Cooking can sometimes feel like more work than it’s worth, so it’s no wonder many steer clear of the kitchen altogether. But fear not. Our chef-approved hacks will have you cooking like a pro in no time:
- Save your pasta water.
For a restaurant-style pasta meal at home, use a wide and shallow sauté pan or pot. Add your pasta with a small pinch of salt and enough water to cover the pasta by an inch. Once the pasta is cooked, the remaining water is perfect for making a starchy sauce—it helps the sauce emulsify and coat the pasta.
- Freeze homemade stock.
Fill ice cube trays with leftover homemade chicken stock and reduced sauces like demi glacé. Doing so ensures you’ll have easy access to the exact amount you need, when you need it.
- Shake your garlic.
Peeling large amounts of garlic can be daunting and tedious. This hack gets the job done in 20 seconds. Place your garlic cloves in a large mixing bowl. Place another mixing bowl of the same size on top to create a container. Hold the bowls together and shake vigorously for 15 to 20 seconds. Once finished, your garlic cloves should be peeled.
- Freeze fresh herbs.
When stored properly, fresh herbs can be stored in the freezer for up to a year. Pack herb leaves into a re-sealable bag, creating a one to two-inch layer. Release all excess air before tightly rolling the bag. Secure with a rubber band, and when you’re ready to use them, take as much or as little as you need.
- Eggshells as magnets.
Fishing out bits of eggshells with your fingers or a spoon is frustrating and time-consuming. Instead, use eggshell halves to scoop out unwanted shell fragments, which will stick to them like magnets.
- Soak onions to reduce tears.
Chopping, slicing, dicing, and mincing onions shouldn’t make you a teary mess. Instead, peel whole onions, trim their ends, and soak them in cool or cold water. A quick soak brings out their true flavor while doing away with tears.
- Add a drizzle of olive oil
Drizzle a dash of high-quality extra-virgin olive oil to any dish before serving, for a deliciously silky finish.
There’s nothing better than a homecooked meal with the family. So, let’s get cooking!