Cooking is an art. It is also a practical, everyday activity. This combination may account for the tremendous popularity of TV cooking shows, cookbooks, and cooking classes. Recipes are part of the heritage passed down in families. Here are some tips to help you expand your culinary adventures and finesse your kitchen skills.
Add a cast iron skillet to your kitchen if you do not already have one. These multipurpose pans can sear, fry, roast, bake a cake, broil a steak and more, making them essential cooking gear staples. Cast iron heats evenly and holds heat well, allowing you to use a lower burner temperature. When seasoned well, cast iron cures into a nonstick surface, too.
To increase the texture and quality of the pasta that you cook at night, make sure that you finish cooking with the pasta in the pan with sauce. This will help to absorb the sauce so that it blends in properly and tastes great when you sit down to the table and eat.
Cook up the whole bag of potatoes at once! Slice them in half and put them in the freezer! Whether you boil or bake them, you’ll always be ready to thaw out potatoes to use for a hastily put together potato bar dinner, to use as ingredients for potato salad or any other dishes that use cooked potatoes.
Use more alcohol in your cooking. Do not pass off the awesome flavors you can impart into your foods by adding wine, spirits, or beer to your meals. When used properly the alcohol will evaporate, and you will be left with the delicious pure flavor of the base notes.
Be careful when adding oil to a pan in which you are already cooking. If you just pour oil anywhere in the hot pan, it will not only lower the temperature of the food you are cooking, it may also splatter. To avoid this, you should slowly add oil to one spot away from the food.
Try putting your chicken in an oiled roasting pan, instead of on a rack. Slice some thick pieces of onion and put them in the pan under the chicken, so that they will absorb the juice from it. After the roasting, add some stock or water to the pan with the onions to make a sauce while the chicken rests. Cook it for three minutes at high heat on your stove-top.
Pesto cooking tip! When you are using pesto sauce, make sure you never heat it up! If you want to have it in a pasta or soup dish, it is best if you cook the food first – then add the uncooked pesto. This is important because cooking pesto will make the basil have a bitter taste.
When freezing foods like soups, vegetables, and sauces, place the foods into resealable freezer bags and lay them flat in the freezer. When the foods freeze, they will remain flat, allowing you to easily stack them and maximize the space in your freezer. The foods will also thaw faster, since the surface area of the food is maximized.
Easy measuring cup clean up. Many baking recipes call for sticky ingredients such as butter, honey, syrup or peanut butter. Instead of having to wash out a gooey mess every time you need to reuse the measuring cup, spray the inside of the cup with non-stick cooking spray. The ingredients will slide right out and you can reuse the measuring cup right away!
This is a rich and bountiful set of cooking tips and lore to help both the novice and the chef. We hope they will challenge you to try new dishes and expand your list of ingredients. This can bring new enjoyment to you and those who share your table.