Cooking Terms R And S

Easy to Understand Cooking Dictionary

This page provides cooking definitions for cooking terms R and S.

Cooking Terms can be a little confusing so these definitions are provided for frequently used terms found in recipes and articles about cooking.

As with all dictionaries, the terms are alphabetized (I think ;-) )

Cooking Terms R and S : Learning the Language

Cooking Terminology: Words starting with "R"

  • ramekin - a very small dish used for individual portions
  • reconstitute - a dried food product is returned to its original form by adding a liquid, hot or cold
  • reduce - to cook by simmering or boiling until its volume is decreased in order to concentrate flavors
  • refresh - to stop the cooking process by submerging in or spraying with cold water; common with vegetables and pasta
  • roast - to cook foods by surrounding them with hot, dry air in an oven (uncovered) or on a spit over an open fire
  • rolling boil - boiling water at very high heat so that even if stirred the water continues to boil (bubble)
  • roux - a cooked mixture of flour and oil, fat or butter that is used to thicken liquids

Cooking Terminology: Words starting with "S"

  • sachet - a small bag usually made of cheesecloth containing herbs and spices and is placed into soups, stews, stocks and sauces while cooking for added flavor and is removed when the item is finished cooking
  • saffron - a yellow-orange spice made from the stigmas of purple crocus
  • sauce - a liquid that adds flavor and moisture to foods
  • saute' - to cook foods quickly in a small amount of fat
  • scald - to heat a liquid just below boiling with bubbles around the edges
  • scallion - very young onions picked when beds of onions need to be thinned. Both the shallot and the green onion, which have small bulbs, are also known as scallions.
  • scallop - to bake food with a sauce or other liquid in a casserole
  • score - tenderizing meat or seafood by slicing with a knife
  • sear - to seal in the juices of meat by quickly browning it on all sides in a very hot pan
  • season - enhancing the flavor of food by adding ingredients such as herbs and spices; cooking term also means to oil a pan and slowly warm it and then wipe it
  • set - to allow food to solidify
  • shred - to tear or cut food into narrow strips
  • shuck - to remove the shells from clams and oysters; also to remove the husks from corn
  • seive - to press a food through a strainer to break it up
  • sift - to remove lumps from certain foods while aerating it
  • simmer - to gently cook food in a liquid over low heat so only tiny bubbles can be observed breaking the surface of the liquid
  • simple syrup - two parts water and one part sugar cooked together
  • skim - removing fat or impurities that have risen to the top of a liquid being cooked
  • slivered - thin slices about 1/4 inch by 1/8 inch
  • smoking point - the temperature at which fat breaks down and starts smoking
  • steam - to cook by direct contact with steam
  • steel - a dowel-shaped tool used to sharpen knives
  • steep - to soak dry ingredients in water or another liquid until the flavor is infused into the liquid
  • stew - to gradually cook ingredients in a covered pot for a long time (until tender)
  • stir-fry - fast frying in a small amount of oil over very high heat while continuously stirring ingredients
  • stock - the liquid that you have left after simmering bones, vegetables and seasonings in water or another liquid
  • strain - to separate and reserve the liquid contents from a cooking process such as straining the liquid from the bones and vegetables for stock
  • sweat - to cook in a very small amount of fat over low heat (sometimes covered) without browning to release flavors and moisture

Hopefully this cooking dictionary will prove helpful in your pursuit of cooking with confidence and style.


“The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary."

 Donald Kendall