Cook Great Meals With These Cooking Tips

Cook Great Meals With These Cooking Tips

fruits veggies and nuts imagesA lot of people view cooking as an unwelcome task. This article will energize your cooking and make it a fun activity.

Find a dark, cool area in which to store herbs and spices. Herbs and spices can quickly lose their flavor if exposed to continuous light or heat. Another little known fact is that ground spices tend to lose their flavor quicker than whole spices. If spices are kept whole, they could stay fresh for up to five years. When stored properly, they will stay fresher longer.

Rule of thumb for veggie selection:  Fresh local is best, frozen is second best, dry or dehydrated is third best, non-local fresh is fourth best and canned is fifth best.  This is in regards to absorb-able nutritional value of your foods.

fry pan with meat imagesTry to add the oil into your pans from the sides, so that by the time it touches the food, it will be hot. The flavor will be greatly enhanced when it has completed cooking.

If you are cooking meats that need seasoning, season a small piece first before making the entire meal. Items such as burgers, meatballs and other meat dishes need deliberate, specific seasoning. Spices and seasonings added when the meat is fully cooked are unlikely to stick. Cook a bit of the mixture before you continue to cook the entire batch to ensure that the seasonings are correct. Doing this allows you to test the seasonings and make appropriate adjustments.

Prolonged boiling of vegetables destroys many of the nutrients contained within them. To preserve a vegetable nutritious value, cook quickly by either steaming or sauteing it. Ideally you should consume the vegetable in its raw state or its fresh juiced state.

soaking potatoes in water imagesSoaking raw potatoes for 30 minutes prior to frying will produce the crispiest French fries. When potatoes are allowed to absorb cold water, the texture is able to withstand the extreme heat of cooking without breaking down and becoming mushy.  This tip also leeches out much of the potassium – so if you need to restrict potassium in your diet – soak the spuds!

It is alright to use Chef’s Blend type mixes on other foods besides meats. Experiment with adding it to roasted seeds such as sunflower or pumpkin, or even sprinkle into salads and egg dishes. Simply sprinkling on these kinds of seasonings can turn your dish into an instant hit.

Complete as much of the preparatory work as possible for your meals ahead of time to speed up the process of cooking. Try looking at recipes and see what can be done in advance without spoiling. Much of the preparations can be finished one day prior to cooking. This is a great time saver, and can make that complex recipe into something that is quick and fun.

crock pot dinner imagesAnother time saver is to prepare meals for crock pot cooking the evening before.  Then just put the crock in the refrigerator.  In the morning – remember to take the crock out of the refrigerator 30 minutes before putting it in the cooker and turning on the heat.  The crock needs to warm up from the cold before accepting the heat.

There are many suggestions covered in this article that show how cooking can become a fun part of the day. Following these tips will help you engage creatively in an activity that could otherwise be boring or unpleasant.