Becoming a better cook can be accomplished with a little time, patience and following a few simple steps. The basics of cooking are easy to master and accomplish. In order to cook meals and dishes that will make your friends and family say “Wow!” you need to try these simple steps and you can be on your way to being the best cook you can possibly be.
Garlic is one of the more pungent odors that you will ever experience, and you will want to have tricks to get rid of it as soon as possible. Here is a suggestion, after you cook something with garlic, rub your hands on the base of your stainless steel sink for a minute to eliminate the pungent odor off of your skin.
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.
When your pasta is done and you are finished draining, pour some Parmesan cheese on top, which will give your sauce something to latch on to. This will make things much easier for you when you are creating your meal and allow you to layer the levels of your pasta.
A coffee grinder isn’t just for coffee. A coffee grinder actually works just as well as a food processor for some jobs. This is especially true with small jobs when you don’t want the trouble of lugging out a huge processor and then having to wash all the parts. Nuts and peppercorns grind perfectly in a coffee grinder, even sugar if you need a quick substitute for powdered sugar in a recipe.
To get the best sear and the crispiest crust on everything from fish to meats to other pan fried foods, the secret is a hot pan. Getting a nice brown color on your food requires a pan that is as hot as possible before the food hits its surface. Because the exterior of the food cooks first, you get only one chance to create that perfect golden color and crispy texture, so heat your pan and oil for several minutes prior.
Make sure you are storing your spices in the right place. Many people store their spices right above their stove or near a light source. To stay fresh, put them in dry and dark spot that is cool. Humidity can also destroy spices so keep those several factors in mind.
Be careful with frozen spinach. After thawing, squeeze the water out before cooking or the extra water will come out during cooking possibly destroying your recipe. You can squeeze it by hand or use any other suitable device to do it. Lay the spinach on paper towel to drain the excessive moisture.
When you put flour or other baking needs away, put them in a vacuum seal holder. Sealed containers are great for keeping bugs out and helping your food to not spoil. You can get them at a number of places and are well worth the small amount of money.
To make the perfect pasta, cook it one minute less than what you read on the box and cook it the rest of the way with the sauce you are serving with it. This ensures that you do not overcook the pasta if you were to toss it in with the sauce after you cooked the pasta until it was done in the pot of water.
If your family tends to eat a lot of chicken and often, remember to always brine the poultry as it will lock in flavor. Otherwise you are left with a dry piece of chicken that merely has whatever spices and herbs you chose coated on the outside rather than penetrating every bite.
Stay organized in the kitchen to avoid easy mistakes, like overcooking or burning your food. Just like with anything you do, the more organized you are, the more productive you will be. You can lose track of your things and waste your food and money if you’re unorganized.
If you are going on a picnic, put lettuce and other vegetables in separate containers from condiments. Condiments are not to make sandwiches soggy, so by separating them, you are ensuring your sandwich will taste fresh. Also, do not place any food items next to drinks inside of the basket.
Allow meals to rest before serving. It is a little known fact that foods should rest for a short period after the cooking process. This is especially true of meats. We are inclined to serve meat and other foods as soon as they are cooked. But many foods need to “rest” for a few minutes before being served in order to taste their best. Instead, allow each dish to cool briefly before serving it.
One great cooking tip is just be flexible and creative; do your own thing. You do not have to follow a recipe word for word. Sometimes making minor changes can make the dish taste even better than it did when following the original recipe. The ability to think creatively shows the heart of a real cook.
To test the freshness of an egg, place it in a cup of water. If it sinks, it’s fresh. If it floats, it’s getting old. As an egg ages the fluid inside slowly evaporates as oxygen and gases seep inside. This makes the egg lighter and causes it to float.
To add a little extra special flavor to a plain vanilla or yellow cake mix, use the liquid from any canned fruit that is packed in water instead of the plain water called for when making the mix. Most every variety of canned fruit around comes packed in syrup or water. Choose a water-packed can of fruit your family loves to make a plain cake extra tasty. Frost the cake using vanilla or butter cream and add the fruit chunks as decoration on top.
After trying these steps, you should be well on your way to being a much better cook. The great thing about these tips is that if they don’t work the first time keep trying and you are sure to get better. You should notice the difference right away and your friends and family will thank you.