Very important cooking secrets
International Cuisine has many secrets to be discovered, and they all lead to better progress and accomplishment of culinary art. One of the secrets of success is using quality ingredients, which will help you cook only as to value them.
Freshly cleaned and finely cut salad vegetables shouldn’t be kept unused for a long time because they will lose their vitamins and freshness.
Green salad if washed leaf by leaf with cold water, put in a plastic bag and kept in the fridge can stay fresh for 2-3 days.
In order to serve white celery root, keep it for 2-3 hours in a mix of water and vinegar before preparing.
When steam-boiling vegetables their cellulose will soften while vitamin C loss will be reduced.
Vegetables will longer keep their nutritional value if boiled in salty water.
In order to keep their green color, haricots and green peas are to be boiled in covered pots, adding a pinch of aerated salt in the water.
Don’t use cold milk when making mashed potatoes for it will make its color darken, use hot milk.
After cutting the eggplants, and before adding the oil, add a raw yolk. They’ll taste better.
Salad vegetables are to be cooled, otherwise, the salad will change its taste easily, turning sour.
Vegetables are to be boiled in hot water, in covered glazed pots, boiling only as to soften, so they won’t lose their vitamin content.
For cauliflower not to darken while boiling, add some sugar in the beginning.
To serve a better fresh or canned salad, just add some mayonnaise.
New potatoes can be easily cleaned or skinned by rubbing them with coarse salt in a napkin.
Onion used in salads will lose its hotness/spice if it’s washed before, sliced and mixed with some salt. Besides, when preparing a salad, it’s indicated you put the salt before the oil for it will not dissolve in oil.
Potatoes are to be boiled at a low temperature because high temperature will only make them mash on the surface and stay hard in the middle.
For potatoes to taste better, add 3-4 garlic cloves while boiling.
The unpleasant taste of frozen potatoes can be removed by keeping them in cold water before preparing and boiling them in hot water with a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of vinegar.
For cooked cabbage, use the same recipe; only make sure to rub some salt into the shredded cabbage so it’ll be tenderer.
Cauliflower will keep its nice white color if a teaspoon of salt is added in the boiling water. In order to remove insects from the cauliflower, just keep it for about an hour in cold water before boiling.
When boiling fresh vegetables, salt is always to be added in the beginning, and when boiling dried/dehydrated vegetable salt is to be added only a few minutes before they’re done so they won’t harden.
Green vegetables are to be boiled in uncovered pots, thus them keeping their color.
When boiling green vegetables, salt is always to be added in the beginning so vitamins and mineral salts won’t be lost.
When vegetables are sautéed, salt is to be added in the end, in order to avoid them losing their juice and moistness, allowing them brown faster.
After the first water in which the beans have boiled is drained out, 2-3 garlic cloves are to be added and let to boil.
For peppers to keep their color even after cooking, just add some lemon juice.
Garlic isn’t to be kept in the fridge because it gets a bitter taste.
Eggplant salad will have a special flavor if adding some garlic instead of finely chopped onion.
Frozen vegetables should be defrosted at room temperature and then put to boil in a covered pot with some hot water and a bit of margarine or butter so that they boil faster and don’t lose the flavor.
Mixed into salads, horseradish will give them a nice flavor.
Cack / Pastry Secrets
A layer cake is to be baked in the first 5-10 minutes at a high temperature and afterward at a lower temperature, which will allow it to get a nice volume.
Fruit, Turkish delight and nuts used in cakes are to be rolled through the flour so they won’t sink through the composition reaching the pan’s base.
The tart pastry will be finer and more delicious if you add a grated apple in the composition.
Strawberries used in decorating must be sprinkled with alcohol or cognac, so they’ll maintain their flavor and color.
A too dry layer cake is to be kept in a damp kitchen towel before pouring syrup over it.
When dough/pastry has overgrown and you can’t put it in the oven immediately, place a clean, damp sheet of paper over it.
Nuts used in cake filling are to be mixed with egg whites and sugar.
Any type of dough/pastry will be fluffier if let to cool down for an hour.
Fish and Meat Secrets
For fish to taste better and not mash when preparing, it should be rubbed with lemon juice, then salted and left for 20-30 minutes, and only after boiled, fried or grilled.
Fried fish will taste much better if before rolling it through the flour and frying it, we just keep it for 5-10 minutes in milk.
Fish that has an unpleasant smell is to be boiled for a minute or two in a big amount of water with some tablespoons of vinegar and a pinch of salt, taken out after and then prepared.
The most adequate spices for fish are laurel, thyme, coriander, tarragon, rosemary, sage, pepper, allspice, nutmeg, and fresh cilantro.
Vegetables and potherb that can be served with fish are onion, potatoes, carrots, peppers, tomatoes, and parsley.
For removing the fish smell from hands, dishes and pots, rinse them first with cold water and then wash them with warm water and detergents or with warm water that has a tablespoon of vinegar added (lemon salt). Cutlery is to be rubbed with coffee dregs.
Frozen meat should be defrosted only at room temperature or in the microwave oven.
When preparing jams, use only enamel pots; when preparing the syrup, let the sugar dissolve in cold water and only after that put to boil.
When making jam, choose fresh, really ripe, and unhit fruit.
Sugared jams can be avoided by adding a bit of lemon salt dissolved in warm water when boiling, or by adding a slice of lemon at the end of the process, over the jam in the jar.
Spaghetti and Pasta Secrets
Spaghetti will be more delicious if adding a laurel leaf in the boiling water.
Pasta won’t stick to the bottom of the pot if you add some salt while boiling.
Other Kitchen Secrets
Spices will be fresh if wrapped in foil and kept in the fridge.
Homemade ice-cream won’t have ice crystals if you just add some lemon drops in the composition.
A roast is only to be softened with white wine.
Mayonnaise can be best kept in lid covered jars, in the fridge or on ice.
Add a pinch of salt so hot oil, grease or butter won’t spring out of the pan while frying.
The polenta will stop pelleting if before adding the cornflour to boil, you first sprinkle it with some cold water.
When preparing polenta, let the water boil, add salt, then sprinkle the cornflour a little at a time, lower the flame/heat and stir well with a whisk. The corn flour will increase its volume 3-4 times.
Withered potherb will revert if kept for a couple of hours in a mix of cold water with a tablespoon of vinegar.
The roast is not to be salted before grilling because its nutrients influenced by the salt will be eliminated.
Sauerkraut liquid, when used in soups, is to first be boiled separately with an onion, the foam being thrown away and only after can it be added to the soup.
Fresh or dry bean soup will taste better if a teaspoon of sugar is added.
Egg whites whisk better and faster if kept in the fridge before and if carefully separated from the yolks.
Pudding, rich potato/eggplant stew, and pilaf are to always be heated using steam (the bain-marie technique).
Aerated salt or ammonium bicarbonate is always mixed with a little bit of lemon juice or vinegar, thus making its unpleasant smell disappear.