How To Dry Herbs From Your Garden

Although cooking is an unavoidable necessity of life, it can very easily be turned into a delicious and enjoyable hobby as well. Learning to cook can be a breeze for anyone who gets quality advice and good information. This article will provide you with some great tips on how to improve your cooking.

Try to keep your spices and herbs in a dark, cool area of your kitchen. Exposure to humidity, light and heat all affect the flavor of your spices. Usually, a freshly ground spice or herb will keep its flavor for around a year. Whole spices keep their robust flavors for up to five years. If you keep these properly stored, they can sometimes stay fresh for an even longer period of time.

TIP! When storing your herbs and spices, they should be kept in a cool, dark spot. Many factors can cause herbs and spices to lose their flavor, especially humidity and light.

When cooking with skewers, be aware of some important facts. If you are using metal skewers, stick to twisted or square designs, as this can grasp food more effectively.

In order to get the most out of your selection of spices, you should store them out of the light and heat. If you leave them out somewhere, you will expose them to light, wetness, and heat, and it could ruin them. You can preserve the flavor and freshness of your spices by storing them in a dark, cool spot. If you use fresh spices, your food will taste better.

TIP! Keep all spices stored out of the sunlight. If you leave them out somewhere, you will expose them to light, wetness, and heat, and it could ruin them.

Your spices and herbs should always be stored in a cool and dark place. Many factors can cause herbs and spices to lose their flavor, especially humidity and light. Generally speaking, spices that have been ground will keep their flavor for about one year. It is possible for whole spices to hold their flavor for several years. If you store them properly, they will stay fresh for a longer period of time.

You can salvage the work you’ve done and quickly rectify the situation with this little trick. For every tablespoon of water, add half a tablespoon of cornstarch and mix as much as needed to get the right thickness. Stir the mixture into a warm thin sauce to thicken it. Try to incorporate it slowly so that you do not make it too thick.

TIP! There’s a neat trick you can use to save your sauce. In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons’ worth of water with 1 of corn starch.

Being organized is a key step when planning to prepare a meal for family or friends. First, check that you have everything you need to get started. Prepare everything you need for cooking ahead of time; don’t forget the utensils! With a good plan and everything in place, you will feel far less anxious.

Partially frozen meat is easier to cut into thin strips. Thin strips of meat are ideal for meals that are originally ethnically Asian. When you freeze meat, it makes the slicing much cleaner because it prevents the meat from being as flexible. However, the meat strips should be thawed to assure even cooking.

TIP! To easily slice meat thinly, place it in the freezer until firm but not frozen. Thin strips of meat are ideal for meals that are originally ethnically Asian.

A good cooking tip when you use oil is to put it on the sides of the pan so it gets real hot by the time it hits the food. This also maximizes the flavor of whatever you are cooking.

If you wish to have crispy French fries, then you should soak the potatoes in cool water for 30 minutes and then fry them. The potatoes need to soak because the fibers will be reinforced through the cold fluids which in turn makes them fry better. They can handle the heat and not break apart completely.

TIP! To make your French fries crispier, let the raw potatoes soak for about half an hour in cold water prior to frying. Allowing the sliced potatoes to soak up more cold fluids helps to reinforce the fibers that are in the vegetable, that way when they are deep fried, they are better able to stand up to the heat and won’t completely break down.

Do you enjoy cooking with the flavors of fresh basil? Gather a bunch and put it into a glass. Add water to cover the stems. Place it on your kitchen counter to keep it fresh for weeks! In fact, if you periodically freshen the water, the herb may even sprout roots. You should also trim the basil once in a while so it grows even more.

To reduce fat and calories in mashed potatoes without sacrificing texture or taste, replace some of your potatoes with an equal amount of cauliflower. Cauliflower tends to have a bland taste, so this will blend nicely with the potatoes, and will pick up other ingredients, as well. Cauliflower has the same texture and color as potatoes, offering you a perfect way to add another vegetable to your dish while cutting calories.

TIP! A nutritious way to reduce the calories from your mashed potatoes is to replace some of the potatoes with cauliflower. The bland cauliflower taste will make it so that you do not notice much difference in the taste, while accentuating the taste of some of the other ingredients.

A lot of preparatory work can be done ahead of time in order to speed up time spent cooking. Examine recipes and identify which preparations can take place well in advance without risking spoilage. A lot of the preliminary work can be done a day before you cook the meal. You can turn a fancy meal into a fast, fun meal that can be cooked in a flash!

When storing sugar, baking mixes, or flour in your kitchen, use containers that are airtight. When you store food in airtight containers, it will not spoil so readily, and bugs won’t be able to get into it. These containers can be purchased at many retail locations and are a great investment for the money,

TIP! Store your supplies of flour, sugars, pancake mixes, and similar dry ingredients in airtight containers. Keeping your ingredients in airtight containers will stop them from spoiling or being infected with bugs.

When you do this, the mushroom will become absorbent and soak up the water. Get a wet cloth instead, and wipe off each mushroom by hand.

If you’re cooking pumpkins, cut them in half by positioning them upright and slicing down the middles. Place each half of the pumpkin on two separate baking sheets with the cut side facing down. Sprinkle your baking sheets with a little water, and roast the pumpkin halves for an hour at 350 degrees.

TIP! When you are cooking pumpkins, first stand the pumpkin upright and then cut it in half directly down the middle. Put the halves down on the baking sheets.

Chicken Broth

If you have decided to serve salad with the meal that you are preparing for guests, be sure to serve the salad dry and serve the dressing on the side. Some people like to put more salad dressing on their salads than other people do; let your guests put their own salad dressing on. You should also provide a large variety of dressings to serve your guests.

TIP! If you are about to serve salad to multiple guests, serve the dressing separately instead of putting it directly on the salad. Some people like to put more salad dressing on their salads than other people do; let your guests put their own salad dressing on.

Add some chicken broth to your pan when cooking vegetables. Not only will chicken broth help to keep vegetables from getting stuck to the pan, but they will add some nice flavors to the dish. Chicken broth can be found at any grocery store, and is very low priced.

When making a big dinner for family and friends, start the preparations for the meal the day before. This will prevent you from getting overwhelmed on the day of the dinner. You can marinate the meat, make a sauce and cut up some vegetables and onions before going to bed. Preparing your meal the next night will be a snap, and much more relaxing.

TIP! If you find yourself overwhelmed with preparing dinner for your family, do some of the preparations the night before. Do little things for your meals the night before so your mealtime will be a little bit easier.

If you are looking for ways to include more protein to your daily diet, look no further than beans and tofu. Most grocery stores sell both items. You can fry tofu or add it to soups, seasoned well, for a yummy protein alternative. You can boil the beans with a bit of herbs to give the protein more flavor.

If you’re cooking mac and cheese, always follow the instructions on the box exactly as they’re written. Wait until the macaroni is done to add the cheese. Let the dish sit for a few minutes so the cheese can melt and blend with the macaroni. To serve the delectable macaroni and cheese, using a spoon with a solid face is just the right choice. If you want to add a little flavor to your macaroni and cheese, feel free to spice it up with some pepper.

TIP! If you decide to take a shortcut and prepare boxed foods, follow the directions exactly. Your macaroni will turn out wonderful if you do it this way.

Pay attention to the cooking oil amounts when preparing meals! This will help you lower the fat in your foods while cooking. In this way, you can be in control of the quantity of oil that goes into your meals.

When it comes to sauteing food, do not put too much food in the pan at once. This will create extra moisture that will act to steam the food rather than adding that crispness that comes from sauteing. Keep the pan set on a lower temperature.

TIP! When it comes to sauteing food, do not put too much food in the pan at once. If there is too much, there will be extra moisture, and the foods will steam instead of sauteing.

Don’t mix unfamiliar wine into your food. Because wine will have a big impact on the flavor of your food, a bad wine can result in a bad meal. If you want a safe bet, most liquor stores carry cooking wines.

Pick a place that will not compromise the quality of your cooking spices; try somewhere that is non-humid and light free. Exposing them to light or heat could make them lose their flavors fast. This will only expose your spices to elements that will make them less flavorful and aromatic.

TIP! Keep your spices and herbs fresh by not exposing them to humidity and light. Spices rapidly lose their flavor and aroma if they are kept in areas that are bright, humid, or warm.

Cooking is not as simple as preparing some food, plating it, and putting it on the dinner table. It can also be very fun. Occasionally, things may not turn out the way you had hoped, but hopefully this article will limit the frequency of those occurrences. Gain culinary success with the help of these tips!

Cut down on cooking time by doing your prep work in advance. You can frequently get your ingredients ready one or two days before you cook your meal. Sometimes you will even discover that preparing ingredients over an extended period of time will enhance the flavor of the final product. Once you get used to prepping ahead of time, you will always do it.

TIP! Save on cooking time by prepping ahead of getting started. You can frequently get your ingredients ready one or two days before you cook your meal.