Try drying your own fresh tomatoes. Start by slicing a ripe tomato one-half inch thick, or you can cut Roma tomatoes in half lengthwise. Put the tomatoes, cut-side up, onto a cooling rack and give them a light salting. Put the rack on a baking sheet, and slow-bake in an oven that is set to 190 degrees for about 10 hours. You can store your dried tomatoes in a plastic bag in the freezer. Dried tomatoes may also be stored in a jar containing fresh herbs and olive oil. Refrigerate and use within 2 weeks.
Never add garlic, salt or any other seasoning until your beans have softened. Salt and garlic can both cause your beans to stay hard instead of softening up, and this is even more likely to happen if you are using older beans. Once the beans are cooked to your desired texture, you should then add the spices.
Beans or tofu are excellent sources of protein that you may not have yet considered adding to your diet. They are also easily located at almost every grocery store. Make a yummy meat alternative by pan frying the tofu with some seasonings. Beans can be used in vegetarian chili, added to baked goods, or just boiled with herbs and vegetables.
When cooking different types of meat, always check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer. Every meat type has a different recommended temperature in order to be safe for eating. If meats are not properly cooked, any bacteria present can grow and could possibly make you very sick if not killed during the cooking process.
Be sure to care for your wooden cutting board properly. Cutting boards made of wood can often warp due to climate. Don’t submerge your board in water to clean it. Use a sponge and warm soapy water instead. If your board is damaged you, can restore it by applying oil regularly, using an oil specially formulated for use on wood cutting boards. It should be completely dry before its next use.
Have you ever experienced difficulty judging the time your meat should be grilled? The best way to figure this out is by using a meat thermometer (a digital one will work best). This will ensure that the inside of your meat is cooked properly. A good rule of thumb to reduce the total cooking time is to always close the grill lid whenever the thickness of the meat exceeds 1.5 inches.
When possible, complete all of the prep work in advance. The prep work should be done before you even start cooking. Cooking with a deadline to meet can become stressful. Get everything prepared at least a day ahead of time.
Potatoes come in many different varieties, and you can’t always substitute one for another. For example, some are waxy and wonderful for making potato salad or boiled potatoes but would not work well as french fries or baked potatoes. For those applications, you want to use fluffy potatoes like Russets.
Don’t panic, you can fix that ripped or torn pie crust. If you have handled your dough too much it may crack. You need to lightly sprinkle cold water on the cracks. You will then gently rub the areas with your finger until the cracks appear to be filled. A top crust with cracks can be repaired by brushing on a small amount of milk, and sprinkling with a little sugar. After the crust has finished baking the glaze that appears will cover any cracks that may be present.
Cooking can a hobby, a skill, and a job. The only limit to what you can make is your imagination, but you need to learn some of the principles of good cooking from the masters in order to make your perfect dish a reality. So, try out some of these tips the next time you are in charge of the kitchen!
Another Great Cooking Article From Darwins
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