Category Archives: Intermediate

Common Mistakes Terrible Cooks Make

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At some point in their lives, most people will try their hands at cooking. However, most people also end up making a mess of themselves. Still, despite hardships in cooking, they should not stop learning how to prepare meals with their own hands. Over time, people will sure learn all the necessary skills that can help them in cooking dishes that appeal to their palate. For the mean time, it will be of great help if they become aware of the mistakes that they should avoid while in the kitchen

5. CUTTING MEAT IMMEDIATELY AFTER COOKING

After spending significant amount of time to cook a dish, most beginners will be dying to take a bit of the food that they have prepared. Normally, as soon as the meat is pulled out from the oven, people will proceed right away with cutting the meat and taking a bite for themselves.

However, people then sense that something’s wrong with the food as soon as the meat reaches their tongue. This is because they let the juices out from the meat when they cut it.

That is why food is let to set for five minutes before eating. When cooking, the juice inside the meat boils from the inside outward. Moreover, the muscle cells also contract, resulting in squeezing out of juices.

On the other hand, after removing the meat from the heat, it is still being cooked for a few minutes while the heat inside and outside get balanced. While the meat is let to stand after cooking, balancing of heat peaks, and meat muscles begin to relax. In this stage, the juice gets soaked up again and results in more flavorful dish.

Thus, for those who have tried eating meat immediately after cooking it, they possibly noticed that the meat was drier and contained less juice. In their next cooked meals, people should leave their roast for 15 to 20 minutes on top of turned-off stove and cover it with foil to prevent the heat from escaping. Meanwhile, smaller cuts of steak or chicken should only be cooled for 5 to 10 minutes.

4. USING HIGH HEAT TO COOK ALL DISHES

One of the most common errors of people who learn to cook is using too much heat in cooking. In normal cases, people tend to use high heat because they are in a rush to do other things.

When using high heat in cooking, people will easily think that their food is already cooked. However, as soon as they take a bite, they will notice that the inside of the meat is still pink and raw.

What people who learn to cook are not aware of is that only a handful of meals are cooked in high heat. These meals include high-end pan-seared steaks, such as T-bone and New York strip, and flash-fried sides, including zucchini. However, with foods such as chicken, people should avoid using high heat in cooking.

Meanwhile, some foods, such as eggs, easily get burned. Thus, for beginners, using medium to medium-high heat enables them to control their cooking. Lower heat is preferred in because it allows to cooking of food in evenly manner.

Using high in cooking also causes formation of burnt crusts on the pan, and the person cooking end up having a hard time in washing the pan.

3. LACK OF KNOWLEDGE IN PANS

Beginners in cooking tend to think that all pans are just the same. However, there are different pans that are used in cooking different types of meals, and people should be aware of this fact. For instance, cast iron skillet can be used in high fires but non-stick frying pans will only get burned. In a similar case, searing off and frying potatoes in frying pan is effective but not in a big pot for boiling water.

People should only choose utensils with sizes that are apt for the amount of food that they want to cook. They need not to use a very large pot to cook pasta meals for one.

2. FREAKING OUT WITH SEASONINGS

A lot of people think that using different herbs and spices is the key to adding flavors to cooked meals. However, the proper way of using spices is practicing restraint on the amount put into dishes.

Though may be tempted to buy a whole rack of spices, they should still focus on the good ingredients. Seasonings are only used to enhance the flavor of the food. Moreover, using too much of them can only mess up the food that people are cooking.

  1. MESSING EVERYTHING UP

In a number of cases, people are just too unfortunate to mess what they are cooking. In other situations, they are not sure whether to flip or not the meat on their pans. However, with enough practice, people will eventually learn when to flip their food or when the meat on the pan already has the right color. They should also not panic when their food starts sizzling in the pan. The way a food sounds in the pan provides a great deal of information while it is being cooked. Recognizing the sound of food while cooking is no easy task but people should not give up in their journey in cooking.

How To Keep Your Kitchen Clean

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Most people think that cooking is one of the activities that tend to be messy. Grease splatters, crumbs, and pile of dishes are some of the common things that can be seen in the kitchen while a person is cooking something. However, what people do not realize that cooking need not to be that messy. They need not to whiten themselves in a cloud of floor. There are a number of ways by which people can minimize or prevent the mess that comes with cooking:

  1. PREPARE A GARBAGE BOWL

Garbage bowl can be of great help in the kitchen. With a garbage bowl nearby, people need not to go back and forth to the trash can just to throw away peelings or scraps. In addition, using a garbage bowl saves people significant amount of time while in the kitchen.

  1. USE A FLEXIBLE CUTTING MAT ON CUTTING BOARD AS LINING

After cutting vegetables and other ingredient, people will normally slide the food directly on the pan while still on the cutting board. Unfortunately, not all food end up in the pan. Some of them only fall to the floor. To avoid this wasting cut ingredients, people can use flexible cutting mats on top of their cutting board and use it to transfer cut ingredients to the pan or another container.

  1. TAKE OUT THE TRASH OR RECYCLING BIN OUT OF THE CUPBOARD

While cooking, people can temporarily place the trash or recycling bin near the counter and drop any of their waste their directly.

  1. PICK EVERYTHING THAT FALLS

Some ingredients or utensils unexpectedly fall to the floor. Instead of worrying about cleaning up later, people should just pick up anything that falls to the floor.

  1. USE A CUP TO HOLD ALL REUSABLE MEASURING SPOONS

When cooking or baking, using measuring spoons repeatedly is a normal practice. People can save time and money if they place all reusable measuring spoons in one cup or container.

  1. START EVERYTHING ON A CLEAN SLATE.

Preparing a neat working place benefits some people while cooking. When they start cooking in a clean kitchen, people will easily recognize the spots and corners that need to be cleaned up. Moreover, they can easily organize dirty cooking utensils.

  1. USE SPLATTER SCREEN

Splatter screen saves significant amount of cleaning time especially when cooking fatty foods.

  1. USE COOKING SPRAY OVER THE SINK

Spraying cooking spray over the sink or open dishwasher is effective in collecting extra grease. However, this practice is not advisable for cooking spray.

  1. USE A BOTTLE OF SOAPY WATER

People can use a bottle of soapy water to clean up grimy spots right away and wipe kitchen counters clean. This practice can prevent formation of crusts that get harder to scrub after quite some time.

  1. COOK SLOWLY

People should just take it slowly when cooking. They must be careful when measuring or chopping ingredients. Aspiring cooks are also advised to clean up or wipe messes in between each cooking procedure. This way, people can proceed with each step without being too much of a mess. Moreover, it is better to cook more slowly and deliberately instead of trying to do everything all at once.