Mirepoix

And now for a fancy French cooking term that will boost your culinary street cred when dropped casually in conversation. Mirepoix (pronounced meer-uh-pwa) is a mix of coarsely chopped onions, carrots and celery – the holy trinity of French cuisine.

Many soups, sauces, stews, stocks and other dishes begin with mirepoix as the first building block of flavor. The vegetables are roughly chopped and typically cooked in oil or butter, just until they begin to soften, before other ingredients are added. Other ingredients like bacon or veggies like leeks or turnips can be added to the mix for specific dishes, but a traditional mirepoix consists of two parts onion and one part each of carrots and celery.

Mirepoix is not to be confused with the creole holy trinity of onions, green bell peppers and celery or what many would argue is the true trinity of French cooking — butter, cream and shallots.

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