Conversions and translations British, American and Danish

Conversions and translations British, American and Danish

Hi, sorry to bug you again. This post is one on measurements  and more of a reference post.  Saying that if anyone wants to get involved in some kitchen science I would love some feedback. Also what measurements do you use regularly?  I always thought baking was an exact science but since it seems I have been skipping between worlds and still producing edible results.  This all started with my Ultimate Chocolate Chip Recipe. I noticed that I was using more flour than most of the recipes online suggested.  I was working in cups that day, its an American recipe, but using Danish flour.  And that is the caveat, I knew the recipe and knew the consistency I was looking for, so I kept adding flour.  As I keep saying my recipes, all recipes are a starting point. I must confess when cooking I barely measure at all but use what I have to hand and keep going until it seems finished.  Baking is a bit different but it looks as though there is still a little wiggle room there too.

A WORD ON MEASUREMENTS.

I grew up with good old fashioned ounces and to be honest cannot get my head around grams, they will forever be a mystery to me.  Having spent 15 years in America I can see the attraction of cups. Certain recipes just work in their original system of measurement, I would not dream of making scones in anything but cups, the beauty being that a recipe based totally on cups works with any cup.  

A basic cake on the other hand should be made with imperial measures.  The Victoria sandwich is based on the measurement of an egg, which just happens to be around 2 ounces, and for every egg you add the same amount of butter, sugar and self raising flour.  Any self respecting eight year old can remember that recipe!

As grams and ounces are both weight measurements they can be interchanged, up to a point. One ounces is 28g. The choice is whether to round up or down to 25g which is fine as long as all ingredients are by weight.  Nigella amends the classic Victoria Sponge Recipe and uses 125g instead of the exact conversion of 112g. Ms Lawson increases the liquid volume by adding a little milk to the two eggs. It seems to work well and gives a perfect amount of batter for 12 cupcakes.

Cups are a volume measurement and are less consistent. I have been using conversions I found on trusted websites for flour and sugar. For example a cup of regular flour is often quoted as being 41/2 ounces.  Recently however I was checking a recipe and discovered I was getting substantially different results. The regular flour I have been using here in Denmark gave me a figure of 5.1 ounces.  I asked my kitchen Guru, Caroline Burke to check back in Darien.  Apparently Stop’n’ shop AP flour comes in at 51/2 ounces. Caroline also quoted a conversation by Barricelli of SoNo Bakery who observed  that not all flours are born equal. So where does that leave us?  A little confused to be honest.  I am going to check all my recipes and try and make sure they are correct. I have also been checking tablespoons and milliliters. I have been using 1 tablespoon to 15 ml. Turns out a British Tablespoon is nearer 18.  Do you know that feeling when you wish you had not started something?

My advice to any bakers would be to invest in a set of scales which converts from ounces to grams and have a set of cups handy as well. I will star* the original measurements but try and give conversions where possible. Remember only use one set of measurements for each recipe and do not switch between metric, imperial and cups.( Although now that I start checking recipes I see that I often use a mixture, ah the joys of international travel!)

Measured in my kitchen November 1st!

1 cup self raising flour 5.1 oz

1 cup all purpose flour 5.4 oz 154g

1 cup 00 flour 4.7 oz 133g

1 cup regular sugar 7.4oz 209g

1 cup icing sugar 5.2 oz 152g

1 cup oat flakes 4oz 212g

Taken from the Internet

Dry Ingredients: Do not believe the dry cup measurements! See my comments above.

All-Purpose Flour: 1 cup = 4 1/2 oz = 126g
Bread Flour: 1 cup = 4 1/2 oz = 126g
Whole Wheat Flour: 1 cup = 4 1/2 oz = 126g
Cake Flour: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g
Pastry Flour: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g
White Granulated Sugar: 1 cup = 7 oz = 196g
Brown Sugar: 1 cup = 7 1/2 oz = 210g
Powdered Sugar: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g
Chopped Nuts: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g

Liquid Ingredients:

Most liquids: 1 cup = 8 oz 240ml
Water: 1 cup = 8 oz 240 ml
Milk: 1 cup = 8 oz 240ml
Cream: 1 cup = 8 oz 240ml
Yogurt: 1 cup = 8 oz 240ml
Sour Cream: 1 cup = 8 oz 240ml
Honey: 1 cup = 12 oz 360ml

An American pint (16 ounces)is not equal to a British pint(20 ounces)

American to British ( to Danish in good time)

Below find some common translations, which I confess I adapted from another website.  Only now I cannot find it again to give you the link.  Will keep looking.

Once I find time I will start adding the Danish translations.

Vegetables:

  • Eggplant is an aubergine (UK,DK).
  • Zucchini (US, AU) is a courgette (UK) Squash (DK)when harvested young or a marrow (UK) when allowed to mature further.
  • Summer Squash (US) are members of the squash family with a short storage life typically harvested before full maturity; typically available starting in the spring and summer; includes zucchini, yellow and crookneck squash.
  • Winter Squash (US) are members of the squash family that are allowed to reach full maturity before harvesting; typically available in the fall; includes pumpkin, acorn and butternut squash.
  • Arugula (US) is rocket (UK, AU).
  • Rutabaga (US) is swede (UK, AU), but also called turnip or neep in some parts of the UK, particularly Scotland. (Wikipedia)
  • Endive (US) is chicory (Belgium, perhaps others).
  • Capsicum (AU) / bell pepper (US) is a pepper (UK)
  • Peppers (US) (note the plural), is typically short for chili peppers unless qualified as sweet peppers or bell peppers, or specified as peppercorn.
  • Colored peppers (US), (eg, red peppers, green peppers), typically refers to bell peppers unless qualified (eg, ‘hot red peppers’, ‘small red peppers’)
  • Pepper (US) (note the singular) refers to black peppercorns unless otherwise qualified.
  • Red pepper (US, note the singular) refers to dried, red chilies (typically cayenne) that has been dried and ground or crushed.
  • Seaweed (US) has many names based on type of plant, including Kombu (Japan), Nori (Japan), Laver (Wales), and many others. See (edible seaweed)
  • Snow peas (US, AU) are mange tout (UK) (word borrowed from French meaning ‘eat everything’). Mange tout (UK) also includes sugar snap peas (US).
  • Peanuts (US) may sometimes be sold in the UK as monkey nuts, especially if unshelled. And Peanut Oil may be known in the UK as groundnut oil.
  • Legumes (US) are pulses (UK). ‘Legume’ may refer to the plant and not the seeds (lentils, beans, etc).
  • Boiling potatoes (US) are waxy potatoes (UK, US). This refers to low-starch potatoes that don’t fall apart when cooked. Sometimes called roasting potatoes (US). New potatoes behave like waxy potatoes, even if they come from a variety used for baking. The concept of new, straight from the earth potatoes does not seem to exist in US.
  • Mealy potatoes (US) are floury potatoes (UK) or baking potatoes (UK, US). This refers to high starch, low moisture potatoes that result in significant softening when cooked (useful for mashed potatoes or using for thickening; the opposite of waxy potatoes).
  • Runner Beans (UK) are green beans or string beans (US, CA). UK also has green beans and stringless beans, but neither is the same as runner beans.
  • Broad Beans (UK) are fava beans, butter beans or lima beans (US, CA)
  • Sultanas (UK) are seedless golden raisins (
  • Spring onions (AK, AU, CA), Scallions (US), and green onions may not always be the same thing, but can typically be substituted for each other. (more details).

Herbs, Spices & Seasonings:

  • Kosher(ing) salt (US) is flaked salt (UK). Some sea salts may be appropriate substitutes
  • Cilantro (US) is known as Coriander (UK), and it tends to refer to the leaf, unless qualified as coriander seed. May be qualified as fresh coriander or green coriander. Ground coriander is always the seed.
  • Coriander (US) refers to the seed.
  • Celeriac (UK, AU, US) is celery root (US)
  • Stock cubes (AU) are bouillon cubes (US).

Baked Goods:

  • Cookies (US, CA) are biscuits (UK).
  • Biscuits (US, CA) are similar to a scone (UK, AU), and usually neither sweet nor savory. Note: bisquit (Germany, no plural) is sponge cake (US).
  • Graham Crackers (US) are roughly analogous to Digestive biscuits in the UK (both may be used to make a crust or dessert base, for example).
  • Muffin (US, AU) is a quick bread (typically using the ‘muffin method’) baked in forms used for cupcakes. It increasingly has this meaning in the UK too, with the prevalence of American-style coffee-shop chains. Muffin (UK) is english muffin (US, AU), a yeast leavened flat-ish bread, cooked on a griddle with a ring form.
  • Scone (US, CA) tends to be sweeter than a scone (UK).
  • Pancake (US, CA) Pikelet generally refers to puffy item made from a thick leavened batter. Pancake can go by a number of names in the US, including hotcakes, griddlecakes, flapjacks and hoecakes.
  • Pancake (UK) is made from a thinner unleavened batter, with a result a little thicker than a french crêpe. Drop scone (or scotch pancake) (UK) is similar to a (US, CA) pancake
  • Flapjack (US) is the same thing as a (US) pancake. But flapjack (UK) is a baked square usually consisting of sugar/honey/golden syrup, butter, and oats.
  • Frosting (US) is icing (UK). In the US, frosting typically has air whipped into it, while icing (US) doesn’t and dries harder.
  • Turnover (US) or hand pie (US) is pasty (ˈpas-tē) (UK). (Pasties (ˈpās-tēz) in the US are coverings to comply with nudity laws in strip clubs.) Turnover (US,UK) in the UK is a puff pastry shell, usually triangular, filled with fruit and whipped cream.
  • Flan (US) is créme caramel (UK)

Flour:

  • plain flour (UK) is all-purpose flour (US) (aka ‘AP flour’ or just ‘AP’ on cooking shows) unless otherwise qualified (eg, ‘plain, strong flour’) in which case it just means ‘not self-rising’. Note that AP flour in the US South (eg, White Lily brand) tends to be softer than northern and national brands of AP flour (eg, King Arthur, Gold Mill, Pillsbury).
  • soft flour (UK) is lower gluten than AP flour, such as pastry flour (US) or cake flour (US)
  • strong flour (UK) aka. hard flour (UK) is higher gluten flour, such as bread flour (US)
  • self-rising flour (US) is available in the US, but less common. It is referred to as self-raising flour in the UK . Although it has baking powder in it, it does not have fat in it such as Bisquick or other ‘baking mixes’.
  • wholemeal flour (UK) is whole wheat flour (US)

Meats:

  • Ground beef (US) is minced beef (AU) or simply mince (UK).
  • Canadian bacon (US) is also back bacon (from the loin).
  • Bacon (CA, US) is streaky bacon (UK) (from the belly). In the UK, bacon is most likely back bacon.
  • Gammon (UK) is “ham-like bacon from the pig’s hindquarters” (Farmhouse Cookery)
  • Pork rinds (US) are scratchings (UK, when dry) and crackling ( UK when fresh from a roast).
  • Brawn (UK) is head cheese (US, CA) (Farmhouse Cookery)
  • Names of cuts of meat in the US may differ from other countries. See Wikipedia for images of US and British names of regions
  • Prawns (AU, UK) and shrimp (US) are technically different animals, but are frequently labeled by the more common one in that country, and are often substituted for each other.

Dairy:

  • Cream (US) with 5% butterfat is Single cream (UK), while cream with 48% butterfat (US) is double cream in the UK.
  • Half-and-half (US) = a mix of half cream, half milk (about 12.5% butterfat)
  • Light cream (US) = cream with 18 to 30% fat. But in Canada light cream = cream with 5 to 6% fat.
  • Whipping cream (US) = cream with 30 to 36% fat, whereas whipping cream (CA) = cream with 35% milk fat.
  • Heavy cream (US) aka heavy whipping cream (US) = cream with more than 36% fat
  • Buttermilk (US, modern usage, aka ‘cultured buttermilk’) is a fermented product, basically a runny yogurt, while historically buttermilk is the liquid left over after churning butter, which when fresh is closer to skim milk.
  • Sour cream (US) = soured cream (UK)

Sugar:

  • powdered sugar or confectioners sugar (US) is icing sugar (UK); contains cornstarch (~3%) as an anti-clumping agent.
  • superfine sugar (US, CA) is caster sugar (UK); may also be called berry sugar(CA), fruit sugar (CA), bar sugar, castor sugar, instant dissolving sugar, ultrafine sugar, fondant sugar, or extra fine sugar.
  • sanding sugar (US) is pearl sugar (CA). (size between coarse sugar & granulated sugar)
  • unless otherwise qualified, sugar (US, CA) is granulated sugar

Other Food / Ingredients:

  • entree (US) is the main course. Entree (AU) is a starter course, or appetizer (US) course. (ref)
  • dessert (US) is pudding, sweets, dessert or afters (UK, depending on region and social class). Pudding is always a cooked item, while dessert may be fresh fruit or other non-cooked item.
  • pudding (US) is roughly equiv. to custard (UK)
  • jello (US; brand name issues) is jelly (UK, AU)
  • jelly (US) is seedless jam (UK) (see answer below for details)
  • fries (US, abbr. for french fries) are chips (UK); both terms work in AU, as does hot chips
  • chips (UK) are steak fries (US), rather than the typical American shoestring fries
  • chips (US, AU) are crisps (UK)
  • cornstarch (US) is cornflour (UK)
  • corn flour (US; aka fine corn meal) , a finer ground version of cornmeal (US,UK) or polenta (US,UK). Cornflour (UK) is the extracted starch derived from the raw corn kernal, not the dry ground flesh of the whole kernal. Also called masa harina (US) if made from nixtamalized corn.
  • cider (US) is unfiltered (cloudy) juice, commonly from apples, while cider (UK) is an alcoholic beverage made from apple juice (aka. hard cider (US) or scrumpy (UK) for stronger dry ciders). cider (AU) refers to both the alcoholic beverage and any non-alcoholic carbonated apple juice.
  • liquid smoke (US) is condensed smoke, used as a flavoring.
  • black beer (UK) is a malt liquor/fortified wine containing malt.
  • black beer (US, Germany), also called black lager or schwarzbier is a type of lager brewed with extremely dark malt.
  • tomato sauce (UK, US) is a tomato based sauce typically for pasta or pizza.
  • marinara (US) is used synonymously with tomato sauce, and may refer to both quick or long-cooked varieties.
  • tomato paste (US) is tomato purée (UK)
  • tomato purée (US) is unreduced tomatoes (possibly stewed) with the skin and seeds removed. Also called crushed tomatoes.
  • tomato passata (UK) (sometimes just ‘passata’) is strained tomato purée (US).
  • golden syrup (UK) is dark cane sugar syrup (US, CA); corn syrup is an acceptable substitute although I would never use it.
  • rapeseed oil (UK) is Canola oil (US). (abbreviation for “Canada oil, low acid”)
  • vegetable oil (US) is any flavorless oil with a decent smoke point. It may be soy, corn, or a blend, but you can use peanut (groundnut (UK)), canola (rapeseed (UK)), or extra light (notextra virgin) olive oil.
  • oats (US) unless qualified are ‘old fashioned’ or ‘rolled oats’, not groats (which are sold as ‘pinhead oats’), ‘Steel cut oats’ (cut up groats but not flattened, aka. ‘Irish oatmeal’), nor ‘instant oats’ (flattened & parcooked).
  • granola (US) is a cooked sweetened oat dish that may include nuts or dried fruit, and may be pressed into bars. It looks similar to muesli (UK) which is raw oats, nuts and fruit.
  • trail mix (US) is a mixture of nuts and dried fruit. It may include granola, seeds (eg. sunflower) or chocolate (typically in the form of M&Ms)
  • Smarties (UK) are similar to the candy M&Ms Smarties (DK)
  • Smarties (US) are compressed sugar pellets (similar to PEZ tablets, but round with concave sides, packaged in rolls with twisted ends)
  • Candy (US) is sweets (UK) Slik (DK)

Cooking methods:

  • broiling (US) is grilling (UK) which is cooking with heat from above as in some ovens or restaurant salamanders.
  • grilling (US) is barbecuing UK) which is cooking with heat from below, typically on a metal rack over a vessel of burning wood or charcoal, or a gas burner.
  • barbecuing (US) is slow cooking using wood or charcoal to impart smoke to the food.
  • barbeque (US) (sometimes abbreviated BBQ) may refer to the either food cooked through barbequeing, or the device on which it is cooked.

Tools / Equipment / Non-food items :

  • parchment paper (US, CA) is greaseproof paper (Ireland/ UK)
  • stove (US, CA, AU) is also range (US, CA) and hob (UK). Hob can refer to both the stove as a whole, or an individual burner (aka. heating element).
  • crock pot (US; brand name issues) is a slow cooker (US, UK, AU). Also slo-cooker (UK; brand name issues)
  • food processor (US) is sometimes a magimix (UK; brand name issues)
  • canned items (US) are tinned (UK, AU). Items ‘canned’ in glass jars would be described as either preserved or pickled (if in vinegar) in the UK
  • aluminum foil (US), aluminium foil (UK,) is often referred to as tinfoil (US, UK), which had previously been in use for similar purposes.
  • plastic wrap (US), cling film (UK), cling wrap (AU) is often referred to as Saran™ wrap (US brand name)
  • liquidiser (UK) is a blender (US, CA).
  • skillet (US) is a frying pan (US, UK). (a type of low-sided round cooking vessel with handle (pan (US)), with angled sides.)
  • paper towels (US) are kitchen towels or kitchen roll in other countries.
  • dish towels (US), aka kitchen towels (US) or tea towels (UK), are reusable cloth towels.

Units of measurement & sizing :

  • teaspoon (US,UK, CA) is 5 mL (note: abbreviated ‘t’ or ‘tsp’)
  • dessert spoon (UK) is 10 mL (although may have historically been closer to 15mL)
  • tablespoon (US,CA) is roughly 15 mL (note: abbreviated ‘T’, ‘TB’, or ‘tbsp’) but a tablespoon(UK) is 17.7mL and tablespoon (AU) is 20 mL. Historical British cookbooks may use an ~25mL tablespoon. (more details).
  • A stick of butter (US) is 1/4 lb (113 g); the physical stick is marked into eight “tablespoon” divisions [slightly larger than an actual tablespoon, roughly 14g each]
  • A knob of butter (UK) is somewhere around 2 TB (US), but is an inexact measure.
  • A pat of butter (US) is between 1 and 2 tsp (5 to 10 mL), most commonly 48 per lb, or ~1.5 tsp. (~9.5 grams, 7.5mL)
  • A cup (US) for cooking is a fixed measure of ~236mL (8 fluid ounces, 16 TB, 1/2 a US pint); Other countries may use a 225mL ‘cup’ or 250mL ‘metric cup’ (AU, and some regions of CA?)
  • A cup of coffee or tea (when measuring electric kettles) may be based on 5 or 6 oz ‘cups’. Always look for the volume in mL or L when buying such items.
  • A cup of uncooked rice (for rice cooker instructions) is 175mL, roughly 3/4 of a US cup.
  • A pint (UK, AU) is 20 Imperial fluid ounces (568.261 mL), while a pint (US) is 16 fluid ounces (473.176 mL).
  • A gas mark (UK) refers to the dials on some British gas ovens (Farmhouse Cookery). The marks from 1 to 9 correspond roughly to 275 – 475 °F (at 25 °F intervals) or 140 – 250 °C (at 10 °C intervals) (more detail below)
  • A tin (UK) of tomatoes is the sized can that it’s typically sold in. For many vegetables, this is a 400mL / ~14oz container, but is not a constant (for example, anchovies or tomato paste). (ref)
  • Unless otherwise qualified, assume an egg is about 60 grams. (a ‘large egg‘ (US,CA), but a ‘medium egg‘ in Europe). (ref)

 

Taken from the Internet

Dry Ingredients: Do not believe the cup measurements! See my comments above.

All-Purpose Flour: 1 cup = 4 1/2 oz = 126g
Bread Flour: 1 cup = 4 1/2 oz = 126g
Whole Wheat Flour: 1 cup = 4 1/2 oz = 126g
Cake Flour: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g
Pastry Flour: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g
White Granulated Sugar: 1 cup = 7 oz = 196g
Brown Sugar: 1 cup = 7 1/2 oz = 210g
Powdered Sugar: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g
Chopped Nuts: 1 cup = 4 oz = 112g

Liquid Ingredients:

Most liquids: 1 cup = 8 oz
Water: 1 cup = 8 oz
Milk: 1 cup = 8 oz
Cream: 1 cup = 8 oz
Yogurt: 1 cup = 8 oz
Sour Cream: 1 cup = 8 oz
Honey: 1 cup = 12 oz
Oil: 1 cup = 7.5 oz
Butter: 1 cup = 8 oz

For those who prefer grams: 1 ounce = about 28 grams

 

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4 thoughts on “Conversions and translations British, American and Danish”

  • This is wonderful! My daughter lives in New Zealand and has been figuring out most ‘alternate’ names, but this will undoubtedly help her, and me when I visit (again)! Thank you!

    • Being in a new place can be so frustrating. I came home with Chervil not parsley the other day! It took me 15 years in American before I could find all the ingredients I needed, and then we moved to Denmark. The flour thing is kind of freaking me out though as there seems to be a huge variance and it is such a basic ingredient for so many things!

  • Love this post! I needed it when I moved from Israel (and Paris on the way) to the USA and tried to impress my future husband with my cooking. I collected recopies from friends in Paris before leaving for Texas. Little did I know that not only the measurements are different but the fat content and more. The French butter is rich and creamy, nothing like the American butter. The French flour was heavier and denser.
    I think that is the reason I stopped baking and focused on cooking with out measurements just based on feel and eyeball test.
    I have to admit that I don’t know what a Victoria Sandwich is. LOL

    • You would have had fun at cafe call yesterday. We got started on types of flour, protein and gluten contents and wheat substitutes. I was enjoying myself so much I lost track of time and almost missed my next appointment. Victoria sponge post on my to do list but it is a basic sponge cake, maybe similar to a yellow cake in the US? The recipe is so straightforward anyone can remember it so no box mix required.

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