Cooking is the science of flavors and the correct combination of foods, and it is not as easy to comprehend as it seems at first glance. Novate.ru offers to learn from professional chefs who have the necessary knowledge and experience in this area. In our article, there are several culinary life hacks that will help you turn a simple dish into a real masterpiece worthy of a restaurant.
Life hack 1: Add sour cream to the sauce
Some professional chefs like to add sour cream to their dishes for a rich, creamy taste. In particular, this ingredient will be appropriate in preparing a sauce for a side dish or dressing for borscht. Before mixing the sour cream with the rest of the ingredients, fry it in a pan for 3-5 minutes. In addition to the fact that fried sour cream will add a creamy touch to the sauce, it can be used to store the dish in the refrigerator for several days.
Life hack 2: Bring the steak in the oven
In order for a finished steak to have the perfect taste, several rules must be followed. First, dry the meat with paper towels and then rub it with a little olive oil and sea salt. After the steak is marinated, place it in a hot skillet and wait until the meat is browned on both sides (this process does not take long). Next, transfer the steak to a baking sheet and place in the oven, preheated to 200 ° C. Ten minutes will be enough for it to "come up", but the final time will depend directly on what degree of roast you like.
Life hack 3: Soak meat in brine
It turns out that the way meat is cooked directly depends on which part of the animal it comes from. If you bought a sirloin or leg, you need to fry over low heat at a low temperature. If the back or tenderloin, then the dish should be cooked over high heat for a short period of time.
And in order not to overdry the meat, you should resort to a cunning trick, which is often used by European chefs - soaking in brine. It is very simple to make: for one liter of water you need to add ¼ glass of salt and half a glass of sugar. Then you should pour the prepared brine over the meat so that it completely covers the piece, and send it to the refrigerator. The salting time will directly depend on the weight of the product - on average, one kg takes one hour, but no more than eight hours and at least half an hour. Before cooking, do not forget to remove any salt residues from the meat so as not to spoil the taste of the finished dish.
Life hack 4: dry potatoes
To get the perfect puree, be sure to dry the boiled potatoes before chopping them. To do this, put it in a dry hot pan and hold it until all the moisture has evaporated. The main thing is that the potatoes do not start to fry. Then you can start making the puree. We assure you that it will turn out to be very tender, it will literally melt in your mouth.
Take a note: To prevent hot milk or cream from sprinkling on you during puréing, first crush the potatoes a little, and then add liquid to it.
Life hack 5: Salt onions while frying
Onions should also be sautéed using a few helpful life hacks. Place the skillet over medium heat, wait until it warms up, then add a little butter and vegetable oil. Next, add the chopped onion and salt it. Salt is needed here for several reasons at once: firstly, it will rid the vegetable of an unpleasant odor, secondly, it will speed up the cooking process, and thirdly, it caramelizes the onion, giving it a sweetish aroma and taste. You can only use butter for frying, and so that it does not darken, give preference to ghee.
Life hack 6: Chop the onion and garlic before serving
Not everyone knows that chopped onions and garlic quickly lose their flavor and aroma. Therefore, you should not cut them in advance; it is better to do this immediately before serving the dish, especially when it comes to salads. However, onions and garlic sound great in many other dishes as well. You just need to rinse them under water and add them raw to the dish to give it a unique taste and aroma.
Life hack 7: Put greens in the dish at the right time
Greens should be put into dishes correctly, depending on the stage of preparation. For example, herbs such as marjoram, thyme and oregano are added at the very beginning of cooking so that they give the food their taste and aroma, and green onions, basil, parsley and dill are added at the very end. If you put them at the beginning, then the desired effect will not be.
And so that the greens do not dry out while waiting for their "finest hour", place it in a jar or glass of water and cover with a regular plastic bag. You can also use another life hack: rinse the herbs under running water, dry with a paper towel to get rid of excess liquid, put in a plastic container, cover and store in the refrigerator.
Life hack 8: Add less water to rice when cooking
Almost all housewives adhere to an unspoken rule: add two glasses of water to one glass of rice. However, if you follow these proportions, the cereal can be digested and turn into a sticky porridge. If you do not want such an outcome, but dream that the rice will turn out delicious and crumbly, use 1 and ¾ cups of water for a cup of rice. Also, do not rush to remove the cereal from the stove after it is cooked. Turn off the heat, cover tightly with a lid and leave the rice for 10 minutes to "come".
There are a few more secrets on how to make rice crumbly. First, it must be rinsed before cooking, even if the packaging is marked "steamed". This is necessary in order to reduce the amount of starch that is on the surface of the grains - it is from it that the degree of boiling of the cereal depends. After pouring the rice into the boiling salted water, stir it once to prevent the grains from sticking to the bottom, then leave it alone. If you constantly stir the cereals, the grains will break and release starch.
Life hack 9: Cook pumpkin in the microwave
Pumpkin is an excellent side dish and is also often used as an ingredient in other dishes. If you need to puree a vegetable, do not cook it on the stove, but use the microwave. Peel the pumpkin, cut it into small pieces, place it in a microwave safe plate and cover with plastic wrap. Depending on the power of the appliance, the product will cook for 10 or 15 minutes. Then remove the pumpkin, mash the slices with a fork and enjoy the mashed potatoes, which can be used as a stand-alone dish or for making pies, muffins and other desserts.
Life hack 10: defrost vegetables in the oven
Many housewives are used to defrosting vegetables in the microwave, because this process takes a minimum of time, and the manufacturer indicates this method on the packaging. However, there is one "but": after the microwave oven, vegetables become rubbery, tasteless and acquire the same aroma. The food tastes much better when thawed in the oven. The moisture that remains after defrosting will evaporate, and the taste and texture of the vegetables will not change. After that, they can be safely added to soup, a side dish or put in a pan to achieve a golden brown crust.
Continuing the topic, read about 11 life hacks how to cook dishes that even a picky mother-in-law will appreciate