Many people only see cooking as a chore that needs to be done. However, there are many ways to make cooking fun. Cooking can also be used as a way to promote a healthy lifestyle. The best cooks are those who are always willing to learn new techniques. Furthering your knowledge also makes the cooking experience far more pleasurable; use the following tips to help you grow as a cook.
Bake pie crusts a little longer than you would think they should be baked. They should be a light golden brown instead of pale in color. This deeper color is evidence that the sugar has caramelized in the crust for added sweetness.
Before cooking with skewers there are a few things that you need to know. Not all metal skewers are created equal; traditional round metal skewers are not the best option to keep food in place when grilling. Choosing skewers with a different shape can be the secret to keeping your food from the bottom of your grill.
There is a way to save your dish and you can use it immediately. In a small bowl, combine two tablespoons of water and 3 teaspoons of corn starch. Add this mix to the sauce little by little until it becomes thicker. Stir constantly as you pour the cornstarch and water mixture slowly into the pot.
bake tart or pie crusts longer that you think they should be baked. Your objective is to cook them past the point of being pale blonde, to the point where they become a golden caramel color. When you see the golden color it indicates carmelization, which lends a crisp, sweet flavor to the pie crust.
Complete as much of the preparatory work as possible for your meals ahead of time to speed up the process of cooking. Look through your recipes and determine whether or not certain steps can be completed beforehand. There are many recipes where you can do the prep work the day before you start cooking. More complex recipes become quicker and more fun this way.
Meat can easily be sliced into thin strips if it is partially frozen. This is a good way to cut strips for Asian dishes, such as Chinese and Thai. When you partially freeze meat, its fibers don’t tear as easily so slicing is cleaner. To keep your meat cooking evenly, make sure you let the slices thaw completely before you cook them.
Mushrooms will absorb the water like a sponge. Wipe the mushrooms off by hand with a cloth that is damp.
Ice trays can be a great tool for freezing sauces. This makes it easier for you to make a quick meal which you can reheat at a later time. The sauce will be very edible after it comes out of the trays.
Want to add more protein to your diet? Consider incorporating beans and tofu! They are also easily located at almost every grocery store. Try pan-frying tofu with some interesting seasonings and you will have a tasty alternative to meat. Beans can be used in vegetarian chili, added to baked goods, or just boiled with herbs and vegetables.
If you want to lose weight and eat healthier, cut back on the amout of oil that you cook with. These products contain a lot of unnecessary fat. Consider giving non-stick cooking spray a shot. The end result is virtually the same, but these sprays are often fat-free and have ingredients that are more friendly to your diet.
Never cook with wine you haven’t tried. If you use a kind of wine you’ve never tasted before, you may mess up the flavor of the dish you’re working on. You could try wine that is specifically formulated for cooking purposes.
Be sure to soak your wooden skewers in water for at least 30 minutes before using. This helps them avoid burning when you cook. You can make sure that food stays on your skewers by skewing the food with parallel skewers.
To make your cooking experience run more quickly and smoothly, commit some of your time for food preparation the night before a meal. Before retiring to bed, you can do things like preparing a sauce, chopping up vegetables and onions, or marinating meat. You will save a lot of time, and feel much less stressed when you have to cook.
Homemade stock adds lots of flavor. Make a large batch, and then store it in your freezer. This ensures that tasty, homemade stock is always available when the time comes to prepare soups and other recipes. When you prepare your stock from scratch, you will be certain that it is 100% natural, not loaded with preservatives.
If you want to cook a pumpkin, cut it vertically in half. Lay both halves upon separate baking sheets cut side down. Sprinkle or spray a bit of water on your baking sheets, then preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. The pumpkin takes about an hour to bake.
Don’t eat your meal right away. A lot of people do not wait long enough before serving food. If you are hungry or in a hurry, you will be tempted to eat the very moment your meal is ready. Doing so actually causes you to miss out on some extra flavors. Therefore, it is always best to allow the juices to redistribute by allowing for a cool down period.
Always make sure you measure the cooking oil! The reason to do this is simple: You want to measure instead of just dumping the oil in the pan in order to keep track of how much you’re using. In this way, you can be in control of the quantity of oil that goes into your meals.
You can make your pasta sauce tastier by saving some of the cooking water from the pasta. Measure out one-fourth of a cup and place it to the side. While mixing the sauce and pasta, add the pasta water into the mix. The pasta water contains starch, which will infuse your concoction with the thickness and body you are looking for.
If you’re cooking mac and cheese, always follow the instructions on the box exactly as they’re written. This way, the macaroni ends up immaculate and the cheese is melted perfectly of the pasta. For serving, a solid spoon works best. Another great tip is to spice things up a bit with some black pepper.
Spreading the mayo evenly and smoothly on the entire surface of the bread will make perfect sandwiches that will impress your friends and family. People are often in a rush and will slap the sauce on haphazardly. When you spread your condiments evenly, you ensure that every bite is as good as can be.
You should let your meal rest for a little bit. It is often overlooked, but it makes a difference when you let the food sit and allow the flavors to be absorbed. We are inclined to serve meat and other foods as soon as they are cooked. You are not serving your food at its finest if you do this. Give your meal enough time to cool, and new flavors will appear.
To save counter space when baking, use stacking cooling racks. When you make large batches of cookies, making enough area to cool them can quickly overrun your kitchen and beyond. The use of stackable cooling racks is an efficient way to utilize your kitchen space. The cooling racks will take up vertical space and will still accomplish the same end goal. It is a great way to allow baked goods to cool properly while still allowing you to have the counter space you need to accomplish other projects.
Complete your prep work before you start cooking a meal. If you do so, you’ll save on electricity by not running an oven that you aren’t yet using. You are also adding a measure of safety by not getting distracted with another task and forgetting about a hot pan on the stove.
Try reheating foods that contain lots of oil rather than microwaving them to avoid having a greasy mess. Because oil tends to get hot quickly, a microwave’s concentrated heat causes it to become separated from the rest of the food. If you bake the dish instead you are cooking it all at the same rate, which will result in better tasting food and less mess.
There are a few ways to heat up tortillas. The first way requires you to place them into a preheated oven, at 350 degrees, and bake them to your liking. You can also place a tortilla directly above the flame of the grill. Using these cooking techniques will make for fresher and much tastier tortillas.
Use a baking potato with thick skin to get a good, firm shell when making potato skins or twice baked potatoes. Red potatoes can’t hold dense fillings because their skin is too thin.
Measuring and chopping ingredients before you begin cooking can save you time. Prepare ingredients for several days worth of meals ahead of time. In some cases, the longer preparation times can make some very flavorful creations in the end. Once you get used to prepping in advance, you will probably never go back to doing it on the fly.
Many dessert recipes require copious amounts of butter. Instead of melting the butter, you should ensure that it is only softened; this will make creaming the butter easier. If the butter melts, place it into the freezer and let sit for a couple of minutes to harden a bit, or you can place the dough in a refrigerator after the ingredients are mixed. An added benefit to using cool dough is that your cookies will maintain their proper shape.
There are quite a few different types of potatoes. Not all potatoes can be interchanged in recipes. Waxy potatoes are good for potato salad or boiled potatoes but aren’t good for making french fries, baked potatoes or mashed potatoes. Russet potatoes will produce the fluffiest results.
Making a simple dish of fried rice is a great way to make use of the leftover meat and vegetables in the refrigerator. Use cool rice from the day before or cook fresh rice with less water that you would normally use. Chop your meat and a variety of vegetables and saute in a small amount of oil to warm them through. Toss in the rice and add some soy sauce, ginger and garlic.
A better way is to use the oven timer as well as a watch timer. Carry the second timer with you so that you will hear the alarm anywhere in the house.
Leave at least some of the spices for the dinner table. Spices like cayenne, garlic powder, and pepper are fabulous seasonings. Everyone has their own individual tastes regarding spices. Rather than adding these spices to the food as you’re cooking it, put them on the table so people can choose which ones they want to use. This way you are sure that every person enjoys their dish.
To give your meals a burst of flavor, instead of using water, try adding beef or chicken stock. Bouillon cubes dissolved in the appropriate amount of water will also work. Your dish will still have the required amount of moisture, but it will have a better overall flavor.
Do as much cooking prep work as you can ahead of time to minimize the stress you experience in the kitchen. It will speed up preparation time, and you will avoid discovering you are short an ingredient halfway through. It doesn’t take longer to prepare beforehand, but it can certainly save time as you go.
In order to eliminate some strong odors caused by items such as garlic or other pungent foods, just use stainless steel on your hands for a few seconds prior to washing them. Using a stainless-steel material will help to keep your hands fresh and clean, improving the smells around your kitchen.
Fruit tastes great when cooked on a grill. You can fill a skewer with peach or nectarine slices, and melon slices can work well too. Place the fruit directly on a grill and allow it to cook until grill marks are visible. Finally, serve them with a slice of cake or a scoop of ice cream.
As was stated at the beginning of the article, good cooks never stop learning. Joy that comes from cooking comes not just from preparing a meal, but also from learning about various foods, and acquiring new cooking skills and techniques. Cooking is also about sharing your knowledge with others. Cooking is an acquired skill that is meant to be taught to and shared with others.
Frozen corn can be a staple of a healthy family meal plan, but if your family is starting to get tired of it, you can spice it up for them. Be creative and serve Asian dishes that call for coconut flakes and corn mixed together.