The process of becoming a chef is something that lots of people want to do, but it can be very tiring. However, cooking can be learned in short sessions. The following article will outline several simple ways you can enhance your cooking.
As with many other things in life, one of the keys to making great meals for your family is preparation. Gather all the ingredients beforehand. Get everything set to cook the next day. Determine if you have you got the right utensils, etc. With a good plan and everything in place, you will feel far less anxious.
You should store your spices and herbs in a cool dry space out of direct sunlight to avoid flavor loss. If they are exposed to light, heat or humidity, they will lose much of their flavor. Ground herbs and spices will retain their flavor for about a year. Whole spices, on the other hand, can retain their freshness for 36-60 months. Proper storage can extend their shelf life even longer.
Apples spoil quickly if stored incorrectly. You can keep apples fresh by storing them in a cool basement or refrigerator as warm or dry air makes them rot. Watch out if you are storing a large number of apples, one bad apple ruins the bunch.
When you are cooking a stir-fry, ensure the meat is sliced to be very thin, and cut it on the bias. It may be difficult to do. Take the meat out of the freezer once it firms up (not frozen) then cut at an angle of 45 degrees across the grainy part of the meat.
Vegetables should be cooked rapidly to obtain peak results. Using a slow cooking method is sometimes suggested, but the results are less nutritious and don’t taste as good. These quick cooking techniques will produce generally, healthier vegetable sides. Cooking better vegetables is all about cooking them for the least amount of time possible.
When cooking with oil, add it not to the bottom but to the pan’s sides. This will allow the oil to heat up as it works its way down to the center. Using this method will help ensure your food is as tasty as possible.
While garlic is a great addition to many dishes, it has the frustrating feature of rubbing off on your hands. If you have a stainless steel sink or other utensil, rub your hands over the inside of the sink to remove the smell. This works for onions as well. This helps clean your hands and keep you from transferring the smell onto your other foods.
Invest in a knife sharpener to make cutting any ingredient easier. Dull knives make cutting difficult, but in addition, they are dangerous. You could easily cut yourself if you are trying to cut something up with a dull knife.
Ice trays can be a great tool for freezing sauces. This makes it easy to prepare a quick meal by reheating the sauce using a saute pan. And don’t worry, your sauce will still taste great even after freezing.
When you want to add a bit of protein to your diet, tofu and beans are a great source of it. Both are easily available to buy at almost every grocery store. Seasoned tofu is a wonderful alternative to meat, and can be cooked in a variety of ways, such as pan frying. Beans may be boiled with herbs for a delicious protein source.
Do you cook with fresh basil? Fill an empty glass with fresh basil. Then cover the stems of the basil with water. Basil will stay fresh in bowl of water for up to four weeks. If you are sure to add fresh water, your basil will even form roots and become a plant. Trim or cut the basil periodically to provide for added growth so you can partake in some fresh basil for a while!
If you are making a roast and you need to cook it quickly, do not take out the bone. The idea is that the bone will help carry heat to the center of the roast, thus cooking it faster. When the cooking is complete, just serve by cutting around the bone.
A lot of preparatory work can be done ahead of time in order to speed up time spent cooking. Look through your recipes and determine whether or not certain steps can be completed beforehand. Lots of prep work can be completed the day before cooking. Even if you are faced with a challenging recipe, it can make everything go quickly.
Save the delicious taste of summer by drying tomatoes yourself. You can do this by cutting ripe tomatoes into 1/2 inch thick slices, or by cutting Roma tomatoes in half lengthwise. Put the tomatoes, cut-side up, onto a cooling rack and give them a light salting. Heat your oven to 190 degrees and put the cooling rack with the tomatoes directly onto a cookie sheet, baking for no more than ten hours. Finally, place your dried tomatoes in freezer safe bags and store in the freezer. Dried tomatoes could also be put in a jar with fresh herbs and topped up with olive oil. When refrigerated, they will last a minimum of two weeks.
Cooking doesn’t have to be an exact science; that’s baking. But you should still measure the amount of oil you cook with. By measuring, you will be able to lower the quantity of fat and grease in your foods. Measuring your oil is the only way to control the impact it has on the flavor and fat content of your dish.
A pantry or other cool, dark space will preserve the flavor of herbs and spices the longest. 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.
Cater to your guests by serving salads with dressing on the side. 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. For an even more considerate touch, provide different kinds of dressings.
It is important for every cook to have their cooking supplies organized. If you are not well organized, you’ll be a disaster in the kitchen. Place the cooking supplies that are similar in one place. For instance, keep your spices in a cabinet, your baking goods in another, and cooking utensils together in a drawer.
If you find it too much to prepare the nighttime meal, then take care of some of the work the day prior. You can dice, slice and otherwise prepare vegetables in advance. Stir up some sauce prior to your bedtime for a stress-free pasta dish the next evening. By completing a few basic steps the day before, you can save yourself time and energy when it is time to prepare your meal after a long, hard day of work.
Replace and refresh your spices twice a year. A lot of people keep spices too long, which makes them not taste very good. When you know you’re not going to be using a spice for a long time, give it away to someone in your family or to a friend before it loses its flavor.
If you love to use herbs and spices, make sure you keep them in a dark, cool place to keep them fresh. 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.
It’s vital that you ensure that the utensils you cook with are clean prior to cooking. Leftover food could really screw up your next dish. There is a possibility this may introduce bacteria into the food.
Never throw away your leftovers whenever you have cooked a turkey. Instead, cut them into smaller pieces, and put in some airtight containers that will go in the freezer. Turkey will stay fresh for a couple weeks and you can use it in sandwiches or a salad.
Stay organized when you are preparing a meal to avoid kitchen catastrophes. When your station is organized, you will be more productive. Being disorganized can make it quite easy to make it impossible to find things when you need them, which makes you miss out on the goodies that you could be indulging in.
Even if a meal looks irresistible, let it sit for a few minutes after it has finished cooking. It is often overlooked, but it makes a difference when you let the food sit and allow the flavors to be absorbed. You may think it is better to serve the food immediately. However, you will miss out on great food if you do. To maximize taste and satisfaction, wait a little while before you serve your meal to friends or family.
You can chop fresh herbs quickly by bundling them together in bunches and cutting them with scissors. This results in light and fluffy herbs, and prevents the wetness that can occur when you chop them.
When boiling water to cook pasta, be sure to add a generous sprinkling of salt. This will help season the pasta as it cooks. Salting pasta after cooking will not be as effective in enhancing the flavor.
Do not forget to add salt to water for making pasta. The seasonings in the water will infuse the pasta thoroughly. Pasta that is salted after it is cooked does not absorb the salt as readily.
Whether your desire to cook a meal for your family or impress a date, the ability to create great meals will always be an asset. All over the world, people eat their meals with family and friends. By following the advice in this article, you can jump start your path towards being a great cook and the life of the dinner party.
When preparing a salsa that won’t be used immediately, rinse any raw onions you are using in cold water and dry them well. Fresh, raw onions emit sulfurous gas. The gas might completely ruin your salsa. Rinsing and drying the onions gets rid of the gas.