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Learn To Cook With These Easy Tips

TIP! Give pie and tart crust a little longer baking time than you normally would for the best results. Rather than pale blonde, they should have a golden caramel color.

It’s important to take the time you need to learn how to cook both healthily and correctly. There are many benefits to cooking your own food including financial, nutritional and social. The tips in the following article will provide you with a whole lot of valuable cooking information.

TIP! Do not keep your herbs or spices in a place that is not cool and dark. By storing them in excessive light and heat, their shelf life will decrease.

If you are learning to cook for yourself or your family, pick up a cookbook from your bookstore or library. Look for one that has basic, easy recipes that will be fun to cook. Focus on one recipe at a time and give yourself enough time to improve your cooking.

TIP! While it may be tempting to show off your culinary talents when entertaining a new love-interest or your boss, you will do best if you keep to a menu you are familiar with, and has already garnered rave reviews. It is great to experiment when cooking but you should not try to do this when you are trying to make a good impression.

Here is a way to save your sauce and use it in your recipes. Try mixing two tablespoons water and a tablespoon containing corn starch in a bowl. You can then stir this solution into your sauce to instantly thicken it. Don’t add all the starch at once, and avoid stirring erratically. Either of these could over-thicken the sauce.

TIP! Vegetables should be cooked rapidly to obtain peak results. Using slow cooking methods can rob vegetable of their taste and nutritional value.

When cooking for someone who is important to you, it’s best to prepare something that you are skilled at making. Stay away from using new ingredients, or a new recipe. This will help you feel less stressed when preparing your meal.

TIP! Garlic can easily stay on your hands. After using garlic or other foods with odors that stick to your hands, all you need to do is rub your hands on a piece of stainless steel, like your sink.

Have you felt sorry for tossing moldy fruit away? Is it possible to simply cut out the moldy, rotten part of the fruit? A half rotten fruit cannot be saved. It must be discarded because mold spores that you cannot see may be present on other areas of the fruit. If eaten, you could become ill.

TIP! Save time and money by freezing leftover sauce in ice cube trays in the freezer. For a quick and easy sauce on another night, simply remove as many cubes as you need and reheat in a pan.

To reduce fat and calories in mashed potatoes without sacrificing texture or taste, replace some of your potatoes with an equal amount of cauliflower. You will not even taste the cauliflower in with the potatoes, because it is so bland. Cauliflower also matches the color and texture of the potatoes. This is a great way to add veggies and eliminate calories from a favorite dish.

Fresh Basil

TIP! Saute vegetables with chicken broth to cook them in a healthy way. The chicken broth adds to the taste of the veggies and, you will not have the extra fat.

If you love using fresh basil, try growing it on your own to always have it on hand. Place several sprigs of fresh basil into a glass container. Next, ensure the stems are covered with water. Place the glass of basil leaves on the counter in your kitchen, and watch it keep its freshness for weeks. Refresh the water quite often, and you will notice that the basil starts to grow roots. Picking the leaves from time to time will cause the basil to put out new growth, so you will have a constant supply!

TIP! If you are preparing a recipe that calls for milk or water, try substituting with an alternate liquid to add new flavor to your meals. Substitute plain water with juice, broth, or the water that you cooked your vegetables in.

If you are going to be making chicken stock, it is best to go big or not at all. If you make a large pot of stock, you can freeze it and store it for future use. This stock is a popular base that can be used in a variety of dishes, from soups to casseroles and much more. To preserve your stock for future use, just simply make sure that it is stored in heavy duty freezer bags and frozen solid. This way the stock should keep for several months or so.

TIP! Always make certain to measure any cooking oil you use. When it is time to add oil to your cooking pan, measure it instead of pouring directly from the bottle.

Try to cut down the amount of oil used when cooing if you are trying to lose weight. Adding unnecessary butter, oil and lard can increase your intake of fat. Consider giving non-stick cooking spray a shot. The end result is virtually the same, but these sprays are often fat-free and have ingredients that are more friendly to your diet.

TIP! Buy your garlic as fresh as possible for any dish that needs the flavorful ingredient. Usually when the garlic is most fresh, that is the point when it tastes the sweetest.

If you’re cooking pumpkins, cut them in half by positioning them upright and slicing down the middles. Put each half with the cut side facing down on their own baking sheet. Sprinkle a tiny bit of water on them and bake at 350 degrees for about an hour.

Fresh Garlic

TIP! Prior to cooking ground meat, you should take the time to blot it. Blotting the moisture away will help the meat cook better.

If your dish calls for a bit of garlic, make sure the garlic is as fresh as possible. One rule to remember is that if you want sweet garlic, choose fresh garlic. Fresh garlic is firm and lacks bruises.

TIP! When preparing a salsa that won’t be used immediately, rinse any raw onions you are using in cold water and dry them well. The sulfurous gas in onions makes the food nasty.

Don’t use bitter, sour, or tasteless wine in your recipes. Using a wine that you are not familiar with in your food can cause you not to like the flavor that’s produced. If you want a safe bet, most liquor stores carry cooking wines.

TIP! When you are baking a cake, do not overcook or undercook it. If you are just beginning baking, you may have a hard time understanding how to adjust recommended oven temperatures to take variables such as elevation and humidity into account.

If you’re feeling stressed at the idea of making dinner for the family, consider doing much of the prep work the evening before cooking. Cut up veggies, marinate your meat or make a sauce the night before. This way, you will be completely ready to cook and less stressed when you have to complete the meal.

TIP! Measuring and chopping ingredients before you begin cooking can save you time. With certain meals, it is possible to make ingredients the day before you are going to cook.

Spices don’t last forever; replace them every 6 months. Spices lose their flavor if kept too long. When you know you’re not going to be using a spice for a long time, give it away to someone in your family or to a friend before it loses its flavor.

TIP! Add some zing to your stews, soups, and mashed potatoes by using stock instead of water. Bouillon cubes dissolved in the appropriate amount of water will also work.

Always make sure that the cooking utensils you are about to use are clean before starting any cooking. This is a basic but very important rule for any cook. If items are not completely clean after you put them away, you could ruin everything you cook. This can also spread harmful bacteria.

TIP! Potatoes such as russets, which are designed for baking, will provide the harder shell needed when you make “twice baked” potatoes or potato-skin appetizers. Thin skinned potatoes such as red potatoes are unable to hold most fillings.

Do all your cooking prep work well ahead of time. This will aid in avoiding cooking disasters that can arise from being unprepared, including flare-ups from overheated oil or choosing the wrong temperatures for your needs.

TIP! You need butter that is soft, but still solid, when you want to cream it with sugar to make cookies. It the butter is already melted, put it in a freezer for a couple minutes to let it get harder.

The ability to cook for your family, or just yourself, is a skill that is beneficial to your life. Cooking can improve a lot of aspects of you life. Although a drive through can be convenient, a home prepared meal is often better!