Becoming a great chef is easier than you probably think it is. It is okay to do some experimentation and find out what your strong points are. These tips can help you expand your cooking so that you to try new things. Use the following advice and you can greatly improve your cooking skills.
Make sure to keep your spices and herbs sealed in airtight containers, protected in a dark, cool place. If they are exposed to light, heat or humidity, they will lose much of their flavor. Generally, ground herbs and spices stay fresh for around a year, after that they begin to lose their flavor. Spices that are whole will retain flavor longer, closer to 3-5 years. If you store them correctly, they will stay fresh for an even longer period of time.
Your spices should be stored in any area that is free of light. Using fresher spices can make your food taste better.
Slicing meat into thin even strips is easier when the meat is partially frozen. This method is great for oriental meals that require small strips. There’s less tearing of the semi-frozen meat as it’s cleanly sliced. After you have sliced the meat, allow it to thaw out before cooking. This keeps the meat cooking evenly.
Try adding cauliflower to your mashed potatoes to cut some calories and fat. The somewhat bland taste of cauliflower will blend nicely with your potatoes while picking up the other ingredients. Cauliflower is also the same texture and color of potatoes when mashed so it’s a great way to add more veggies, so the dish will be transformed into one that has more vegetables and fewer calories.
To maintain a vegetable’s quality, cook it quickly. Slow-cooked vegetables lose nutritional value and taste. As an added benefit, these techniques tend to produce healthier vegetables in general. Cooking vegetables as quickly as possible is key to preserving their nutrients.
Do you love to cook often with fresh basil? Gather a small bunch of freshly cut basil and put it into a glass. Make sure the basil’s stems are submerged in water. You could let it sit on the kitchen counter for weeks. 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!
Complete as much of the preparatory work as possible for your meals ahead of time to speed up the process of cooking. Peruse your recipes and look for things you can do ahead of time. Choose items that will not spoil. There are a lot of things you can prep the day before you need to cook. This can make harder recipes easy, and complicated ones a fun, fast experience.
Use fresh ingredients whenever possible, as they bring out the best flavor of the dish, and they may cost less over the long run.
Keep flour, sugar and other items for baking in tins with seals that keep the air out. Airtight containers keep your food fresh and protect it from bugs and bacterias. Thankfully, you can grab some affordable, quality airtight containers practically anywhere.
Look at your recipe and determine whether or not certain steps you can be completed beforehand. You can prepare a lot of food the cooking process by doing your prep work well in advance. This can make it even the most complicated dishes and make them more enjoyable.
Freezing helps ensure fresh fruit throughout the year. Also, you’ll have certain fruits on hand that can’t be grown during certain periods of the year.
Try drying your own tomatoes. You can do this by slicing your tomatoes about a half an inch thick, or Romas in half. Place the resulting tomato pieces on a rack, then salt their exposed flesh lightly. Set the rack on a cookie sheet in an oven at 190 degrees for a 10 hours. Place the tomatoes into a freezer bag, and freeze them for later use. You can also pack dried tomatoes in a jar with some fresh herbs and olive oil. Dried tomatoes should be stored within the refrigerator and used within two weeks.
Add some chicken broth to vegetables when you cook them. Chicken broth adds flavor to vegetables while keeping them from getting stuck to the bottom of the pan.
Don’t throw out turkey leftovers, whether it is from a holiday dinner or an everyday meal. Instead, cut the turkey into smaller pieces, store it in a container that’s airtight, and freeze it. Frozen, leftover turkey will keep for a few months, allowing you to pull out a container for sandwiches or salads at any time.
Tofu and beans are excellent sources of protein that can be easily added to any diet. Both can be purchased at most grocery store. Try frying tofu with some interesting seasonings and you will have a tasty alternative to meat. Beans can always be cooked with herbs is a flavorful source of protein.
When using fresh herbs in your meal, including dill and parsley, place the herbs together in bunches, and cut them with scissors. This will keep the herbs drier and lighter than chopped with a knife.
Utilize these tips to improve your cooking skills. Experiment with the ideas offered, and don’t be scared to try each of them at least one time. With practice, you will be able to incorporate these ideas into your cooking, improving your technique. You can quickly improve your chef skills if you take the time to try these tips.
Allow meals to rest before serving. A lot of people aren’t aware that flavors will improve if a meal can rest a bit before being served. We are inclined to serve meat and other foods as soon as they are cooked. 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.