To many people, cooking a meal is just another thing on their to-do list. Something that should be enjoyed is cooking. It offers an excellent opportunity to follow a healthier lifestyle. People who are interested in cooking are always looking for tips to improve their skills, and the information that follows will help you on your quest for knowledge.
If you keep herbs and spices handy, make sure you are keeping them in a dark, cool area. Heat, humidity, and light will all weaken your spices’ flavor. Most ground spices will keep their flavor for at least one year. Spices that have not been ground may still be worth using for three years or a little more. They’ll last longest when stored properly.
The prep work comes first. You’ll be glad you have your prep work done when it’s time to cook. Having a deadline for an important meal or event can become quite stressful when you are starting from scratch. You can save yourself a lot of stress by doing as much preparation ahead of time as you can.
When you need to add oil and your food is already cooking, add it on the sides of the pan so that it will heat as it rolls towards the food. This helps to bring out the delicious flavors in your food after you are done cooking.
When you are putting seasoning on meat, just season a small piece first. Hamburgers, meatballs and meatloaf all require some careful seasoning. Once you add seasoning, it is not wise to cook all the meat. You should make a small patty first. You are then able to decide whether to cook the rest of the meat that way, or adjust your seasoning accordingly.
It is absolutely essential that you have sharp knives whenever you cook. Blunted knives do not cut things well, and they can also pose a safety hazard. You can cut yourself because you are forcing the knife through the food, use a sharp knife.
Give pre-cut, raw potatoes a cold water bath for a half-hour prior to frying for crispier French fries. A cold water soak helps the potatoes stand up to the rigors of deep fat frying.
Guessing how long food will take on the grill is nearly impossible. It’s always good to use a high-quality meat thermometer to ensure you correctly cook the inside. Another tip is to close the lid on your grill if the meat you’re cooking is thicker than an inch and a half.
When preparing chicken stock, make a large amount. Plan on preparing a large batch so that the excess can be frozen and used later. Good homemade chicken stock is a wonderful base in soups, stews, casseroles and more. Allow the stock to cool before freezing it in durable, Ziploc bags.
As was stated earlier, part of being a good cook means constantly learning new things. The best part about cooking is not simply meal preparation, but learning about all the kinds of foods, ingredients and techniques. It is about sharing knowledge that you have gathered from others. Cooking is not only a skill to be learned, but a gift to be shared.