Cooking is a beloved pastime for countless individuals, and is something that most anyone can learn to do well. Knowing how to cook is something that can serve you well for your entire life and bring great enjoyment. By using the tips that follow, you can can soon become an expert in the kitchen.
Perfect pasta every time. Never add oil to the water when you are boiling pasta. It prevents the sauce from coating the pasta properly. Just before you drain the pasta, set aside about 1/3 cup of the cooked pasta water. When you mix the sauce with the pasta, add a little of the cooking liquid. The starch in the water adds body and flavor to the sauce.
Try to plan for a week’s worth of meals. If you can get in the habit of planning a weekly menu, it will save time on grocery shopping, and will reduce the stress of having to come up with a meal idea at the last minute. Also, keep a magnet-backed notepad on the refrigerator, and jot down any items that you are running low on. This way, your kitchen will always be stocked with the ingredients that you use regularly.
To prepare for the meal that you are going to cook, make a comprehensive list of everything that you are going to need to cook your meal when you go to the supermarket. This will allow you to stay as organized as possible so there is no part of your meal that you leave out.
Do not be afraid to experiment. There is no rule that says you need to follow a recipe exactly. If you do not care for an ingredient, leave it out. If you think a different ingredient would taste better, substitute it. If you think the dish is missing a little something, add it.
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.
Make sure that if you are planning a party with friends and family, to have each course planned out in advance. You should have an appetizer course, salad course, main dish and dessert. Breaking your meal into courses will give people a chance to digest and appreciate what you have cooked for them.
An easy way to experiment with combining savory flavors in the kitchen and not spend a lot of money in food waste, is to turn your ideas into an omelet. Eggs, especially egg whites, are fairly flavor-free and provide a great “canvas” on which to “paint” the ingredients you want and then combining into a dish. Small batches of scrambled eggs that you can fold your ingredients into, will also give a neutral background for your flavor taste tests.
When you are cooking a dish that requires it to be sauteed, add oil around the edges of the pan rather than directly on the food. This gives the oil a chance to heat up before it reaches the cooking food that is in the center of the pan. Hot oil will give you improved results and makes your dish taste better.
Always have a lot of napkins handy when you are cooking in the kitchen. You never know when a spill will occur, so always prepare for the worst. Purchase thick napkins that can hold a lot of liquid if you want to get the most absorption when cleaning up a mess.
To saute vegetables, use chicken broth in place of oil or butter. Broth will flavor the vegetables, and less oil will be needed to saute them. This is a delicious and healthy way to easily cook vegetables.
If you would like to know more about cooking, do not be ashamed to go to cooking classes. These classes can give you some really good ideas to increase your cooking skills. Many locations offer cooking classes at reasonable prices and some even give you supplies that you can bring home with you.
If you are looking to improve your cooking skills, learning from experienced cooks is a great way to avoid making their same mistakes. While testing out new recipes on your own can be fun, messing up in the kitchen can end up wasting time, as well as money that was spent on ingredients.
There can be no doubt that cooking provides great pleasure to many, and can also serve as a wonderful creative outlet. Acquiring skills in the kitchen can be rewarding for you, not to mention your friends and family, and is well worth the effort. Putting these tips to work will set you quickly on the path to culinary mastery.