Something that everyone needs to do every now and again is cooking, it is also a great hobby to have. If you have good advice, tools and information anyone can be a good cook. The following article gets you started with learning some of that valuable information.
If you can, do all the preparing of the meal’s ingredients in advance. The prep work should be done before you even start cooking. When you have a schedule as to how long you plan to be cooking, things can get a little stressful in the kitchen. Prep work helps take the stress out of meal planning and preparing.
You should know a few things before you cook anything on a skewer. For metal skewers, twisted or square types will better hold the food than round ones.
Apples are a popular choice for eating in autumn or winter, but they will spoil if not properly stored. Warm, dry air rots apples, so they need to be stored in loosely tied bags, and then placed in the fridge or cool area. Make sure to check on them regularly, as one rotten apple means the rest are soon to follow.
Your spices and herbs should always be stored in a cool and dark place. If they are exposed to light, heat or humidity, they will lose much of their flavor. Generally speaking, spices that have been ground will keep their flavor for about one year. Whole spices can keep their flavor for up to five years. If you keep them correctly, they will last a lot longer.
Texture and taste don’t have to suffer when you are trying to lighten up your mashed potatoes. Cauliflower makes for a great substitute to help drop the fat and calorie content. Cauliflower has a kind of bland taste that mixes well with potatoes and the other ingredients in them. Cauliflowers look very similar to potatoes in texture and color when they are mashed. It will allow you to have a delicious side dish that is healthier and still flavorful.
When cooking a large meal for a family gathering or dinner party, preparation is key. Take an inventory to be sure that everything that you will need is available. The day before your meal, get your kitchen into cooking mode and hunt down your favorite utensils, pots and pans. This will aid you in keeping calm and doing your best.
Garlic is delicious; however the pungent aroma will get stuck on your hands. Rub your hands thoroughly on the interior of a stainless steel sink after working with garlic or other odoriferous cooking ingredients. This will remove the scent from your hands and stop it from transferring.
Do not throw your sauce away. This simple trick can save it. In a small bowl, combine two tablespoons of water and 3 teaspoons of corn starch. Then, stir the resulting solution with the sauce to thicken it. Avoid over-thickening by adding the starch mixture slowly and stirring the sauce often.
By doing this, you are guaranteed fresher fruit throughout the year. In addition, you will then be able to indulge in fruits that aren’t in season.
A lot of people cook with apples during fall and winter, but they will spoil rather quickly if you don’t store them correctly. Apples spoil in warm, dry air, so keep them in a refrigerator or basement, in plastic bags that are loosely tied. Watch your apples so that you can catch any rotten ones, a rotten apple will make the others spoil.
Disperse spices and seasoning to your favorite food in small, equal increments over time. This way, your food becomes more flavorful.
If your dish calls for a bit of garlic, make sure the garlic is as fresh as possible. The fresher your garlic, the sweeter a taste it will have. You can tell whether garlic is fresh or not by checking for bruising and making sure the skin is still firm and not shriveled.
Flour, baking mixes and sugar should be stored in airtight containers. Airtight containers allow your food to remain safe from the elements and also prolongs their freshness. These containers can be bought at almost any store and are totally worth it!
Do not use any wine when cooking a recipe that you do not think normally tastes good. Using cheap or unfamiliar wine puts the flavor of your food in danger. There are wines available that are used just for cooking purposes.
Use vegetable or chicken stock to saute vegetables. The chicken broth will make the vegetables taste a lot better, and you will be able to avoid using other oils that may add fat and calories. You will thoroughly enjoy this way of preparing your vegetables.
Dry your own tomatoes. Drying them is easy – simply cut Roma tomatoes in half, or cut larger tomatoes into 1/2 inch slices. You should place them on cooling rack, and salt them lightly with the cut side up. Put the rack on a baking sheet, and slow-bake in an oven that is set to 190 degrees for about 10 hours. You can then freeze your tomatoes in Ziplock bags. Another way to preserve your dried tomatoes is in olive oil, with herbs for added flavor, in a glass jar. Dried tomatoes should be stored within the refrigerator and used within two weeks.
When cooking pumpkins, stand the pumpkin so that it is upright. Next, cut it down the middle. Once the pumpkin is cut, place it on a dampened baking sheet with the skin facing up. Sprinkle some water on each baking sheet to add moisture, then bake each pumpkin half in a 350-degrees fahrenheit oven for about 60 minutes.
The odors of many spices and vegetables will stay on your cutting board and will be impervious to soap. Mark one end, or side, of each cutting board so that you know which is which.
Cooking doesn’t have to be an exact science; that’s baking. But you should still measure the amount of oil you cook with. To lower the amount of fat in your cooking, be sure to carefully measure the amount of oil that you use when you cook, instead of simply pouring from the bottle into a pan. Doing this will make it easy for you to keep track of exactly how much oil is being used.
Replace and refresh your spices twice a year. If a spice is kept for a long time, it could lose some of its flavor. If you buy too much of a spice, give it to someone you love!
Make sure that you never use a wine in your food that you would not normally drink. Using wine that does not appeal to your palate when you are cooking can lead to a meal that lacks the flavor you desire. You can find wines that are made for use in cooking.
You should blot ground meat before you attempt to cook it. Before cooking ground meat it is always important to blot away moisture. If you leave it there, the meat will not cook properly. The water will be cooked away. This can cause the meat to become steamed instead of seared as it should be.
In order to keep herbs and spices fresh and flavorful, keep them stored in a cool, dark area. When you keep them in cabinets or in warmer areas, they tend to lose flavor.
When you are making pasta you need to be sure to add a liberal amount of salt to the water. This will help season the pasta as it cooks. Salting cooked pasta will not have the same effect.
You should always organize your cooking supplies. If your supplies aren’t organized, you’ll be spending a lot of time trying to remember where everything is. Put like items with other like items. For instance, place parsley and basil in one cabinet, since both are spices.
When chopping fresh herbs, sprinkle a small amount of salt on the cutting board. This adds some extra flavor to the herbs while also keeping them on the board. Do not add any salt to the dish you are making to prevent over-salting. Applying salt to the board will allow the herbs to stick better and give the meat a bit more flavor.
To cook your meats to the proper temperature, make sure you are using a meat thermometer. The temperatures that meat should reach, when being cooked to be eaten, varies between different types of meat. If the meat is not cooked thoroughly there is a chance that the bacteria living on the meat could remain and make someone sick if they eat it.
Prepare your own stock to enjoy dishes that are more flavorful. Making it in huge quantities can allow you to store the leftover in some resealable bags in the freezer. By freezing stock, you ensure that you have tasty homemade stock ready to add to any dish. Making homemade stock ensures that you know what is in it and that it isn’t made with preservatives.
“Trussing” is the term used to describe the process of using string to tie the turkey. Trussing keeps the good stuff inside your bird and also accommodates more consistent cooking. If it isn’t trussed, then the extremities are more likely to burn.
Cooking can be about more than staving off hunger and starvation. It can also be very fun. Not everyone is a perfect cook the first time they try. You will likely make at least one mistake when cooking but if you use the information that was in this article, you should be able to make mistakes less often than you would have without it. Follow these tips to culinary success.
Spices and herbs need to be stored somewhere that is dark, cool and dry. Humidity or heat can ruin your herbs and spices quickly. This will ensure your spices will not be as good to use.