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Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

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braise a verb and also, less often, a noun, indicating a method of cooking with a small amount of liquid in a closed vessel. Some vegetables are braised, but the technique is used mainly for meat dishes. Braised oxtail is a well-known example in England.

The term, derived from the French braiser, first came into use in English in the mid-18th century. Few other languages have a term with the same meaning; for example, there is no Italian or Spanish equivalent. See, however, korma for a Middle Eastern and W. Asian equivalent. And French, the richest language in this respect, has two other terms, à l’étouffée and à l’étuvée, which are virtual equivalents for ‘braised’.