Are you tired of fast food restaurants and takeout? Are you expecting company soon? If you said yes to these questions, you may be in need of some cooking inspiration. These tips should help you get passionate about cooking again!
For the most beautiful homemade chocolate chip cookies, do not add all of the chocolate morsels into the mix! Save about a quarter of what your recipe calls for until after the cookies are all arranged on the cooking sheet, then add them evenly to the tops of the dough drops to create bakery looking, perfect chocolate chip cookies!
For a delicious take on pie crusts, bake them for longer than the recipe calls for. They should be golden caramel in color instead of pale blonde. The darker color results when the sugar from the crust has started to caramelize and will have a much sweeter and crisper flavor.
Substitute Greek yogurt for mayonnaise in creamy salad dressings. If you are on a diet or just trying to eat healthy, you can still make creamy salad dressings with healthy ingredients. Just substitute the mayonnaise in them with a low-fat Greek-style yogurt. This will make the dressing much healthier.
Your cake can be ruined if the baking powder is too old. In most cases, you don’t remember when you bought the box you have just found in the cupboard. Don’t gamble with it, test it. Put one tablespoon of baking powder in one third cup of water. If it fizzes, it’s good to use. If not, throw it away and buy a new box because what you have is too old.
If you are making pastries, you should try to maximize the accuracy of your measurements as it is a very exact science. By adding one gram too much or too less, you are going to put the taste of your pastry in jeopardy. Always try to be precise when baking.
When cooking steak, make sure the pan you are using is really hot so that it sears the outside of the meat and keeps all of the juices inside. This will make your steak taste great, and it won’t be dried out, since all of the flavor is still sealed inside of the meat.
Cooking can be a joy if you invest in a good, sizable cutting board able to handle all of your cutting and chopping needs. If a butcher block table is out of the budget, look for a durable bamboo or sturdy maple for the job. A cutting board with a recessed groove surrounding the cutting surface is handy to catch juices from carving meats and makes clean up easy. If you will be using a cutting board on a smooth surface, look for one with rubber feet to avoid slipping. Maintain your cutting board with food-grade mineral oil (vegetable and olive oils can turn rancid) and make sure that you properly clean, and more importantly, dry your cutting board after each use to prevent warping.
To have a meal ready when you get home from work use a slow cooker or crock pot. Some meals come prepackaged. All you have to do is pour it into the crock pot, maybe add some water and set the heat. If you like making your own meals you can prepare ingredients the night before. After you’ve prepared the ingredients put them in the fridge. Add everything to the crock pot in the morning before you go to work.
One important tip to remember focuses on who you cook for rather than what to cook. If you are cooking for your boss, a date, or someone really important, try to refrain from testing out new recipes and new ingredients. You should refrain because you have not had a chance to test and perfect the recipe, which may result in cooking errors and unexpected results.
When you’re making foods that need seasoning, use a little in intervals of a few minutes versus all of it directly at the beginning. By cooking in this way, you can help different seasonings “open up” and release their flavor into the dish without overpowering it.
Some recipes call for peeled half or quarter peaches. In most cases peeling is not easy, as the skin sticks to the fruit and doesn’t come off. The easiest way to remedy the problem is to place the peaches in boiling water for 30 seconds. After removing the fruits, place them into ice water to stop the boiling effect. Their skin will come off easily.
When cutting vegetables or meat it’s very important to have sharp, high quality knives. This will help you to get the look and evenly cooked meal that you desire. If you use dull, low quality knives, instead of cutting your food, they will rip it which can cause uneven cooking and a not so appetizing looking meal.
Cook small quantities of food at higher temperatures for a lesser amount of time. Bite-size cookies only need a few minutes in the oven if you put it a higher temperature because there is only a small surface area to cover and it will not take long to cook. This way you will be able to enjoy your meal in minutes.
Invest in a good roll of parchment paper. When you are baking, line your pans with it and you will save yourself much time and mess. The baked goods slide right off of the paper and all your pan needs is a simple rinse in some hot soapy water!
Add pasta or rice to your leftovers. Sometimes you might just have a bit of sauce or meat left over from a larger meal. Rather than just throwing this out, add some rice or pasta to it. You can get an entirely new meal out of it that is quick and easy.
Do not let cooking frustrated you, even if you fail at first; you will get better at it as you practice. Remember to have fun. Think of the joy that you will have to share your creations with your family and friends.