One of the best things about cooking, is that whether you are not so great at it or a cooking virtuoso, you can benefit from recipes and great cooking tips. Anyone can follow a recipe and implement tips. Whether you think you’re a great chef or if you think that you can’t cook at all, here are a few cooking tips you can use today.
Do not be afraid to experiment. There is no rule that says you need to follow a recipe exactly. If you do not care for an ingredient, leave it out. If you think a different ingredient would taste better, substitute it. If you think the dish is missing a little something, add it.
Have you been making the same berry shortcake for a while? Make the flavor pop with the following tip. Mix your berries with a pinch of salt, a little fresh mint and a small spoon of lime juice. Your guests will never guess how you enhanced the flavor of the old family recipe.
Take the guesswork out of reducing liquids. When a recipe calls for you to cook until the liquid is reduced by a certain amount, dip the handle of a wooden spoon into the liquid to mark the depth. This will leave a line on the wooden spoon. Later, you can dip the spoon again to see how much the liquid has actually reduced.
If you are having a lot of trouble with cooking, sign up for a cooking class with a friend. Here, you will not only learn the recipes that you desire to know but also the techniques to maximize your abilities as a cook. This will be an important skill to use for the rest of your life.
Planning out meals for the coming week can save you both time and money. You can buy all of the things you will need beforehand without having to make spontaneous trips to the store during the middle of a busy week. You can have a planned schedule and it will make it easy for you to prepare things before you actually cook.
You should use your freezer bags more than one time. You need to store your meats or vegetables in regular storage bags and then place them into freezer bags so that you can use them repeatedly. Freezer bags are very expensive and this will cut back on your costs each month.
When you store some ingredients, like flour, baking mixes, and sugar, use airtight containers. Storing food in containers that are impermeable to air helps the food last longer, and keeps insects out. These containers can be bought at almost any store and are totally worth it!
It is possible to cut back on the amount of calories that are in your favorite dessert by simply using applesauce in the recipe. Many recipes call for unhealthy ingredients that add tons of calories to a desert that really are not needed. Applesauce will add sweetness to the dessert with adding tons of calories.
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!
Make sure eggs are still fresh before using them. Eggs that are no longer good can cause salmonella poisoning among other deadly diseases. You can test an egg’s freshness by lowering it into a bowl of water. If it settles horizontally, it is still good. If it rises to the top, it is bad.
Here is a cooking tip that will make your life easier on nights and weekends. When cooking, save any sauces leftover from cooking by pouring them into ice cube trays. When you need to use the sauce cubes, simply pop them out of the tray and reheat them in a sauce pan for a quick sauce without all of the cook time.
When you are making mashed potatoes, you need to be extra careful and make sure not to whip them for too long. While it might seem that mixing them for longer would make them smoother, it actually has an opposite effect. Doing so actually makes them come out gummy in texture.
Don’t use citrus in your meat marinades. When you marinate meat with citrus juices, it often produces a mealy, grainy texture. If you still want to have that mild citrus taste, use a small drizzle or squeeze of lemon or lime juice right before serving the dish. This still provides a zesty citrus flavor, but makes sure your meat is tender and not grainy feeling.
While cooking is fun, generally, the cleaning up that follows, is not. To avoid having to deal with a big mess after a day of experimenting or meal preparation in the kitchen, keep your sink filled with hot soapy water (refreshing when necessary) and clean up as you go along. Besides keeping your end of day cleaning down to a minimum, you will also have clean hands as you touch and prepare food throughout the day.
While it may seem somewhat counter-intuitive, you should actually increase the baking temperature of very small quantities of food. The smaller the dish, the higher the temperature should be. This is also true for the allotted time to bake. Generally, the time needed to fully cook the food is much shorter.
If you are out of bread crumbs you can try these simple substitutions in your recipe: cracker crumbs, matzo, crushed cornflakes, grounds oats, or even potato chips. Simply substitute an equal amount of the replacement food for the bread crumbs. You can also make fresh bread crumbs by finely chopping four slices of bread per cup you need.
Cooking is not something you stop learning. You eat every day of your life, so you can use cooking skills every day of your life. What you learn about cooking today, you can use forever. Use these tips to boost your cooking skills and put your own spin on them, to make everyday eating a pleasure.