Cooking might be one of the oldest skills in the world. That does not mean that there are any limits to the knowledge available for the cook interested in increasing his or her skills. Even the finest cooks, even professionals, can always find new recipes, methods and techniques to improve their kitchen skills.
Make sure you store all of your spices in cool and dark places. Make sure they are not over the stove. Humidity, light and heat, will cause them to lose their flavor. That will not make for a good tasting meal. Get a spice rack and store it in your pantry.
If you are cooking for someone important, such as a new boss or for a dinner party, don’t use a new recipe and a new ingredient. Make sure you practice the dish first for your own family. Play around with it to make sure it is how you want it.
Have you ever wondered how your neighbor’s pie crusts turn out to be golden brown and glossy while yours is always pale? There is a trick to learn which guarantees the desired result every time. Beat some egg whites and brush it over the pie. You will take out beautiful, glossy, golden brown pies from your oven.
Make sure you spread out your condiments when making a sandwich. Most people rush through the early steps of making a sandwich. They spread their condiments around in the middle rather than making sure they cover the entire piece of bread. Cover your bread from corner to corner with condiments for flavor in every bite.
To cook healthier, try replacing highly refined goods with whole-grain alternatives when you bake. Enriched white flour and other such refined grain products are low in nutritional value. Even replacing a fraction of them with natural whole-grain products will improve the healthiness of the finished dish. Consult packaging directions for specific replacements; whole-grain products do not always replace refined ones at a 1:1 ratio.
Always continue to taste test all of your food as you cook them. Cooking a sauce, and you’re not sure if it needs more salt? Just taste it and you’ll know right away. Getting into a habit of testing all of your foods will keep you from accidentally over-spicing or under-spicing it.
When cooking, many people forget about proper care for the spices that they use to season their food. All spices should be stored in a cool dark place and never above a stove. The reason for this is because storing spices in areas where there is a lot of heat, light, or humidity will cause them to lose their flavor.
After you have drained pasta, add fresh Parmesan Cheese to it while it is still hot. By putting the cheese on this way, the sauce you will be using has something to stick it. Plus, the pasta will have more flavor this way than if you added the cheese after your pasta and sauce are mixed together.
Eggplants tend to turn black during cooking unless you treat them properly. Add a spoon of milk to the cold cooking water and add the plant to that milky water. The eggplant will not change its color during cooking and will make your dish more appetizing when you serve it.
Avoid dry sandwiches by making sure the spread reaches every corner of the bread. Whether its mayonnaise or a cucumber cream cheese spread, it rids the sandwich of the dry taste of bread, meat and cheese. A quick dollop in the middle leaves only a well moisturized middle and less flavored and prepared edges.
When you are making Easter eggs it is a pain when the eggs crack because coloring leaks onto the actual egg. To prevent this you can add some vinegar to the boiling water. This helps to seal the egg inside the shell and keep it all in one piece.
A great cooking tip is to spray your pan with oil before you cook with it. Spraying the pan with oil will make it so that the food doesn’t stick to the pan. Trying to clean a pan with food stuck on it can be very frustrating and time consuming.
Do not use oil when boiling pasta. You may hear many sources tell you that oil in your water when boiling pasta will keep it from sticking when it is drained. This may hold some truth, however, the oil can not only break the pasta down prematurely, it will also prevent your sauce from sticking to it. Use salt in the water to achieve a faster boil and rinse cooked pasta with warm water to prevent sticking.
If you like to bake for the holidays and give home-baked gifts from the kitchen, consider packaging your goodies in any of the readily available, multiple-use plastic storage containers instead of holiday print metal tins. The recipient of your tasty treats will not only love their cookies, but will also love the very re-useable container your baked goods came in. Fancy tins are pretty, but often get tossed away because they are rarely air-tight and tend to rust after washing.
Brine is a method that is great when cooking. In order to maximize the flavor of your poultry recipes, let your turkey, duck, chicken or goose sit in a brine solution prior to cooking.
Freeze overripe bananas. You do not have to throw out brown bananas. If they are overripe before you can eat them, just freeze them for later. Overripe bananas are still perfect for smoothies. You can even use them as an ingredient in baked goods like banana bread or muffins.
There is always something new to learn when it comes to cooking and every cook’s skill-set is open to improvement. This article included just a few ideas to help improve a cook’s performance. There are many more good tips out there and good cooks keep looking for them throughout their lives. Constant learning is the key to ever-improving cooking skills.