Learning how to cook is a great way to take control of your life. Cooking skills can improve your health, shrink your food budget and impress friends and family. Whether you are a stranger to the kitchen or an experienced stove-top jockey, there are always new cooking tips and techniques to learn. This article has a few such tips to get you started on sharpening your cooking skills.
How to pit and peel an avocado. Peeling and pitting an avocado can be quite messy, but there is a simple way. Use a sharp knife and cut around the whole avocado lengthwise. Grip each half of the avocado and twist it apart. Using your knife, carefully but firmly hit the top of the pit and twist it. The pit will slide out, still attached to the knife. To remove the peel, simply take a large spoon and run it between the peel and the flesh. Enjoy!
Put salt on your cutting board. It can be difficult to cut herbs on your cutting board. They tend to go all over the place. To keep this from happening, just sprinkle a little salt on your cutting board before you begin. This will work to keep them from slipping around.
Cook your rice in vegetable or chicken stock instead of using water. Choosing a stock will add both extra taste and valuable nutrients. The cooking process and time are the same as with water, so you won’t be adding any extra work by trying this method.
Herbs and spices have a powerful impact on the quality of your cooking. To preserve these important, expensive ingredients, keep them in a cool, dark place with minimal humidity. All too often spices are left near ovens and sinks. The heat, light and moisture in such places leach the flavor out of high-quality spices.
When storing sugar, baking mixes, or flour in your kitchen, use containers that are airtight. Bugs can creep into your food, and most food items will become stale if exposed to the open air. These are just a couple of solid reasons that you need solid containment. Airtight containers are your best friends in the kitchen. You can find these containers in a variety of sizes online or at local stores. Regardless of where you purchase them, using these containers is a choice you are unlikely to regret.
Ginger roots can be used for several dishes so it’s worth learning how to store them. For a few days you can just put them in the refrigerator’s vegetable drawer. For a much longer storage, freeze the unpeeled ginger root and cut the piece you need while it is frozen.
When you are cooking clarified butter, first slowly melt butter that is unsalted over very low heat. Do not stir the butter, and do not let it comes to a boil. This process will separate the milk solids from the liquid butter into three layers when finished. The clarified butter will be in the middle layer.
Do not just stick to iceberg lettuce when considering making a fresh salad. You can find a multitude of greens that have increased health benefits over the old stand-by lettuce. Try varieties such as butter, romaine, and red. Also try some fresh herbs and spices for a greater amount of flavor.
If making dinner every night is becoming laborious, start preparing for it the night before. Cut up vegetables and make marinades or sauces before going to bed at night. This will result in less stress the next day, and you will be more than ready to begin the cooking process.
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.
Never use oil in the water when you are boiling pasta. Conventional wisdom is that using the oil makes the noodles not stick together. While this is true, it also prevents your sauce from sticking to the noodles after they are cooked. The best pasta dishes are those where the sauce sticks to the noodles to provide delicious flavor in every bite!
Prior to barbecuing food, be sure that the grill is properly prepared. Get your grill ready about half an hour before you want to put food on it. Your coals should be covered in ash and of a medium temperature. This is the best temperature to begin grilling.
It is a good idea to cook your green vegetables in boiling hot water. If you place the veggies in cold water and wait for it to come to a boil you will lose a lot of the green color because the chlorophyll in them will leech into the water.
Olive oil is any cook’s best friend. It is a very versatile ingredient and is, opposed to what many people think, not limited to just Italian cuisine. Stir fried dishes and any dish in which you would ordinarily use butter can be made better tasting and healthier when olive oil is used.
Store your cooking spices in a cool dry place. This will ensure the longevity and potency of the flavors in your herbs and spices. A dark cabinet away from the stove is the ideal storage place. Spices kept in bright, hot environments usually fail to maintain their flavor long before any expiration date comes.
Try making stir fry. Stir fry is the perfect dish for inexperienced cooks – or for anyone who just wants to make something quick. Stir fry is simple to make. It isn’t even necessary to follow the recipe. If you mess up while making stir fry, you can almost always fix your mistake without losing anything.
Feel free to make use of the tips that appeal to you. One of the greatest things about cooking for yourself is that it puts you in control of your diet. You are free to cook the way you want to. As you refine your cooking skills, keep looking for recipes and techniques that will help you to make the kind of food that you want to enjoy.