Although most people want to be able to prepare meals that amaze others, the process to becoming a great chef can often seem overwhelming. If you are a beginner cook, you too can become a wonderful chef by following the techniques taught in this article.
To maintain the flavor and freshness of spices and herbs, make sure you keep them stored in someplace that is cool and dark. They will not taste as fresh if they are exposed to light or warmth. Usually herbs and ground spices tend to stay fresh for about a year. Whole spices last longer, possibly as long as five years. Store your spices correctly to make them last.
If you are going to make a stir-fry dish, slice the meat on the bias, as thinly as possible. Perfectly sliced meat takes time and patience, though. Use meat that is firm, but unfrozen, and slice the meat across the grain, at 45 degrees.
Cook your vegetables quickly to retain quality and nutrients. When you cook veggies slowly, they lose many nutrients. These methods usually create healthier vegetables. When you know how to cook vegetables in the least amount of time possible, you will enjoy better tasting and nutritious vegetables.
If you’ve made a big pot of sauce, freeze the leftovers by pouring the extra sauce into ice cube trays. When you’d like to make a quick and easy meal later on, you just have to pop out a few cubes of sauce and reheat them in a pan. Have no fear, for the sauce will taste great even after being frozen in the trays!
To cook flavorful veggies that turn out well, use chicken broth. Chicken broth is a great way to add flavor to your vegetables while keeping them from sticking to your pan. Chicken broth is economical and widely available.
If you are serious about losing weight and getting healthy, you need to cut back on cooking oils. Butters and oils contain unnecessary fats. A great alternative to oils is a nonstick cooking spray. Not only does it provide the same results as cooking with oils, it also contains less unhealthy ingredients.
When cooking a whole pumpkin, place the pumpkin upright first, then cut directly down its middle to create two halves. Lay the cut halves on individual baking pans. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Sprinkle a little bit of water onto the baking sheets, then bake for about one hour.
Know how much cooking oil to use. Avoid pouring oil directly from the bottle to the pan when you cook, as this will allow you to lower your consumption of fat. You’ll be able to carefully account for all of the oil that you use.
If spices and herbs are used regularly in your cooking, keep them somewhere dark and cool in order to keep their fresh flavors. When you store your herbs out on the kitchen counter, they will lose their flavor quickly and become stale.
Some ingredients can leave a rather strong odor on your cutting board. Label the ending of your chopping board by marking it with ink. This will help you to identify the different sides of the board.
When using fresh herbs in your cooking like parsley or basil, bundle them together and cut them with scissors instead of chopping. This method of cutting herbs provides a drier, more flavorful product than chopping.
You can make remarkably flavorful dishes by making your stock yourself. You can cook it in large batches, pour the extra batches into plastic freezer bags, and then simply store them in the freezer. This ensures that tasty, homemade stock is always available when the time comes to prepare soups and other recipes. If you prepare your own, homemade stock, you will be cutting out all of the preservatives of canned versions.
Add plenty of salt to the water when you are cooking pasta. This will help season the pasta as it cooks. Pasta salted during cooking tastes better than pasta salted after the fact.
You should have all preparations for your food ready before you start cooking. This can help you avoid too much heat or gas when you cook, and can also make it safer to cook with a hot pan, oil, or other dangers that could harm you if you’re distracted.
When you barbecue, get your grill ready before you start. A half hour is the lead time usually needed in order to have the grill properly fired up before you cook. The coals should have an ash covering and should emit medium heat. Once the coals have reached this point, they have reached the prime grilling temperature.
If you are sauteing, don’t use too much liquid in the pan. It will add too much moisture, which steams the food and doesn’t allow it to saute or get crispy. Be sure that you do this when the temperature is low too.
It doesn’t matter if you want to cook for fun or as a career; the start of great tasting meals begins with accurate cooking knowledge. Every culture in the world shares family meals. If you use the above tips, you will become an awesome cook and everyone will ask you to cook for the next big family event.