Kitchen Basics: How To Make Homemade Bread

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Cooking does not have to be a scary thought! Understandably, cooking is easier for some than others. It takes know how, practice, and patience, but you can do it! Below are some helpful tips to make your cooking a pleasure:

Add flavor to boring roast chicken. Rather than using a roasting rack, place thick slices of onion in the bottom of the pan, and place the chicken on top of them. The chicken juices will be absorbed by the onion, creating a caramelization on the bottom of the pan. After roasting, remove the chicken, add a little water to the pan and cook on high heat for a few minutes. This will create a tasty sauce for your chicken.

You should bake crusts for a longer period of time than you think. Rather than pale blonde, they should have a golden caramel color. The caramelizing of the sugar in pie crust gives it crispness and extra sweetness.

When storing ingredients that you will use for cooking it is a good habit to stock them in large quantities and freeze them in plastic bags. This will make preparing food easier and faster. For example, when preparing vegetables, you can just pull them out of the freezer and simply boil them.

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.

Cooking tip “? sweet treat for smelly fingers! Cleaning fish or shrimp is a messy task and leaves a distinctive smell on your hand for at least a day. There is an effective way of removing the smell. Squish a few fresh strawberries between your fingers for a couple of minutes and rinse your hand with soapy water. The smell will disappear instantly!

Shelling pecans can be really challenging. Make it easier by soaking them in a cup of water and put the cup into the microwave for 5-6 minutes. It is always possible to soak the pecans into boiling water to get the same effect. Hot water makes the shell softer and easier to crack.

When you are cooking with cheese, be sure to bring the cheese to room temperature before you melt it. Also, always melt cheese using a very low level of heat. This will prevent the cheese from getting tough or separating into oil and liquid. Overheating cheese will denature its proteins.

Never cook when you are tired. You need to be alert when you are cooking, to increase your level of safety, and put you in the best position to create quality food. Besides, you’re not going to enjoy the experience if you feel exhausted.

Place fruit that is not quite ripe in a plastic bag with a few small holes to allow it to ripen. The plastic helps retain the gases used by ripening fruit while the holes allow fresh air to circulate across the fruit. This also helps you keep your fruit fresh longer!

To save time when cooking for a big event like Thanksgiving, do all the prep work the night before. You can also make desserts a day or two before the dinner. This will give you more time to focus on what needs to be done and the day will be a lot less stressful.

If you are sauteing vegetables and require more oil, add the oil to the outer part of the pan. This way the oil is heated by the time it reaches your vegetables. By doing this you eliminate extra cooking time and you never have to worry about your vegetables getting soggy or getting splattering hot oil.

Choose local seasonal ingredients as a showpiece for your dish when you are cooking on a budget. Ingredients that are in the peak of their season are also at the height of their flavor and affordability. The flavors from these peak ingredients will allow you to take an inexpensive item and turn it into a star.

Make homemade vinaigrette dressings instead of purchasing them from the store. Your homemade dressing not only tastes better, but it uses fewer ingredients and is often healthier. You can easily whip these up by just dumping all the ingredients into a sealed contained and shaking it up vigorously, and voila! You have delicious tasting dressing for marinades and salads.

When preparing food in the kitchen, always remember to wash your hands with soap and warm water before touching food, or anytime you handle raw meat, fish or eggs. In addition, you never want to put cooked food on plates, counters or any other surface where these raw meats have been unless they have been washed with hot, soapy water.

A foolproof way to clarify butter. Melt several sticks of butter over low heat in a heavy-based saucepan. When you see froth on the top, solid particles on the bottom, and a clear yellow liquid in between, remove the pan from the heat. Skim the froth off the top, and strain the clarified liquid into a container, leaving the milk solids behind.

For tastier meat, cook for longer periods of time under a lower heat. This allows the flavor, time to fully settle and seep into the meat. In addition, this will produce a piece of meat that is much more tender than one that has been cooked at a higher temperature for a shorter period of time.

Are you ready to get started? The helpful tips above, no doubt, will contribute to you making a delicious meal! This is just a few suggestions to inspire you to give cooking a try or perhaps a second chance! Enjoy!

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