Cooking can be a new experience for many people who have recently left the comfort of their parents’ cooking. This article provides a few helpful tips to the beginner chefs who wish to try their hand without chopping, burning, or maiming themselves in the process. Proper procedure and preparation methods are detailed within to help amateur cooks brave the insidious dangers of the culinary world.
Learn to use your hands when cooking (after washing them thoroughly first of course!). Hands are the most sensitive yet versatile cooking utensil you will own. They can be used for mixing, measuring and testing whether a product is cooked enough. A cake, for example, will show that it is done by springing back when touched lightly with a finger on its top.
Preparation is a very important part of cooking. You want to make sure you have every item you might need. You also want to make sure you have all the supplies you might need. You don’t want to be in the middle of a dish and find out you are missing something important.
When deep frying foods, hold the food below the oil with the tongs for a few seconds. Holding the food under the oil for around five seconds will create a useful seal around the food. This seal will work to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
As you cook your meal during the course of the night, make sure that you taste it at several different points. This will allow you to pinpoint exactly when it is done, so that you do not run the risk of overcooking it. Tasting your food is important to achieve the quality you desire.
When you are seasoning a salad, add a small dose of olive oil in addition to natural sea salt. This will help to give your salad a crunchy appeal even after you add the dressing. Keeping your salad as crunchy as possible will create a feeling of freshness upon consumption.
Do you often feel a bit guilty throwing out fruit that is rotten? Should you save fruits by cutting out moldy parts? If you have fruit that is just a little rotten, throw it away. The mold and spoilage that you can see is only part of the problem with marginal-looking fruit; even the parts that appear pristine can be unsafe to eat.
Keep track of ingredients when baking. Sometimes, when you are adding a lot of dry ingredients to your mixing bowl, it’s easy to lose track. An easy solution to this is to place each ingredient in a different part of the bowl. That way, every dry ingredient you add can be seen and counted.
When cooking any meat you want to make sure that you reach the temperature that is high enough to kill any transferable bacteria. If this bacteria is not cooked high enough for whatever the certain meat calls for, people can become very ill or even get worms that were in the meat.
How to ‘un-seize’ melted chocolate. If the chocolate you are melting suddenly gets lumpy or grainy, this means it has ‘seized’, and it will ruin a recipe. Remove the pan and add 1/2 to 1 tsp of shortening or cooking oil (not butter or margarine). Stir until the mixture becomes smooth again. To prevent seizing, make sure the pan is completely dry before trying to melt chocolate.
To make perfect deviled eggs, ensure the yolk is evenly centered within the egg by spinning the egg on a flat surface before boiling. Place an egg, lengthwise, on the top of the kitchen counter and gently spin it a couple of times. The spinning action helps center the yolk within the shell. This method helps create perfectly-formed deviled eggs.
When cooking with thick and sticky ingredients like molasses or honey, make it easier with non-stick cooking spray. Simply spray the inside of a measuring cup before adding the viscous liquid. When pouring it will slip out completely and cleanly with no need to scrap the inside of the cup.
When you are deep frying foods, try not to fry too much food at once. Overcrowding the deep fryer, will cause the oil temperature to drop and the food will not be as crispy. The key to successful deep frying is to keep enough oil around the foods to keep up the temperature.
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.
One of the first steps in becoming a better cook is to better understand cooking in general. The best way to do this is to simply think about your meals every time you eat in a restaurant. When you eat something you find tasty in a restaurant, think about why it tastes so good.
Brine is a method that is great when cooking. Soak your turkey, duck or chicken in brine for an hour prior to cooking if you want the best flavor from the poultry.
Check your ingredients before starting a recipe. There is nothing worse than getting halfway through a recipe, only to realize that you are missing a vital ingredient. Also, you will save time by assembling everything. Measure everything out, and prepare any ingredients in advance. This way, you won’t suddenly find yourself having to chop an onion or grate cheese when you are right in the middle of your recipe.
To prevent dense pie fillings like pumpkin from cracking after cooking, allow the pie to cool on the oven rack. Removing a pie from the hot oven and placing it on a cool counter can cause the filling to expand or contract and as a result crack. Allowing the pie to cool slowly on the oven rack is the best way to get an even, glossy finish on the filling.
In the best case scenario this article will provide the reader with a few good safety guidelines to prevent themselves from bodily damage. Added with some basic cooking knowledge and a few kitchen tips the reader should be well on their way to a healthy, food-filled, unscathed lifestyle that retains both taste buds and fingers.