Cooking everyday can become boring if you only know to prepare a few different dishes. Try spicing things up with a couple cooking lessons. There’s more to cooking than just preparing a nice meal for the family; it can actually be an enjoyable experience as you experiment with new ways of cooking. Here are some great cooking tips to get you going.
Spices should be stored in an area with little light and low temperatures, like a pantry. Your spices will not last as long if they are exposed to light, heat or humidity. Always keep your spices in a dark and cool location to extend their longevity. Your culinary preparations will taste better if your spices are fresh.
In your journey to cook more meals yourself, utilize the library or local bookstore in acquiring cookbooks. Target simple books with simple recipes that make you comfortable. Try a few recipes, and be patient with yourself as you are mastering this new skill.
Make sure that the knives you are using are very sharp. Dull knives are more dangerous to use and they are less productive as well. The chance of accidentally cutting yourself while using a dull knife to cut steak is way higher than using a sharp knife to cut the same steak.
If you are preparing a meal for a boss or new date, cook something that you are familiar with. You can avoid stress by sticking to familiar recipes and food you enjoy. This can keep your stress levels in check while you cook.
If you wish to have crispy French fries, then you should soak the potatoes in cool water for 30 minutes and then fry them. Soaking the sliced potatoes in cold water strengthens the potato fibers so they will not break down so much when you fry them in the hot oil.
You can also use this seasoning on foods other than meat. Use it with roasted pumpkin seeds for a wonderful snack, or go ahead and add some to scrambled eggs. People will wonder how you’ve managed to add such amazing flavor to simple dishes.
When cooking vegetables, cook them as quickly as possible to keep their nutritional value. Vegetables that have been slow-cooked are not as nutritional or tasty as vegetables that are cooked in other ways. You have an added bonus, because these certain techniques make vegetables healthier in general. If you learn to cook vegetables for the right amount of time, it will help to keep them tasty and preserve nutrients.
One good way to store extra sauce is to freeze it using ice cube trays. When you feel the need to create another meal, you will have them handy to heat up. The sauce is still good after it is frozen.
These spices are able to be used on many things in the kitchen, not just meats. For example, sprinkle it over roasted nuts or seeds, or use a dash when cooking eggs for breakfast. The interesting flavor will leave everyone wondering what the secret ingredient it.
Wooden skewers should be soaked in plain water before each use for an absolute minimum of thirty minutes. This keeps them from burning up while the food is cooking on them. Use two parallel skewers as opposed to a single skewer to keep food intact.
Mushrooms absorb large amounts of water, and this excess water will go into whatever you are cooking with. Wipe the mushrooms off by hand with a cloth that is damp.
If you are looking for a nutritionally beneficial way to cook your vegetables, try sauteing them in a small amount of chicken broth. Broth will flavor the vegetables, and less oil will be needed to saute them. This is a delicious and healthy way to easily cook vegetables.
For a high-protein diet, meat isn’t the only source available. Tofu, lentils and beans are great protein substitutes. Both are readily available in grocery stores. You can pan fry the tofu with a few seasonings to have a delicious meat alternative. Boil the beans with herbs to make a tasty protein-filled dish.
If you have a recipe that requires water or milk, you can change out the liquids to create a whole new flavor. As a substitute for water, try broth. Juice can work as well. Some people use the water left over from boiling vegetables. Sour cream, buttermilk and yogurt make good milk substitutes. Mixing up the base of your sauces and soups is a great way to liven up old recipes.
When certain recipes call for milk or water, try adding some other liquids that you would see fit to experiment with flavors. As a substitute for water, try broth. Juice can work as well. Some people use the water left over from boiling vegetables. To replace milk, yogurt, sour cream and buttermilk can make good substitutes. Changing up the liquids in your recipes can add nutrition, while livening up a standby dish.
Keep herbs and spices fresh and tasty by storing them in an area that is dark and cold. If you keep herbs and spices in an area that is close to the stove, they will lose their flavor very quickly and just be a waste of money.
Always make sure that the cooking utensils you are about to use are clean before starting any cooking. This is a basic but very important rule for any cook. If items are not completely clean after you put them away, you could ruin everything you cook. Another concern is the potential cost to your health, as you could possibly be exposed to bacteria.
When boiling pasta, salt the cooking water generously. Seasoning will impregnate the pasta more efficiently while it cooks. Salting pasta after cooking will not be as effective in enhancing the flavor.
When you are cooking, wash the dishes as you use them to reduce clean-up time later. With a two-bowl sink, you can keep one side full of hot suds and run clear water for rinsing in the other. After using utensils and mixing bowls, it’s best to wash them right away because it’s easier. Once cleaned, they will be ready to use again.
You should save some water from the pan in which you cooked the pasta so that you can add it to the pasta sauce later. Set aside approximately one-fourth cup. Put in some of the water when you mix the pasta and the sauce. The starch from the pasta water will add body and a “creaminess” to your sauce through amalgamation.
Before preparing ground meat, blot it. Eliminating the moisture off the meat is always good. If you leave the moisture on the meat, it’ll release when the meat is cooked. The heat will vaporize the moisture. This detracts from the searing process, and instead mimics steaming.
When cooking, be creative. Following a recipe word for word and teaspoon for teaspoon is not always what cooking is about. Give the recipe your own personal twist by leaving an ingredient or two out, substituting, or adding something. These little changes can result in an exceptionally good dish that is better than the original recipe! Sometimes that’s the best sort of cooking!
When chopping fresh herbs, try sprinkling a bit of salt over the cutting board before you begin. This keeps your herbs on the cutting board and can add a bit of flavor, as well. Don’t add any additional salt to the food while you’re preparing it, or it may become too salty. Any salt on your cutting board can stick to the herbs you are chopping and enhance their flavor.
Put a little bit of salt on your cutting board before chopping fresh herbs. Salt will not only add flavor to your herbs, but it will keep the herbs on the cutting board. Don’t over-salt your foods. The herbs gain more flavor when the salt sticks to them.
Impress family and friends when you make a simple sandwich just by spreading the mayonnaise evenly on the entire slice of bread. Most people simply put mayo in the center of their sandwiches. When the mayo reaches every corner of the bread, each bite of the sandwich tastes just as wonderful as the last.
Potatoes come in many different varieties, and you can’t always substitute one for another. For boiling and for use in potato salad, the waxy varieties will work best. This kind of potato does not work as well for mashing, baked potatoes or french fries. Russet potatoes are more suited to those applications because of their fluffy texture.
Be sure to care for your wooden cutting board properly. Stressors, like heat or extremes in humidity, can warp or split a cutting board made of wood. Do not immerse the cutting board in water, instead, clean it using a sponge and warm water. If you have a damaged cutting board, you should purchase an oil product that is designed for cutting board restoration. Allow your board to dry completely between uses.
Brine is an easy, handy method of cooking. Soak your meat from turkey, a goose or a duck in this brine solution for an hour before you cook to make poultry taste better.
You need to use herbs that are fresh when you are cooking. Dried herbs can work beautifully in complex dishes. Fresh herbs have brighter flavors, though, and will lend a fresher taste to your meal. It is possible to have an herb garden no matter where you live. The garden will allow you to have fresh herbs available at all times.
Find fresher ways to prepare meals with oysters. Conventionally, oysters are served raw with a small drizzling of lemon juice, however, there are lots of other ways that you can present them. You can crack open the oysters and put them in a broiler pan with their shells, then add a little bit of cream on top. Sprinkle some Parmesan cheese and grated pepper, then boil until bubbling. Another tasty method is to take the oysters and saute them. Dunk them in some flour that has been seasoned, fry in some heated butter for a couple of minutes, and remove them from the stove when they are golden in color. Oysters should be baked in their shells. Place them into a casserole dish, and then place a little butter and fresh, new breadcrumbs on every oyster. Once you’ve done all of this, bake the dish at about 425 degrees for approximately 4-5 minutes. When the juices and butter both bubble, it is time to serve it. Serve it before it cools down. A toasted baguette should accompany the dish.
To save time while cooking, be sure to prepare properly. Ingredients for meals can often be prepared a few days ahead of time. There are many cases in which the flavor of the ingredients is actually improved by early preparation. Once you get in the habit of advanced prep, you may never return.
Reheating oily dishes should take place in the oven rather than the microwave if you want to avoid a mess. Microwaves heat oils faster than solids which will cause your food to separate. Reheating foods in the oven allows everything to heat more consistently, keeping the ingredients blended and the flavors intact.
Try some new ideas for oysters. Oysters are normally eater raw with a drop of lemon, but there are other methods of preparation. Place oysters that have already been opened in a broiler pan. Cover them with a small amount of cream. Broil the oysters until they are bubbling; you may also wish to top them with black pepper or grated cheese. A second, more popular method, is known as saute oysters. Coat them with seasoned flour and saute them in warm butter for about two minutes, until the oysters are golden. Another way is to keep the oysters in their shell and bake. Put them into a casserole dish and then add some butter and breadcrumbs over the top. Put in the oven and bake for five minutes at 425 degrees. Once you see the liquid start to bubble, put the oysters out of the oven and serve them immediately with toasted bread.
When you are creaming butter for cookies, be sure the butter isn’t completely melted, just soft. If it has been melted, put it in a bowl and place it in the freezer, allowing it to firm up. You can also place the entire concoction in the refrigerator after you have combined the ingredients. Dough that is cool won’t spread out as much as it bakes.
If you use these tips, cooking can become your hobby. Cooking is an enjoyable way to educate yourself about food. As well as food, you can learn a bit about yourself as you begin to learn about the foods that you enjoy cooking. As you move along in your learning, you’ll find it to be even more fun, your skills will improve, and the food you create will begin to taste better and better.
A stir-fry is a great way to cook up bits and pieces of leftover vegetables and meat. If you have day old rice on hand, that works best; but if not, reduce the water slightly to make it a little drier than normal. Fry your vegetables and chopped meat in vegetable oil, then throw in your rice an season with some soy sauce, ginger, garlic and other spices of your choice.