Category Archives: Cooking Tips

What are the pros and cons of being a culinary artist- Chef?

Every profession comes with their joys and also downfalls. To be able to wow your clients with your exemplary culinary skills, a lot of sacrifices have to be made. There are also numerous benefits that come with being a food artist. A lot of chefs only see the pros without considering the cons. It is therefore important to weigh in depth of both sides. As much as you love your career, focusing the pros only can make you in the same way overlooking the cons can break you. A list of pros and cons is specially prepared to guide chefs in the right direction towards self-improvement and overall growth.
Chefs are highly skilled professionals trained in all kinds of food as well as a presentation of the same. They normally work both in local and international hotels or restaurants. Apart from cuisine preparation they also take part in kitchen management and supervision of kitchen staff.

Pros of being a chef

The chefs are trained in preparation of any cuisine under the sun even inventing new recipes combinations as a result of experimenting with ingredients. Chefs are able to express their creativity in food preparation and presentation. They are free to try out and come up with new food recipes. The methods range from vegetarian cuisine which is now taking root as the food choice for many food lovers. It is not just cooking but also making tasty cuisines as well as retaining the nutrients and hue. Arranging and combining different foods to amaze food lovers is the work of a chef. A committed one will definitely do an excellent job to the client’s satisfaction.

Many chefs get international recognition via their culinary art. This, of course, comes at a cost from the hotels and restaurants in terms of payments. Most of the qualified chefs are paid handsomely in exchange for their skills in the kitchen. Many are the times the chefs are specifically called to prepare foods for prominent people who in turn pay a good sum of money for their excellent services.

A competent and highly-skilled chef is always been sought after by hotels and restaurants. Most restaurants and hotels retain their customers who are captivated by the kitchen skills of a specific chef. The list of hotels that want to have a taste of their skills is endless thus making job opportunities rising by the day. A professional chef is hard to complain about unemployment.

Due to their nature of the job, some of the chefs are hired to cook for varied prominent people in different states. This makes them travel to where their services are needed. The benefit of touring the world courtesy of their skills is frequently experienced.

There are also numerous self-employment opportunities at their disposal. In addition to traveling to different countries, they are able to identify a niche in the food industry. They are capable of utilizing resources and manage a business with ease.

Cons of being a chef

As they get satisfied comments from their customers the chefs mostly work for long hours. They spend most of their long shifts standing and moving in the kitchen. The hours in a shift can at times be extended especially during peak hours. They work on odd hours and the shifts are not easy. At the end of the day, they end up being extremely tired.

In some cases chefs working in average hotels and restaurants are underpaid. The pay being offered does not match the hours they input on a daily basis.

They also work in dangerous conditions. A chef is responsible for making sure the food is perfectly prepared at the same time to manage the kitchen staff. In the bid to multi-task all the roles, one slight mistake can be fatal to everyone in the kitchen. The fatalities can be in form of fires and serious accidents. In some cases, their careers come to an end due to workplace injuries. They are rendered unable to work anymore due to the severity of the accidents.

They also spend most of their time building an empire by incorporating their entrepreneurship skills without owning a single chain of food place in their entire life. They work for an entrepreneur but themselves do not own a business of their own. This is as a result of financial disability and lack of ample time to run a personal business. Majority of their time is spent working for someone and it is easy to lose track of how fast time lapses. By the time they think of setting up a business on their own, they are already aged.

5 Tips and Tricks to Keep Your Kitchen Clean When Cooking

Keeping your kitchen clean as you cook is a daunting task as you will be juggling two activities at a time. Unlike the cooking shows on television, your kitchen will never look that clean unless you have someone else cleaning after you make a mess. However, imagine the possibility of having a clean kitchen as soon as you are done preparing a large meal. You simply need to learn how to clean as you cook as professional chefs do. They are able to keep their workspaces clean considering the amount of cooking they engage it at a particular time.
Not only will having a clean workspace give you peace of mind but also will help you prepare food more efficiently. The result will be the production of delicious meals which is definitely what you are looking forward to.
As a result, this article is designed to help you with several tips that will enable you to keep your kitchen clean.

1. Soak the dishes

Trying to avoid dirty dishes from piling up in the sink? Well, we got you covered. Fill up a large basin or sink with hot soapy water. Every time you are done using a utensil, dump it into the water. Soaking utensils for some time will wash away the dirt and soften any foods that might be stuck onto it. This will lessen the time you will require to wash it later. In case you need to use the soaked utensils, simply fill up a sink or bowl with clean water where you can rinse them off. It is advisable not to soak knives as you might end up hurting yourself when trying to reach for other utensils.

2. Limit the number of items you use

If you are using a bowl to mix a certain ingredient, you can simply rinse it off once you have poured it into your cooking pan. This will reduce the number of times you will have to reach out for your cabinet to grab fresh utensils. It will also prevent you having a pile of dishes lying in your sink which could have been reused. For example, you do not need different knives to chop vegetables. Rinse the knife off with some running water instead. As a result, you will have fewer dishes in your sink by the time you are done cooking your meal which will give you some level of fulfillment.

3. Use a cutting mat

A chopping board is the best surface to cut meat, vegetables, and fruits on. However, you should consider using a cutting mat underneath the board. Ensure that the mat is much larger than your chopping board. The importance of the mat is that it will catch any foods that fall off the chopping board. This will help to prevent food substances from falling to the floor or countertops creating a huge mess. A cutting mat will ensure that the kitchen counters remain clean at all times. The only task you will have to engage in is cleaning the dirty dishes and not the counters.

4. Have a garbage disposal bowl

Cooking involves many waste products such as peels and trimmings which seem to always take up most of the space on the kitchen counter. Walking to the garbage station is not always convenient as you are trying to focus on making a great meal. Also, it is more reasonable to dispose everything all at once. As a result, you should set up a garbage station on your counter. This could be a shopping bag or a bowl that will hold all the waste. This waste management technique will save you several trips to the trash can and seeing piles of waste on your counter.

5. Plan frequent cleaning sessions as you cook

As you prepare your food, you will always have some time to spare before you start cooking. This time can be used to carry out some minor cleaning to eliminate dishes from piling up. Additionally, as you wait for your food to cook, let us say fifteen minutes, you could take some time and clean. If you realize that your counter is looking messy, take a two-minute break from food preparation and clean it up. Plan small cleaning intervals as you cool so that you are not left with a huge mess.
Moreover, before serving the food. Wipe the kitchen counter and place utensils in the dishwasher.

10 Basic Cooking Tips for Beginners

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!

Tips to Cook for Diabetics

Having to live with diabetes doesn’t to necessarily mean that an individual should be eating a special diet or forego some meals but rather eat like any other person, eating the same meals as them. Having all that mentioned, because diabetes is an ailment culminating from a metabolic disorder that is associated with glucose control within the bloodstream, people living with diabetes need to pay keen and vivid attention to their diet ensuring that they are receiving a correctly balanced diet.

The food is to be cooked using low fat and food that has a low count of starch and sugar. The food should constitute fruits, vegetables such as broccoli and spinach. Moreover, cooking should be done using liquid oil and fats. Solid fats in most cases have saturated fats in them. Also, diabetic people are called to be smart about the choice of food they take. They should take in food that provides them with energy and fiber. Also, instead of using ingredients like sugar that raise the level of sugar in the blood, a diabetic person in the process of cooking food can opt to use other components that may play the same role like sugar and salt would have done. It should be understood that some of these ingredients have medicinal value in them. Cinnamon, for instance, helps reduce blood sugar. Having put all these in mind that people with diabetes need to eat like other people, questions begin to rise on what type of food that is supposed to be taken by them. Below are eight suggestions of foods that may constitute the diet of a diabetic person.

First and foremost, there is a need to make a selection of the excellent range of vegetables and fruits. This is done to discourage the diabetic people from sticking to some specific kinds of foods. Color testing is an essential element when it comes to the choice of fruits and vegetables. There is needed to make the inclusion of a wide range of fruits and vegetables for example oranges, carrots, bananas, red cabbages, apples, carrots, and beans. The vegetable intake into the body should be that one that has a low count on starch and calories or starch free vegetables such as broccoli and spinach.

A need also rises for the diet cooked for the diabetic, to constitute whole grain rather than the processed foods. They should also be choosy on grains like brown rice rather than the regular white rice and turning to the cooking of whole wheat such as spaghetti. Furthermore, the inclusion of fish in the diet of a diabetic person has a significant effect and of great significance, because in fish, we can get proteins and the addition of various nutritious oils. Always bake, boil, steam or grill fish and always avoid frying the fish in butter and cooking oil since the oils contain calories that increase the susceptibility of the diabetic people to the vulnerability of diabetes.

Also, there is a need to have a choice of lean meat on the plate of a diabetic person. To gain better results, the meat is supposed to be grilled, baked rather than frying. When buying the meat, always choose meat with the word loin or sirloin or pork loin. If it is indispensable that an individual decides poultry like chicken, before serving, the outer skin is to be removed since the surface has fatty oils and fat that are full of calories. In addition to this, there is a need for putting avoidance on fatty meat. Without forgetting the role of the dairy products, there is a need to emphasize the selection of the dairy products that are low in fats or lacking fat at all.

In most cases, when using the dairy products that require fats, in consuming them, it is realized that they are lack taste or tasteless, their one may resolve to use dairy products that are low on fats. Besides, diabetic people have to avoid sweetened drinks particularly the carbonated ones but instead take a large intake of fresh water and natural fruit juice. Diabetic people are also encouraged to shy of from the behavior of consuming foods that have substantial levels of sugar and taking tea with high levels of sugar and tea. Sugar is a significant contributor to glucose. Without forgetting, diabetic people need to eat at a slower pace for them to enjoy their food. Eating faster increases the possibility of eating a large chunk of food as it denies the body enough time need to notify it of eating enough.