Humans need to eat food in order to survive. Just eating “survival food” gets boring fast, though. Even better than eating something wonderful is cooking something wonderful. You can make a big difference in your kitchen savvy by checking out these tips.

Spices should be stored in a dark and cool place. Warmth, humidity and light will make them stale and unflavorful. Generally, ground spices and herbs keep most of their flavor for a year. Spices that come in the whole form will keep their flavor for around 3-5 years. When stored in the correct place, they will keep their freshness for longer.

The prep work is a very important part of assembling a home-cooked meal for family or friends. Double-check to make sure you have all the necessary ingredients. Get out everything that you’ll need including the ingredients and utensils a day ahead of time. With the right groundwork, you can enter your kitchen confidently and get right to work whipping up a fantastic meal.

You can always save the sauce that you put so much effort into. Try mixing in 1 tablespoon corn starch and another 2 tablespoons water in a container. Add this mix to the sauce little by little until it becomes thicker. For sauce that is too thick, add liquid until your sauce is at the desired consistency.

Sharp knives will make cooking so much more efficient. Dull knives are not only difficult to cut things with, but they are also very dangerous to use. You have a much higher chance of cutting yourself because you will probably have to force the knife through your food, instead of having to gently cut it.

Do you find yourself throwing away molded fruits a lot? Could you instead just cut off the mold and eat the rest like you can with cheese? You should never eat or keep a piece of fruit that has any mold on it. The fruit needs to be thrown as away as some of the mold may not be visible and can cause you to become ill.

You can reduce the fat and calorie content of regular mashed potatoes by substituting part of the potatoes with mashed cauliflower. This won’t affect the taste but it adds a handful of nutrition. Cauliflower blends perfectly with your potatoes without changing the taste of your mashed potatoes. In addition, cauliflowers can blend into the same texture and color as potatoes, which makes cauliflower an excellent method of adding vegetables and decreasing calories from a mashed potato dish.

Fresh ingredients are better than frozen or dried, regardless of what you cook. Use whatever seasonal ingredients are available to create tasty dishes, which are also less expensive.

It’s fun to learn how to cook more complicated meals. You may even enjoy eating more when you cook the food yourself. Build up your fund of cooking knowledge by incorporating the preceding tips into your kitchen skill set, and keep your eyes peeled for more great ideas. With your new culinary skills, your recipes will be in demand. People will ask for your special dishes at social gatherings as well as at home.

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