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Glossary of Southeast Asian Cuisine

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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    Posted: 30 November 2011 at 16:11
I will add to this as conditions warrant. If you are looking for something and it is not listed, please send me a PM and i will try to find it.
 
Unless otherwise noted, the terms posted by me will be from Time-Life's Foods of the World Series
 
Glossary of Southeast Asian Cuisine
 
Achiote - See Annatto Seed
 
Achuete - See Annatto Seed
 
Annatto Seed - Rusty-red, dried seed of the fruit of a tropical West Indian or South American tree. When used as a seasoning, it is an inexpensive substitute, both in flavour for the orange color it imparts, for the more expensive saffron. Availabe in packages or jars at Latin American groceries. 
 
Boniato - See Mun Tet
 
Cilantro - See Coriander, Fresh
 
Chayote - See Vegetable Pear
 
Chinese Long Beans - See Yard Beans
 
Chinese Parsley - See Coriander, Fresh
 
Christophine - See Vegetable Pear
 
Cloud Ears - Small, crinkly dried fungus, about an inch long. Sold by weight in Oriental specialty shops. Store in covered jar. No substitute.
 
Cellophane Noodles - See Mung Bean Threads
 
Coriander, Fresh - Aromatic herb of the parsley family, much more pungent than the flat-leaf parsley it resembles. Sold by the bunch in Oriental or Latin American markets[, or can be grown at home]. Store refrigerated in a plastic bag or wrapped in a damp paper towel, without washing or removing roots.
 
Daun Djeruk Perut - Dried citrus leaves.
 
Daun Salam - See Salam
 
Daun Sereh - Dried lemon grass blades. See Lemon Grass
 
Djeruk Purut - Dried leaves of Far Eastern wild lime tree. Sold whole in small packets by importers of Indonesian specialties or in some Oriental food stores.
 
Fish's Gravy (Fish Sauce, Nam Pla) - Thin, brownish sauce produced by fermentatio of salted fresh fish. Extremely salty and smells strongly of fish, but when used in moderation, it provides a suprisingly subtle flavour. Used in much the same way as soy sauce. Available bottled as "fish's gravy" in most Oriental stores.
 
Fish Sauce - See Fish's Gravy
 
Fresh Bean-Curd Cake - See Tofu
 
Ginger Root, Fresh - Gnarled,  brown root, about 3 inches long. Sold by weight in Oriental and Puerto Rican specialty shops. Whole ginger root will keep for a few weeks wrapped in paper towels in the refrigerator. Peeled, sliced fresh ginger, placed in a jar of dry sherry and refrigerated, can safely be kept for several months without losing or changing its flavour. Peeled, sliced ginger root in brine, available in cans, may be substituted; ground or crystalised ginger root may not.
 
Indonesian Laurel Leaves - See Salam
 
Indonesian Shrimp Paste - See Trassi
 
Jaca - See Jack Fruit
 
Jack Fruit - Irregularly shaped fruit of a tropical tree related to the breadfruit, sometimes weighing as much as 70 pounds. Its yellowish-green hide is covered with closely set spines. When immature, its fibrous pulp is used as a vegetable, in soups or curries; when riper and sweeter it may be used in sherbets or fruit salads. Sometimes available in Latin American markets
 
Jakfruit - See Jack Fruit
 
Java Root - See Laos
 
Kachai - See Kentjur
 
Kentjur - Thick root of a tropical Asian plant of the ginger family. Sold dried, sliced or chopped, in jars, by importers of Indonesian specialty foods or in some Oriental food stores.
 
Kha - See Laos
 
Laos - Thick root of a Malayan plant of the ginger family. Sold in powdered form or as dried stem pieces in Indonesian or Oriental specialty stores.
 
Lengkuas - See Laos
 
Lemon Grass - Aromatic, lemon-flavoured tropical grass, widely used in Indonesian and Southeast Asian cooking. It is available fresh in Hawaii and Puerto Rico; though it is not sold in mainland U.S. markets (as of 1970), it can easily be grown from clipped rooted plants available by mail in limited quantities from select greenhouses or nurseries. Three to six roots will multiply fast enough to provide an adequate household supply. Grow outdoors in warm climates; in cooler climates, grow outdoors during warm months and potted indoors when it is cold. Available dried as a powder or as dried blades(daun sereh) from Indonesian and some Oriental specialty shops.
 
Makrut - Dried lime leaves. See Djeruk Perut.
 
Mun Tet - Sweet Potato (source: SimplyThai.com)
 
Mung Bean Threads - Thin, translucent noodles made from ground mung beans. Dried in looped skeins and sold in 2- to 6-ounce packages in Oriental specialty stores. Cover with foil or plastic wrap to store. No substitute.
 
Nam Pla -  See Fish's Gravy
 
Salam - Dried Far-Eastern bay leaves, sold in small bundles by importers of Indonesian foods and in some Oriental food stores
 
Sereh - See Lemon Grass
 
Star Anise - Dry, brown licorice-flavoured spice resembling an 8-pointed star, about 1 inch across. Sold whole (though often the sections break apart) by weight in Oriental specialty stores. Store indefinitely in tightly-covered containers.
 
Takrai - See Lemon Grass
 
Tamarind - Tart, brown fruit of the tamarind tree. the dried pulp of fruit from the pod is available in gourmet food stores, Indian[, Oriental] and Latin american groceries. 
 
Tiger Lily Buds, Dried - Pale, gold, stringy lily buds about 2 to 3 inches long. Sold by weight in Oriental specialty shops. Store in a covered container. No substitute.
 
Tofu - Custardlike squares of pressed pureed soybeans. Sold fresh by the cake, usually ½ to ¾ inch thick and 3 inches square, in Oriental specialty stores. The Chinese variety is generally firmer in texture than the Japanese and more suitable for deep-frying. To store the cake, drain, cover with fresh water, refrigerate in a covered jar for up to 2 weeks, changing water daily. No substitute
 
Trassi - Thick, dark brown, salty shrimp paste, sold in small, sausage-like rolls by sources specialising in Phillippine or Indonesian foods or in some Oriental groceries. Because it is strong-smelling, cover or wrap it tightly to store. Will keep almost indefinitely.
 
Vegetable Pear - Round or pearshaped white to dark-green tropical squash, 3 to 8 inches long. It may be smooth or corrugated and is sometimes covered with soft spines. The firm, crisp flesh is more delicate in flavor than the familiar summer squash. Available year round in some Latin American markets
 
Yard Beans - Far-Eastern species of bean prized for the tenderness of the slender young green pods, ½ inch wide, often growing to 3 feet long. Available seasonally in some Oriental vegetable markets
 
Yard-Long Beans - See Yard Beans
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Marissa View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marissa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 February 2012 at 16:30
As I have just started on cooking from this book, I have found that some of the terms are outdated or at least just don't include more commonly used ones.  For instance:

Djeruk Purut - Dried leaves of Far Eastern wild lime tree. Sold whole in small packets by importers of Indonesian specialties or in some Oriental food stores.  This is kaffir lime leaves.

Laos - Thick root of a Malayan plant of the ginger family. Sold in powdered form or as dried stem pieces in Indonesian or Oriental specialty stores. More commonly called galangal.

Kentjur - Thick root of a tropical Asian plant of the ginger family. Sold dried, sliced or chopped, in jars, by importers of Indonesian specialty foods or in some Oriental food stores.  Lesser galangal.




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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Effigy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 August 2013 at 22:36

As a note to Chayote (which I am certain is actually South American) but it grows well here, so hey....
Also known as Choko or Mirliton. The plants commonly known here in NZ as Choko grow rampant over disused farm buildings, fences and sheds and were universally loathed by most New Zealander's until we got over our xenophobic distrust of 'foreign' food in the 1970's.
With the introduction and acceptance of new flavours came a rash of ways to cook them other than boiling, I love them. They go really well with garlic, cream and cheese, the popular seasonings here being S&P, nutmeg and parsley. They also make great relish and savoury jam.
They are ripe now which is great because there is not much else in the garden in early August; and are a good source of vitamin C and fibre, as well as apparently having diuretic and anti-inflammatory properties.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Effigy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 August 2013 at 23:01
Also...
You missed out Sambal !!!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 August 2013 at 06:52
Interesting note on Chayote, Anne.

Known there as Mirliton, Chayote may as well be the state vegetable of Louisiana. But it's all but unknown in most of the U.S. Most supermarkets do stock it, but the general reaction is "what is that?"
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