What You Should Know About Cooking

Once the time comes that you know a handful of fundamental skills, the art of cooking can actually be a source of joy. The information provided here can help you become more adept at cooking and feel more proficient in the kitchen. Once you master those skills, the party can start.

Try going to a library or buying a cook book if you are wanting to cook different foods. Work your way through a few different recipes, but do not allow yourself to become discouraged during the learning process.

First, freeze the meat partially. Then you can easily slice it into neat strips. This works well for Asian dishes, like Chinese or Thai. The meat holds a tighter form when the it is partially frozen making the strips clean cut with out any stretching of the meat. But, if you use this technique make sure that the meat strips thaw out again before you cook them.

If you are seasoning meat, cook a little piece of it to test the seasoning before cooking it all. Foods like meatloaf, meatballs, and even hamburgers can require careful seasoning. Spices and seasonings added when the meat is fully cooked are unlikely to stick. Start with a small amount of the spiced meat first. After doing this, you can either adjust the seasoning to better suit your tastes, or just continue to cook the meat as is.

Dull Knives

Invest in a knife sharpener to make cutting any ingredient simple. Dull knives are hard to cut with and they are also dangerous. You can cut yourself so easily trying to force dull knives through something than it is to make a simple cut with a sharp one.

Are you using fresh basil to cook with? Try putting a bunch of basil that is fresh inside a glass. Fill the container with enough water to cover the stems. Keep it on the kitchen counter and it should stay fresh. If you keep the water as fresh as you can, roots will start growing. Trim or cut the basil regularly to encourage growth and you will be able to enjoy fresh basil!

Fresh Ingredients

Regardless of what you cook, it is always better to use fresh ingredients as opposed to those that are dried or frozen. Use fresh ingredients whenever possible, as they make the food more flavorful, and they may cost less over the long run.

All sugars, flours, and mixes should be stored in airtight containers. These airtight containers can keep your food fresher for a longer period of time, as well as protecting your food safe from insects and pests. You can find them on sale often at discount stores and the investment is worth every penny.

Make a lot of stock if you are going to make it ahead of time. If you make a large pot of stock, you can freeze it and store it for future use. Many great recipes including soups, casseroles and stews call for a base of chicken stock. To preserve your stock for future use, just simply make sure that it is stored in heavy duty freezer bags and frozen solid. This way the stock should keep for several months or so.

Keep in mind that tofu and beans are excellent sources of protein when you want to add more protein to your diet. Most grocery stores sell both items. You can pan fry the tofu with a few seasonings to have a delicious meat alternative. Boil beans with a sauce or herbs, or add them to a salad to serve up some additional protein.

Leaving the bone in a roast can help shorten the cooking time. The meat will cook a lot faster as the bone will heat it up internally. When the meat has cooled enough to let the juices settle all you have to do is go around the bone when cutting and serve.

Dried Tomatoes

Try drying your own fresh tomatoes. Slice a large, ripened tomato in half-inch-thick slices. If you are using Roma tomatoes, slice them lengthwise into two pieces. Place cut side up on a clean cooling rack and salt lightly. After placing the rack atop a cookie sheet, allow the tomatoes to dry for 10 hours in an oven at 190 degrees. Put the tomatoes in plastic bags, and store them in the freezer. You can also pack dried tomatoes in a jar with fresh herbs and olive oil. Dried tomatoes should be stored within the refrigerator and used within two weeks.

Organize your materials as best as possible, if you desire to prevent the hazards of burns in the kitchen. You can be more productive, if your cooking station is well organized. Stay organized, as it will help you keep up with what you have and you won’t be wasting food or money.

If you decide to take a shortcut and prepare boxed foods, follow the directions exactly. This way, your macaroni will turn out perfectly every time and will taste great with the cheese melted over the top. Serve your dish with a nice serving spoon. Add some extra flavor with pepper.

In conclusion, it is simple to learn how to cook. You need time and determination to learn to cook. Applying the tips you’ve read here will help you to become a more proficient cook, thereby feeling more at ease in your kitchen. With a positive attitude, you will certainly discover the joy of cooking.

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