Cooking Glossary - N
Naan - a white flour Indian flat bread. It is one of the most
loved Indian breads. A trip to an Indian restaurant usually involves the
ordering of some kind of Naan. It is traditionally made in a brick and
clay tandoor oven. Traditionally served as an accompaniment with an
Indian curry, Naan's can also be used to wrap seasoned grilled meats,
seafood, or vegetables. A naan should be served hot and eaten
immediately or else it tends to get chewy.
Nabo - [Spanish] turnip.
Nachos - [Spanish] tortilla chips that are topped with cheese, chiles,
etc., then heated until the cheese melts; originated in El Paso, Texas.
Nage - An aromatic broth in which crustaceans are cooked. The
shellfish is then served with this broth. The most notable of these dishes is
lobster la nage.
Nam Pla - See "Fish Sauce."
Nantua - A name given to dishes containing crayfish. This includes
crayfish tails and sauces made with a crayfish fumet.
Napa cabbage - Sometimes called Chinese celery cabbage. Found in many
supermarkets and Oriental markets.
Naranja agria - [Spanish] sour orange.
Naranja dulce - [Spanish] sweet orange.
Naranjas - [Spanish] oranges.
Natilla - [Spanish] custard dessert; similar to floating island, with
stiffly beaten egg whites layered on top of an egg custard; often accompanied
with fresh or poached fruits.
Navarin - French stew made with mutton or lamb and onions, turnips,
potatoes, and herbs.
Nesselrode - A mixture of candied fruit, nuts and cherries used in
Nasturtium - See "Indian cress."
Navarin - A stew of browned lamb.
Nectarine - A smooth-skinned variety of the peach family.
Negro - [Spanish] black.
Neapolitan - [Italian] Ice creams and sweet cakes in layers of
different colors and flavors.
Nesselrode - A dessert or sauce with rum and fruit flavor, often with
Neufchatel - [French] A soft unripened cheese originally from
Neufchatel-en-Bray, France. It has a fat content of 44 to 48%. Also available as
low-fat cream cheese in the U.S.
New Mexican chiles - Formerly known as Anaheim chiles; long green
chiles grown in New Mexico; poblanos may be substituted.
New Mexico red chiles - A fresh chile; mild to medium hot; keeps its
same name in both dried and fresh forms; mild chile with an earthy flavor,
slightly tart with a hint of dried cherry; seen often strung in ristras for
drying; used in pipiбns, salsas and barbecue sauces.
Newburg - Served with a hot cream sauce containing sherry and pieces
Niзoise, Nigoise - [French] foods cooked in the style of Nice. These dishes may include
garlic, Niзoise olives, anchovies, tomatoes, and green beans. Salad Niзoise
is the most famous of all these dishes, consisting of potatoes, olives, green
beans, and vinaigrette dressing. Also, a garnish of garlic, tomatoes,
capers and lemon.
Niзoise and Gaeta Olives - Small black olives from the south of
France and from Italy. They have a pure olive taste and come packed with their
pits. Green Niзoise olives come already pitted. Their flavor is more tart than
the black olives.
Nixtamбl - [Spanish] hominy; lime-slaked corn; used to make posole or
ground into masa, or dough, to make tortillas.
Noci - [Italian] nuts.
Nogada - [Spanish] walnut sauce.
Noisette - A small round steak, made of lamb or beef tenderloin.
Noisette Butter - Whole butter which has been cooked until it reaches
a rich, nutty brown color and aroma.
Noix - [French] nut.
Noodles - Flat ribbon pasta made from flour, water and egg, then dried
and rehydrated during boiling in water.
Noodles - Chinese
Cellophane Noodles - Also known as slippery noodles or
bean threads, these noodles are made from the starch of mung beans, a.k.a.
"sprouts" to most of us. Dried they're translucent, but softened in hot water
and cooked they become gelatinous and transparent. Although they don't have much
taste on their own they do have a knack for picking up the flavors other
ingredients they're mingled amongst. To cook: soften in hot water for 15
minutes, then boil or stir fry for 1 minute. Or deep-fry briefly in hot oil
until puffed and lightly golden and use to garnish anything from quirky
Asian-inspired appetizers to salads.
Egg Noodles - Well-stocked Asian markets usually
offer a selection of dried and fresh egg noodles, both thin and thick. Although
they are often neon yellow, some of the dried varieties are made without eggs.
If you can't find Chinese egg noodles, substitute fresh or dried Italian pasta.
To cook egg noodles boil fresh noodles for 2 1/2 to 4 minutes or dried noodles 4
1/2 to 5 minutes.
Wheat-Flour Noodles - Made with wheat flour and
water, this is the oldest noodle form found in China. Still made by hand in fine
restaurants around the world, they are created from a soft dough, resulting in a
silky texture. They do vary in thickness and may be round or flat. The thinnest
are used in refined soups, whereas the thicker varieties stand up to heartier
soups and casseroles. Although these noodles come in shrimp-, chicken- and
crab-flavored varieties the quality can vary dramatically along with their
flavor. To cook wheat-flour noodles boil fresh noodles for 2 1/2 to 4 minutes or
dried ones for 4 1/2 to 5 minutes.
Noodles - Korean
Buckwheat Noodles - One of the most popular varieties
of noodles among the Koreans are the brownish noodles known as "naengmyon" which
are sold dried. They are made with buckwheat flour and potato starch and are
slightly chewier than soba noodles. To prepare buckwheat noodles boil for 3 to 3
1/2 minutes. Naengmyon are mostly used in soups.
Sweet Potato Noodles - "Tangmyon" or sweet potato
noodles are similar to cellophane noodles, and they are often made with mung
bean starch. Like cellophane noodles, they become translucent once cooked and
will absorb the flavors of the foods they are cooked with. Used in stir fry
dishes, to cook simply soften noodles in hot water for 10 minutes then stir-fry
for 45 seconds to 1 minute.
Noodles - Japanese
Soba Noodles - The brownish buckwheat soba noodles
from Japan are becoming more popular as their beguiling nutty flavor and
nutritional value engage the attention of Western cooks. Rich in protein and
fiber, they are most commonly served cold with a dipping sauce or hot in soups.
Soba noodles are extraordinarily versatile and lend themselves to salads and
stir-fried dishes as well. You can find soba noodles flavored with green tea,
lemon zest, or black sesame seeds. For the best-quality check out the Japanese
brands. To cook boil fresh noodles 1 to 1 1/2 minutes or dried ones 4 to 4 1/2
Udon Noodles - Fat, slippery white noodles found
bobbing about in soups or casseroles, udon noodles are made from a
wheat-flour-and-water dough and may be round, square, or flat in shape. In most
recipes, udon noodles are interchangeable with soba noodles and Chinese
wheat-flour-and-water noodles. Boil the fresh variety for 2 to 2 1/2 minutes and
the dried anywhere from 4 to 4 1/2 minutes.*
Ramen Noodles - Most of us recognize ramen noodle
from the dried, curly variety found in those inexpensive instant noodle soup
packages. Made with an egg-based dough, ramen are usually served with meat and
vegetables in a flavorsome broth. Because fresh ramen is not always easy to
find, fresh or dried Chinese egg noodles or Italian pasta make an adequate
Somen Noodles - The most delicate of all the
Japanese noodles, somen are often distinguished by their elegant packaging. Made
from a wheat-flour dough with a touch of oil added, like soba noodles they are
often served cool with a dipping sauce, but don't forget they also make a light
and delicate garnish for hot soups. To cook somen noodles just boil for 2 1/2 to
Nopal (nopales) - [Spanish] paddles (leaves) of the prickly pear (nopal)
cactus; they are firm and crunchy; the smaller the paddle, the more tender;
nopales have a flavor similar to green beans and can be eaten raw or cooked;
sliced green beans can be substituted.
Nopalitos - [Spanish] cactus paddles cut into strips or dices; usually
refers to the canned and pickled cactus.
Nori - Thin dry sheets of seaweed used in Japanese cooking. It is
mainly used to wrap sushi and as garnish for other cold presentations. See
"Seaweed sheets, dried."
Normande - A cream sauce containing fish essence, mushrooms and egg
Norte, norteсo - [Spanish] north; of the north.
Nougat - A candy made from sugar and honey mixed with nuts. This
mixture is then formed into slabs and sliced.
Nougatine - A darker candy, made of caramel syrup and nuts. This is
rolled into thin sheets and formed into cups or bowls to serve as a vessel for
other candy or fruit.
Nouilles - [French] noodles.
Nudeln - [German] noodles.
Nuoc Mam - See "Fish Sauce."
Nusskuchen - [German] Nutcake.
Nuevo - [Spanish] new.
Nuez moscada - [Spanish] nutmeg.
Nutella - A commercial brand of gianduja. This is a creamy paste of
chocolate and hazelnuts treasured in Italy. This is used in candy making, for
flavored milk drinks, and when thinned out, spread on bread as a quick snack.
Nutmeg - Oval-shaped, brown, wrinkly seed of the nutmeg tree. In its
grated for is primarily utilized in sweet and savory dishes including cakes,
custards, soufflйs, meatballs and soups.