...All purpose flour comes from wheat and though wheat is cultivated all around the world today, it was first cultivated in Turkey 10,000 years ago. All purpose flour is white in color and has a soft texture. This incredibly versatile flour is used in everything from breads, cakes, pastries, crackers, pasta, sauces and much more because of its pleasing and mild flavor that is slightly nutty and buttery. The gluten protein is what helps hold together breads and other products, part of what makes all purpose wheat flour so popular.
...Vegetable oil is obtained by extracting oil from seeds. Types of vegetable oil include canola, sunflower, corn, and safflower. Light and with a neutral taste, vegetable oils are used to fry foods, or can be used to lightly coat meats and vegetables before roasting. Vegetable oils are also used as ingredients in salad dressings and sauces.
...Sugar comes from sugar cane and sugar beets. The sugar is extracted from the juice of both plants and refined into the granulated substance known as sugar. Sucrose, the sweet substance of sugar is a combination of glucose and fructose. White sugar is composed of tiny white, dry granules. The flavor is sweet and neutral. Brown sugar is brown and has more moisture, with a richer flavor that hints at molasses. Sugar is used in both sweet and savory foods.
...Milk is almost always sourced come from cows. Sometimes sheep, goat, yak and water buffalo milk are used. In general, store bough milk comes from a cow, unless specified otherwise. Whole milk is white, or cream colored and has a higher fat content than skim milk and therefore a creamier and richer texture and flavor. The flavor is mild and bland with a hint of savory sweetness and is satisfying, especially due to its creaminess. Milk is served as a beverage and used in a multitude of dishes both sweet and savory.
...Eggs are an incredibly versatile protein and binder. Most eggs used in cooking come from hens and are usually unfertilized. Eggs are oval shaped and roughly 53 mm in length and 40 mm in width. Eggs have a hard, but thin and delicate shell that is brown or white and occasionally green. Inside is the clear and glossy white, with a slimy texture and in the center is the yellow opaque, round shaped yolk. Once cooked, the whites become opaque. Eggs can be scrambled, fried, boiled, and more. They are used in desserts and baked goods as a binder. Egg is also used as a wash to glaze items or dip meat into before breading it. The flavor is mild and sulfurous. It has many uses.
...Pecans are a nut related to the hickory tree. They have hard, thin oblong shells with pointed ends and grey brown colors. The nut of the pecan is a warm brown tone and has a flat oblong shape, with a top that contains two indented lines downs its length with thin ridge in its middle. The pecan has a rich and buttery flavor that is sweet and nutty. Pecans are popular in the American south and are found in sweet and savory dishes.
...Maple syrup comes from the sap of the maple tree and is cooked down into a syrupy consistency. The color varies from a pale to dark amber. The darker the color is, the stronger the flavor will be. Maple syrup is broken down into four categories all under the name Grade A, with four levels of varying color and flavor. Darker syrup will be slightly thicker than light colored syrups. The flavor of a light maple is sweet and a warm. Darker syrups have a more robust flavor and a slightly caramel taste. Maple syrups is used to drizzle on pancakes, baked into desserts as a flavoring, and can be used in savory dishes from ham to vegetables. Like many sweeteners, it is a multi-use item.
...Margarine is a non dairy imitation butter spread. It is made from vegetable oils and has the same consistency of butter. Margarine is a combination of vegetable oil, water and may contain a small amount of milk. The fat content of margarine varies, but often it must have a minimum of 80% fat to be considered a margarine spread. The spread is cream colored and has a buttery taste. Margarine is used in exactly the same way butter would be used.
...Vinegar is made from alcohol. It can be made from wine, fermented apple, grains and other sources. Healthy bacteria is used to ferment this product. The final result is a thin liquid used to season foods. All vinegar is sour. White vinegar has a sharp sour flavor and is clear. Red wine vinegar is a clear red color and tastes a bit more rounded. Balsamic vinegar is dark red or brown and tastes rich, fruity and sour. There are many other kinds of vinegar, each with its own unique flavor profile. Some types of vinegar are suited to specific flavors and cuisines. It is used in sauces and in dishes both sweet and savory.
...Vanilla extract is a flavoring used in baked goods, candies and drinks. It is made by infusing alcohol with vanilla pods or beans. This mixture sits for some months and is then strained. It is also extracted using heat and alcohol. The result of either is a thin brown liquid that smells and tastes like vanilla. It has a rich and gentle sweetness to its flavor.
...Baking soda is a crucial component in non-yeasted baked goods and acts as an instant leavener with the acids in the batter. It is used for cakes, quick breads and many flour-based baked goods. Baking soda is a fine white powder with a salty and bitter taste.
...Salt is a mineral composed mostly of sodium chloride. It is the main flavoring used in food and is naturally occurring in certain foods, such as cheese, beets, meat and celery, plus many others. Salt is white and has finer granules than sugar. Many commercial salts include iodide, while others exclude it. Most salts are white, while some are naturally pale pink with minerals. Salt brings out the flavor of something and can create a tangy mouthfeel, if used in excess.