Have you ever had a delicious dinner provided by family or friends and found yourself wondering how it got made? The following article can make anyone a better cook.
A cool and dark location is best for storing spices and herbs. If they get exposed to any light, humidity or heat, their flavor will begin to weaken. Another little known fact is that ground spices tend to lose their flavor quicker than whole spices. It is possible for whole spices to hold their flavor for several years. When spices are stored in the correct manner, they will stay fresh for much longer.
There are some things you should be aware of if you plan to cook with skewers. When using metal skewers, square or twisted skewers hold food better than the round skewers.
Give pie and tart crust a little longer baking time than you normally would for the best results. The crust should have a nice golden color to be fully cooked. This golden color means that the sugar used in the crust has caramelized, giving the crust a crisp and sweet flavor.
Prepare in advance as much as possible. This will simplify matters when you are cooking your meals. However, when you are ready to start cooking and have a deadline for when your meal needs to be finished, it can be a bit stressful. Do your prep work in advance, if you can.
Do you feel like you’re wasting money when you throw away a piece of moldy fruit? Have you ever been tempted to cut the rotten bits out of a piece of fruit and eat the rest? Cutting off rotten bits of fruit will not make them safer. Mold grows inward to places that you can’t even see and can make you sick so throw moldy fruit in the garbage.
When using knives to prepare your food, it is critical that they all have a sharp edge. Blunt knives are frustrating to use and they can also be very hazardous. If you’re trying to slice a firm vegetable with a blunted knife, you’re more likely to cut yourself with it than you are if you use a sharp knife.
Before frying raw potatoes, allow them to soak for half an hour in a bowl of cold water; this will result in crispier fries. The soaking process will reinforce the vegetable fibers, and they will be better able to withstand heat when you fry them.
Replacing some of your mashed potatoes with equal amounts of cauliflower is a healthy alternative, reducing fat and calories. Their bland flavor blends effortlessly with the potatoes while taking flavor from the other ingredients. When they’re mashed, cauliflowers have the same appearance and consistency as potatoes, too. Adding a little cauliflower can take calories out of your favorite mashed potato recipes and add in a little vegetable goodness, too.
Are you aiming to reduce the amount of fat and calories you consume in your mashed potatoes without having to give up taste or texture? If so, consider replacing a certain amount of the potatoes with cauliflower. Since cauliflower is bland, it will mix right in with the potatoes along with the other ingredients. As a bonus, cauliflower is the same texture and color as potatoes, so no one will be the wiser when you improve the nutritional content and lower the caloric content of your mashed potatoes.
Are you partial to using fresh basil in your cooking? Place several sprigs of fresh basil into a glass container. Now fill the glass with water to just above the stems. It will remain fresh for weeks, just sitting on the kitchen counter! Even if the water is varied on occasion, the basil will still grow their roots regardless. Trim or cut the basil periodically to provide for added growth so you can partake in some fresh basil for a while!
Whatever you may be cooking, using fresh foods is always better than canned, dried, or frozen. Use fresh foods any time you can, as they bring out the best flavor of the dish, and can be real money-savers too.
Whatever you may be cooking, using fresh foods is always better than canned, dried, or frozen. When you use fresh ingredients you can bring out the true flavor of your food, and they can sometimes be cheaper in the end.
A great source of protein for your diet can be found in beans and tofu. It is possible to buy both at most supermarkets. Fry up the tofu with seasonings to get a great meat alternative. Beans may be boiled with herbs for a delicious protein source.
They are known to soak up water like a sponge. You should use a clean, wet cloth and wipe the mushroom off by hand.
If you have a recipe that requires water or milk, you can change out the liquids to create a whole new flavor. If the recipe calls for water, try using chicken or beef broth, or even the water that you used to cook your vegetables in. Some great replacements for milk are sour cream, yogurt and buttermilk. Changing up the liquids in your recipes can add nutrition, while livening up a standby dish.
Keep flour, sugar and other items for baking in tins with seals that keep the air out. These sorts of containers will help keep all of your foods fresh and safe from bugs. You can find these containers in a variety of sizes online or at local stores. Regardless of where you purchase them, using these containers is a choice you are unlikely to regret.
Don’t throw away turkey leftovers, at Thanksgiving or any other time. Simply chop and seal in a freezer safe container to store in the freezer. Frozen turkey will keep for weeks in the freezer and can be unfrozen and used for a variety of dishes.
Sauteing vegetables in a small amount of chicken broth is a healthy and delicious way to cook. Not only does it lessen the amount of cooking oil needed as per a traditional saute, the broth adds an extra dimension of flavor to the vegetables. Try this next time you cook vegetables for a great meal.
Spices don’t last forever; replace them every 6 months. Quite often, spices pass their sell-by-date before you use them up, losing their flavor. If you do not think you will use all of the spice within six months, split it with a friend.
When making a dish that needs to contain garlic, purchase the best and most fresh garlic you can. As a rule of thumb, garlic will taste sweeter the fresher it is. You will want to look for the following characteristics; firm skin, and no bruises or shriveling.
When serving a salad for guests that accompanies a meal, avoid pouring dressing on it. Leave the dressing on the side instead. Let people put on their own dressing. Give them a choice of salad dressings.
If you buy unripened fruits, keep them in a plastic bag fitted with holes. Some fruits, like apples, produce ethylene gas as they ripen. The perforations in the bag allow the air to circulate while the plastic retains enough of the ethylene gas to increase the ripening process and keep the fruit tasting sweet and delicious.
Bone-in roasts will cook most rapidly, something to keep in mind when you need to watch the clock. The idea is that the bone will help carry heat to the center of the roast, thus cooking it faster. Once the meat is done, you then just cut the meat off the bone and enjoy.
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. If you just cook without a plan, you will waste lots of food, which is the same as wasting lots of money.
You need to stay organized when you are cooking, so that you can be sure the food is as great as it can be and that nothing burns. An organized kitchen is a much more productive kitchen. If you aren’t organized, you will start to forget what you buy and that will make you spend too much money that could have been spent on something you would have eaten.
To make pasta sauce even more delicious, save some of the water you boiled the pasta in. You will need to save roughly one quarter cup of water. When you combine the sauce and the pasta, add this little amount of water to the mix. The pasta water contains starch, which will infuse your concoction with the thickness and body you are looking for.
You can reduce the cleanup required from meal preparation by washing dishes as you use them. Make sure that one side of the sink always has soapy hot water in it and the other side has clear water for rinsing in it. It is much easier to wash cooking utensils right after using them, and in some cases, you’ll need the same utensil again later in the cooking process.
When you are barbecuing, make sure that you prepare your grill beforehand so it is ready when you are. You should try to have everything ready 30 minutes prior to your cook time. The charcoals are ready to cook over once they are ash covered, and at medium heat. Once the coals have reached this point, they have reached the prime grilling temperature.
Before chopping fresh herbs sprinkle some salt on the cutting board. This gives the herbs a little flavor. Mostly, though, a little salt keeps the herbs from flying off the board. Remember to use moderation; you don’t want to add too much salt to your ingredients. The salt that you sprinkle on the board sticks to the herbs and gives them just the right amount of flavor.
“Trussing” is the term used to describe the process of using string to tie the turkey. The advantage of trussing is that the legs and wings are held closer to the body, resulting in even cooking throughout the bird. If they are untied, the tips of its legs and wings can burn while the remainder of the bird cooks.
Keep your seasonings in a cool, dark, moisture-free place. Exposure to light, heat and humidity can cause them to lose a lot of their flavor very fast. In this location, the spices are exposed to heat that will cause their flavors to dissipate.
You need to be careful not to overcook or under cook a cake. The times that they recommend for cake baking can be wrong due to several factors. Instead, test the cake periodically by inserting a toothpick into the middle. The cake is finished if the toothpick comes out completely clean. If it does not, and has some batter on it, it needs to be cooked longer.
Do not fall victim to believing that all potatoes are the same. There are some potatoes that are more waxy and should only be used for things like potato salad or boiled potatoes. Using these to make something like french fries will not turn out well for you. When making those types of foods, you should use a fluffy potato, such as a Russet.
Oysters are versatile. Even though oysters are usually eaten raw with drops of lemon juice, they can be made in plenty of other ways. Place oysters that have been opened in a broiler pan. You place a dollop of cream on top to cover them. After, top them with some parmesan cheese, and finally broil them. You can also saute your oysters. Mix some seasonings with flour and coat the oysters. Fry them in very hot butter for about two minutes or until they are golden brown. The oysters should be baked within their shells. Plop it in a rectangular dish, add a tiny bit of butter, then sprinkle some breadcrumbs on the oysters. Once you do all that, put it in the oven at 425 degrees and let it bake for 4-5 minutes. Your oysters are ready when the butter is bubbling. Serve them with toast.
If you’re cooking for someone of importance, do not try your hand at an untested recipe, no matter how much you would like to impress your guest with a gourmet meal. Depending on whether it’s a boss, date or your new in-laws, you will want to make sure you cook something amazing so they are impressed. It is much better to show off a meal that you have had success with before.
Follow the advice you find helpful and within your means. Your loved ones will quickly be asking you for your recipes.
Always use soft, not melted butter when you are making cookies. If it does melt, put the bowl in the freezer long enough for it harden a little bit, or when you are done mixing the ingredients together refrigerate the dough. Chilled dough will result in smaller and thicker cookies.