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MADEIRA:
Sweet-amber dessert wine originated on the Portuguese island of Madeira.

MARSALA:
Dry or sweet amber Italian wine from the area of Marsala in Sicily.

MARZIPAN:
Sweetened almond paste made into confections.

MERINGUE:
Mixture of stiffly beaten egg whites and sugar. Also the cooked soft mixture on desserts or the cooked "hard" mixture as a dessert shell.

MOREL:
A wild mushroom shaped like a folded parasol with a distinct nutty flavor. Morels are most easily obtained dried.

MOUSSE:
A cold dessert made with whipped cream or beaten egg whites.

MOZZARELLA CHEESE:
Rindless white, mild-tasting Italian variety of cheese, traditionally made from water buffalo's milk and sold fresh. Commercially produced and packaged, cow's milk mozzarella is now much more common, although it has less flavor.

NEW YORK STEAK:
Beefsteak cut from sirloin; prized for its tenderness and flavor.

PARFAIT:
A dessert made of layers of fruit, syrup, ice cream and whipped cream or beaten egg whites.

PARMESAN CHEESE:
Hard, thick crusted Italian cheese with a sharp, salty full flavor resulting from at least two years of aging.

PEARS:
Subtlety sweet and aromatic and smooth to grainy in texture. A favorite fruit for eating or cooking year round.
Varieties of Pears

PETIT FOUR:
Small, decoratively iced cake.

POLENTA:
A very thick mush usually made from cornmeal or farina, used in main dishes and as accompaniment.

POTAGE:
Soup.

PROFITEROLE:
Tiny cream puff, filled with sweet or savory mixtures, served as dessert or hors d'oeuvre.

PROSCIUTO:
Italian-style cured and spiced ham, served sliced paper thin.


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