Cooking Preparation

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Toasting Nuts

Toasted nuts are delicious and simple to make. Pay close attention as you toast nuts. If the nuts become overtoasted (very dark), there’s no going back. You’ll have to start over. The nut toasting process [more…]

How to Increase Your Vegetable Intake

If you are hoping to lose weight this year, you probably already know that one easy way to meet that goal is to increase the amount of fruits and vegetables you eat. Vegetables are low in calories and [more…]

Ten Low-Calorie Cooking Techniques

If losing weight is your goal for the New Year, dieting doesn’t have to mean eating terrible food. You can rework standard cooking methods to make them lowfat and low calorie, and some foods can be used [more…]

How to Make Lemon Zest

Lemon zest is essential for flavoring (and garnishing) many desserts — and it's often interchangeable with orange and lime zest. But lemon zest can be bitter if not made properly. Here's an easy technique [more…]

How to Cube a Mango without Peeling It

You can cut a mango into cubes after you peel it, but you can also cube a mango without having to remove its skin at all. Here's an easy way to get your mango cubed without the mess! [more…]

How to Dice an Eggplant

You can use this technique to dice an eggplant into cubes for any number of recipes, including soups and sauces. Dicing an eggplant is an easy process, but to dice your eggplant properly, you need to have [more…]

How to Peel and Cube a Mango

Cubed pieces of mango make a great addition to everything from chutney to fruit salad. And cutting up a mango couldn’t be easier. You can cube a mango in two ways, in fact. This method involves peeling [more…]

How to Use a Mandoline to Slice Vegetables

A mandoline, a rectangular, hand-operated food slicer that slices vegetables quickly. The mandolin has interchangeable blades to give you different vegetable slices — julienne, wavy, plain, even lattice [more…]

How to Poach and Steam Seafood

Poaching seafood is a fabulous way to preserve its flavor and texture, especially with firm-textured fish like salmon, tuna, halibut, cod, and swordfish. The only drawback is that it takes on no flavors [more…]

Scrambled Eggs: A Basic Recipe for Beginning Cooks

If you’re eager to jump in and start cooking, try your hand at this quick and easy recipe for scrambled eggs, which you can enjoy for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Eggs are a healthy and nutritious protein [more…]

How to Chop and Mince

Chopping food means to use your chef’s knife to cut it into pieces. Those pieces don’t have to be exactly uniform, but the recipe will often tell you whether you need to chop something finely, coarsely [more…]

How to Julienne and Cube Vegetables

A recipe that calls for you to prepare vegetables might ask for you to julienne or cube them. Don’t let the French accent scare you: Julienned vegetables are as simple as they are attractive, and if you [more…]

How to Cut Tough-Skinned Vegetables in Half

With their nearly impervious skins and odd shapes, winter squash, such as butternut squash, is difficult to cut open. Use a Chinese cleaver and a mallet or hammer rather than a chef’s knife, which can [more…]

How to Slice and Pare Fruits and Vegetables

Recipes that feature fruits and vegetables often ask for you to slice or pare them. For example, to create a the all-American apple pie, you need to first pare and then slice the apples. [more…]

Parboiling, Blanching, and Steaming Veggies

Sometimes a recipe calls for parboiling vegetables. Certain dense vegetables, such as carrots, potatoes, and turnips, may be parboiled (cooked briefly in boiling water) to soften them slightly before another [more…]

How to Boil and Steam 12 Fresh Vegetables

All sorts of seasonal vegetables benefit from boiling and steaming. When it comes to choosing between the two techniques, remember that steaming is more gentle and better retains the texture and color [more…]

How to Make Vegetable Purées

Vegetable purées are simply cooked vegetables (usually boiled or steamed but sometimes roasted) that are mashed, blended, or processed to a thick consistency. Starchy root vegetables like potatoes, sweet [more…]

Combining Sautéing with Roasting (Pan-Roasting)

Thin cuts of meat, 1 to 1-1/4 inches thick, are best grilled or pan-seared on top of the stove. If you try to sauté thick meat, there’s a good chance you’ll burn the surface before the center is cooked [more…]

When to Use Oil or Butter for Sautéing

When you sauté something, even in a nonstick pan, you need to use some kind of fat. But which one — butter or oil? Each is best suited for different kinds of sautéing: [more…]

How to Make Clarified Butter

Some chefs prevent burning when sautéing by using clarified butter. Quite simply, clarified butter is unsalted butter that slowly melts, causing water to evaporate and its milk solids, which burn over [more…]

How to Sauté Vegetables

Vegetables are excellent when blanched or steamed until about 90 percent done and then transferred to a skillet to be finished by sautéing in butter and maybe fresh herbs. Many classic recipes for potatoes [more…]

How to Sauté Firm, Rich Fish

Rich fish — those with a high fat content, such as salmon, tuna, and bluefish — are exceptionally good when sautéed. And you can enhance them with countless sauces that you can make in 15 minutes or less [more…]

How to Sauté Chicken and Turkey

Sautéing is a great way to impart flavor to poultry. It stays juicy with a flavorful outside, especially with the addition of different herbs and spices. Sautéing is particularly good with the chicken [more…]

How to Sauté Beef

When sautéing beef, you want to choose thin cuts to allow the meat to cook through over the high heat. Thicker cuts may not cook all the way through, leaving the middle pink [more…]

How to Cook in Liquid

Both braising and stewing involve long, slow cooking in liquid. The major difference is that in braising, foods lie in a few inches of liquid, not quite submerged, so they stew and steam at the same time [more…]


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