Herbs include a wide range of plants used in flavouring, but they must be treated with res­pect since many are strong and pungent in flavour and some enhance certain foods more than others. The main herbs are Basil, Bay, Chives, Dill, Fen­nel, Marjoram, Mint, Parsley, Rosemary, Savory, Tarragon. See also Fines Herbe.



One of the commonest fish round England's shores, 7-10 inches long, silvery in colour. Herrings move round the coast in shoals, reaching the Great Yarmouth area of the east by about October after taking 6-7 months to travel from the northwest part of the British Isles. May be smoked and eaten as kippers or bloaters or cooked fresh, when they should be eaten as soon as possible after being caught, before the delicate flesh be­comes too oily.



The hip is the fruit of the wild (dog) rose, known as Rosa canina, which contains Vitamin C. A pleasant tasting jelly may be made from it which, like red currant jelly, can be served with game or meat. An apple is needed when making jelly to supplement pectin in the hip. Also makes an excellent syrup for drinking.



A German white wine, origin­ally from Hochheim-on-Main but now the name is applied to most Rhine wines, which are distinguished by their tall brown bottles.



1. A method of cooking (à la hollandaise).

2. Arich Dutch or Holland sauce made from butter and eggs and usually served with vegetables, such as asparagus or fish.



Maize which has been ground into a meal resembling a coarse semolina. In the past it was extensively used for making croquettes and cream sweets.



Homogenised liquid is that which has been emulsified. Milk which has been homogenised (its fat particles broken up and dispersed) is more digestible than ordinary milk.



A natural, liquid form of sugar which bees prepare. The flavour depends on where the bees have fed, such as in heather, lime or clover. Probably the earliest form of sweetening; may be clear or thick (containing some wax) or still in the comb when purchased.


Hors d'oeuvre

Small dishes aimed at whetting the appetite; these form the introduction to a meal, particularly lunch. Originally cold hors d'oeuvre were served with lunch and hot with dinner, but both may now be served at the same time. The dishes chosen should be tempting, light and delicious, perhaps a collection of piquant salads such as anchovy fillets, egg mayonnaise, Russian salad, salami, crudités (raw vegetables) and spiced fish.



A condiment made by grating the root of the Cochlearia armoracia plant. The hot, astringent taste is a perfect complement to roast beef. May be mixed with some cream which has been lightly whipped to make a horseradish sauce or for cold beef or salads, may simply be grated over it.


Hot cross bun

Traditional Good Friday bun, made of yeast dough with currants and possibly candied peel. The top is marked with a cross.


Hot dog

American name for a frankfurter sausage, boiled or grilled and served hot with mustard inside a long soft bread roll.



A traditional dish in the Midlands and north of England, originally cooked in a special earthenware dish not often seen nowadays. The famous Lancashire hot-pot consists of layers of meat, mushrooms and oysters under a top layer of potatoes. The dish is cooked without a lid so as to allow the potato to brown.


Hurt [See Bilberry]