Category Archives: Equipment

define: salamander

a culinary broiler characterized by very high temperature overhead infrared heating elements powered by either electricity or gas. primarily used in professional kitchens for broiling. also used for toasting, browning of gratin dishes, melting cheeses onto sandwiches, and caramelizing desserts such as crème brûlée.

not to be confused with this little guy

I first came across this piece of equipment while working in a restaurant at an upscale New York hotel. The salamander was used to brown the cheese that garnished the French Onion Soup, and to cook the Miso Salmon to absolute perfection. It literally took just a couple of minutes for this fiery beast to bring these dishes to golden brown goodness. To mimic the results of a salamander, you can use the broiler function on your toaster oven, or even in the regular oven. Obviously, the temperatures in these appliances do not get as intense as they do in their industrial counterparts, but for a novice chef, like me, it does the job.