COOKING GLOSSARY & GUIDE FOR CURIOUS KIDS

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New to cooking? Below is a GLOSSARY & RESOURCE LIST that my mom put together to help kids & parents. We also have a Glossary & Guide to Arts & Crafts!

 

COOKING: kitchen tools

Blender
An electric mixing machine that usually liquifies ingredients poured into it. It can also be used to chop or grind some ingredients.  We will use this item a lot.  You can see Gray use a blender to make a unique dairy-free shake with her friend, Ruby, and in the future she will show you how to make mango lassis from India.

Mixing Stand
A kitchen tool used to mix ingredients for recipes, such as cookies, cakes etcetera. Mixing stands are powered by electricity and have different speeds and paddles or blades which are used to mix different types of ingredients.  You can see Gray use her Mixing Stand in the video she made with her dog, Baxter: Homemade Dog Biscuits How-To.

Grater
Kitchen tool with sharp holes or slits that shreds cheese, vegetables or fruit when you slide them across the tool.  Great for making shredded potatoes or carrots or cheese.

Zester
A kitchen tool used to peel or shred fine pieces of peel from citrus fruits like lemons, oranges, and limes. Zested citrus is great in baked goods, like cookies and cakes, or on fruit or vegetable salads.

Melon baller
Tool used to scoop out round ball-shaped sections from soft fruits and melons. The size of the melon ball is usually ¼ inch to 1 inch.  This makes cute fruit salads and fruit kabobs.

Plastic Knife
A plastic tool that looks like a metal knife but is made out of plastic. We got the serrated plastic knife that is used in our videos at Target.

Mandoline
A kitchen tool used to thinly slice fruits and vegetables and sometimes make decorative slices. This should really only be used by adults because the blades are very sharp and if you are not careful, you can cut yourself.

Parchment paper
We use this “paper” a lot when we bake to line cookie sheets and cake pans. It keeps the food from sticking to your pan. We will also use it for some arts & crafts. You can find it in the grocery store where you find aluminum foil and plastic wrap.

COOKING: some unique & alternative ingredients

We use lots of different kinds of ingredients from around the world. Here are just a few of the ingredients we thought we should explain. This list will grow as we grow.  And, feel free to email us a question about any ingredients we use in our cooking posts!

Rice paper
Yes, we talked about “Rice Paper” in the arts & crafts glossary, but this is a different kind of rice paper. This one is “edible” (edible means “something that can be eaten”) made from rice starch. People from Vietnam call the paper banh trang and they roll up vegetables in it to make what we call a Summer or Vietnamese Spring Roll or cha goi; Our Chinese relatives call it Chun Juan and they might be likely to add strips of pork and deep fry it; our Filipino friends are likely to do the same and they call it Lumpia.  You will definitely see us use this rice paper to make Vietnamese Spring rolls (yum!). Depending on where you live you might be able to find this ingredient in the your grocery market.  If not, you can find them at Whole Foods, or your nearest asian market.  

Gyoza Skin/Wrapper & Dim Sum Skin/Wrapper
These are small squares of simple pastry dough made from water, wheat flour and salt.  These skins are widely (“widely” is another way to say “often”) used in Japanese & Chinese cooking and are used to wrap different combinations of meat and/or veggies.  The skins are folded in different designs depending on what one is making, then the wrapped meat and/or veggies are steamed, or pan-fried or deep fried.  Some of the most common items made with these skins are wontons, gyoza, pot stickers, and shumai.  Gray includes all of those in her favorite foods list, so she will definitely be showing you how to use these skins.  She even makes them homemade some times (she’ll teach you that, too). Depending on where you live you might be able to find these in the refrigerated section of your grocery market.  If not, you can find them at Whole Foods, or your nearest Asian market.

Agave Syrup/Agave Nectar
We use Agave as an alternative to sugar in many of our drink recipes and some times in baked goods that we want to make more moist.  We love the taste of it and it feels more natural to us than processed white sugar. It is sweeter than honey but less thick.  It is also very easy to mix into iced drinks, unlike honey, or raw brown sugar.  The nectar or syrup comes from the Agave plant, which looks like a cactus but is not technically one.  Originally, agave was manufactured mainly in Mexico.  You can find it at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods and many more local grocery stores are carrying it on the same shelf as honey.

Gluten-Free Flour & Baking
Gluten is a protein found in grains such as wheat, barley, rye and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye).  Gluten appears in a lot of food and drinks, including most breads, pastas, and pastries.  We have friends who try to eat gluten-free diets because they have Celiac disease (which means they must not eat gluten if they want to stay healthy).  And, we feel healthier when we don’t eat too much gluten, so we try to find recipes and ingredients that help us make gluten-free dishes to share on Wondermint.  Below are some of our favorite products or places to find gluten-free products.

  • Udi’s Gluten-free hamburger and hotdog buns and sliced bread are some of our favorite choices when it comes to gluten-free bread.  Gray used their softer white bread to make the gluten-free raspberry-nutella wafflewich in her how-to video.

  • These stores carry a good selection of gluten-free food items: Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Sprouts.

And, these bloggers provide a lot of recipes and information on gluten-free cooking:

  • Simplygluten-free.com
    Simply…Gluten-free is a gluten-free blog – it’s purpose is to share, teach and inspire people to make lots of Gluten-Free recipes. (Breads, desserts, candies, breakfast, drinks, appetizers,e.t.c.)

  • Gluten Free Girl  
    New to Gluten-Free? Gluten Free Girl Is A Guide To Gluten-Free Recipes & More!
    (Baking -Desserts- Breakfast & Seasonal Ideas)

  • GlutenFreeFind.com
    An award-winning Online Resource Directory focused on Healthy Living.

COOKING CONVERSION HELP & CHARTS
We made our site trilingual so that all of our family and friends and as many kids as possible around the world could enjoy what we do.  If you are from a country that does not use the same measurement system as we do in the United States, then these charts & calculators may help:

This Cooking Glossary & Guide is an ongoing labor of love.  If you have a question or would like us to add an item, please leave a comment below or email us.

Wanna share this page?  Go for it!  If you are a blogger, please do feel free to re-publish, but please do not forget to credit us with a link and a courtesy line.  Something like the following feels about right: ‘Thank you to www.WondermintStudio.com for sharing this information.’