Studies show that most people in developed countries cannot cook. Despite the many cooking television shows, people have not still found their way around the kitchen. Cooking can be a great past time activity when the right approach is utilized. With a few cooking tips, you can simplify the cooking process and create delicious meals. Outlined below are ten cooking tips for beginners.
1. Read the Recipes Before You Start Cooking
More often than not we skim through recipes instead of reading them thoroughly. Probably it is because we think it is a waste of time, or we can read as we cook. Unfortunately, the results are not usually great once the meal is ready. Sometimes some of the instructions are usually written further down in the cookbook. Chances are, you will miss some of them if you do not read carefully. For excellent results, read and understand your recipes.
2. Prepare and Organize Your Ingredients in Advance
You might be wondering why this step is so important. It might be more reasonable to chops the tomatoes as the meat cooks. However, preparing ahead of time will make you a better cook. As a first time cook, you might find it hard to watch the food in the pan while still trying to chop more ingredients. Begin by washing, chopping and dicing all your ingredients before heating up your pan. This will prevent burning the food or cutting yourself as you swiftly try to chop other ingredients. Additionally, it will help you enjoy cooking instead of rushing through the process.
3. Avoid Overcrowding the Pan
When the pan is overcrowded, heat will not be distributed evenly to the food. These will affect the general taste of the food. Additionally, as food cooks, it releases moisture. An overcrowded pan will result in steamed food which alters the texture. Ensure that there is space between the food so that it cooks thoroughly. You could cook in batches if you have a small pan.
4. Get a Good Knife
Well, you definitely need a knife while cooking. A chef’s knife in this case. A knife can affect your cutting techniques as you will struggle to cut everything especially if it is blunt. A good knife must be sharp and feel comfortable in your hands. People with small hands should use smaller knives while those with larger hands should use larger knives. When buying a knife, ensure that you are aware of the size of your hands.
5. Buy Fresh Ingredients and Vegetables
Your food will only be as good as your ingredients. As a beginner, head to the nearest food store and purchase an array of spices. Avoid using old spices you find in your cabinet.
When it comes to vegetables, head over to the nearest farmers market. You will find fresh and healthy vegetables that will make your dish flavorful.
When buying meat and cheese, choose organic products. There is a significant difference in flavor between organic and regular cheap meat. Organic foods always taste better.
6. Add Salt to Pasta Water
When making pasta, add a good amount of salt to the boiling water. Do not worry about taking in excess salt as it will drain with the water. Add pasta to the hot water which will elevate the taste of your meal. While still on pasta. Avoid adding oil to the pasta water. It will prevent the sauce from mixing well with the pasta.
7. Regulate The Heat
Unless you are boiling water, do not use a lot of heat when cooking. Try and use medium heat to avoid burning all your food. Electric and gas burners are quite different which is why you should learn how your stove works before using it.
When boiling eggs, turn off the stove before they are completely done. It will prevent them from being overcooked.
8. Rest the Meat
Steak should never taste dry. Once it cooks, do not cut into it immediately as it will lose its juices. Resting meat ensures that the juices remain within the meat which will make it delicious as you eat. The resting time of meat depends on its size.
9. Preserve vegetables using paper towels
Wrap vegetables with paper towels and store them in plastic bags. It will reduce the amount of food that is thrown out. Ensure that the bags are airtight since oxygen destroys vegetable. Avoid washing vegetables or fruits until you are ready to consume them.
10. Do not improvise
As a beginner cook, follow the recipe to the end. Write down any new things you learn as you cook which will come in handy the next time. Once you learn how to cook most meals, you can begin to improvise.
Remember to taste everything as you cook!