If you’re anything like me, cooking is probably not your favorite thing to do. If it seems that way, it’s because there’s a lot of pressure involved. From the moment we step into a home through the moment we step outside and behold our handiwork, we are constantly being measured and reviewed. But, don’t let that stop you from trying and getting better at what you do. If only life would give us perfect circumstances so that everything was as easy as cooking some awesome food. The good news is that with a few tricks up your sleeve and some time in the kitchen, you will get better too! Below are 10 useful tips for making your culinary endeavors easier and more enjoyable.
Don’t underestimate the power of sniffing
It sounds a little odd, but sniffing is one of the most important steps to making food taste better. For example, let’s say you are cooking a pork dish. If you want it to be really tender and juicy, then you’ll want to leave it in the pan for a few hours while constantly turning it over so that all sides get exposed to heat. The first step is to take the meat out of the hot pan and put it on a plate or on paper towels; this allows the surface of the meat to cool down and makes sure there’s no steam trapped inside. Next, give it a quick sniff before you put that piece back in that same hot pan. This will introduce more surface area to more flavors from your aromatics. This will make your pork dish have more complex flavors and also ensure that it doesn’t stick as much when you cook it again.
Keep an eye on your fingers
When you’re chopping vegetables, be careful not to cut yourself. To avoid this, try keeping your fingers on a wet kitchen towel. This way, if you do happen to cut yourself, the towel will pull away and let you know right away. Similarly, when you’re grating cheese or ginger (to name two common tasks), keep your hand out of sight. You can use the backside of a spoon or a dry tea towel to hold the food while you grate it. For example, if you’re grating ginger on a cutting board that has been sprinkled with sugar and salt, sprinkle some sugar onto the countertop as well so that your ginger does not stick to the cutting board.
Ask yourself “why” before you cook
When you’re in the kitchen, don’t be afraid to ask yourself why you are doing what you are doing. Maybe there’s a better way to do it. Just because this is how we have always done it doesn’t mean that it has to stay this way forever! Don’t be afraid to experiment and try something else. If you want to learn more about cooking, check out some of these helpful cooking articles or even watch food TV programs so that you can see how others do things before deciding for yourself. 1) Use spices instead of salt Salt is an essential ingredient in most dishes, but using spices might be just as effective with less sodium intake! Try adding chili powder, cumin, oregano, rosemary, and red pepper flakes to your next batch of rice or vegetables. 2) Make pasta sauce from scratch If you’re used to just throwing some stuff together in a pan and calling it a day when making pasta sauce, think again! It may seem like too much work at first, but once you make one batch your ingredients will last a while and your spaghetti sauce will taste amazing! Making pasta sauce is simple: boil water and add garlic cloves until they turn brown then let them cool off before blending them with tomatoes, olive oil, and thyme leaves. You could also add anchovy fillets for extra flavor!
Keep reading and learning
First, try to keep reading and learning about cooking. There is a lot of information out there for you to learn from, so make sure you find books that are applicable to your level of expertise. Also, don’t be afraid to ask the people around you for help or advice. Find someone who is an expert in a certain area that interests you and ask them how they got started. For example, if you struggle with desserts like me, ask a baker friend how they got started making cakes and cookies.
Take notes while you cook
Before you begin cooking, take a quick note of the recipe and then jot down any questions in your head that you may have. Once you start to make progress, stop what you are doing and write down the answers to those questions. This will make sure that you don’t forget anything important as the recipe goes on.
Double up on your cooking shortcuts
It’s always a good idea to learn a few shortcuts so that you can get the meal or cook faster. The internet is full of recipes that are easy to follow, meaning you don’t have to be a master chef in order to make sure your food is cooked properly and tastes delicious. If you have time, feel free to experiment and combine your own flavors. There are so many possibilities for meals, that there really is no excuse not to try them out!
Flavor your food with aromatics
The first step to good cooking is getting a head start on your recipe. One way to do that is by flavoring your food with aromatics. These are the ingredients that will give your food a boost of flavor, and they are also some of the easiest things to find in your kitchen! Some examples of aromatics include garlic, ginger, lemon, honey, and wine. Once you’ve added these ingredients to your meals and snacks, you can rest assured that your dish will be extra delicious.
Use a digital thermometer to quickly and accurately measure temperatures in your food
Using a digital thermometer is one of the easiest ways to track your progress. If you are cooking meat, you can use it to monitor temperature and prevent foodborne illness. You can always turn the oven up or down after using it to take the temperature and make sure the food is at the level where you want it. If you are cooking in your slow cooker, you can use it to monitor temperature if you’re not around and get notified through your phone when it’s done.
Your Cooking Whether you are cooking for a crowd or just one, the best way to wrap up your cooking is by serving and presenting it with flair. The presentation can make or break a dish. The more aesthetically pleasing the presentation, the more likely people will share their meal with others. The best piece of advice I can give to you is to keep it simple. This means that if you have time to be meticulous in your presentation, then do so! But if time is not on your side, don’t worry – your dish will still be delicious!