FOOD GLOSSARY - Silver Cake to Smother

FOOD GLOSSARY - Silver Cake to Smother

SILVER CAKE:  A delicate, rich, white cake.

SILVER DRAGEES:  Tiny ball-shaped, candies.

SIMMER:  To cook gently in a liquid just below the boiling point at temperatures of 185° to 210°F. Adjust the heat to maintain this stage. In simmering, the food cooks so slowly that the surface moves only slightly; no bubbles show because they form slowly and collapse below the surface. See Boil.

SIMNEL CAKE:  Rich fruit cake with an almond paste layer, baked in position, not put in later, traditional in England for the fourth Sunday of Lent, or "Mothering Sunday," a holiday for servant girls by old custom, so that they could visit their mothers. The name "Simnel" is derived from the Latin word simila which means "the finest wheat flour." Those who prefer a more far-fetched explanation may like to know of a theory that the name of the cake arose out of a squabble, between a husband and wife called Simon and Nellie, as to how a cake should be cooked, whether boiled or baked. In the end, they compromised by boiling it first and then baking it; and in some old recipes Simnel Cake is boiled first and then baked.

SINGE (Poultry):  Hold over flame to burn off all hairs.

SIZZLING STEAK:  Steak served on an aluminum platter which has been heated so that the steak and juices sizzle.

SKEWER:  To fasten or hold food to keep it in position while it cooks, with metal or wooden pins (skewers). "Skewer" may also mean assembling, cooking, and serving kabob-style on skewers.

SKILLET:  Originally a three-legged, long-handled stewing pot to cook food in a fireplace, sometimes called "spider" because of its resemblance to same. Nowadays it refers to a fry-pan or frying pan, a shallow, covered or uncovered pan with one handle. The size is stated by the top diameter in inches.

SLAW:  Shredded cabbage, hot or cold. Cole slaw (not cold slaw) is its full and proper name. Cole is derived from the Dutch word for cabbage, and slaw from the Dutch word for salad.

SLIVER:  To cut or split into long, thin strips with a knife on a cutting board. For example, the term is applied to almonds and to pimiento: pieces used for decoration. See also Julienne.

SLOE:  A small, blue-black, plumlike fruit that grows on the blackthorn; used to flavor sloe gin.

SMELTS:  Small silvery fish, usually cooked and eaten whole.

SMORGASBORD:  Literally Swedish for "bread and butter table," which nowadays may contain as many as 20 to 30 different dishes, including many kinds of fish, cheese, cold meats, salads, and hot foods like beans and meat balls. Originally it was an appetizer table, but American enthusiasts often make it an entire buffet meal. You may make several trips to the table to refill your plate.

SMOTHER:  As applied in cookery, smother means to cook in a covered dish or in a close mass, as smothered onions.


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