Abalone – A mollusk, related to a sea snail, similar in flavor to a clam. It may be cooked by various methods and is best suited to very long or very short cooking times. Also called “Awabi” in Japanese cuisine and “Loco” in South American cuisine. It has been over-harvested and is very expensive when available. A small amount is being commercial raised.
Al Dente – A term, meaning “to the bite”, used to describe the correct degree of doneness for pasta and vegetables. This is not exactly a procedure, but a sensory evaluation for deciding when the food is finished cooking. Pasta should retain a slight resistance when biting into it, but should not have a hard center.
Alfredo – A pasta sauce originally consisting of butter, cream, and the finest parmesan cheese available. Modern versions add garlic, peas, and less expensive parmesan. All of these will make fine sauces, but nothing can compare to the original version.
Andouille – A sausage made from the stomach and the intestines of pork. The sausage is dried and smoked, then boiled or steamed to finish cooking.Andouille sausage is used regularly in Creole cooking, but it is popular in French cooking as well. The Creole version of this sausage is much spicier than those made in France.
Anna Potatoes – The name for a potato pancake made of thin slices of potato which are assembled in concentric circles and cooked with liberal amounts of butter. The cake is then baked until crisp and golden brown.
Antipasto – ‘The Italian word for snacks served before a meal. These are dishes to peak one’s appetite, not quench it. This may consist of one or more dishes of all types of food. Common elements of an antipasto table are cured meats and salamis, olives, marinated vegetables, and cheese.
Artichoke – A name shared by three unrelated plants: the globe artichoke, Jerusalem artichoke and Chinese (or Japanese) artichoke. Considered the true artichoke, the globe artichoke is cultivated mainly in California’s mid-coastal region. It is the bud of a large plant from the thistle family and has tough, petal shaped leaves. They are available year-round, with the peak season March through May. Buy deep green, heavy for their size artichokes with a tight leaf formation.
Asafetida – A spice used in India and the Middle East for cooking or as a condiment to be sprinkled over food after it has been cooked. It has a bitter taste and a pungent aroma similar to garlic and truffles.
Aspic – A jelly made from stock, fumet, wine, or fruit juices used to mold dishes. These preparations are often elaborately decorated for use on buffets. Both savory and sweet foods are set in aspic. Cubes of aspic are a common garnish to fine pGtTs and foie gras.
Check out the rest at http://www.culinarysoftware.com/glossA.htm ( content above adapted from this website )