Words Beginning with the Letter T



A commercial sauce used mostly with shellfish, etc. Made from hot peppers which are specially matured and treated.



One of the Pastas, sold in strips 1-1½ inches wide.



A middle East speciality, a paste ground from sesame seeds. Mixed with olive oil and purée of lentils, it is eaten with bread (usually unleavened) as an hors d'oeuvre. Sold in big stores and specialist shops.



Sweetish but acrid flavoured fruit of the tamarind tree (Tamarindus indica), used in some curries, conserves and chutney. The fruit has a dark-­brown pulp resembling that of a date but more fibrous. Dried tamarind or amyli, is imported from India.



A verb meaning to force soup or sauce through a tammy strainer and thus make it very smooth and glossy through emulsifica­tion. A tammy strainer nowa­days is more usually a very fine double-mesh wire instead of the old-fashioned rough-tex­tured cloth through which the sauce was forced by wringing.


Tangerine [See Orange]



Large granules of starch ob­tained from the cassava plant which, when raw, have a rough appearance, but which become jelly-like and transparent when simmered in milk. Used in a similar way to sago.


Tarama or Taramasalata

Smoked cod's roe or grey mullet roe, creamed with olive oil and breadcrumbs soaked in water, sharpened with tomato or lemon juice. This paste is served cold with toast or un­leavened bread and is popular as a first course.



A perennial herb best grown at home if wanted fresh; if buying plants make sure they are the French type with its faint ani­seed flavour and grey-green, long, narrow leaves. 'Russian' tarragon is sometimes mistaken for this variety, but has no scent and is rank by comparison. Tarragon goes particularly well with chicken, fish and eggs and is delicate in flavour. Also makes an aromatic vinegar for use in salads, etc.


Tart and Tartlet

Tart is a pastry case without a lid for holding fruit or savoury fillings, tartlets being the small or individual, version. See also Pie and Flan.


Tartar [See Cream of Tartar]


Tartare sauce

A mayonnaise-type cold sauce in which hard-boiled eggs have been incorporated and which is given a distinctive taste with chopped herbs, capers and gherkins. Served with a number of dishes, including fried fish and croquettes.


Tartaric acid

An acid which can be bought in powder form in the shops but which is also present in some fruits such as pineapple and berries. Used for a variety of purposes in the kitchen, including home-made lemon squash.



Tea is the leaf of the shrub Thea which is fermented and then dried to give the familiar black tea. If dried without fermentation the result will be green tea. There are many types of both black and green, blended to suit different tastes; all are infused in boiling water for drinking. Much of the world's supply now comes from India and Ceylon. China tea has a milder, more scented flavour than Indian and is best without milk.


Tea cake

The traditional English tea cake is a large round of bun or yeast bread dough which is baked, split, toasted and served hot, buttered and in individual portions.



A small game bird of the duck family, enough for one person. Served roasted with game chips and a salad, either green or orange. May be shot from September 1 to the end of February. See also Game.



There are numerous ways of tenderising meat before it is cooked: steak, for instance, may be beaten with a special hammer to break down the toughening fibres. Mutton and lamb may be treated with yoghurt for several hours before cooking. There are also preparations, such as that made from paw-paw or papaya, for rubbing into meat to make it tender.



A type of tortoise (not seen in Britain) which is caught in the eastern coastal waters of the U.S.A. Although very much smaller than a turtle, the flesh is similar.



An ovenproof dish with a lid for cooking pâtés or other meats with a minimum of moisture. The term also applies to dishes cooked in this way, like terrine de foie gras. The dish should be oval, 6-8 inches long, 5 inches wide and 4 inches deep. To retain the steam the lid should be sealed with luting paste, a mixture of flour and water. See also Pâté and Pot-Roasting.



An instrument for measuring temperature, the four main types being:

Frying: Should register up to about 450-500°F, for testing temperature of fat for frying.

Oven: Also registering up to 450-500°F for testing oven temper­atures for baking and roasting. Modern cookers have a thermo­meter built in.

Bottling: Registering up to about boiling point of water, 212°F, for sterilising bottled fruit.

Sugar: For testing temperatures in sugar boiling. See Syrup.


Thickening [See Liaison]



A perennial herb, the most commonly used varieties being the black and the lemon. The former has a narrow leaf, the latter a bright green leaf and a decided lemon smell. Thyme is also used in a bouquet garni and chopped in all savoury stuffings. It dries well.


Timbale [See Mould]


Tipsy cake

The basis of a tipsy cake is a firm sponge which is soaked in wine, either a white wine or mixture of white wine and sherry. This is decorated with shredded almonds and topped with plenty of whipped cream and a garnish of fruit, either preserved or fresh.



Made in the same way as tea, but using herbs, fresh or dried leaves or flowers such as camomile, lime, etc.



Sausages baked in batter.



To brown by holding near an open fire or grill. Usually refers to a slice of bread which has been toasted on both sides. Melba toast is very thinly sliced bread baked golden brown in the oven.


Tomato (Hycopersicum esculentum)

A fruit which originated in South America but which is now grown in most parts of the world, including Britain. Although mostly grown under glass in England, the tomato is imported in large quantities and thus is on sale all year round. One of the most important items in cookery, but also extensively eaten raw in salads. There are also purely decorative types of tomato.



The tongue of an animal slaughtered for meat comes into the category of offal. Pig's tongues are usually left in the head for brawn. Ox tongue is the most universally sold, gen­erally salted or pickled, weigh­ing 3-6 Ib each. Calf's tongue weighs up to 1 Ib and lamb's about 6 oz. See Ox Tongue.



A steak from the 'eye' of the fillet of beef. It should be cut thick. A steak smaller in size and from the tail end of the fillet is called a filet mignon.



A by-product of the refining of sugar. Molasses or black treacle, comes from coarse sugar while the lighter and refined sugars give golden syrup.



A dessert which is as English as roast beef and Yorkshire pudding; made by soaking sponge cake in white wine or sherry, covering this with rich custard, jam or fruit, then topping the whole with whipped cream garnished with glacé cherries, angelica and almonds.



An offal: the lining or walls of the stomach of an ox, usually specially cleaned and prepared for cooking by the butcher before being sold.



The term for an animal's foot, generally that of a pig or sheep. The former is very gelatinous; both are prepared for braising or stewing before being sold.



One of the finest freshwater fish, weighing between 4 oz and several pounds, caught in lakes, streams and rivers but also extensively bred for the table. Most sold in England is rainbow trout, but there are other types and the colour of their skin, generally a speckled silvery brown, may vary according to where they were caught. The flesh is usually white, although some lake-bred trout are slightly pinkish. See also Salmon trout.



A coal-black fungus prized by gourmets for its unique flavour; it grows underground attached to the roots of oak trees. The best are scented out of the ground by trained dogs or pigs in the Perigord region of France after the first autumn frosts. Less good quality truffles are found in southern France, Italy and North Africa. They cannot be cultivated. A truffle may be as big as an apple; they are imported into Britain in tins and are traditionally used in foie gras; they also make an excellent garnish or addition to entrées, omelets and stuffings.



To tie with string, or secure with skewers, joints, game, poultry, etc., before roasting, so as to make eventual carving easier as well as improve the appearance of the finished dish. See also Needles.



Caught mainly in the Mediter­ranean and off the French Atlantic coast, the tunny is an enormous fish and a member of the mackerel family. Sold only canned in England. Flesh is meaty, firm and white, with­out a strong fish taste and is very popular in many European countries.



This is one of the finest white fish, flat, with firm white flesh and gelatinous skin. Can grow to an enormous size, but small fish known as chicken turbot and weighing about 6 Ib can be bought whole or filleted, at the fishmonger's. The larger fish are sold in steaks. Some­times called the 'pheasant of the sea'.



A large bird bred for the table, in the poultry category. Original­ly American. Norfolk turkeys once were considered to be the finest but nowadays good tur­keys are bred in many parts of the world.



Aromatic, pungent root of the Circuma longa plant from Ceylon, used in ground form to colour and flavour curry. Has deep bright yellow colour and being a dye, is very hard to remove from napkins, table­cloths, etc.



A winter root vegetable with greenish-white skin and pure white flesh, with leafy tops that can be cooked and buttered for a green vegetable when young. The turnip root itself is cooked like a swede; in Scotland mashed turnips are the traditional accompaniment for haggis.



A round of shortcrust or flaky pastry one half of which is filled with meat, meat and vegetable or fruit and the other side turned over it to make a semi-circular patty or pie. The edges are crimped and the turnover baked like a pie in the oven.



A large amphibious animal which inhabits the beaches and water of south Atlantic and south Pacific regions; is from the same family as the terrapin. The turtle is much prized for its flesh and its eggs, which are laid in the warm sand of the tropical beaches. Turtle soup, a clear consommé with pieces of the green turtle flesh in it, is a traditional feature of City of London banquets. Turtles are neither bred nor imported into Britain and turtle soup is avail­able only in cans.