Everyone is aware that in order to survive you need food. But plain “survival” foods can lead to boredom in the kitchen. Cooking great food can be even more rewarding than eating good food. Here are some things you can use to bump your cooking skills up a notch.
You should keep your spices and herbs in a space that is cool and away from light. The flavor of the spices and herbs will decrease if they are kept in areas with light, humidity, and heat. Ground spices, when stored correctly, can retain flavor for up to a year. Whole spices can keep their flavor for up to five years. If they are stored properly, they will stay fresh longer.
You want to make certain you have the prep work done ahead of time. You’ll be glad you have your prep work done when it’s time to cook. However, when you are ready to start cooking and have a deadline for when your meal needs to be finished, it can be a bit stressful. You can save yourself a lot of stress by doing as much preparation ahead of time as you can.
You can start cooking simple meals out of a cookbook you can borrow from the library. That way you can try different meals that you can prepare and when you are done you can take it back. Try your hand at some of the recipes, remembering that patience is key during the learning process.
Bake pie and tart crusts for a longer time than you think is really necessary. Your objective is to cook them past the point of being pale blonde, to the point where they become a golden caramel color. The golden color is a sign that the sugars in the crust have finally caramelized.
A good cook takes pride in keeping a set of well-sharpened knives. Dull knives make cutting very difficult, and this makes them much more dangerous than sharp knives. You have a much higher chance of cutting yourself because you will probably have to force the knife through your food, instead of having to gently cut it.
Longer cooking methods, such as boiling, take out a lot of the healthy nutrients that are found in vegetables. In order to retain their most important attributes, opt for steamed, sauteed or even raw vegetables.
Do you often throw away moldy fruits and feel bad about it? Have you ever wondered if you could simply cut away the part with mold and keep the rest? Sadly, there really isn’t a healthy way to save fruit if it has begun to rot. You should dispose of any rotten fruit, as mold penetrates further than the naked eye can see. Rotting food can carry a number of pathogens, so it is best to avoid the risk.
You can have as much fun learning to cook as you can have eating the results. Utilize the advice above in you cooking, and always make sure to tweak and experiment to add a personal touch to any dish you prepare. You’ll notice your skills gradually improve, and eventually, all of your family and friends will be wanting you to bring meals to them.