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If you are just getting started learning how to cook, remember that everyone must start with the basics. Not everyone has that natural talent to cook. That being said, everyone can learn to cook. Eventually, you will be able to experiment with different spices, seasonings and ingredients to create new dishes. This article provides valuable guidance that will help you on your road to becoming an exceptional cook.
Store herbs and spices in an area that is cool and dark. Exposure to humidity, light and heat all affect the flavor of your spices. Generally, ground spices and herbs keep most of their flavor for a year. Spices in their whole forms have longer useful lifespans, lasting up to five years. If you keep these properly stored, they can sometimes stay fresh for an even longer period of time.
Before preparing a nice meal for friends and relations, be sure to make a good plan. Gather all the ingredients beforehand. Prepare everything the day prior, including the correct utensils and other cooking tools. This means you don’t have to worry when time is short, which means your cooking will be better.
Going through a long cooking process like boiling removes many important nutrients that are found in vegetables. To preserve their vitamins and minerals, cook vegetables quickly by steaming them or frying them. They can also be enjoyed raw.
If you have a meal that is important, like for a date or your boss, try cooking one of your better dishes so that you are familiar with it and know it tastes good. Cooking a new recipe is a bad idea since you have not yet worked out any quirks in the recipe. Preparing a meal that you are comfortable with can really help to reduce your stress level.
To reduce the calories and fat of mashed potatoes, and to avoid sacrificing taste or texture, replace some potatoes with the same amount of cauliflower. Since cauliflower is bland, it will mix right in with the potatoes along with the other ingredients. Cauliflower mashes into the same texture and color as potatoes, so no one will notice, and you you will get the benefits.
Do you enjoy flavoring your food with fresh basil? Place a fresh bunch of basil in a jar or glass. Cover the stems with water. Put the basil on your counter and it will remain fresh for up to seven days! Change the water regularly and roots will grow. Trim the basil once in a while so it grows even more and stays fresh.
If you are left with extra sauce after a meal, find a clean ice cube tray to pour the leftovers into and store the tray in the freezer. Just melt the sauce cubes in a sauce pan when you are ready to prepare dinner. The frozen sauce will keep extremely well until the next time you need it!
It is not always easy to remember the proper grilling times for all meats. Using a meat thermometer can help ensure that your meat is cooked thoroughly. If your meat is thicker than 1.5 inches, consider closing the grill lid to reduce grilling time.
When you make chicken stock make as much as you can. If you make a large pot of stock, you can freeze it and store it for future use. Homemade chicken stock makes a great base for casseroles, soups, stews, and many other wonderful dishes. Allow the stock to cool before freezing it in durable, Ziploc bags.
While not everyone is destined to become a great cook, the ability to follow directions is all you need to achieve the status of amateur cook. It may seem difficult, but it really isn’t. With these tips in mind, there is nothing to stop you.