(Many words are linked to an online dictionary where you can find out more about the word, like definitions, example sentences, translations, synonyms, pronunciation etc.)
In Part I, I gave some reasons why it's better to explain unfamiliar food than to translate it, and some general advice on how to explain it.
In this part, I'll start explaining an important part of explaining food: cooking methods.
Here's a table of many cooking methods:
As you can see there are a lot, so I will focus on the most common ones; or least, my favourite ones :) .
In this part I'll explain baking and roasting. Click "Read More" to continue...
Baking is a method of cooking something with dry heat, usually in an oven. Using a heat source like gas or electricity (or sometimes wood), the air in the oven is made so hot that the hot air bakes the food.
Baked foods are usually made from flour, mixed into dough or batter. The baking process changes the strucure of the food, so that the dough becomes something else. Some examples of baked foods are bread, cakes, pies, biscuits (US: cookies) and pizzas. A place that sells baked goods is a bakery. A person who bakes is a baker, which is also a surname.
More info: Wikipedia - Baking.
More images: baking, baked, baker, baked goods, bakery, dough, batter.
Roasting is a method of cooking using dry heat. You can roast either inside an oven or over a fire. Using a heat source like gas, electricity or even charcoal, the air around the food is made so hot that the hot air roasts the food.
If you want to roast food over a fire, you often push a skewer or a spit through it. No, not spit from your mouth. "Spit" can have another meaning: a spit is a metal pin pushed through food to hold the food over the fire and turn it so that it is roasted evenly. This style of roasting while turning, and the mechanical equipment for it, can be also called "rotisserie". The word rotisserie comes from the French for "roasting place".
The most common types of food that are roasted are meat (like beef) and poultry (like chicken, turkey and duck), but sometimes vegetables like potatoes too. Food that has been roasted may be called "roast..." (more common) or "roasted...". For example both "roast chicken" and "roasted chicken" are possible, although I prefer to say "roast...".
Roast beef is such a typical dish of English cooking that the word has entered other languages like French. In fact, in France "rosbif" can mean more than just food, it can also be a nickname (even an insult) for English people! Don't worry, the English have their own cuisine-based insult for the French; they call them frogs, because of the French dish of frogs' legs.
Roasting can also be done to coffee beans to give them extra flavour. Go into Starbucks and you are sure to see coffee names with the word "roast", like "French roast".
More info: Wikipedia - Roasting, Coffee Roasting, Rotisserie
More images: roasting, roasting in oven, roasting over fire, roast, roasted, roast beef, Sunday roast, spit OR skewer, rotisserie, roasting coffee beans,
Difference between Baking and Roasting
If both are done in an oven, baking and roasting are basically the same technique: the main difference is the type of food and how the food is affected.
Baking is usually (but not always) for foods that are made of liquids, powders and pastes (like flour, dough, batter etc) that change structure as they cook, usually becoming more solid.
Roasting is for foods that whose structure doesn't change much. If we put meat or vegetables in the oven and cook them with a dry heat, we call them roast or roasted.
But there are exceptions, for example baked potatoes or baked ham.
In fact you can have both baked potatoes and roast potatoes!
Roast potatoes are often peeled and usually cut into pieces, then put into a roasting tin with some fat or oil. They are crunchy and golden when finished, and often a little oily.
Baked potatoes are usually cooked whole, in their skin, with no fat or oil. After they are cooked, they are cut open. The inside is usually soft, white and dry. Sometimes extra ingredients like butter and cheese are added on top, because a plain baked potato is rather boring.
Baking vs Roasting
The difference between these two cooking methods (baking vs roasting) is confusing even for native English speakers. During my research for these articles, I found many online discussions (even arguments) about the difference between baking and roasting.
Here's a search showing examples:
Well, that's the end of Part II. I'll explain more cooking methods in Part III. I hope it'll be useful for you in explaining your native food to a foreign visitor or understanding an explanation of foreign food.
All photos are copyright of their respective owners. Click on photo to see source, author etc.
G.A.L.E.S.L. / joe3
Some tips and links on learning English.