Change Your Cooking Style With These Recommendations
Few things are more enjoyable than sitting down to a well-cooked meal at home. Few things are more appreciated. Here are some tips to help you raise your game a level in cooking. You will find tips here on technique, ingredients, cookware, ethnic dishes, time-saving methods and much more. Bon apetit!
Being properly prepared is key to success in cooking for your family and friends. First, check that you have everything you need to get started. Plan out your cooking the day before. Make sure all the necessary utensils are clean and ready to use.This will allow you to cook without having to worry.
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.
Take care when storing chocolate for use in cooking. As a rule, only buy as much chocolate as you can use within a few months. Chocolate contains fat, and under the wrong conditions it can turn rancid. Store in a cool, dry place away from sunlight. A kitchen cupboard away from any heat sources is ideal. Keep the chocolate wrapped in foil or plastic and store it away from anything with a strong smell, as it absorbs odors easily.
If you’ve forgotten to soak your beans over night, quick soak them instead. Just put the beans in a very large pot and cover with water. Bring this to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for about two hours. This method is just as effective as an over night soak and can save you time.
Learn some proper knife-work techniques to make your time in the kitchen safer, more productive, and more enjoyable. Proper cutting techniques not only help to ensure safety in the kitchen, but food cut properly and uniformly looks better (which of course makes it tastes better!) and cooks more evenly. Stop cutting off your fingertips and burning half of the French fries with proper cutting skills!
To save on fat when cooking, use applesauce instead of butter. A cup of applesauce is equal to a cup of butter. This will reduce fat and calorie contents of your dessert recipe. It will also make your recipe moist and delicious. Most people won’t even be able to tell the difference.
A salad spinner can be a great addition to your kitchen. It will help to spin the water out of your lettuce so your salads aren’t soggy and droopy. Salad spinners are inexpensive and can be found at most discount stores. They’re also small so they store easy.
For an easy meal to put together, save the sauces from other meals you had earlier in the week. Put them in an ice cube tray. You can reheat the cubes in a sauté pan for a quick sauce. Add some veggies and you will have a yummy meal.
You can make stock ahead of time to add to other dishes. Store extra stock in bags in the freezer that are resealable. By doing this, you’ll always have homemade stock available whenever you are in the mood to cook soup. In creating your own stock at home, you are assured that it isn’t loaded with preservatives.
Cook small quantities of food at higher temperatures for a lesser amount of time. Bite-size cookies only need a few minutes in the oven if you put it a higher temperature because there is only a small surface area to cover and it will not take long to cook. This way you will be able to enjoy your meal in minutes.
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.
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.
A great way to save money by cooking is to substitute similar items. For example, let’s say that you want steamed green beans at dinner. Fresh green beans cost about $1.50 a pound even during the season, but frozen green beans, which have much the same color and texture, cost less than a dollar a pound.
A great way to boost the flavor of dishes from stews to potatoes is to use beef or poultry stock instead of water. You can also dissolve cubes of bouillon into the required amounts of water. This is a good way to moisten your food while adding more flavor.
Cooking with fresh, raw cloves of garlic can easily create an overpowering smell that can linger on your kitchen, clothes, and nose, you need not worry about removing the smell from your hands. After your are finished with the garlic, you should rub your hands on your stainless steel sink for half a minute before you attempt to wash them with soap and water.
Dark greens are really healthy. However, they can be hard to prepare. It can be tedious to remove the tough stems of leafy greens. An easy method of removing difficult stems involves breaking the greens in half, and pulling the stem out. Or, you can just use a knife and cut out the stem from the middle of the leaf. When you unfold the leaf, you will see a de-stemmed green.
These tips have served up a smorgasbord of new delights for you to attempt in the kitchen. They have suggested ways to improve your skills and get great results expeditiously and more economically. With these in hand you can make the food you serve your family more delicious and exciting than ever.