Want To Impress Your Girlfriend? Try These Cooking Ideas

While everybody needs to eat, not everybody can cook. By following the tips given in this article, you will learn a couple things about how to prepare your own food. Don’t let your kitchen, ingredients or recipes intimidate you. It is a good skill to have and can give you years of joy. Use the tips about cooking here and come up with your own culinary ideas. Don’t be afraid to experiment.

There are a few things you need to know if you are considering cooking with skewers. If using skewers made of steel or metal, avoid ones with rounded surfaces and try ones with square or beveled designs.

When you are cooking food on skewers, there are some basic guidelines to know. If you are using metal skewers, the square or twisted kind are much better than round ones for holding food in place.

Get your ingredients squared away ahead of time. Try to have the prep work completed before cooking; this is important. Cooking with a deadline to meet can become stressful. Do the prep work as early as you can to avoid stress later.

If you have decided that you might like to cook more food at home, look for a great book that can help you. These books can be found in many places: the library, online or even a family member. Try making three or four of the recipes that appeal to you the most, and give yourself plenty of time to perfect your newly acquired skill.

Do not keep your herbs or spices in a place that is not cool and dark. Shelf life can be significantly decreased for those spices which have been exposed to too much light, dampness and heat. To keep your spices spicy and fresh, store them in an area that is cool and dark. Using fresher spices can make tastier meals.

As with many other things in life, one of the keys to making great meals for your family is preparation. Double-check to make sure you have all the necessary ingredients. Get everything set to cook the next day. Determine if you have you got the right utensils, etc. Doing so allows you to focus on the cooking itself.

Here is a little trick that can help you save your sauce so that you can use it right away. Put a small amount of corn starch in a bowl and mix thoroughly with two tablespoons of water to add to your sauce. Stir the solution into the simmering thin sauce to make it thicker. Keep stirring your sauce and add the corn starch little by little.

Partially Frozen

Long cooking processes, like boiling, can “zap” nutrients from foods, like vegetables. For the most nutritious vegetables, employ fast cooking methods or, better yet, consume raw veggies.

Slicing meat into thin even strips is easier when the meat is partially frozen. This works well when cooking many oriental meals. Uncooked meat is easier to cut when it is partially frozen. Allow the meat to thaw prior to cooking though, so that it can cook evenly.

When creating a meal for someone you are friends with or fond of, try making what you already are good at making. Don’t attempt a dish that is new or very far out of your experience level. Preparing a meal that you are comfortable with can really help to reduce your stress level.

If you’re using wooden skewers to cook, try soaking them in water for half an hour first. Being soaked in the water prevents them from getting burned when exposed to the cooking heat. Prevent softer food from falling into the coals by using two parallel skewers rather than a single one.

Apples spoil quickly if stored incorrectly. Air that is dry and warm tends to make apples rot, and you can slow down this process by loosely placing them in plastic bags that are tied shut. Store them in a cool area, such as a refrigerator, garage or basement. You’ll want to monitor them, though, because if one goes bad, it can cause the all the others to spoil also.

Try cooking your vegetables in chicken broth for an extra kick. The broths adds some additional flavor, and reduces or eliminates the need to use cooking oil to prepare them. This technique is a tasty way to cook healthier while not skimping on flavor.

Regardless of the recipe, you can always bet that a fresh ingredient is better than its dried or frozen counterpart. Use fresh ingredients whenever possible, as they make the food more flavorful, and they may cost less over the long run.

Baking Sheets

If you’ve made a big pot of sauce, freeze the leftovers by pouring the extra sauce into ice cube trays. This will make reheating the sauce easy, as you can pull out as many cubes that you need for the next meal. The frozen sauce will keep extremely well until the next time you need it!

To prep a pumpkin for cooking, set the pumpkin upright, and then cleave it down the center, effectively cutting it into two halves. Place both halves cut side down on separate baking sheets. Sprinkle the baking sheets with water, and put the pumpkin in a 350-degree (Fahrenheit) oven for one hour.

When you cook veggies, try using some chicken broth! Not only will chicken broth help to keep vegetables from getting stuck to the pan, but they will add some nice flavors to the dish. Chicken broth can be found at any grocery store, and is very low priced.

If you want to add flavor to your dishes, use a liquid other than milk or water. If the recipe calls for water, switch it up by using a broth, juice, or cooking liquids. If a recipe calls for milk, try using buttermilk, yogurt or sour cream. Using a variety of liquids can add a bit of zest to a favorite recipe and even make it more nutritious.

Pumpkin preparation involves slicing it in half, from top to bottom. Place them on an ungreased baking pan with the cut side down. Pour a little water on some baking sheets and bake the pumpkin for about 1 hour at 350 F.

Measure the oil you use when cooking! You never want to pour oil straight from the bottle. Most oils are very high in fat, so when you measure them with care, you can keep the fat content lower. This lets you keep an eye on just how much oil you use.

When adding your seasonings during cooking, add small amounts of seasonings at a time, rather than adding everything at once. Seasoning in this manner offers several advantages. First, you are maximizing the flavor of whatever you are cooking. Second, you are utilizing ingredients in the best way possible.

Keep the dressing for a salad off to the side when you’re having guests over for a meal. There are many people who prefer little to no dressing on a salad. If you allow everyone to apply their dressings on their own it will allow them to have the amount they like. Offer your guests a variety of dressings.

If you are having people over to your home to eat, and you are including a salad with the meal, allow your guests to put the dressing on themselves. Some people enjoy lots of dressing when eating salads so it is important that each person add their own dressing. Get different kinds of dressings to leave them more choices.

Avoid cooking with a wine that you ordinarily would not find palatable to drink. Using wine that does not appeal to your palate when you are cooking can lead to a meal that lacks the flavor you desire. They make wines that can be used only when you’re cooking food.

Replace your spices twice a year. If you keep them longer than this, they may lose their flavor. If you don’t use a spice very often, and it will go bad before you have to replace it, give some to family and friends.

You can make many preparations a day in advance to keep serving a family dinner from getting overwhelming. Cut up ingredients the night before you plan on cooking a meal to save some time. This creates less stress the next day when you are pressed for time; it also keeps your more prepared when you are ready to throw dinner together.

One of the best cooking tips you can find is to use your imagination. The instructions for a recipe aren’t set in stone. Sometimes making minor changes can make the dish taste even better than it did when following the original recipe. That is the mark of a real chef!

If you love using herbs and spices, make sure to keep them stored someplace that is dark and cool to maintain their freshness and flavor. Storing these items in warm locations will lead them to lose their flavor quicker.

When chopping fresh herbs, sprinkle a small amount of salt on the cutting board. Doing this not only adds some flavor, but it also ensures that the herbs are right where they need to be, which is on the board. If you add the salt to your cutting board, reduce the salt in the recipe by the same amount, so that you don’t add too much salt to your dish. The herbs gain more flavor when the salt sticks to them.

New spices should be purchased every six months. Spices do not last forever. They will eventually lose their flavor. If you purchase a specific spice, knowing that you probably won’t use it all, split it with someone.

Impress your loved ones or guests with great sandwiches by spreading the mayo evenly across the corners of the bread slices. Too many sandwich artists hurriedly put a glob of mayonnaise in the center of their bread. Every bite will be filled with flavor with the dressing evenly spread.

It is important to completely follow the instructions when making macaroni and cheese. Remember that the makers of your mac and cheese designed these instructions with the best possible result in mind. Use a solid spoon to serve your macaroni and cheese. Spice it up with some type of pepper!

If you plan on making a batch of salsa containing raw onions that will not be eaten within about 20 minutes, prepare the chopped onions first by rinsing in cold water and blotting dry. Fresh onions contain gas that has sulfur in it. The gas they release can ruin the salsa. Rinsing and drying the onions gets rid of the gas.

To make an improvement to pasta sauce, save some of the pasta’s cooking water. Save approximately 1/4 cup of water after cooking your pasta. When you are ready to mix your sauce and pasta together, incorporate some of this water. The water from the pasta contains starch that, when mixed with your sauce, will create a creamy texture.

Do not overfill the pan when sauteing foods. Just add a little bit. This will create extra moisture that will act to steam the food rather than adding that crispness that comes from sauteing. Make sure you do this at a low temperature as well.

Extra Flavor

Trussing means to tie a string around the turkey’s wings and legs, pulling them closer together. This prevents the legs and wings from moving too far away from the main body, which can cause it to cook unevenly. If not tied down, the tips of the wings and legs tend to burn easily while the rest of the bird is still cooking.

When it’s time to chop fresh herbs, you should sprinkle a bit of salt on your cutting board first. Not only does this add a little extra flavor, it keeps the herbs you are chopping where you want them – on the board. Remember to use moderation; you don’t want to add too much salt to your ingredients. The salt that has been sprinkled onto the board, will also have the extra benefit of adding a little bit of extra flavor when it adheres to the herbs.

Herbs and spices need to be kept in a dry, cool area, away from light. Heat and moisture can have an adverse effect on the taste of your spices. This makes it more likely that your spices will not retain their distinct flavors and properties.

Cooking does not have to be frightening. In fact, there are many benefits to preparing your own food. Apply what you learned from this article at the grocery store, in your kitchen and also on your plate. Have a great time cooking for yourself and bon appetit!

When cooking with fruits and vegetables that you have never used before, gather as much knowledge about them beforehand as you can. You may be surprised, with a little research, at the versatility of a new food. Becoming knowledgeable should precede any work you do in the kitchen, and it will also help in giving you a more enjoyable cooking experience.

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Want To Become A Better Cook? Read This

Many people see preparing meals as a tedious task. This article will give you tips on how to make cooking fun and a joy to do.

When you are cooking food on skewers, there are some basic guidelines to know. If you are using metal skewers, stick to twisted or square designs, as this can grasp food more effectively.

Make sure to keep herbs and spices in an area that is cool and dim. Your spices and herbs will lose some of their flavor when exposed to light, humidity and heat. Usually, a freshly ground spice or herb will keep its flavor for around a year. Whole spices can stay fresh for up to five years. Proper storage is essential to maintaining fresh, robust flavors.

Do you regret having to throw out old fruit? Should you save the moldy fruit and cut away the bad parts? Unfortunately, there isn’t any way to save fruit that has begun to rot. Get rid of them quickly, as mold can develop and cause health problems.

Your spices should be stored in any area that is dark and cool. Shelf life can be significantly decreased for those spices which have been exposed to too much light, dampness and heat. Keeping your spices in darkened, cool areas will lend extra longevity and flavor. If you use fresh spices, your food will taste better.

It is not always easy to remember the proper grilling times for all meats. Try using a digital meat thermometer to judge when your meat is cooked thoroughly. If the meat you’re grilling is more than 1.5 inches thick, think about keeping the lid of the grill closed to shorten the cooking time.

Do not throw away the product of your hard work. Mix one tablespoon of starch from corn and two tablespoons of water together in a bowl. Take this mixture and slowly stir it into the thin sauce, and this will make it thicker. Make sure you stir your sauce and stop pouring the mix once your sauce looks better.

You should always look at the product labels before purchasing ingredients for a meal. Many common cooking ingredients include substances that may not be very healthy. Too much salt, sugar, and those dreaded unpronounceable chemicals can really alter the flavors of dishes and be generally unhealthy for you.

Partially Frozen

When preparing a dish that calls for garlic, purchase garlic that is as fresh as possible. One rule to remember is that if you want sweet garlic, choose fresh garlic. Fresh garlic will have firm skin and cloves. In addition, it should not be shriveled or have any bruises.

Partially frozen meat is easier to cut into thin strips. The thin sliced meat is great in many dishes including many Chinese and Thai meals. If the meat is partially frozen, its texture is maintained nicely, even when sliced into thin strips. Allow the meat strips to completely thaw before you throw them in the cooking pan, so you can be sure that the strips all cook evenly.

When serving salad to guests, leave the dressing on the side. Let people put on their own dressing. It is important to provide your guests with a plethora of dressings.

When using knives to prepare your food, it is critical that they all have a sharp edge. Dull knives don’t get the job done, but in addition, are actually dangerous. You’re less likely to cut yourself chopping up a vegetable with the clean, fast strokes of a sharp knife, than when you are forcing and wiggling a dull knife.

It is fairly easy to dry tomatoes yourself. Just slice them when ripe to about 1/2″ thickness. Lay your tomato slices across a cooling rack with the cut-side facing up, and salt them lightly. Next, position a full rack on a baking sheet in an oven preheated to 190 degrees. Dry for approximately 10 hours. Put the tomatoes in plastic bags, and store them in the freezer. Another option is to place the tomatoes in a jar and cover them with fresh herbs and olive oil. The jars can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

If you do any lengthy cooking process like boiling, many of the nutrients will be cooked out. You can keep all those healthy nutrients by using a quick method of cooking like steaming or by eating the vegetables raw.

Your favorite herbs should always be stored in a dark, cool area. You are destroying your herbs’ flavors and wasting your money when you store them in a warm area or where they are exposed to sunlight.

To make your French fries crispier, let the raw potatoes soak for about half an hour in cold water prior to frying. When you soak sliced potatoes in cold water, it strengthens their fibers, so that they can stand up to the heat when being deep fried.

Many vegetables and herbs have a smell that has a tendency to remain on cutting boards, despite how many times you wash them. Mark your ends on the cutting board using indelible ink so that you can remember one side from the other.

Cooking Vegetables

You should consider replacing your spices about twice a year. When spices sit around for too long, they tend to lose flavor. If you purchase a spice that you don’t use very often, give some of it to friends or relatives.

Cooking vegetables quickly improves their overall quality. When you cook veggies slowly, they lose many nutrients. These cooking techniques will yield vegetables that are healthier and taste great as well. Cooking vegetables as quickly as possible is key to preserving their nutrients.

If you have purchased unripened fruits, put them into a plastic bag that is perforated. Fruits produce ethylene gas when they become riper. If you put them in a perforated plastic bag, the air can circulate and assure that the gas is retained, keeping the fruit fresh and tasty.

Cooking with fresh basil? Take a few twigs of the basil and place it in a small container or glass. Pour water in the glass until the stems of the fresh basil are completely covered. Store it on the counter of your kitchen; it will stay fresh for weeks. Change the water regularly and roots will grow. Trim or cut the basil periodically to provide for added growth so you can partake in some fresh basil for a while!

You should be as organized as possible when cooking to avoid burning food and other mistakes, which could be costly. This will increase your productivity, generating tasty foods and saving a lot of money. Unorganized cooks can easily make mistakes, lose or overlook buying important ingredients, and waste good money and food that could be used.

Sauteing vegetables in a small amount of chicken broth is a healthy and delicious way to cook. The vegetables get flavor from the broth, and there is no need to use as much oil as it normally takes to saute them. This is a tasty way to cook your veggies.

The night before you are scheduled to prepare a large, multi-course meal, complete as much prep work as possible. Make sure you have every ingredient you need, and measure out spices or herbs. Cut veggies as necessary. When it comes time to cook, all you will have to worry about is assembly and cook time.

When you want to cook a pumpkin, stand it on its end and slice it in half. Lay the cut halves on individual baking pans. Pour a little water on some baking sheets and bake the pumpkin for about 1 hour at 350 F.

When chopping fresh herbs, try sprinkling a bit of salt over the cutting board before you begin. The salt will keep the herbs on the board and add extra flavor as well. Just make sure you don’t add salt to your dish afterwards as the herbs already contain it. If you put salt on your cutting board it will give your herbs a little more flavor.

If you decide to make a roast, leave the bone in if you are in a hurry. The bone transfers the heat from your oven to the center of the roast, helping it cook far more quickly. After the roast is cooked, just slice around the bone to serve.

Purchase quality cutting utensils for the kitchen. You can save time not having to sharpen or deal with dull knives and sharper knives are safer to use. A greater number of accidents occur because of dull utensils. Therefore, purchasing sharper ones decreases the chance of injury.

Tomatoes can be easily dried. Prepare by cutting ripe tomatoes into half-inch-thick slices or slicing Roma tomatoes in half down their long axis. Put them facing upwards onto a cooling rack and add a little salt. Put the rack on a baking sheet, and slow-bake in an oven that is set to 190 degrees for about 10 hours. The tomatoes can then be placed in plastic bags and stored in the freezer. You can store dried tomatoes in an olive oil filled jar. Add fresh herbs for seasoning. Keep it refrigerated and use it within two weeks.

When sauteing food, don’t put too much oil in the pan. The extra moisture will steam the food instead of sauteing it and will not add that little bit of crispness that sauteing is good for. Keep the flame or burner around medium as you saute.

In order for herbs and spices to remain fresh and flavorful, they need to be kept in an area that is cool and dim. If spices are stored above a stove or other warm area there is a good chance that they will lose their flavor very quickly.

Trussing is the process of tying the turkey with string. Trussing keeps the good stuff inside your bird and also accommodates more consistent cooking. If they are untied, the tips of its legs and wings can burn while the remainder of the bird cooks.

When boiling water to cook pasta, be sure to add a generous sprinkling of salt. Adding salt at this stage will ensure that the pasta absorbs it completely. If you try to salt the pasta after it is already cooked it will not hold the seasoning as well.

Cooking with brine is a smart cooking idea. Soak goose, turkey, chicken or duck in brine one hour before preparation to bring out the best poultry flavors in your dish.

It important to neither overcook or undercook a cake. While the recommended baking times are good guidelines, they can be affected by factors like elevation. A better idea is to insert a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick has no batter on it, then the cake has finished baking. If it does have batter on it, then put the cake back in the oven.

If you have various leftovers in your fridge, make some fried rice and add small pieces of vegetables and meat to it. Cold rice that was prepared the day before works especially well, but if none is available, just prepare fresh rice with half the water you would normally use so that the final product is drier. First, use a small amount of oil to fry the meat and vegetables. Next, add the rice to the mixture and use soy sauce, ginger and garlic according to your taste preferences.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that every potato is like the others. You can make potato salad with waxy potatoes, but you should use a different kind for fries or mashed potatoes. Russet potatoes will produce the fluffiest results.

To make cooking less stressful, prep all of your ingredients ahead of time. This will make sure that you do not end up halfway into a recipe, then find out you are missing something. It might take a little longer to do this prep work ahead of time, but you will save time in the cooking phase and eliminate the stress of having to do it while cooking.

You can make cooking more enjoyable and less of a chore. Use the advice in this article, and start taking a more enjoyable, fun, and delicious approach to cooking.

Some fruits will grill up nicely, and make a tasty treat. Thread sliced melon, nectarines and peaches onto skewers. Keep grilling them until grill marks show up. Finally, serve them with a slice of cake or a scoop of ice cream.

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Cooking Help Is Here! Check Out These Simple Tips And Tricks

No matter whether you live alone or are surrounded by a large family, cooking is a skill that is essential to learn. Having the ability to cook is beneficial in so many ways, notwithstanding the nutritional and financial benefits of knowing this art. The article below covers a wide range of cooking tips that are easy and practical.

The prep work comes first. Having your preparation done ahead of time is very important. Setting a time limit can add stress to your cooking experience. Preparing some of the ingredients ahead of time can reduce the amount of stress you feel when it is time to prepare the meal.

Prepare as much of your recipe as you can ahead of time. Having your preparation done ahead of time is very important. Setting a time limit can add stress to your cooking experience. Having as much prep work done as possible will save you both time and frustration!

Get a cookbook with easy recipes or a specific theme you find interesting to get you started. Try looking online or to your local library or bookstore. Experiment with several recipes, and give yourself the time in perfecting your cooking skills.

When cooking a large meal for a family gathering or dinner party, preparation is key. Make sure you have all the ingredients ready. Check the day before you start to cook to make sure that you have everything that you need to cook the dish you have planned. Being prepared will settle your anxiety and ensure that you are ready to create a fantastic meal.

If you boil your vegetables or cook them for too long, they will lose a lot of nutrients. To get the greatest health benefit from vegetables, cook them quickly with methods like steaming or sauteing, or serve them raw.

When you are cooking a stir-fry, ensure the meat is sliced to be very thin, and cut it on the bias. Sometimes, however, this can be a little challenging and tedious. When the meat is partially frozen, slice it diagonally across the grain at a 45 degree angle.

A lot of people cook with apples during fall and winter, but they will spoil rather quickly if you don’t store them correctly. Apples will be ruined if they are stored in a warm place, make sure you store them in the fridge or in a cool place. Remember the rule, one bad apple will spoil the bunch.

Add oil to the side of the pan when you are cooking with it. The oil will then already be heated when it comes to the center of the pan. This will give your food the flavor you crave.

Whenever you have a meal to cook, if you do your all your prep work ahead of time, it will be much less stressful and quicker. Look at your recipe ahead of time and draft up a list of what you can do to get ready, but don’t risk spoiling any ingredients. There is a lot of preparation that you can take care of a day in advance. Prepping before you cook can make even advanced recipes fun and accessible.

This trick can save you a ton of work and it can be used immediately. Combine 2 tbsp. of water with 1 tbsp. of corn starch in a bowl. Stir the mixture into simmering sauce to make the sauce thicker. Adding the cornstarch mixture slowly and continuing to stir helps you judge the proper thickness of your sauce.

Always use an airtight container to store baking ingredients such as sugar or flour in the kitchen. Keeping your ingredients in airtight containers will stop them from spoiling or being infected with bugs. These containers are affordable and are available at most grocery stores.

Thin Strips

If you are trying to eat smarter to lose weight, it is vital to use less oil when you cook. Most fats are brought into a diet through oil and butter. 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.

Partially chill meat so it becomes easier to slice into thin strips. Certain dishes require thin strips of beef, chicken or pork. If the meat is partially frozen, its texture is maintained nicely, even when sliced into thin strips. However, the meat strips should be thawed to assure even cooking.

Use vegetable or chicken stock to saute vegetables. The vegetables get flavor from the broth, and there is no need to use as much oil as it normally takes to saute them. Try this next time you cook vegetables for a great meal.

If you are cooking for someone you want to impress, cook something you already know how to make. You should never attempt to cook some new dish or even a new ingredient you’ve never attempted. This can lessen the stress of your cooking.

That way, fruit can stay crisp and fresh all year. This also gives you the advantage of having fruits available off-season.

This can be applied on many other foods other than just meat. It can spice up snack foods such as roasted pumpkin seeds, or provide a little zing to your breakfast menu when used on your morning eggs. Everyone at the table will be asking for your recipe!

You should always organize your cooking supplies. If you are not well organized, you’ll be a disaster in the kitchen. Try to keep things with similar purposes in proximity to one another. As an example, parsley and basil are spices, so they should be stored in a cabinet together with all of the other spices.

While garlic is a great addition to many dishes, it has the frustrating feature of rubbing off on your hands. However, rub your hands inside a stainless steel basin when you have finished working with any strong-odor ingredient. This process removes the odors from your hands and keeps you from transferring them to the next piece of food you work with.

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. Mark your ends on the cutting board using indelible ink so that you can remember one side from the other.

Ice Cube Trays

When unpacking your groceries, place any unripened fruits in perforated bags. Fruits produce ethylene gas when they become riper. The perforations in the bag allow the air to circulate while the plastic retains enough of the ethylene gas to increase the ripening process and keep the fruit tasting sweet and delicious.

After you make sauce, pour the leftovers into ice cube trays and place them in the freezer. You can easily take them from the freezer when needed for a meal, and quickly reheat in a saute pan. No worries, because the sauce is still quite edible after being frozen in ice cube trays.

Make sure that prior to cooking, your utensils are sparkling clean. If items are not completely clean after you put them away, you could ruin everything you cook. It could promote the spread of bacteria.

Many herbs and veggies make odors on your cutting board no matter how many times you clean it. You can mark your cutting boards with permanent marker to tell which one or which side is for each type of food.

If you are cooking with a certain type of fruit or vegetable for the first time, do some research before using it. It takes only a short time to dig up some information on a new food, and you may come to learn that it’s versatile enough to use in many of your dishes. You can have much more fun when cooking if you do some prep work and research ahead of time.

Make sure that prior to cooking, your utensils are sparkling clean. If old, leftover food is stuck on your cooking utensils, it could ruin the meal you are making. Beyond that, dirty utensils allow bacteria to grow which could make you ill.

There are many different kinds of potatoes, and they cannot be equally substituted for each other. Waxy potatoes are best for potato salad and should be avoided when making mashed potatoes or french fries. When cooking those foods, try using fluffier potatoes, including Russets.

Consider creating your own stock, in order to add some customized flavor to your dishes. Making a large amount allows you to store some in the freezer for future meals. Doing so will give you the best stock for any dish that calls for it. Making homemade stock ensures that you know what is in it and that it isn’t made with preservatives.

A great way to add zip to some of your staple foods, like potatoes, use beef or chicken stock instead of water. Bouillon cubes dissolved in the appropriate amount of water will also work. Doing this gives your food all the moisture that it needs, but kicks the taste up a notch.

You should establish a habit of washing the dishes as you use them to cook. On one side of your sink, you should have hot soapy water at the ready, and on the other, lukewarm water for rinsing. 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.

If you are working with foods that have strong odors, such as fish, garlic or onions, remove the smell from your hands by rubbing them on something that is stainless steel, prior to washing them. A spoon or the side of the sink will do the trick, or a ready-made “soap bar” made of stainless steel. This technique will eliminate odors and keep hands fresh-smelling as well.

Use a paper towel to blot your ground meat before cooking it. Always fully drain your ground meats and blot them dry. If your meat is soggy before you sear it, then it will be soggy afterward. Basically it just burns away. This can steam the meat, which will make it difficult to sear it.

Catching your own fish is a wonderful hobby and it can benefit your kitchen experience too. Catching fish and being able to eat it that same day allows for the enjoyment of an incredibly fresh and delectable meal, and the satisfaction that it did not require reliance on a supermarket.

When cutting fresh herbs, sprinkle salt onto the 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. Don’t add to much salt when doing this. The herbs gain more flavor when the salt sticks to them.

Add some interest to a basic ear of corn or dinner roll by using flavored butter. Make sure that your butter is room temperature by either leaving it on the counter for a while or softening it in the microwave. Then mix in herbs, spices or sauces to add an extra burst of flavor. Barbeque sauce is good, so is honey or lemon juice.

Cutting Board

If you are preparing mashed potatoes, add hot milk just before you get ready to mix them. You want to make sure that the milk is not boiling, however. The end result is lighter, fluffier mashed potatoes. This will turn your mashed potatoes from dull to delightful with virtually no effort.

Be sure to care for your wooden cutting board properly. Your cutting board can split or warp if it is exposed to excessive moisture, heat, or extreme dryness. Don’t submerge your board in water to clean it. Use a sponge and warm soapy water instead. To restore a damaged board, oil it on a regular basis, using a product specifically designed for wood cutting boards. Be sure to dry it off completely before using.

You can cut cinnamon rolls with ease. If you have made cinnamon rolls, it can be hard to prepare them for baking by slicing them. To cut the dough easily, use a string thread underneath it where you desire the cut to be made. Gather the thread around each side, then cross it over the top, pulling with a strong force and dividing the roll with the strength of your motion. You will have perfectly sliced cinnamon rolls!

It’s a huge asset to be able to prepare meals for you or for others. It does not matter what type of food you like, being able to cook can add nothing but benefits to your life. When it comes down to it, home cooking is your best bet for a good meal.

To create low-fat soups or stews, start with fat-free broth or stock. Also use lean meat and lots of vegetables; this will keep your soup low-fat. Before you serve the soup, allow it to chill for a little while in the refrigerator. This allows the remaining fat to congeal on the top. Simply skim off the hard fat now and throw it away. Each tablespoon of hardened fat removed equates to around 100 calories so that can add up quickly to quite a savings.

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