How many times have you dreaded going into the kitchen to make breakfast, lunch, or dinner? You might need a new perspective. Cooking can be enjoyable and relaxing if you try to see it in another way. Here are a few cooking tips that are sure to get your taste buds tingling and entice your inner chef to come out.

If using oil in your cooking, pour it in the pan in an area away from the food. By the time the oil reaches the food it has been heated up and is ready to roll. This also maximizes the flavor of whatever you are cooking.

Don’t throw away that runny sauce, as there is an easy fix available. In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons’ worth of water with 1 of corn starch. Stir the mixture into a warm thin sauce to thicken it. To prevent the sauce from getting overly thick, pour the corn starch and water mixture into the sauce very slowly and be sure that you are stirring it constantly.

When trying out a new marinade or seasoning, test it on a small piece of meat before you cook the entire meal. Many foods, like hamburgers, meatloaf and meatballs take careful seasoning to taste great. Do not try and cook the whole piece of meat right after adding seasoning. It is a good idea to cook a small portion of the meat first. Doing this allows you to test the seasonings and make appropriate adjustments.

Have you ever felt sorry for throwing away moldy fruits? Is it a good practice to save them by cutting out the rotten, moldy part? Unfortunately, there isn’t any way to save fruit that has begun to rot. Discard the fruit, because the mold penetrated deeper than can be seen with the naked eye, and moldy foods can cause some people to experience health problems.

Give pre-cut, raw potatoes a cold water bath for a half-hour prior to frying for crispier French fries. When your potatoes soak up cold fluids, their fibers are reinforced. This means that they will hold up better to the heat necessary for the frying process.

When you make chicken stock make as much as you can. Make enough so that you can freeze it and use it in your recipes. There’s nothing better than homemade chicken stock as a flavorful base for casseroles, stews and soups. 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.

Tofu and beans can serve as great sources of protein that can be easily added to any diet. Both of these protein-rich foods are available at most grocery stores. Tofu is great meat alternative when baked, broiled, or pan-fried with seasonings. Make beans a less boring source of protein by including some herbs when you boil them.

Always measure your oil when you are cooking. This will help you lower the fat in your foods while cooking. If you know exactly how much oil you’re using, you know exactly how much fat has been added.

Fresh garlic is ideal when preparing dishes that call for garlic. A rule of thumb for garlic: Fresher means sweeter. You can identify fresh garlic by its lack of bruising and firm skin.

If you are big on using spices and herbs, store them in a cool and dark place to preserve their flavor and freshness. Herbs and spices that are stored in cabinets above or beside a stove or in similar locations that may become warm or moist will lose much of their flavor, consequently costing you money.

After a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving or any other occasion, do not discard the leftovers. Rather, cut up the meat and store it in an airtight container in the freezer. With enough leftover turkey, you can enjoy turkey sandwiches and salads for several weeks after the bird was cooked.

Many vegetables and herbs emit aromas that remain in the cutting board, regardless of how many times you clean it. Mark one end, or side, of each cutting board so that you know which is which.

Make sure that prior to cooking, your utensils are sparkling clean. Any residual food matter missed during washing can spoil the dish you intend to cook. This can cost you a lot because it might cause bacteria to spread.

When cooking ground meat, blot it dry before cooking. It is always advisable to blot away moisture from ground meat. When ground meats are cooked, excess moisture can be released. The meat is going to sizzle away. As a result, your meat may steam instead of searing.

Use your creativity as much as you can. Following every recipe to the letter will give results, but it won’t make you a great cook. Add things to flavor and shake up the recipe to make it your own. That is a sign of a true cook!

Whenever you make salsa that won’t immediately be eaten, you should use raw onions that have been run under cold water first. Onions that are fresh have a great deal of sulfurous gas. The gas can add a strange taste to your salsa. By rinsing the onions and blotting away the excess water, the gas is removed.

If you are preparing a recipe with an unfamiliar fruit or vegetable, enhance your skills as a chef by taking a moment to educate yourself about it. You may find that your research leads to many great new ways to use the food. Giving yourself more knowledge prior to cooking anything will go a long way towards improving the overall experience.

Use these tips when you are cooking your meals. After your first taste, you will realize that cooking is not such a bad thing after all! Not only will your meals be more fun to eat, you’ll look forward to cooking them; you might even start trying new recipes. Try out some new cooking techniques and start enjoying the process!

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