que·​nelle kə-ˈnel How to pronounce quenelle (audio)
: a poached oval dumpling of pureed forcemeat (as of pike) often served in a cream sauce

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The matzoh quenelles end up light and crispy on the outside and custard-rich within. Leah Koenig, Washington Post, 31 Mar. 2023 One dish looks like a donut decorated with dots of verjus gel, halved grapes and blueberries, pistachios, two delicate leaves of glacier lettuce and a quenelle of apricot jam. Bahar Anooshahr, The Arizona Republic, 29 Dec. 2022 They’re filled with potato, fontina and mascarpone and served with razor clams and a substantial quenelle of caviar. Caroline Hatchett, Robb Report, 1 July 2022 El Bulli’s chicken curry featured a quenelle of curry ice cream and a cold curry-flavor granita in a pool of coconut milk, with the protein only present in a last-minute savory drizzle of chicken demi-glace. Soleil Ho, San Francisco Chronicle, 11 Apr. 2022 The quenelle, an ivory round of delicate custard formed from fish and cream, dares you not to take its photo. Washington Post, 14 Jan. 2022 The vegetarian kare-kare, for instance, swaps lamb belly with halloumi, served with a round of paratha flatbread to swipe through a soft quenelle of defining peanut sauce. Louisa Chu, chicagotribune.com, 27 Dec. 2021 What appeared to be a chunk of corn on the cob was in fact a sweet, tender replica made of corn custard, served with a quenelle of caviar, gleaming with pecan oil. Tejal Rao, New York Times, 17 Sep. 2019 Use 2 spoons to form the frozen yogurt into quenelle shapes, if desired, and set one or more in each bowl. ExpressNews.com, 4 Dec. 2019 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'quenelle.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


French, from German Knödel dumpling, from Middle High German; akin to Old High German knoto knot — more at knot

First Known Use

1845, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of quenelle was in 1845

Dictionary Entries Near quenelle

Cite this Entry

“Quenelle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quenelle. Accessed 1 Jun. 2023.

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