How many times have you dreaded going into the kitchen to make breakfast, lunch, or dinner? You might need a new perspective. Cooking can be enjoyable and relaxing if you try to see it in another way. Here are a few cooking tips that are sure to get your taste buds tingling and entice your inner chef to come out.
Being organized is a key step when planning to prepare a meal for family or friends. You need to have the ingredients readily available. Put everything you need to cook the dish out the night before. Make sure you have all the cooking equipment and ingredients required. With a good plan and everything in place, you will feel far less anxious.
There are some things you should be aware of if you plan to cook with skewers. Regarding metal skewers, square or twisted varieties are preferable to round ones, as the round ones do not hold food items as well as the other two types.
Store your spices in a cool, dark place. Spices will last longer when they are not exposed to warm temperatures and moist air. Try to find a cool, dark cupboard if you want to increase the flavor and lifespan of your favorite spices. Make sure that your spices are fresh to add taste and flavor to any meal.
All of the prep work can be done ahead of time. Do not start cooking until the prep work is done. When you have a limited amount of time, cooking can become stressful. Prep work helps take the stress out of meal planning and preparing.
When making food for someone whom you want to impress, stick to a familiar dish that you are confident preparing. You are taking a risk if you want to try something new. Doing this will decrease the stress that you feel, which is always a good thing.
If you are just beginning to cook more of your meals, go straight to the nearest bookstore or library to find a cookbook that has simple, fun recipes. Try a few recipes, and be patient with yourself as you are mastering this new skill.
During autumn, apples are an important ingredient in many recipes; however, they do turn bad if they are not carefully stored. Apples spoil in warm, dry air, so keep them in a refrigerator or basement, in plastic bags that are loosely tied. However, if even one apple becomes rotten, it will quickly spoil all apples in the same bag.
To make slicing meat into thin strips a little easier, partially freeze it. This works well when cooking many oriental meals. By marginally freezing meat, slicing it is made cleaner, as its fibers will not tear quite as easily. Then don’t forget to let the meat strips completely thaw, so it will cook evenly.
If you want crispier and crunchier French fries, then soak the potatoes in a bowl of cold water for a period of at least half an hour before use. When you soak sliced potatoes in cold water, it strengthens their fibers, so that they can stand up to the heat when being deep fried.
Think big if you plan to make chicken stock. If you make a large amount of stock you can freeze it for future use. You can use the stock as a base for all kinds of soups or even casseroles. Simply cool the stock, and then freeze it into Ziploc, heavyweight freezer bags.
A nutritious way to reduce the calories from your mashed potatoes is to replace some of the potatoes with cauliflower. Because cauliflower has a pretty bland taste, it blends well with the potatoes and enhances the flavors of the other ingredients. Additionally, mashed cauliflower has the same texture and color as mashed potatoes, so no one will know that you’ve boosted the veggie content of the dish while removing calories.
Add some chicken broth to your pan when cooking vegetables. Simmering vegetables in the broth will keep them from adhering to the bottom of the pan and also infuse them with rich flavor. Chicken broth is dirt cheap, and can be bought at any supermarket.
You should use chicken broth when you are cooking your vegetables. Add extra flavor to your vegetables and keep them from sticking by using chicken broth instead of water. Chicken broth can be found at any grocery store, and is very low priced.
Leave the bone inside the roast if you want to cook it faster. The meat will cook more quickly due to the heat transfer into the roaster caused by the bone. When done cooking, carve the bone out of the roast and serve.
Sauteing vegetables in a small amount of chicken broth is a healthy and delicious way to cook. The broth adds flavor to them, while reducing oil that is usually used for sauteing. You will thoroughly enjoy this way of preparing your vegetables.
When you have a big meal to prepare, get a head start by doing the prep work the night before. Chop your onions, slice your vegetables, make the sauce or marinate your meat before bed. When the time comes for you to put together the meal, it will be less stressful.
Leaving the bone in a roast can help shorten the cooking time. You will see that the meat will cook in a shorter amount of time because the bone will help carry the heat directly inside of the roaster. When the meat is fully cooked you should just cut the meat off near the bone and then serve.
There’s almost always leftovers after serving turkey. Instead, cut them into smaller pieces, and put in some airtight containers that will go in the freezer. The turkey will remain fresh this way for a couple weeks, and you can use it for sandwiches and salads.
Having a clean and organized kitchen is essential to cooking a great meal or dessert. Your time spent cooking will also be more productive if you are organized. Stay organized, as it will help you keep up with what you have and you won’t be wasting food or money.
A lot of herbs and vegetables give off an odor that tends to stay in your cutting board, no matter how much you scrub it. Mark the end of your cutting board with indelible ink to remember which side is which.
Even on simple dishes like mac and cheese, going letter by letter on the directions always gets you the best results. This way, the macaroni ends up immaculate and the cheese is melted perfectly of the pasta. A simple serving dish and spoon are all you need to serve dinner. You can use pepper to add some spice to the macaroni, if you choose.
New spices should be purchased every six months. Quite often, spices pass their sell-by-date before you use them up, losing their flavor. When you know you’re not going to be using a spice for a long time, give it away to someone in your family or to a friend before it loses its flavor.
When cooking, make it a habit to wash up dishes as you are using them. For a lot of people, the worst part of cooking is the cleaning up. Mixing bowls and utensils wash up easily just after they have been used and they will be clean and ready for whipping up the next ingredient of your family meal.
Homemade stock can add flavor to many dishes. Making a large amount allows you to store some in the freezer for future meals. Doing so will give you the best stock for any dish that calls for it. Homemade soup stock or bullion is a wonderful way to eliminate high sodium and preservatives that are present in commercially made products from your diet.
When you have a large or complicated meal to prepare, you can eliminate a lot of the stress by doing any prep work the day before. Gather all your ingredients together, chop what needs to be chopped, measure out all the required herbs and spices and make sure you have everything that you need on hand. Then all you have to do is put everything together when you get ready to cook the meal.
Wash your dishes as you use them, when you are cooking. If you have a two-bucket sink, put soapy water on one side and keep the other side for rinsing your dishes. Mixing bowls and your utensils rinse rather easily and can be cleaned and wiped before the next ingredients in your meal.
Prior to barbecuing food, be sure that the grill is properly prepared. This should be done about 30 minutes prior to putting any food on it. The coals should have a coating of ash and be at a medium heat. This is the ideal temperature for grilling.
Shake a little salt onto your cutting board when you are chopping up fresh herbs. It will not only add flavor to the herbs but it will also keep them in place while they are being chopped. Do not add more salt as you are cutting the herbs. Some of the salt will adhere to the herbs and add flavor to your dish.
Try incorporating a few of these tips into your meals. You’ll soon be convinced that cooking can be great once you taste the wonderful meals you create. Not only will your meals be more fun to eat, you’ll look forward to cooking them; you might even start trying new recipes. Get ready to discover the joy of cooking!
Try using brine to change-up meals. Soak your proteins, especially poultry, in a brine for an hour prior to cooking to really pull out the inherent flavors.