Have you had dishes at restaurants that you really felt curious about? Maybe you’ve fantasized about being able to cook that well at home. This article will give you the knowledge you need to create these dishes, or even new ones, from your own home. Many people enjoy cooking and find it to be a relaxing hobby.
Cooking with skewers can provide very beneficial if you use them properly. When using metal skewers, square or twisted skewers hold food better than the round skewers.
Partially freezing meat makes it easier to slice it into thin strips. This technique is particularly good for meats served in Asian cuisine. When the meat is frozen slightly, cutting it is easier because the fibers in the muscle do not tear or stretch when slicing. However, to make sure that the meat cooks evenly, take the time to let it thaw out prior to cooking.
When you store your spices and herbs, keep them in a place that is cool and dark. If light, humidity and heat are present, these items will begin to lose their flavor. In general, herbs and spices that are ground will retain their flavor for up to one year. It is possible for whole spices to hold their flavor for several years. If stored correctly, they will remain fresher longer.
If you are seasoning meat, cook a little piece of it to test the seasoning before cooking it all. Different meats including meatballs and meatloaf need to be seasoned carefully. You should not cook the whole dish after it has been seasoned. Cook a small portion first to sample. If you are satisfied with the flavor you can move on to the rest of the batch, or, if the flavor is off, you can add more seasonings to get the flavor right.
Make sure that all your preparation is done prior to cooking. Save time by doing the prep work before you begin cooking the meal. Setting a time limit can add stress to your cooking experience. Try and prepare your ingredients ahead of time to avoid unnecessary stress.
To make a delicious beef stir-fry, slice your meat thinly and across the grain. Getting the perfect cut can sometimes be a challenge. Take the meat out of the freezer once it gets firm, place a sharp knife at an oblique angle and start slicing.
Will you be making a meal using fresh basil? Try placing clumps of fresh basil into a clear, glass container. Put enough water into the glass to cover the stems but not the leaves. Now, just sit this glass on your window sill or counter and the basil should stay fresh for a few days to a few weeks. Many times the basil will root if the water is changed regularly. To encourage growth, you can trim some of the leaves to use in your cooking.
When trying to cut strips of meat, partially freeze it for a more firm cut. This is especially helpful if you are preparing an Oriental dish. The meat holds a tighter form when the it is partially frozen making the strips clean cut with out any stretching of the meat. Allow the meat to thaw prior to cooking though, so that it can cook evenly.
Using less fats, like extra virgin oil or butter, when you cook will help you to lose weight and keep your heart healthy. These products contain a lot of unnecessary fat. A god nonstick spray is a wonderful substitute for the oils and fats that you are using.
If you are cooking a meal for someone you want to impress, stick with something you are already familiar with. Avoid cooking with new ingredients or a new recipe that you have never used before. You will enjoy cooking more if you have greater peace of mind.
Beans or tofu are excellent sources of protein that you may not have yet considered adding to your diet. Both of these protein-rich foods are available at most grocery stores. You can fry tofu or add it to soups, seasoned well, for a yummy protein alternative. Beans can always be cooked with some spices and herbs for a meal full of flavor and protein.
Do you ever hesitate to toss moldy food? Have you ever tried to salvage a fruit by slicing away the bad-looking part? Sadly, there really isn’t a healthy way to save fruit if it has begun to rot. Mold grows deep into the fruit, and by eating it you will risk illness.
Sauteing vegetables in a small amount of chicken broth is a healthy and delicious way to cook. The broth adds flavor to them, while reducing oil that is usually used for sauteing. This is a wonderful way to cook, and enjoy, your vegetables.
You can reduce the fat and calorie content of regular mashed potatoes by substituting part of the potatoes with mashed cauliflower. This won’t affect the taste but it adds a handful of nutrition. Since cauliflower is bland, it will mix right in with the potatoes along with the other ingredients. When they’re mashed, cauliflowers have the same appearance and consistency as potatoes, too. Adding a little cauliflower can take calories out of your favorite mashed potato recipes and add in a little vegetable goodness, too.
If you are preparing a recipe that calls for milk or water, try substituting with an alternate liquid to add new flavor to your meals. When you cook vegetables you can use chicken broth or add beef instead of water. Other dairy products such as buttermilk or sour cream can be used in place of milk. Using different liquids can add nutritional value, while at the same time punching up bland, old recipes.
If you are going to be making chicken stock, it is best to go big or not at all. If you make a large amount of stock you can freeze it for future use. There’s nothing better than homemade chicken stock as a flavorful base for casseroles, stews and soups. Just cool your stock and freeze it in heavyweight Ziploc freezer bags.
When serving a salad at a social gathering, keep the dressing in a dish to the side. Some people like to put more salad dressing on their salads than other people do; let your guests put their own salad dressing on. For an even more considerate touch, provide different kinds of dressings.
Keep the bone in the roast if you want it to cook faster. The bone helps the heat distribute on the inside of the roast, which helps it cook faster. Simply cut the meat off the bone to serve.
You can make your own dried tomatoes. You can do this by cutting ripe tomatoes into 1/2 inch thick slices, or by cutting Roma tomatoes in half lengthwise. Place the resulting tomato pieces on a rack, then salt their exposed flesh lightly. Set your oven to 190 degrees, place the rack on a baking sheet and let the tomatoes dry in the oven for approximately 10 hours. They can then be stored in plastic freezer bags in your freezer. Zing up your dried tomatoes and conserve them at the same time by canning them in olive oil and herbs. Keep it refrigerated and use it within two weeks.
Always drain and blot your ground meat after cooking to remove excess fat. Eliminating the moisture off the meat is always good. If your meat is soggy before you sear it, then it will be soggy afterward. If excess moisture is present during the cooking process, the end product of your meat will be altered. This can steam the meat, which will make it difficult to sear it.
When you finish a turkey meal, always make sure you save what remains. The meat can be cut up, stored in separate bags, and kept in the freezer. Keeping the turkey in the freezer allows it to stay fresh for a couple of weeks, and then it can be used for sandwiches or in a salad.
Invest in good cutting utensils to use in the kitchen. Sharp utensils are safer and will save you a lot of time. Dull knives have caused many more accidents than nice, sharp ones.
Put any of the unripened fruits you buy in a plastic bag with small holes on the bag. As the fruits ripen, ethylene gas is produced. A paper bag allows air to circulate, yet also keeps in enough ethylene gas to help the fruits ripen and enhance the flavor.
When food is being sauteed, make the pan is not overloaded. Excessive moisture can steam food, instead of actually sauteing it. Also, make sure that this is done at a temperature that is low.
Dab away excess moisture from ground meat before cooking it. Blotting away the moisture on ground meat is always a good idea. If you leave the moisture in your meat, that moisture will be released when you cook. It will cause the meat to sizzle. This prevents the meat from searing as you intended; it will steam instead.
You can get nice, crispy tortillas in a few different ways. One way is place the tortilla on a rack in a 350-degree preheated oven. Let it cook until the tortilla is at the level of crispiness you prefer. Another method is by using the stove top of your gas oven, positioning the tortilla right on the grill over the flame. Trying any of these methods will create an amazing tortilla.
Rinse diced onions with cold water if you are planning on making salsa and serving it later. Onions have plenty of sulfurous gas. It can affect the taste of your home made salsa. If you rinse off the onion and then dry it, it will get rid of the gas.
Do not overcook or undercook your cake. Though recommended cooking times are a great guideline for novice cake bakers, they can be misleading, because factors such as elevation can impact the actual cook time of the cake. Instead, take a toothpick and insert it into the middle of the cake. The cake will be done when the toothpick comes out without any batter attached; if it doesn’t, bake it longer.
It is important to have great cutting utensils at your disposal in your kitchen. Dull knives waste time and can mash food instead of cleanly slicing. Sharp knives are safer to use, too. Many cuts and accidents are caused by dull utensils.
Enhance the flavors in a simple dish by using fresh ingredients, herbs and seasonings. Dried herbs can work beautifully in complex dishes. However, fresh herbs are much better and will produce a stronger, fresher and overall better taste. If you love to cook, create an herb garden, which will provide you with a variety of quality herbs any time you choose.
The are many varieties of potatoes, and some cannot be used as substitutes for other varieties. Different potatoes have different tastes and textures, making them ideal for some very different recipes. When making those foods, potatoes which are fluffy, like Russets, are best.
Cut down on cooking time by doing your prep work in advance. It’s often possible to do some preparations even a couple days before you need to cook. For certain meals, it is imperative to engage in longer preparation times to yield the best flavors. Once you start preparing your foods well in advance, you may never want to cook another way.
A quick way to make your food more flavorful is to use beef stock or chicken stock in place of water. If you don’t have stock on hand, go ahead and use the water, but add a bouillon cube or two. This helps give the food the right amount of moisture and gives your food an added amount of flavor.
You have now begun the journey to becoming a better chef at home. Experiment with new ingredients and recipes, use techniques you’ve never tried before, and even test out different cooking methods. For some new flavors, go to an ethnic market for exotic spices and seasonings.
If you want to make potato skins or twice baked potatoes, try using a potato with a thick skin. Red potatoes can’t hold dense fillings because their skin is too thin.