Many people view cooking as an annoyance. This article has many suggestions so that you can enjoy cooking.
You want to make certain you have the prep work done ahead of time. It is important to have all the prep work done before you start cooking. Cooking can get stressful when you’re working to deadline. Preparing some of the ingredients ahead of time can reduce the amount of stress you feel when it is time to prepare the meal.
Protect your spice and herb collection by storing your jars at room temperature in a dark place. If they are exposed to light, heat or humidity, they will lose much of their flavor. When properly stored, ground herbs and spices can retain full flavor for up to a year. Whole spices usually keep their flavor for around 3 to 5 years. If they are stored properly, they will stay fresh longer.
Overdo it a little when you bake a pie crust. Judge their color, not the time in the oven to determine if they are done. They will be golden brown when cooked. When you see the golden color it indicates carmelization, which lends a crisp, sweet flavor to the pie crust.
You want to make certain you have the prep work done ahead of time. Before you start making your food, it is a good thing to have everything prepared. When you have a timeline for your meal to be ready, things can get a bit stressful once you start cooking. You can help lessen the potential stress by getting all your prep work done early.
When cooking a large meal for a family gathering or dinner party, preparation is key. Look at your recipe, and ensure that you aren’t missing any ingredients. Prepare everything the day prior, including the correct utensils and other cooking tools. This can help relax everything so that you can make something great.
When you are baking pastry crusts, try increasing the cooking time a bit. The color should be a darker caramel instead of the pale blond so many people do. This golden color means that the sugar has caramelized, leaving a sweet flavor.
Always keep your spices away from light in a cool place. If they are stored in an area that they are exposed to light, heat and humidity, their shelf life is shortened. 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.
To make your sauce thicker, stir cornstarch into the simmering sauce. In a bowl, combine a tablespoon of cornstarch with two tablespoons of water. Stir it into your sauce as it simmers and it will get thicker. Make sure you stir your sauce and stop pouring the mix once your sauce looks better.
Sharp knives will make cooking so much more efficient. Dull knives make cutting very difficult, and this makes them much more dangerous than sharp knives. You can cut yourself so easily trying to force dull knives through something than it is to make a simple cut with a sharp one.
Do you feel bad when you throw away fruit that has gone bad? Could you instead just cut off the mold and eat the rest like you can with cheese? If you have fruit that is just a little rotten, throw it away. The mold may have grown deeper than can be seen, and eating it may make you quite ill.
Did you ever feel bad for throwing old, moldy fruit away? Is it possible to save at least a portion by getting rid of only the bad part? Unfortunately, you cannot rescue a piece of fruit once it has started to grow moldy and decayed. Fruit with any mold on it must be discarded because it contains unhealthy organisms.
Popular French fried potato recipes suggest soaking the potatoes in water for 30 minutes before cooking them. The potatoes need to soak because the fibers will be reinforced through the cold fluids which in turn makes them fry better. They can handle the heat and not break apart completely.
It is sometimes difficult to determine when your foods are thoroughly cooked on a grill. Try using a digital meat thermometer to judge when your meat is cooked thoroughly. A good rule of thumb to reduce the total cooking time is to always close the grill lid whenever the thickness of the meat exceeds 1.5 inches.
Garlic, like lots of other foods, has the unfortunate characteristics of absorbing into your hands. Rub your hands on the inside of a sink made of stainless steel after using garlic. Not only will this remove the scent from your skin, but it will also prevent the juices from affecting the flavor of the next food you touch.
Always read the labels of the ingredients you buy. Many common items contain unhealthy hidden ingredients. Too much salt, sugar, and those dreaded unpronounceable chemicals can really alter the flavors of dishes and be generally unhealthy for you.
You should think big when preparing chicken stock. Fill a large pot of stock and freeze it for later. A rich chicken stock makes a savory base for soups, stews and other dishes. After the liquid has cooled you can store it in heavy-duty freezer bags.
When you cook a pumpkin, the first step is to slice in in half vertically. Put both sides of the pumpkin face down on a baking sheet. Sprinkle some water on the sheets and bake the pumpkin for about an hour at 350 degrees.
Always make certain you are checking out the ingredient labels when getting items for a recipe. Many common items contain unhealthy hidden ingredients. You must make sure that your ingredients are not high in either sodium or sugar because these may cause health problems if consumed in large amounts.
Place salad dressing off to the side of a salad, instead of on top of it, when serving salad to guests. Some people love dressing in great huge globs, while others like a lighter taste. Some folks don’t like any dressing at all, (or are watching their weight) so leave the dressing of salads up to your guests. Offer a variety of dressings, so there will be something to everyone’s taste.
When you are seasoning food, a good rule to follow is to add the seasoning a little at a time rather than adding it all at once in the beginning of the cooking process. When you use this method, you will be more in control of the flavor and can limit over using your ingredients.
Protect your investment in herbs and spices by storing them correctly – in a cool, dark space. 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.
Always seek out garlic that is fresh and firm. Fresh garlic tastes a lot sweeter than older garlic, so buy fresh to avoid the bitterness. To choose the freshest garlic, keep away from any cloves that are bruised, soft or have skins that feel too firm.
Always begin your cooking with utensils that are spotlessly clean. If there is leftover food on your utensils from the last meal you cooked, it could contaminate the food you are making now. This can also cause bacteria to spread.
Many veggies and herbs leave strong scents and plant oils on your cutting board that are very difficult to remove completely. Mark one end, or side, of each cutting board so that you know which is which.
Even if a meal looks irresistible, let it sit for a few minutes after it has finished cooking. It is a new idea to many, but allowing your food to rest can be quite beneficial. It has become almost habit now to serve up a meal as it comes right off the stove. However, you will miss out on great food if you do. Let your meal sit and cool off for a couple minutes before serving.
Clean cooking utensils are an absolute necessity when you start any cooking project. If there is leftover food on your utensils from the last meal you cooked, it could contaminate the food you are making now. This can also spread harmful bacteria.
One of the best cooking tips you can find is to use your imagination. You don’t always have to follow the recipe word for word. Add things to flavor and shake up the recipe to make it your own. Now that is a real cook!
Use your own stock for more flavorful food. Making a large amount allows you to store some in the freezer for future meals. By freezing stock, you ensure that you have tasty homemade stock ready to add to any dish. Doing it on your own, prevents any unnecessary preservatives from being added to the stock.
To make pasta sauce even more delicious, save some of the water you boiled the pasta in. Set aside a small amount of the water, about one quarter cup. When you mix your pasta and sauce, also add the water you reserved. Residual starch in the water adds volume and creaminess to the sauce of your choice.
Do not forget to add salt to water for making pasta. This is so that the seasoning will set into the pasta. If you salt the pasta once it is cooked, you will not get as much flavor when you add the seasoning.
An excellent suggestion is to purchase solid cutting utensils for use in your kitchen. This can save you time so that you don’t wrangle with dull knives, and it’s safer for you to use a sharper one! A greater number of accidents occur because of dull utensils. Therefore, purchasing sharper ones decreases the chance of injury.
Be sure to care for your wooden cutting board properly. Exposure to moisture or dryness can damage a wooden board easily. The correct way to clean a wooden cutting board is to use a damp, soapy sponge or cloth to wipe it clean, rinse with boiling water and towel dry. If you have a damaged cutting board, you should purchase an oil product that is designed for cutting board restoration. Before you use the board, make sure it is dry.
Trussing refers to the method of tying a turkey up with string for baking. It pulls the legs and wings close against the bird, which helps the turkey to cook more evenly. If not tied down, the tips of the wings and legs tend to burn easily while the rest of the bird is still cooking.
There are some ways to properly take care of a cutting board made of wood. A cutting board made from wood can crack and warp if it is exposed to excessive moisture, heat and dryness. Don’t submerge the board in the sink when you clean it. Instead, use warm, soapy water and a sponge. You can find oil designed for cutting boards to maintain yours. Before you use the board, make sure it is dry.
Use the freshest herbs and seasonings available, even when making a simple meal. Dried herbs are okay to use in dishes that are complex or have a lot of flavors in them. However, using fresh herbs adds a fresher, stronger taste that improves the overall quality of the dish’s flavor. You could start your own herb garden to always have fresh products.
It is important to cook your meat properly, so always have a meat thermometer on hand. There is a minimum internal temperature to which a meat needs to be cooked so that it is safe to eat. Bacteria flourish on the meats, so you need to make sure the meet is cooked properly and thoroughly so the bacteria don’t stay on the meat and cause sickness if you were to consume the meat.
If you are cooking for an important person, make sure you cook something that’s both fancy and you know how to cook well. Don’t try to over impress by cooking something out of the ordinary or it could backfire. Whether it’s your boss, new-in laws, or a new love interest, you want to please them. Impress these people with a meal that you already know you are good at making.
There are several cooking techniques that you can utilize to make cooking more interesting and fun. If you use the tips in this article you’ll find that you can make cooking creative and fun, enjoying every minute of it.
Set both your oven timer and the timer on your watch. By setting a watch, you will know when your food is done.