Many people want to learn to cook like a pro, but the time and effort required to do so can seem overwhelming. One benefit of cooking is the possibility of breaking the task down into smaller steps, and if you utilize the information provided here, you will become a proficient chef before you know it.
Pie crusts and tart crusts should be cook a bit past the point that you think they should be cooked. Let the crust go beyond light tan to a deeper, golden shade. The golden color indicates that the sugar in the pie crust has caramelized and this will give a sweet and crisp flavor.
Store your spices and herbs in a cool and dark spot when you decide where to keep them. Humidity, heat and light can all cause flavors to weaken thus making your foods not able to obtain their potential. Generally, ground herbs and spices stay fresh for around a year, after that they begin to lose their flavor. Spices that have not been ground have the potential to last upwards of five years. The length of time that they stay fresh depends on how they are stored.
When preparing stir-fry meals, cut the meat on the bias and keep it thin. Very often this is difficult to master and takes a lot of time. Take the meat out of the freezer once it gets firm, place a sharp knife at an oblique angle and start slicing.
bake tart or pie crusts longer that you think they should be baked. Wait until the crust turns golden rather than pale blond. This indicates the sugar has turned to caramel. Your crust will have a sweeter and crispier flavor.
Keep all spices stored out of the sunlight. Shelf life can be significantly decreased for those spices which have been exposed to too much light, dampness and heat. Keeping your spices in a cooler space with little light will enhance their flavor and shelf life. Make sure that your spices are fresh to add taste and flavor to any meal.
If you are making a meal for someone that you want to make a good impression on, be sure to make something you know how to make well. Do not attempt to whip up a new dish or use an ingredient you have never used before. This will allow you to cook with less stress.
Don’t overcook your vegetables. They will lose a lot of food value and won’t taste good. Use quick cooking methods instead to maintain their healthy quality. Examples of these methods are steaming, sauteing, or the best one is to eat them raw.
To reduce the calories and fat of mashed potatoes, and to avoid sacrificing taste or texture, replace some potatoes with the same amount of cauliflower. Cauliflower does not have a strong taste and will be virtually undetectable when mixed with the potatoes and other ingredients. Cauliflower mashes into the same texture and color as potatoes, so no one will notice, and you you will get the benefits.
Have you felt bad before when you have had to throw away your moldy fruit? Do you think it is accepted practice to salvage the fruit by removing the rotting parts? There is, unfortunately, no good way to save fruit that is half-rotten. After a certain point, the fruit may become moldy, though you may not be able to tell by looking at it. Consuming the fruit could make you very ill.
Adding cauliflower to your mashed potatoes is a great way to reduce the amount of fat and calories they contain. You should use equal portions of potatoes and cauliflower when making this delicious side. Cauliflower’s bland taste makes it easier for it to blend with the potatoes, so that you can’t taste it, and it picks up other ingredients. Cauliflower also matches the color and texture of the potatoes. This is a great way to add veggies and eliminate calories from a favorite dish.
Do you enjoy cooking with the flavors of fresh basil? Place fresh basil into a glass. The stems will then need to be covered with water. Just set it on the counter top, and it will be good for several weeks. Switching out the water from time to time will cause the basil to grow, as well. If this happens, trim the basil once in a while. This promotes continued growth, which means you have fresh basil at your disposal well into the future.
Are you partial to using fresh basil in your cooking? Take out a glass and put some fresh basil inside. Make sure the basil’s stems are covered in water. Put it on top of your kitchen counter and it will be fresh for weeks! If you are sure to add fresh water, your basil will even form roots and become a plant. Cut it on occasion and your plant will continue to provide you with fresh basil for a long time to come.
These spices are able to be used on many things in the kitchen, not just meats. Try using the seasoning on pumpkin seeds, or get creative by adding it to your favorite egg dish. Everyone will wonder what you’re doing to make things taste so delicious!
It is possible to do a lot of preparation beforehand in order to speed up the cooking process and make it easier. Look through your recipes and determine whether or not certain steps can be completed beforehand. It is often possible to prepare your ingredients as much as 24 hours ahead of time. This takes a lot of the stress out of even the most complicated recipes and dishes.
Many times your burgers can stick to your grill and it could be nearly impossible to free them without destroying them. The way to prevent this is to coat the grill with some vegetable oil prior to putting any food on the grill.
Fresh ingredients are much better to use in all of your cooking than those that are frozen or dried. Use fresh ingredients whenever possible, as they make the food more flavorful, and they may cost less over the long run.
Using chicken broth is something you can try when you’re making vegetables. Cooking vegetables in chicken broth is a low-fat, flavorful option. Chicken broth is dirt cheap, and can be bought at any supermarket.
Once in awhile, burgers stick to the cooking surface making it nearly impossible to get them off in one piece. Try brushing the grill using vegetable oil prior to cooking so you can avoid sticking.
If you are cooking a roast and are short on time, make sure to leave the bone in. Cooking the roast with the bone still in it will help the inside of the roast cook faster. When the cooking is complete, just serve by cutting around the bone.
When trying to add protein to a diet, you need to remember that beans and tofu are great sources. The vast majority of grocery stores stock both of these products. Fry up the tofu with seasonings to get a great meat alternative. Beans may be boiled with herbs for a delicious protein source.
When preparing a large family dinner, do some prep work the night before to decrease stress and leave time for you to enjoy everyone. Cut up vegetables and onions, put the meat in the marinade, or make the sauce before going to bed at night. You’ll be less stressed when cooking the following day.
Read the labels for any product that you buy to use in a recipe. A lot of items you purchase at the grocery store will have a laundry list of unwanted substances in there. Health issues can be avoided if you carefully read labels to assure that the ingredients do not have excess sugar or salt.
Don’t waste your turkey leftovers after Thanksgiving dinner. Rather, cut up the meat and store in in the freezer. Turkey will stay fresh for a couple weeks and you can use it in sandwiches or a salad.
Leave the bone in your roast if you are pressed for time. The bone inside of the meat acts as a conductor of sorts, helping the meat to cook faster. After the roast is cooked, just slice around the bone to serve.
A good cook will have their utensils and ingredients well organized. If your kitchen supplies are not organized, this can cause confusion in the kitchen because you will be running around looking for the items. Group similar items together, and keep them in the same area. As an example, keep all of your spices stored in one cabinet for ease.
A lot of herbs and vegetables give off an odor that tends to stay in your cutting board, no matter how much you scrub it. Make a small mark with a marker on one side of your board to remind you which side is for sweet items and which is for sour.
Instead of chopping them on a cutting board, a better way to cut herbs is to hold them in a bunch and cut them with sharp scissors. This works especially well for dill and parsley. This method of cutting herbs provides a drier, more flavorful product than chopping.
Place unripened fruits in a plastic bag that is perforated right after you buy them. Fruits produce ethylene gas when they become riper. Putting them in a perforated bag will allow circulation of the air and keep the gas retained, thus allowing the fruit to keep it’s delicious taste.
Dry ground meat with a towel before you put it in the pan to remove excess moisture. It is always wise to blot any moisture that is present on ground meat. Any moisture left on the meat will be released when the meat is cooked. The moisture will start to sizzle and steam away when it hits the heat of the pan. This can steam the meat, which will make it difficult to sear it.
When using fresh herbs in your meal, including dill and parsley, place the herbs together in bunches, and cut them with scissors. The leaves will be fuller and more crisp than they would have been if they were wet.
The night before you are scheduled to prepare a large, multi-course meal, complete as much prep work as possible. Gather your ingredients, chop and measure the herbs or spices and double-check that you have everything you need. This way, you won’t have to do the tedious tasks when you are ready to cook.
Let your food rest a bit before sitting down to eat. It is a new idea to many, but allowing your food to rest can be quite beneficial. If you are hungry or in a hurry, you will be tempted to eat the very moment your meal is ready. But many foods need to “rest” for a few minutes before being served in order to taste their best. Let your food rest for a while, and you will enjoy tastier meals.
Buying quality knives is an important investment in your kitchen. It’s safer to cut with a sharp instrument than it is to with a dull one, and you will also save some time. Dull knives cause more cuts and accidents than sharp ones.
Having the prep work done a day in advance will make the cooking process less stressful. Use this time to gather all needed ingredients, chop veggies and measure seasonings. Make sure you have everything you need. The next day when you have to cook your meal, all you need to think about is assembling and cooking the dish.
Keep butter or oil used to a minimum when sauteing. This can result in additional moisture that may cause the food to become steamed and lose its crisp brown surface, one of the primary features of sauteing. Use a low temperature while doing this, too.
When you want to chop herbs, sprinkle some salt on your cutting board. Not only does this add a little extra flavor, it keeps the herbs you are chopping where you want them – on the board. Just make sure you don’t add salt to your dish afterwards as the herbs already contain it. The herbs gain more flavor when the salt sticks to them.
Different varieties of potatoes can have specific uses; you cannot always use one type in lieu of another. For example, there are waxy potatoes that are ideal for making potato salad and boiled potatoes but are a poor choice for french fries, baked potatoes, or mashed potatoes. When preparing these dishes, opt for russet potatoes, which have a fluffier texture.
Knowing how to cook will always come in handy when you want to prepare a meal that impresses. Sharing meals is a common tradition among cultures across the globe. If you follow these ideas, you can begin on a journey of becoming a cook, and everyone’s favorite person at dinner parties.
The use of brine is an effective cooking technique. Soak chicken, turkey, duck or goose in brine about an hour before preparing the dish to make the most out of the flavors in your meal.