Definition of blanch in English:


Syllabification: blanch
Pronunciation: /blan(t)SH


1 [with object] Make white or pale by extracting color; bleach: the cold light blanched her face
More example sentences
  • The wind blew, chilling their coffee and blanching their faces.
  • The glare of the flash blanches some faces, while others are obscured by the frame's edges.
  • The grey of the last forty eight hours had blanched it silver.
turn pale, whiten, lighten, wash out, fadepale, turn pale, turn white, whiten, lose its color, lighten, fade
1.1 [with object] Whiten (a plant) by depriving it of light: blanch endive by covering plants with large flowerpots
More example sentences
  • Planting leeks deep in the soil blanches them, shielding the shanks from the sun and keeping them white, tender, and sweet.
  • When seedlings are 10 to 12 inches tall, hill up the soil around the plant bases to blanch the stems.
  • The traditional way to blanch asparagus is to mound mulch or sand around the spears as they emerge.
2 [no object] (Of a person) grow pale from shock, fear, or a similar emotion: many people blanch at the suggestion their faces blanched with fear
More example sentences
  • The five remaining men blanched and trembled with fear as they were faced with something beyond their reckoning.
  • I saw Mike's parents look at me oddly; his mother seemed to be blanching with fear of what I was going to say.
  • Some of the proposals range from 20 to 30 percent and people blanch at the thought of paying that much.
3 [with object] Prepare (vegetables) for freezing or further cooking by immersing briefly in boiling water.
More example sentences
  • In a separate pot of salted, boiling water, blanch the fava beans, then immediately drain and shock them in an ice bath.
  • The colouring is important and he suggests that the mushrooms are first briefly blanched in boiling water, so they are moist without the need for prolonged cooking.
  • Prepare the tomatoes for the sauce by blanching them in boiling water for 20 seconds.
3.1Peel (almonds) by scalding them: (as adjective blanched) blanched almonds
More example sentences
  • A small handful of soaked and blanched almonds or walnuts makes a nutritious mid-morning or afternoon snack.
  • Before baking, the top is covered with whole blanched almonds.
  • Because I didn't blanch the almonds or pistachios, the cake itself looked a bit dull and not as green as you might fancy.
scald, boil briefly


Middle English: from Old French blanchir, from blanc 'white', ultimately of Germanic origin.

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