Cooking is so easy, a caveman could do it. Cooking is as simple as purchasing the ingredients you will need, and following a recipe step by step. Is your kitchen full of cooking equipment and utensils that you never use? If you said yes to the two previous questions, than you are well on your way to learning how to cook! If you’re aiming to improve your culinary skills, read the advice provided below to help you easily create yummy dishes you and your entire family will enjoy.
If you are looking for new ideas for meals to prepare for yourself or your family two great places to look are the library and the internet, where you can find a vast array of options. Try some recipes and be patient as you develop your skills.
Do not keep your herbs or spices in a place that is not cool and dark. Exposing spices to heat, humidity, and light will shorten their lifespan. To keep your spices spicy and fresh, store them in an area that is cool and dark. These fresh spices will help add flavor to your meals, making them tastier!
To make slicing thin strips easier, you need to freeze the meat slightly first. This is great to do when you need to slice meat thinly for Chinese or Thai meals. When the meat is partially frozen, cutting becomes cleaner as the meat fibers are less likely to tear or stretch. For even cooking, let the strips of meat thaw completely before you start to cook.
Raw potatoes should rest in chilly water for approximately 30 minutes. This will help them to be crispy and delicious. The soaking process will reinforce the vegetable fibers, and they will be better able to withstand heat when you fry them.
Many use a good number of apples for baking and cooking throughout fall and winter, but if improperly stored, they will spoil quickly. When exposed to dry, warm air, the apples will rot. To prevent this, apples should be stored in plastic bags and placed in the fridge or perhaps a basement. Remember the rule, one bad apple will spoil the bunch.
Are you using fresh basil to cook with? Take a few twigs of the basil and place it in a small container or glass. Make sure the basil’s stems are covered in water. Keep it on your counter and it will stay fresh for weeks. Frequent changes of the water might even encourage the basil to spread out some roots. Encourage growth by cutting or trimming the basil now and then, and you will be able to use fresh basil for a long time!
When cooking vegetables, it is a good idea to use chicken broth. The broth will give the vegetables a delicious, warm flavor as well as extra moisture so they don’t stick to the pan. Chicken broth is easily purchased at almost every supermarket, and is quite inexpensive.
Have you ever struggled to determine the time it takes to grill your meat? You can purchase a meat thermometer to ensure that the inside of your grilled meat is cooked to satisfaction. A good rule of thumb to reduce the total cooking time is to always close the grill lid whenever the thickness of the meat exceeds 1.5 inches.
When you are using wooden skewers in cooking, soak them for at least half an hour before putting the veggies on them. This step will stop the skewer from burning while it is being used. You can prevent food from sliding off skewers by using parallel skewers for twice the support of the food.
Sauteing vegetables in chicken broth is very healthy. The chicken broth adds to the taste of the veggies and, you will not have the extra fat. This is a tasty way to cook your veggies.
If you are cooking a meal where seasoning gets added, don’t add it all at the beginning, add a little every couple of minutes instead. You can be sure that you are not cooking away the extra flavoring, but instead are making the desired impact that you want your spices to have.
If you are serving a salad with a meal where you have guests, do not pour the salad dressing on the salad, keep it on the side. Some people prefer more dressing than others; let guests pour their own dressing. Offer many different types of salad dressing as well.
Try drying your own fresh tomatoes. Slice tomatoes 1/2″ thick to dry. Romas should be cut in two lengthwise. Next, lightly salt the open sides and place them salt-side up on a wire cooling rack. Use a cookie sheet to hold the rack and set it in the oven at 190 degrees for at least 10 hours. Put the tomatoes in plastic bags, and store them in the freezer. Dried tomatoes could also be put in a jar with fresh herbs and topped up with olive oil. Keep it refrigerated and use it within two weeks.
Store any spices you might use in a dark, cool place to help maintain their flavor and freshness. Storing spices in warm locations, such as above the stove, can cause the spices to lose their flavor and you to lose your money.
When you prepare a turkey for Thanksgiving or any other time, don’t ever toss the leftovers. Instead, cut it into smaller pieces, and place in the freezer in airtight containers. Storing turkey in this method helps it stay fresh for weeks and allows you to use it again in the future for sandwiches or salads.
Keep your turkey leftovers after Thanksgiving. Instead, get some airtight containers, cut up the leftovers and freeze them. With enough leftover turkey, you can enjoy turkey sandwiches and salads for several weeks after the bird was cooked.
Many vegetables and herbs emit aromas that remain in the cutting board, regardless of how many times you clean it. Put a waterproof mark on the end of the cutting board so you’ll know which side to use.
It is a good idea to store unripened fruits in perforated plastic bags. As a fruit ripens, it produces ethylene gas. If you put them in a perforated plastic bag, the air can circulate and assure that the gas is retained, keeping the fruit fresh and tasty.
Macaroni and cheese should be cooked with careful attention to the instructions. This is the best way to get the noodles and cheese cooked to just the right consistency. To serve the macaroni and cheese, a solid faced spoon works just fine. Use pepper to add a little spice to your macaroni and cheese.
Create your own stock for tastier dishes. Make a large amount and store it in the freezer. Doing so will give you the best stock for any dish that calls for it. If you make your own stock, it will not be full of preservatives.
Get rid of the moisture on your ground meat by blotting it out before you begin cooking it. The excess water on ground meat can present a problem while cooking, so do not skip this essential step. If the moisture is allowed to remain, it will be released when cooking commences. Sizzling will occur. When this happens, your ground meat may actually steam, instead of searing like you want it to.
Make a habit of washing your dishes as you use them when you cook. Fill one side of your sink with hot soapy water and the other with clean rinse water. It’s easier to wash cooking utensils right after their use.
Impress your friends and family by creating an especially tasty sandwich, by making sure the dressing and fillings are adequate and there are no dry corners to the bread. A lot of times people rush and only put mayonnaise in the center of the bread. An even spread will ensure that every single bite tastes as it should.
Add a little salt to your cutting board whenever you are slicing up some herbs. This will add some flavor and the herbs will stay on the board. You don’t need to add extra salt to the food you are preparing. This will over-salt the dish. Applying salt to the board will allow the herbs to stick better and give the meat a bit more flavor.
Complete your prep work before you start cooking a meal. This is the best way for you to prevent any accidents or waste in the kitchen. Oil should not sit in a pan for too long, or it could cause a fire. Having everything ready to go will help you to be able to monitor what is going on in the kitchen, and not create a hazardous area.
If you are sauteing, don’t use too much liquid in the pan. Too much moisture can cause food to steam rather than saute, affecting the crispness of the meal. Remember, sauteing is always done at low temperatures.
When planning to barbecue, don’t forget the lead time necessary to get the grill hot when you are ready to use it. Plan to start preparing the grilling surface about half an hour before you place food on it. Your coals should all have a coat of ash at this point and be medium hot. This is optimum grilling temperature.
You can warm up tortillas in a few different ways. The first way is to turn your oven on at 350 degrees and place the tortilla on the rack directly until it’s as crispy as you want it. You can also use a gas stove top to warm tortillas right on the grill. These methods will give you a fresher tasting tortilla.
It is important to properly care for your wood cutting board if you want it to last a long time. Stressors, like heat or extremes in humidity, can warp or split a cutting board made of wood. Do not immerse the cutting board in water, instead, clean it using a sponge and warm water. You can do some restoration to a damaged board by regularly oiling it with a product specifically for this purpose. Allow your board to dry completely between uses.
Ensure that herbs and spices are stored in an area that is dark, dry and cool. Flavor loss occurs when they are exposed to heat, light and humidity. This will ensure your spices will not be as good to use.
Trussing is when you tie your turkey with string. By holding the legs and wings close to the body, this allows for more evenly cooked meat. In an un-trussed turkey, the legs and wings can get overdone and the tips can burn by the time the body is fully cooked.
When baking a cake, be sure not to over or under cook it. The recommendations on the package are only guidelines, because many factors, including oven variations, can impact the finished product. To test for doneness, insert a clean toothpick into the center of the cake. The cake will be done when the toothpick comes out without any batter attached; if it doesn’t, bake it longer.
See to it that your herbs are stored in a dry, cool and dark area. If your spices are exposed to light, moisture and humidity, they may lose their unique flavors. These areas are not good because the spices will get exposed to flavor losing elements.
Make it a habit to cook with fresh seasonings and herbs whenever possible. You can use dried herbs, such as oregano and basil, if your dish has many complex flavors. However, stronger, better overall taste is produced by using fresh herbs. Consider planting your own herbs to guarantee a fresh and steady supply.
Do not fall victim to believing that all potatoes are the same. There are certain types of potatoes that are waxy, which are fine for boiled potatoes and potato salad, but are pretty awful for French fries, baked potatoes, and mashed potatoes. For something like that, you’re best off using a fluffy type of potato, like a Russet.
To some people, cooking is just something you need to know how to do or an interesting hobby. To others, it’s a way of making money. The advice of experienced cooks can lead a novice to a million different ways to cook outstanding meals. In the meantime, however, you can use some of the cooking tips presented above the next time you are responsible for preparing a family meal.
While it may be tempting to create something new to impress that special someone, you should always cook what you know. Whether you are preparing a meal for your boss, a new date or your in-laws, your cooking is most impressive when you prepare great dishes you feel very confident with. Stick to dishes that you are confident you can make well, and your meal will be a success.