When you cook with love, those around you take notice. Though most wish they were better skilled in the kitchen, it does not come naturally for everyone. However, with the tips and tricks outlined here, you can expand on what you already know, and take your cooking to the next level.
Ensure that you are getting the most out of your chef’s knife by holding it properly during use. The thumb and the index finger should be on either side of the blade, at the point where it meets the handle. This will give the ultimate in control, when slicing through ingredients.
Get the most juice out of lemons. Fresh lemon juice is much more tasty than the kind that comes out of a bottle, but it is sometimes surprising how little juice you can get out of a lemon. Heat the lemon in a microwave for 20 seconds on high power. Then, roll the lemon on your cutting board using as much pressure as possible. This way, you will get about twice the amount of juice out of the lemon, and your dish will be much more flavorful!
If you are planning to sauté garlic, you will want to slice it instead of mincing it, which will reduce the chance for it to burn. Following certain procedures will not only improve the taste of your dishes in the kitchen but will increase your effectiveness and efficiency in getting the job done.
If you’ve forgotten to soak your beans over night, quick soak them instead. Just put the beans in a very large pot and cover with water. Bring this to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for about two hours. This method is just as effective as an over night soak and can save you time.
Make sure you are storing your spices in the right place. Many people store their spices right above their stove or near a light source. To stay fresh, put them in dry and dark spot that is cool. Humidity can also destroy spices so keep those several factors in mind.
Mushrooms absorb large amounts of water, and this excess water will go into whatever you are cooking with. Instead, you want to wet a clean cloth and use that to wipe the mushroom off.
When you are making fish or meat, make sure to sprinkle seasonings equally. You can compare the sprinkling to falling snow. By doing this, you are avoiding clumping. Also, the spices will be spread evenly so that one side of the meat or fish does not have more seasoning than the other.
You should use nonstick cooking spray when cooking a meal or snack. The nonstick cooking spray keeps food from sticking to a pan without adding unneeded fats and calories. There are some sprays that are flavored, so that you can get the same flavor as if you had used butter.
You should cook chicken stew if you need to make a quick meal. Take a carton of chicken broth and put it in a large stock pot. Add cooked shredded chicken, diced potatoes, carrots, green beans and onions to the pot. Season to taste and cook for three hours on low. It is a tasty meal that does not take a lot of work.
When trying to cook healthy foods, it is important to cut back on the amount of oils and butters that you are using. A great alternative is using nonstick bakeware or a nonstick cooking spray. Many of the sprays have little to no calories and make foods healthy and cleanup a breeze.
Keep dental floss handy in the kitchen to cut or slice soft foods or ingredients. Unflavored dental floss works better than a knife when it comes to cutting soft cheeses, cake, pie or other soft foods or ingredients. Just unwind a length long enough to allow you to stretch it across the item to be cut and apply even, downward pressure for clean, neat cuts.
If you are going to braise meat, cook it at a low temperature for a long period of time. By doing it this way, the meat will stay tender and it will retain its juiciness, which in turns, leaves the meat tasting good. Cooking it a high temperature can dry the meat out.
You should blot ground meat before you cook it. Before preparing ground meat, you should blot away excess moisture. If the moisture is left in the beef, it will be released when you start to cook it. The moisture will start to sizzle and steam away when it hits the heat of the pan. This is undesirable, since the meat will technically steam, instead of searing.
Keep your pantry well stocked with a selection of canned meats. You never know when the power might go out for a day or two and you can’t get to the store. Canned hams, salmon, or other canned meats can save the day. Just add a few other ingredients from your pantry and you’ll have a great meal!
Have fun with flavors and spices and don’t be afraid to put more seasonings into your cooking. Many cooks lightly season their food, leaving it tasting bland. It is okay to experiment with different amounts of salt and spices until you find a delicious tasting blend. Many chefs recommend adding almost twice as much as you would initially considering using, so keep it interesting and flavorful by putting in just a little bit more.
Adjust your baking time for smaller items. For example, if you are making mini cookies, crank the oven up to 500 degrees, and bake the cookies for only 4 or 5 minutes at the most. The end result is perfectly cooked, delicious cookies that will fly out of your cookie jar!
Impress those you care about with your new-found cooking skills. With a bit of effort, some trial and error, and the tips provided in this article, you can take your cooking up a notch. Time in the kitchen should be enjoyed. Use what you have learned, and go cook up a storm.