Culinary Dictionary  "M"

Our ever growing online community Dictionary and Food and Culinary Terms, Phrases and Cooking Techniques that begin with the letter M.



To ‘marble’ or ‘marbling’ is to gently swirl one food into another. Marbling is usually done with light and dark batters for cakes or cookies. Also, I used to have a cat named Marbles.


Marinate is to soak food in a marinade. When marinating foods, do not use a metal container, as it can react with acidic ingredients to give foods an off flavor. Always marinate foods in the refrigerator, never on the kitchen counter. To reduce cleanup, use a plastic bag set in a bowl or dish to hold the food you are marinating. Discard leftover marinade that has come in contact with raw meat. Or if it’s to be used on cooked meat, bring leftover marinade to a rolling boil before using to destroy any bacteria that may be present.


Mis-En-place (MEEZ ahn plahs) is a French term for having all your ingredients measured, cut, peeled, sliced, grated, etc. before you start cooking. Pans are prepared. Mixing bowls, tools and equipment set out. It is a technique chefs use to assemble meals so quickly and effortlessly. 

A place for everything, and everything in its place.

Mirepoix  (meer-pwah)

A mirepoix is the ultimate trio of diced vegetables, celery , carrots and onion, cooked for a long time on a gentle heat without colour or browning (sweating), usually with butter or other fat or oil. It is not sautéed or hard-cooked, the intention is to sweeten and soften by evaporating the excess moisture of the vegetables, rather than caramelizing them. Almost always the base for soups, stews, sauces etc.


Earlier we  had ‘marinate’ as the Word of the Day, this time it’s ‘Marinade’ which is a seasoned liquid in which meat, poultry, fish, shellfish, or vegetables are soaked to flavor and sometimes tenderize them. Most marinades contain an acid, such as wine or vinegar.


A fortified wine that can be either dry or sweet. Sweet Marsala is used both for drinking and cooking although I find drinking the stuff nearly impossible it’s so sweet. Dry Marsala makes a nice pre-dinner drink. Not really, just cook with it…

Mixology / Mixologist

Mixology is a term used to describe the art of mixing cocktail drink recipes. According to the “Free Dictionary,” the definition of mixology is the study or skill of preparing mixed drinks. A mixologist is a person who mixes and invents cocktail drinks.