Cooking is a form of art. You should be creative and unafraid of trying new things in the kitchen. Creativity is great and so is practicality. Below you will find practical tips for making your cooking experiences better. The more you know, the better the chef, you will soon become.
To maximize the efficiency of the cooking that you do, always make your food in large quantities and when you are finished with the meal, store the meats in freezer bags. This will allow you to create a meal the next day for your family that is still fresh and tastes great.
Make sure that you never give up when you are cooking, as it is going to take a lot of practice and failures before you get it right. If you burn something, keep trying. You will only become a great cook if you maintain your persistence.
Use a heavy duty, zip-lock plastic bag to separate pan drippings. After roasting meat, pour the pan drippings into a zip-lock plastic bag. Let the fat rise to the top. Carefully snip off one of the bottom corners on the bag, and pour out the fat-free broth. The fat will stay in the plastic bag, and you will have a tasty broth as a base for gravy or a sauce.
Save sauces in ice cube trays. If you make several meals during a week, consider saving sauces from them in ice cube trays. This will allow you to add some interesting variety to any dishes you might be making later in the week. It will also make the process simple.
When storing ingredients that you will use for cooking it is a good habit to stock them in large quantities and freeze them in plastic bags. This will make preparing food easier and faster. For example, when preparing vegetables, you can just pull them out of the freezer and simply boil them.
If you plan on seasoning the food you are going to make, try to add seasoning in stages. This will bring out the most taste, and help you to layer your spices on the food of your choice. Inject seasoning into your food to maximize its appeal and taste.
When you learn to cook for yourself, do not be afraid of cooking in large batches. The freezer becomes your friend once you are making your own meals. Surplus food that you prepare, but will not use immediately, can be stored almost indefinitely in your freezer. Cooking in large batches is the best way to maximize the utility of your cooking time.
If you are making meatloaf or meatballs, it is important to taste the meat before you cook it. You want to make sure that it has the perfect amount of seasoning. You can taste it by making a small patty and frying it on a pan, almost like a hamburger.
Be careful with frozen spinach. After thawing, squeeze the water out before cooking or the extra water will come out during cooking possibly destroying your recipe. You can squeeze it by hand or use any other suitable device to do it. Lay the spinach on paper towel to drain the excessive moisture.
When freezing meat it is important to use freezer bags. Meat will get freezer burn if it is not properly stored. Meat that has freezer burn will not taste good when it is cooked, and it often has to be thrown away instead of being eaten. This can be very costly, but can also be easily avoided.
When working with poultry, use this useful tip to let your poultry shine. Soak the poultry in a brine solution composed of salt and water overnight before cooking the poultry. Soaking the poultry in brine will help to unlock the flavors buried in the meat and make the poultry succulent and moist, creating an incredible poultry dish.
In order to become a good cook, you should learn to use simple measuring devices. It is very important to know how to get the right quantities because many tried and true recipes require very specific amounts of this and that. Learn to measure and you’ll be licking your chops in no time!
It is important to test the heat of oil before using it to pan fry your food. Pouring the oil into the pan and then sprinkling it with water should give you a series of cracks or sparkles. If it does not, then the pan isn’t currently up to frying or heating capacity and dumping the food in it will act closer to an oil sponge than a frying pan.
Always keep a variety of canned goods in your pantry. Canned corn, both creamed and whole kernel, is a particularly tasty dish by itself. So too are green beans. All you have to do is drain the water, add a bit of butter, and you have a side dish on the table in less time that it would take you to cook a TV dinner.
Use butter in your cooking instead of margarine. It naturally mixes better in your recipes and contains dairy products rather than vegetable oil so contains health benefits as well. Dairy products are higher in healthy fats and will provide more flavor and natural texture to your food than margarine will.
To keep cookies from spreading while baking, chill unused dough and cool off cookie sheets between batches. If cookie dough is allowed to reach room temperature before baking, either in the bowl or on the pan, then the ingredients in the dough are doomed to expand. To get a dense yet still moist cookie, just chill the remaining dough between batches and cool an already used sheet in cold water before returning to the oven.
It may not always be easy to see that cooking is one of the simplest and most fun activities that anyone can partake in. You should enjoy creating delicious food for pleasure, as well as health. Keep the tips you learned here in mind and the chef inside of you will flourish.