Definition of flambé in US English:



  • 1postpositive (of food) covered with liquor and set alight briefly.

    ‘crêpes flambé’
    • ‘‘Excuse me,’ Armand spoke up, ‘I can make an ice cream flambé.’’
  • 2Denoting or characterized by a red copper-based porcelain glaze with purple streaks.

verbflambéed, flambés, flambéing

[with object]
  • Cover (food) with liquor and set it alight briefly.

    • ‘The recipe called for the meat to be flambéed in brandy at one point.’
    • ‘Then the hunks of bacon kicked in, along with the caramelized onion and the dusky tones of the brandy with which the beef chunks had been flambéed.’
    • ‘Return the chicken to the pan, flambé with brandy, add the Marsala and cream.’
    • ‘For the more adventurous, there's banana flambéed in tequila to set your mouth on fire.’
    • ‘Another evening, I watch as a waiter flambés my seafood in Madeira wine with delicious results.’


Late 19th century: French, literally ‘singed’, past participle of flamber, from flambe ‘a flame’.