It is a fact that humans require food in order to survive. But eating should be much more than merely surviving. Cooking and eating something very tasty is better than eating a good meal. Here are a few tips to take your cooking prowess.
Prepare to cook before you actually start cooking. It is quite important that the preparation is done well in advance of the cooking process. Sometimes even when the prep work is done, the deadline for when the meal must be completed can still loom large and become stressful. Do your prep work in advance, if you can.
Your spices and herbs should always be stored in a cool and dark area. If your spices are exposed to moisture, humidity and heat are present, or light they may lose their flavor. Ground spices will retain their flavor for around a year. Whole spices have a longer shelf-life and can hold their flavors for about three years. Storing your spices in glass containers with a
Overdo it a little when you bake a pie crust. Your objective is to cook them past the point of being pale blonde, to the point where they become a golden caramel color. The golden color is a sign that the sugars in the crust have finally caramelized.
It is extremely important to have sharp knives are always sharp. Dull knives can actually be dangerous and they also make chopping difficult.
For stir-fry dishes, meat should be sliced very thinly and on the bias. This can take a lot of time and be hard to do. Take out the meat before it is frozen, but very firm, and cut into it at an angle of 45 degrees perpendicular to the grain.
If you need to slice meat into thin strips, then partially freeze it beforehand. This technique is especially important if you are making Oriental dishes. The meat holds a tighter form when the it is partially frozen making the strips clean cut with out any stretching of the meat. However, the meat strips should be thawed to assure even cooking.
Are you using fresh basil in a recipe? Take a large bunch of it and place it in a glass. Fill the glass just enough with water till the stems are covered. The basil will stay fresh for several days if it is placed in indirect sunlight. The basil can actually grow roots if you change out the water changed occasionally. Trim the basil once in a while so it grows even more and you will be able to enjoy fresh basil!
During cooking, it’s essential that you have sharp knives accessible. Dull knives are not only difficult to cut things with, but they are also very dangerous to use. You have a much higher chance of cutting yourself because you will probably have to force the knife through your food, instead of having to gently cut it.
You can use this seasoning on foods other types of food besides meat. You can add it to scrambled eggs and roasted pumpkin seeds. Everyone will start to wonder about your secret ingredient and what you used for spices.
Lots of recipes for fresh basil? Place a fresh bunch of basil in a jar or glass. Fill the glass just enough with water so that the stems can absorb it. This will help to keep it from going bad for quite a few days. If you occasionally change the water, the basil will eventually grow its roots under water. By picking leaves you will encourage the basil to put out new growth. This will ensure that you have fresh basil on an ongoing basis!
Use fresh ingredients whenever possible, as they make the food more flavorful, and can be real money-savers too.
Cook your veggies in chicken broth! Chicken broth is great for preventing sticking of vegetables and incorporating some great flavor with them. Chicken broth is economical and widely available.
Look at your recipes and decide which steps you can do in advance without worry of food spoilage. You can simplify the day prior to actually cooking. This takes a lot of the stress out of even easier to cook complicated recipes and dishes.
Seasoning should be applied in small amounts throughout the cooking process rather than all at once. By cooking in this way, you can help different seasonings “open up” and release their flavor into the dish without overpowering it.
Sauteing vegetables in a small amount of chicken broth is a healthy and delicious way to cook them. This is a great and delicious and healthy way to easily cook vegetables.
When serving a salad at a social gathering, keep the dressing in a dish to the side. People vary in the amount of dressing they like on their salad, so it is helpful to let them do this on their own. For an even more considerate touch, provide different kinds of dressings.
Read the labels when you buy foods. Most cooking supplies have hidden ingredients that are unhealthy. You want to ensure that is not high in sugar or salt because both can cause major health problems if eaten too much.
If you tend to cook with a lot of herbs and spices, make sure that you are storing them somewhere that’s cool and dark in order to keep them fresh. 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 serving a salad at a social gathering, always offer the dressing on the side rather than pouring it directly on the salad. Some people prefer more dressing when eating salads so it is important that each person add their own dressing.Make sure you have a wide selection to choose from as well.
Make the most of your holiday feast by reusing the leftover turkey. Rather, cut the turkey into pieces, pile it into a sealed container and freeze it. This will keep the turkey fresh, so it can be reused for salads or sandwiches.
The key to making delicious macaroni and cheese is to cook the noodles and prepare the sauce exactly as stated in the directions. Remember that the makers of your mac and cheese designed these instructions with the best possible result in mind. Serve it with a solid spoon to get all the cheese from the pot to the plate. Use some pepper on your macaroni and cheese!
Place unripe fruits in a plastic bag that is perforated right after you buy them. If you put them in a perforated plastic bag, and the gas will stay in, helping the fruits retain their wonderful taste.
Think about making your own stock for more flavor. If you cook large quantities, you could store the leftovers in resealable bags inside your freezer. By doing this, you’ll always have homemade stock available whenever you are in the mood to cook soup. Homemade soup stock or bullion is a wonderful way to eliminate high sodium and preservatives that are present in commercially made products from your diet.
The salt will keep the herbs on the cutting board and also adds some extra flavor. Do not over-salt by making sure you don’t directly add any salt to the dish you are making to prevent over-salting.The salt that is used on the board gives your herbs and add a bit of flavor.
When preparing a meal, make it part of your routine to wash dishes as you use them. If you have a double sink, keep hot soapy water and clear, fresh rinse water in each side of the sink. Utensils and mixing bowls are easy to rinse off right after being used and will be nice and clean for the next ingredient in your meal.
The sulfurous gas in an onion. The gas can sometimes ruin your salsa. Rinsing the onions allows the gas away.
When you have a large or complicated meal to prepare, you can eliminate a lot of the stress by doing any prep work the day before. You can double-check the availability of everything required, get your ingredients together, chop herbs and vegetables, and measure out quantities in advance. When you are ready to start cooking, all you have to do is combine the ingredients and cook them.
Trussing is when you tie your turkey up with string for baking. Trussing will cook your bird more evenly when you tie the legs and wings next to the bird closely. If the legs and wings aren’t tied down, the tips of them will likely burn before the body of the turkey is done.
To enhance the flavor and texture of your pasta sauce, set aside a small amount of the water that was used to cook the pasta. Set aside about one-fourth cup of the pasta water. Before adding the sauce to the pasta, mix in the cooking water. Through a process known as amalgamation, the starch in the pasta water creates a creamy texture in your sauce.
Spices can quickly lose their flavors when exposed to heat, light or humidity. This will overexpose your spices to the elements which make them lose their flavors.
Check to make sure your meat is cooked thoroughly by using a meat thermometer. There is a temperature that is recommended for the different types of meat that indicates it is safe to eat. If your meats are not cooked to the proper temperature, bacteria can stay alive within the meat and make you and your family sick if they are consumed.
Learn a little bit about any vegetables or fruits you haven’t worked with before. You may find that new ways to use the food.
Fresh herbs and other kinds of seasonings can help spice up even the simplest dish. Using dried herbs, like basil or oregano, is acceptable if a dish is complex and has many flavors. On the other hand, fresher herbs invoke more vibrant and fresh tastes. One way to ensure that you have fresh herbs is to plant a herb garden.
By learning to have fun while cooking can sometimes be as rewarding as eating the actual meal. Add these tips to your cooking bag of tricks, and keep adding new touches to get even better. You’ll become a better and better cook, and soon, people will always be asking to try some of your home cooking.
If you will have a busy day tomorrow, you can always get some of the ingredients of your dinner ready today. You can chop and prepare meats and vegetables for fajitas or refrigerate a casserole the night before. When you get home tired and weary, you can pop a great meal in the oven and still make your family happy!