Food Is Fun Again With These Cooking And Prep Tips
If your family doesn’t run to the table, maybe it is time to take an honest look at your cooking routine and see if you have fallen into a menu rut. Generate some mealtime enthusiasm and put a smile on your family’s faces with some fresh new ideas that are sure to please.
Use a tried and tested recipe when entertaining. When you have guests over for a meal, always prepare something tasty that you have made before. This is not the time to test a new recipe as it could turn out to be a disaster! Also, remember to find out if your guests have any dietary requirements or allergies, or if they simply don’t like a certain kind of food. This will ensure that your evening is a success.
Certain types of cooking such as boiling, can strip vegetables of their valuable nutrients. Quick cooking at high heat in a wok is good. Steaming vegetables is also a good way to preserve the nutrients. Some vegetable are suitable to eat raw.
An electric mixer is a blessing when you have to make your dough, but even this relatively easy task can turn into a nightmare when the dough sticks to the dough hook. To avoid the sticky mess, spray the hook with vegetable cooking spray and your dough will never stick to your mixer again.
To get the best sear and the crispiest crust on everything from fish to meats to other pan fried foods, the secret is a hot pan. Getting a nice brown color on your food requires a pan that is as hot as possible before the food hits its surface. Because the exterior of the food cooks first, you get only one chance to create that perfect golden color and crispy texture, so heat your pan and oil for several minutes prior.
Make sure to prepare your dishes the night before. Create marinades and allow your meat to sit in the refrigerator overnight. By doing most of the prep the night before, you make a delicious tasting meal. You also lower the amount of stress when making the meal before your guests arrive.
If you are planning on buying fish from a supermarket or fish store, make sure that you ask the person behind the counter if you can smell the fish. The fish should be very firm and should not have any pungent odors to them. Otherwise, do not purchase it, as they are probably not fresh.
Don’t be afraid to over season your meat. Most people actually under season, because the cooking process will weaken the flavor of some spices. With the exception of salt, most seasonings will better enhance the flavor if you use about twice as much as you think you should.
If you have sauce left over after a meal, store the remainder in one or more ice cube trays and let it freeze. When you feel the need to create another meal, you will have them handy to heat up. Sauce cubes made this way are safe and will taste great!
You should separate your meat into usable portions before you freeze it. You can separate your meat and store the portions in sandwich bags. You can then place the sandwich bags inside of freezer bags. This will give you that ability to have your meats perfectly portioned and to be able to use the freezer bags over and over again.
This procedure will keep fruits fresh throughout the year. This is also advantageous for those seasonal fruits that you can only find during certain growing seasons.
Roast nuts briefly in the oven and then sprinkle some flour on them before using in a cake to prevent them from migrating to the bottom of the pan. Applying heat and coating lightly with flour keeps them in position in the cake batter and reduces the likelihood the nuts will settle before the cake is done baking.
When cooking with a sauté pan, turn the handle of it in the opposite direction of you. Keeping the handle facing you increases the chance of bumping into and spilling your food. This is also a safety concern because you can burn yourself if the pan tips or falls over.
Protect your investment in herbs and spices by storing them correctly – in a cool, dark space. You should never store herbs and spices above a stove or in any other warm location because that will cause them to lose their flavor, and of course you will be out the money.
If you took an honest look at your mealtime offerings and decided that they could use some help, start with the fresh ideas in the article above and you will have your family running to the table in no time. These practical tips will get you on your way to success.