The process of becoming a chef is something that lots of people want to do, but it can be very tiring. One benefit of cooking is the possibility of breaking the task down into smaller steps, and if you utilize the information provided here, you will become a proficient chef before you know it.

Find a dark, cool area in which to store herbs and spices. Many factors can cause herbs and spices to lose their flavor, especially humidity and light. For most grounded herbs and spices keep a lot of their flavor more than a year. Spices that are not ground can keep their flavors for 3 to 5 years. If they are stored properly, they will stay fresh longer.

Do not keep your herbs or spices in a place that is not cool and dark. Putting them in a warm, lighted area can reduce their useful life, due to light and heat exposure. Store spices in a dark, cool location to keep them flavorful and fresher for longer. Using fresher spices can make tastier meals.

When trying out a new marinade or seasoning, test it on a small piece of meat before you cook the entire meal. A lot of foods require you to season them carefully; for instance meatloaf, hamburgers or meatballs. Never cook all of your meat immediately after it has been seasoned. Instead, make a little piece into a patty and cook it first. You can then cook the entire piece, or change the seasoning as needed.

Apples turn ripe in the early fall; therefore, they should be stored in a cool, dry place. Air that is dry and warm tends to make apples rot, and you can slow down this process by loosely placing them in plastic bags that are tied shut. Store them in a cool area, such as a refrigerator, garage or basement. However, if even one apple becomes rotten, it will quickly spoil all apples in the same bag.

Give pre-cut, raw potatoes a cold water bath for a half-hour prior to frying for crispier French fries. A cold water soak helps the potatoes stand up to the rigors of deep fat frying.

Grilling is not an exact science, but you may have encountered some confusion the last time you hit the barbecue. It is always good to use a meat thermometer to determine when your meat is properly cooked. If the meat you are cooking is thicker than 4cm, close the grill door halfway to reduce the time it takes to grill.

Substitute water for other more flavorful liquids, in order to spice up your meals. If the recipe calls for water, switch it up by using a broth, juice, or cooking liquids. Rather than using milk, think about yogurt, buttermilk or sour cream. Using different liquids can add nutritional value, while at the same time punching up bland, old recipes.

When seasoning your food, add the seasoning in increments rather than putting it all on at once. When you use this method, you will be more in control of the flavor and can limit over using your ingredients.

When you are planning to prepare a salad for guests, leave the dressing on the side. Some people enjoy lots of dressing when eating salads so it is important that each person add their own dressing. Give them a choice of salad dressings.

Prepare things the day before if you cannot handle doing everything in one night. Make your sauces, cut your ingredients or marinate meat the day before. You will save a lot of time, and feel much less stressed when you have to cook.

If you really like to use a lot of herbs and spices, you need to keep them in a dark and cool place so they can retain their freshness and flavor. If you store herbs and spices in places that have a lot of heat, they will lose their flavor. This can cost money.

Cooks need to keep cooking supplies organized. If your supplies aren’t organized, you’ll be spending a lot of time trying to remember where everything is. It is a good idea to have separate storage space for similar items. As an example, keep all of your spices stored in one cabinet for ease.

It is important to buy new spices at least every six months. If the spices are too old, they are going to lose a good bit of their flavor. If you purchase a new spice but doubt you can use it before the flavor dries up, share some of it with a fellow cook.

By staying organized while cooking you can avoid making mistakes, such as burning your food. You can be more productive, if your cooking station is well organized. Being unorganized can cause you to lose ingredients or tools that you need when you are cooking. This can cause a meal to be ruined which will put the money you spent on ingredients to waste.

Bundle your fresh herbs together and cut the appropriate amount off with scissors. By using this technique you can chop many herbs in a short amount of time, and they will be much lighter and fluffier, without the wetness that you get when using a knife.

No matter who you are cooking for, being able to cook well is a valuable tool. Eating with family and friends is a custom that transcends place and culture. Become a better cook and host a great dinner party by applying the tips in this article.

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