It can be boring to cook all the time. Instead, how about training yourself on new and creative cooking techniques? Cooking does not have to be only about eating: you can have a lot of fun preparing a meal and discover new things. The following tips will give you a push in the right direction.
If you want to start cooking more, go to the bookstore or library and get a cookbook of simple and basic recipes that appeal to you. Pick a few simple, interesting recipes and work up to more elaborate dishes as your skills increase.
If you are baking crusts for a pie or tart, you will probably need to bake them for a while longer than you thought. Your objective is to cook them past the point of being pale blonde, to the point where they become a golden caramel color. This is because the golden color lets you know that the sugar from the crust has caramelized, which give it that sweet, yet crisp taste.
Doing all of the things you need to in order to prepare a meal is a vital part of the cooking process. Make sure you have everything you need to make your food. Set all of the non-perishable ingredients and utensils out the day ahead. Taking the time to prepare yourself will guarantee that the meal will be a success.
When preparing stir-fry dishes, slice meat as thinly as possible and on its bias. This can take time and be tricky. When the meat feels firm, pull it from the freezer and cut across the grain at a 45 degree angle.
Are you using fresh basil to cook with? Place the basil in a container that is glass. Add water to cover the stems. 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. If you occasionally change its water, it will sprout roots. If you keep the basil trimmed regularly, this will promote growth and allow a decent supply of basil on an ongoing basis.
There’s an easy way to save thin sauces. In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons’ worth of water with 1 of corn starch. Stir this solution into the thin sauce to thicken it. Stir the sauce constantly as you slowly add the starch mixture until it reaches the desired thickness.
Although garlic is a great flavor booster that compliments a wide variety of foods, it can unfortunately stick to your hands. After cooking with garlic, rub your hands across a stainless steel table or sink to rid them of the smell. Your hands will be free from adding the garlic scent and flavor to other foods.
If you’ve made a big pot of sauce, freeze the leftovers by pouring the extra sauce into ice cube trays. This makes it easy to prepare a quick meal by reheating the sauce using a saute pan. Freezing the sauce into cubes in the trays is safe and convenient!
A nutritious way to reduce the calories from your mashed potatoes is to replace some of the potatoes with cauliflower. Cauliflower does not have a strong taste and will be virtually undetectable when mixed with the potatoes and other ingredients. You’ll still be able to enjoy mashed potatoes, but with less fat and calories!
Keep in mind that tofu and beans are excellent sources of protein when you want to add more protein to your diet. The vast majority of grocery stores stock both of these products. Tofu can be pan-fried with some seasonings, and makes a tasty meat alternative. You can boil the beans with some herbs to have a flavorful protein packed meal, side or snack.
Are you planning to use freshly picked basil in a recipe? Take a large bunch of this fresh herb and place it in a glass. Next, put water on the stems until they are covered. Put it on the counter of your kitchen in order to maintain its freshness for many weeks. If you occasionally change its water, it will sprout roots. You can cut the basil every once in a while in order to spur further growth, thereby making basil available for even longer.
By doing this, you are guaranteed fresher fruit throughout the year. Furthermore, you can enjoy seasonal fruits without paying outrageous prices during the off season.
Garlic is a tasty ingredient that has a flavor that can, unfortunately, transfer to your hands. After chopping garlic or other pungent foods, briskly rub your palms against the surface of your stainless steel sink. It helps stop the transfer of the garlic to other foods since it cleans your hands.
If your recipe calls for a liquid, try using something other than water or milk. This will add a spark to that tired old dish. If the recipe calls for water, switch it up by using a broth, juice, or cooking liquids. Instead of using milk, you can substitute yogurt, buttermilk or sour cream. A simple switch like changing a liquid in a recipe can improve the nutritional quality while giving the dish a whole new spin in taste.
If you’ve made a big pot of sauce, freeze the leftovers by pouring the extra sauce into ice cube trays. For a quick and easy sauce on another night, simply remove as many cubes as you need and reheat in a pan. Freezing the sauce in this manner will keep it fresh and ready to be reheated.
Whenever you are adding seasoning to a recipe, add it slowly over time rather than dumping it all at once. 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.
When trying to eat a healthier diet or lose weight, you should decrease the portion of oils used in cooking meals. Oils and butters often contain unneeded fats. Instead, opt for nonstick cooking spray.
If you have to prepare any dish that involves garlic, get the freshest possible garlic available. Garlic is normally sweeter when it is fresh. You can tell that garlic is fresh when it isn’t bruised, mushy or shriveled. The skin should be firm.
Prepare some of your food the night before to save time and headaches. Do little things for your meals the night before so your mealtime will be a little bit easier. With far less work left, you’ll be eager to pick up where you left off at dinner time.
Don’t cook with wines that you don’t enjoy drinking. Wine that you don’t like or haven’t tried can ruin the way you feel about the food. It is possible to find wines that are meant to be used in cooking.
It is vital for cooks to have their supplies organized when cooking. Supplies and staples kept in disarray will have you scrambling when trying to find a needed utensil or ingredient. Organize your kitchen logically. For instance, place parsley and basil in one cabinet, since both are spices.
It is crucial that you buy new spices around every six months. If spices are kept open for too long a time, they will eventually lose their flavor. If you have spices that you don’t intend to use any time soon, give it as a gift to someone who will use it.
You need to stay organized when you are cooking, so that you can be sure the food is as great as it can be and that nothing burns. Organizing your kitchen cooking area creates a more productive kitchen. You can lose track of your things and waste your food and money if you’re unorganized.
Make certain all your utensils are cleaned prior to cooking. You need to make sure there is no residue left on the utensils, it could ruin your food. This can also cause bacteria to spread.
To quickly cut herbs, bind herbs together and snip with scissors. The leaves will be fuller and more crisp than they would have been if they were wet.
Wash your dishes as you use them, when you are cooking. If you have a two-bucket sink, put soapy water on one side and keep the other side for rinsing your dishes. It is much easier to wash cooking utensils right after using them, and in some cases, you’ll need the same utensil again later in the cooking process.
When you are cooking, wash the dishes as you go along. With a two-bowl sink, you can keep one side full of hot suds and run clear water for rinsing in the other. After using utensils and mixing bowls, it’s best to wash them right away because it’s easier. Once cleaned, they will be ready to use again.
Take care of wooden cutting boards properly. Stressors, like heat or extremes in humidity, can warp or split a cutting board made of wood. The correct way to clean a wooden cutting board is to use a damp, soapy sponge or cloth to wipe it clean, rinse with boiling water and towel dry. You should apply oil to a board that is damaged, or to an undamaged board which you want to keep in pristine condition. Be sure to let your cutting board dry completely before you use it again.
Don’t eat your meal right away. Many people do not realize that it is important to let a meal rest. Many are tempted to quickly serve food hot off the grill or stovetop. Unfortunately, this may cause you to miss the full effect. Always wait a awhile before eating your meal; allow it to cool slightly before digging in.
There are much better ways to heat tortillas. The first way you can heat tortillas is in the oven. You need to have an oven that is heated to 350 degrees. Place the tortillas on a rack until they are as crispy as you want them to be. If you have a gas stove top, you can heat the tortilla by placing it directly on the burner over the flame. Using one of these techniques will result in a more delicious final product.
When planning to prepare complicated dishes, do the prep work the evening before the actual cooking is to take place to minimize stress. Get the ingredients ready, chop the veggies, measure and prepare the spices and herbs. It’s also a great time to make sure you have everything that is needed. You will only have to get everything put together when it’s time for you to cook.
When you truss your bird, you tie its legs and wings together. Trussing keeps the legs and wings close to the body of the bird, so that cooking happens evenly. Otherwise, the meat found in the legs and wings tends to become dry and tough during cooking.
There are a few different ways to correctly heat tortillas. 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. You can also use a gas stove top to warm tortillas right on the grill. These preparation methods allow for a fresher, tastier tortilla.
You can make a simple dish much better with seasonings and herbs. Dried herbs and spices can be used for complex recipes that have a plethora of flavors. Fresh herbs though, are optimal to use if you want a more natural taste when consuming. Growing your own herbs in an herb garden, is an easy way to add fresh herbs to a meal anytime.
While it’s natural to want to impress guests with a fancy meal, stay away from new recipes when you will be serving someone important. New or complex recipes will increase your stress level, and you can’t be sure how they may turn out. Cook a dish you are familiar with in order to really give them your best.
Fresh herbs and different types of natural seasonings can add a kick to the traditional dish. Dried herbs can be used for recipes that are complex and filled with lots of flavors. If at all possible, however, go for the ones that are garden-fresh in order to enhance the flavor and impact of these things in your meals. Having a small herb garden is a great way to ensure you always have fresh herbs on hand.
Cooking for large groups can create a lot of anxiety and stress. In order to avoid panicking while making the final preparations, do as much as you can the night before. You can put out all the ingredients you are going to use, and have your measurements and marinades all ready to go.
Cook with style by using these guidelines, and you will be able to start a new hobby. When you cook, it can be an exciting and tasty way to get more knowledge about food. You will learn so much about yourself at the same time you are learning about cooking and the meals you love to prepare. As you practice, you will start having more fun and make better dishes.
If you are aware that tomorrow is going to be extremely busy for you, you should plan your dinner that night in advance. Save yourself time and energy by doing things ahead of time for meals. You can pre-chop any needed ingredients, make a meal that can be frozen and reheated or just gather and measure the ingredients for a dish a day in advance.