We’re all looking to find new hobbies and develop new skills during quarantine. Why not discover new flavors and get in touch with the culinary arts? We cook daily, and with all this extra free time we have, now is the perfect time to take your cooking to the next level! Check out our list of MUST KNOW tips to get you started creating meals that any chef would be proud of.

1. Pat Meat Dry Before Cooking: If you leave fluids on the meat and throw it on the stove, you won’t get crispy, caramelized skin. This is because it creates a barrier between the meat and the pan!

2. Rest Red Meat Before Cutting: To prevent steak from being dry and losing its juicy interior, let it sit on a cutting board for at least 5 minutes after taking it off the grill/stove to allow the juices to settle.

3. Chop Herbs With Salt: Do your herbs fly all over the place with you chop them? Sprinkle some salt on the cutting board to keep them in place.

4. Don’t Overcrowd Pan: Food releases moisture as it cooks. When the pan gets overcrowded, your food will start to steam itself rather than brown, which changes the texture.

5. Know Which Oil To Use: Don’t use butter or olive oil for high-temperature cooking, instead, use an oil with a high smoke point (like peanut or vegetable oil). Butter and olive oil will burn very quickly, or even catch on fire because they have very low smoking points.

6. Use A Teaspoon To Peel Ginger: Simply carve the skin of ginger by running the spoon against the surface.

7. Add A Potato To Absorb Too Much Salt: We’ve all been there, thinking the top was on tight, but instead, you end up dumping half the container into your soup! Add a potato to absorb the excess for about 10 minutes.

8. Chop Herbs, Don’t Hack: You know you’ve bruised and ruined the flavor of your herbs when you look down at your cutting board and see a green smear. This means all the flavor is now on cutting board and no longer in your herbs! To prevent this, roll your basil and then cut each section one time, for example. You should be able to bunch any herb together to get nice cuts—let your knife do the work, GENTLY!

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