Learning to cook is a skill that will prove to be useful to you throughout your life. Cooking is useful, because you need to feed yourself and your family, and it is fun too. Following the tips provided in this article will help you learn more about this useful life skill.
For stir fry with an authentic Chinese touch, try using their velveting technique! Prepare a mixture of corn starch, egg whites, seasonings and sherry and set your pork, chicken or shrimp in it for about half an hour. Then, blanch it in hot oil or boiling water for shiny, tender and delicious restaurant quality stir fry.
Ice water can save the color of your vegetables. Dull washed out vegetables do not look as appealing to eat. If you want bright and vibrant vegetables, then you should plunge them into ice water after blanching them. Vibrantly colored vegetables look much more appetizing in salads and pasta dishes.
Unleash the tremendous flavor power of Mediterranean cous-cous by using this cooking tip. Pour your dry cous-cous in a pot filled with boiling chicken stock instead of water. Mix for ten seconds, then turn off the heat and cover for five minutes. The cous-cous will absorb the tasty flavor of the chicken stock. This effect can also be achieved with vegetable or beef stock.
Cooking a big meal? Do the preparations the day or night before! This way, you will have less to do on the day you are going to make your meal. For instance, if a salad will be part of your meal, make it the night before.
Beans stored for a longer period of time need to be checked for insect damage or mold. Instead of visually looking at each bean put them in a bowl of cold water. Use only the ones sinking to the bottom as those floating are either suffer from insect damage or mold.
To prepare a pumpkin for baking, you should first prop up the pumpkin so that it is upright. Next, use a large knife to bisect it evenly. Take each half cut side down and place on different baking sheets. Place a tiny bit of water on each sheet, then bake the pumpkin for about an hour at 350 degrees.
An easy way to skin nuts. When used in cooking, nuts such as almonds and pistachios need their skins removed. Blanch the nuts by boiling them in a pan of water for one minute. Drain the nuts, and place them on a clean dishtowel. Fold the dish towel over the nuts, and rub vigorously. The skins will rub off onto the towel.
Marinate meat in a bag. A lot of recipes call for meat to be marinated in a dish for a few hours, turning occasionally. This can be frustrating, as the meat is never completely coated by the marinade. A better way is to throw the meat and marinade in a ziploc bag, remove as much air as possible, and shake well to coat the meat. Place it in the fridge and simply flip the bag occasionally.
If you are going to buy mushrooms, make sure that you get them before they are opened. When the stems and the caps of a mushroom are tightly attached, this means means that they are really fresh. If the cap is opened, chances are the mushroom is not too fresh.
If your family tends to eat a lot of chicken and often, remember to always brine the poultry as it will lock in flavor. Otherwise you are left with a dry piece of chicken that merely has whatever spices and herbs you chose coated on the outside rather than penetrating every bite.
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!
When it comes to cooking, try to do all of your preparatory work before you even start cooking. Not only will this make your cooking experience much more desirable and stress free, but you will also look a lot more professional to anybody that you may be trying to impress.
For a juicier turkey, soak it in brine for at least 12 hours before cooking. You can make a simple brine by combining ice water and sea salt. After seasoning the turkey, submerge it fully, cover, and leave to sit for 12-24 hours. Then, cook the turkey as usual. Not only does the turkey come out juicier, but it tends to have more flavor than un-brined turkeys.
As you can see, cooking is not as hard as you may have previously thought. By following these tips, you are well on your way to becoming a competent chef. Your family will love the delicious meals you provide them, and you will likely pass these skills along to them too.