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Need Cooking Advice? Read On For Great Advice!

TIP! A cool area is the best place for you to keep your spices for maximum freshness and taste. Moisture, light and heat can affect the flavor of your spices.

Whether your family is small or big, it is crucial that you know how to cook. You can save money, improve your nutrition and entertain family and friends with the right cooking skills. If you want to learn everything you need to know to get started as a cook, read the rest of this article.

TIP! If you would like to start cooking more food on your own, take a trip to a local library or bookstore where you can find many cookbooks with recipes you can enjoy making at home. Try a few recipes, and be patient with yourself as you are mastering this new skill.

Keep all spices stored out of the sunlight. Storing them out in the light and heat will cause them to lose some of their shelf life. Your spices will have a longer shelf life and retain their good taste if stored in a dark, cool spot. If you use fresh spices, your food will taste better.

TIP! One way to make mashed potatoes retain their taste but contain a little less fat and calories is to replace some of them with equal amounts of cauliflower. Cauliflower does not have a strong taste and will be virtually undetectable when mixed with the potatoes and other ingredients.

Here is a little trick that can help you save your sauce so that you can use it right away. In a bowl, mix a tablespoon of cornstarch with a couple of tablespoons of water. In order to create a thicker sauce, add the mixture to the sauce, while it is cooking on low heat. However, it is important that the sauce is stirred often while the mixture is being added so as to stop it becoming too thick.

TIP! Do you cook with fresh basil? Take a bunch of it and place in a glass. Cover its stems completely with water.

Place meat in the freezer for a few minutes to make slicing easier. This method is great for oriental meals that require small strips. With meat that is somewhat frozen, the fibers tend not to stretch or tear as much when they are sliced, making for much cleaner cuts. However, so they are evenly cooked, you want to make certain the meat strips are thawed before cooking.

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Did you ever feel guilty for tossing moldy fruits in the garbage? Is it safe to save a portion of fruit by cutting around the mold? You can’t save a piece of fruit that has begun to rot. Rid yourself of this fruit. The mold can run deep and can make you sick if eaten.

TIP! By doing so, the mushrooms will absorb the water like a sponge. A better option is to use a clean, damp cloth to hand-wipe each mushroom.

People mainly use plenty of apples in cooking during the winter and fall months, but if not stored properly they quickly go bad. To keep apples at the peak of perfection, store them in your refrigerator or basement. Watch out if you are storing a large number of apples, one bad apple ruins the bunch.

TIP! When cooking vegetables, it is a good idea to use chicken broth. Chicken broth is a great way to add flavor to your vegetables while keeping them from sticking to your pan.

If you want to reduce the amount of calories and fat in a mashed potato dish, substitute cauliflower for some of the potatoes. 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.

Mushrooms will absorb the water like a sponge. Wipe the mushrooms off by hand with a cloth that is damp.

TIP! Instead of adding all the seasoning in one rapid burst at the beginning, add it in increments over time to give it a better flavor. This results in a better blending of the flavors of the ingredients.

If you’ve made a big pot of sauce, freeze the leftovers by pouring the extra sauce into ice cube trays. Take them out to use on another night when you’d like a no hassle home cooked meal. Simply reheat the sauce cubes slowly in a medium pan on your stove top. The frozen sauce will keep extremely well until the next time you need it!

TIP! When serving a salad at a social gathering, keep the dressing in a dish to the side. This will allow your guests to control how much dressing they want to put on their salad.

Burgers will often stick to a grill. Once they are stuck it can be very difficult to get them off of the grill and have them still maintain their shape. Because of this, you should use vegetable oil to brush the grill prior to cooking so that you can prevent the meat from sticking.

Airtight Containers

TIP! A great tip to use when making any type of salsa is to rinse your raw onions once they’re chopped. Also, make sure that you dry them before adding them to your mix.

Store your supplies of flour, sugars, pancake mixes, and similar dry ingredients in airtight containers. Airtight containers will keep your foods safe from bugs, and allow them to stay fresh longer because they are not exposed to air. These containers are easily purchased online or at your local department or even grocery stores. Wherever you get them from, the freshness of any food you intend to store in them is well worth the investment.

TIP! If you plan on using your barbecue, make sure you prep the grill beforehand so it’s ready for use when you need it. The grill should be prepared 30 minutes before it is used for cooking.

When cooking vegetables, it is a good idea to use chicken broth. Chicken broth is a great way to add flavor to your vegetables while keeping them from sticking to your pan. Chicken broth is readily available at most grocery stores, and it is very affordably priced.

TIP! There are a few ways you can heat tortillas properly. One way is place the tortilla on a rack in a 350-degree preheated oven.

When purchasing ingredients for a particular recipe, read the labels. A lot of cooking supplies contain ingredients that could be unhealthy. Select ingredients that have little salt or sugar in order to make the healthiest meals possible.

TIP! Spices and herbs should be kept in a dark place that is cool and dry. If your spices are exposed to light, moisture and humidity, they may lose their unique flavors.

Replace the standby liquids of milk and water in recipes to mix things up. Juices, beef broth, or vegetable broth can all be used as a substitute for water. Try to use buttermilk, yogurt, or sour cream in place of milk. You can increase the nutritional and wow factors of any dish, simply by trying different substitutions for liquids that recipes call for.

TIP! Do prep work in advance to cut down on cooking time. It’s often possible to do some preparations even a couple days before you need to cook.

Don’t throw a huge helping of seasoning in all at once. Try to spread it out, and taste after each application. This is a great way to increase the flavor of your foods and make your seasonings last longer.

TIP! An efficient stackable cooling rack can be a real asset in the kitchen. When you bake cookies or other things you need to cook your cookies can take a lot of area.

If you are under time constraints when you need to cook a roast, don’t remove the bone from it. This will help the meat to cook quicker because the heat will be carried to the center of the roast through the bone. When the roast is done, slice it around the bone.

Olive Oil

TIP! Select potatoes with a thick skin if you are going to make twice baked potatoes. Red potatoes are too thin-skinned to hold up to a dense filling.

Make your own sun-dried tomatoes. Try slicing a Roma in half lengthwise, or cut larger tomatoes into 1/2 inch slices. Put them on a rack with the cut side up and add sufficient salt. Place the cooling rack on a cookie sheet and dry in a 190 degree oven for up to 10 hours. Put them in plastic bags for freezer storage. For flavored olive oil add some dried tomatoes and fresh herbs in a good quality extra virgin olive oil and store out of direct sunlight. This will be good for up to two weeks, and should be refrigerated during that time.

TIP! Cook your food first, and then spice it up. Spices like cayenne, garlic powder, and pepper are fabulous seasonings.

Cooking for yourself or family can greatly benefit you. The tips you have read should help you improve your cooking skills no matter what your food preferences may be; from haute cuisine to informal home style dining. Fast food can be convenient sometimes, but there’s nothing better than a good meal made from your own kitchen.