Many people consider cooking to be a rewarding and relaxing hobby. Deliciously tempting scents emanating from the kitchen will put a smile on just about any face. Yet, finding the right tips and recipes to prepare a perfect meal might be difficult. This article is a compilation of solid tips that will help you become a better cook.
Your spices and herbs should always be stored in a cool and dark place. Herbs and spices can quickly lose their flavor if exposed to continuous light or heat. Ground herbs and spices retain their flavor for 12 months under normal circumstances. Whole spices last longer, possibly as long as five years. If you keep them correctly, they will last a lot longer.
It is absolutely essential that you have sharp knives whenever you cook. Blunt knives are frustrating to use and they can also be very hazardous. With a dull knife it is easy to slip and cut yourself because it is harder to slice the food, but a knife that is sharp makes much smoother cuts.
A lot of people usually use apples for cooking things in the winter and fall months, yet a lot of people store them incorrectly and they spoil quickly. Apples need to be kept loosely in plastic bags while in your refrigerator or basement because they rot in dry, warm air. However, you will still need to keep a watchful eye on your apples. Even properly stored apples can spoil. They're a fickle fruit.
Boiling and other long preparation methods tend to eliminate key nutrients in vegetables. To preserve their healthy reputation, choose quick cooking methods such as sauteing or steaming - or better still, enjoy them in their natural, raw state.
Ice trays can be a great tool for freezing sauces. This way, when you want to make an easy meal another night, all you have to do is reheat it in a saute pan. Do not worry, the sauce will still be edible after it has been in the ice cube trays!
If you've made a big pot of sauce, freeze the leftovers by pouring the extra sauce into ice cube trays. Take them out to use on another night when you'd like a no hassle home cooked meal. Simply reheat the sauce cubes slowly in a medium pan on your stove top. Do not worry, the sauce will still be edible after it has been in the ice cube trays!
You can make meal preparation a breeze by doing part of the food prep in advance. Marinate your meat or cut up the vegetables ahead of time. With so much already prepared, you will likely be less stressed.
When preparing a dish that calls for garlic, purchase garlic that is as fresh as possible. It's well-known that fresher garlic equals sweeter taste. Check the freshness of garlic cloves by inspecting the skin. If it is bruised, soft, or shriveled, it is not fresh.
When serving a salad for guests that accompanies a meal, avoid pouring dressing on it. Leave the dressing on the side instead. Let people add what they want to their salad. Offer your guests a variety of dressings.
Cooking doesn't need to be scary. Making food on your own is cheaper, fun and more nutritious. The tips in the above article can help you with every aspect of your cooking adventure, from trips to the supermarket to dishing out your delicious meals to family and friends. Cooking from home provides all kinds of opportunities.