Bain-Marie - Defined with Recipes

Steam Table with Covered Dishes, Cases, and Bain Marie

Steam Table with Covered Dishes, Cases, and Bain Marie © 1916 The Epicurean

Bain-Marie----A foreign culinary term for a hot water bath in which are kept the pots or saucepans containing sauces, garnitures, entrees, soups, etc., that require to be kept hot without reaching the boiling point.

A double kettle of any kind, the inner vessel surrounded by water, like a farina-kettle or glue-pot.

A Dutch oven and a bain-marie with its set of saucepans are both essentials in a kitchen. The Dutch oven is invaluable for cooking fish and other small dishes in front of the fire, and in the bain-marie any stew, hash, mince, sauce, vegetable, macaroni, or similar cooked dishes can be kept hot in a surrounding bath of boiling water, or can be gently heated up when required, without the least risk. If they were set on the hot plate, even at some distance from the fire, they would certainly dry up and spoil, owing to the bottom heat, and they might even burn at the bottom of the pan.

Four-Pan Bain-Marie

Four-Pan Bain-Marie © 1920 The Epicurean

Recipes Utilzing a Bain-Marie


Proper name of "mush,” which is but a provincialism. Made of oatmeal, cornmeal, graham meal, fine hominy or grits, ground rice, farina, graham farina, cracked wheat, rolled oats, etc.

Some of these need to be soaked in water for some hours before cooking. They are all made into porridge by simply boiling in the requisite quantity of water, and best if in a double kettle or bain-marie.


Pudding material made from wheat; it is like sifted corn-meal to the touch. There are two kinds, one being Graham farina, which is used principally for making mush or porridge for breakfast or supper; takes 3 oz. to a quart of water or milk; requires long cooking in a bain-marie or double kettle; pastry cooks let it simmer in milk for puddings at side of the range, then mix in sugar, butter and eggs, and bake.

Farina Custard Pudding

Made thin with farina boiled in milk, and thickened with sufficient yolks, sugar, butter, flavoring; baked; served with sauce. Boiled Farina Pudding— Made with 3 oz. in 1 qt. milk; simmered till thick, little sugar, butter, 2 yolks; served in saucers with thick lemon-syrup sauce.

Consommé with Farina

Soup first made clear; 1 oz. farina to each qt., washed, and simmered in it till transparent. Farina Cup Custard—Boiled custard, of 1 oz. to 1 qt. milk, well cooked in it, 4 yolks to each quart, sugar, flavor; made cold in ice water; served in cups. Farina Ice-Cream —Cup-custard frozen; it is also called Frozen Farina-Pudding.


An ounce of bruised aniseed, an ounce of bruised coriander seed, two ounces of powdered Florence iris, the zests of two oranges; put them with three quarts of distilled brandy into the alembic bain-marie; dissolve two pounds and a half of sugar in two pints and a half of clear river water, add them to the distilled liqueur, pass the whole through a strainer, and put into bottles.

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