I'm new to this whole cooking business. Not - can only cook spaghetti bolognese new. More - "Frozen pizza? Nope - that's hard. Order in".
However - there's hope for me yet! I recognize how much of a life skill cooking is and before I get too far along in this whole aging process I should really start acquiring it.
I've started looking around at cooking classes in my area but from what I've seen everything appears to assume some prior knowledge and is specializing in dishes from some country or other that the West thinks themselves better than.
What kind of classes are appropriate for me? Is there a 'term' for basic cooking classes that I'm missing (I did try searching for "basic cooking lessons" but Google in all its power returned nothing).
How do I learn these utter basics so I can start enjoying food I've prepared, not purchased?
Cooking classes aren't the only way to learn cooking - in fact, they're a relatively expensive way to go about it, especially as it's hard to introduce all the various techniques in one lesson.
There are any number of beginner's cook books out there that introduce basic concepts and techniques extremely well. There are masses of videos on YouTube covering just about every cooking topic and recipe*. Food blogs abound online. Check them all out, start with basic things like sauteeing onions, boiling eggs etc, and take it from there. I know this works, because it's pretty much what I did (though I started before I had the benefit of YouTube).
Another good way of learning is to find a friend who does cook and help them out chopping veg etc, and have them talk you through a basic recipe (like spaghetti bolognese) as they go. And of course, you can always ask the wizened sages of Seasoned Advice.
If you do decide to go for cooking classes, don't discount those focusing on a specific cuisine; food has to come from somewhere, and they all use the same basic set of techniques. There's only so many ways you can chop and heat foodstuffs after all. I started cooking by learning how to make a decent Chinese stir fry, for example.
*I realise I recommended YouTube in my answer to your other question, but it is a great resource. I don't work for them :)
the options that I've disregarded, yet I don't even have a clue where to start at all! I am hoping to hear some good advice on how to select an oven to fit this criteria. -edit- I start doing some more... I want to know how you can know ffrom specifications what is a good oven. Can you know quality difference from it? Or is the only way read experience from other people and base my opinion... think I have to conclude; I need a new one. I looked around on the internet for a while, and I did not really get an idea of how to choose one. A couple of things are important to me: It must
I've been reading the Geek Cookbook, and decided to try the Mac & Cheese recipe from it, making the sauce from scratch - seemed simple enough! I've never made a Bechamel or Mornay sauce before, though, so this was new to me. I made the roux fine, and mixed in the milk, which produced a smooth sauce. Once it started to thicken, I added the recommended amount of cheese (200g, to 2 cups milk... caused some of the surface to start to resemble a more normal looking mac & cheese sauce, but stirring returned the sauce to its previous grainy consistency. Once it was simmering briskly, I left
I'm about to start making some rillettes with some pork belly and Lard left over from making scratchings the other day. I've looked at a few recipes but it's not clear if I should drain off the fat from the cooking before shredding the pork or not. I assume this would be the way to go so you can better control the amount of fat in the finished product. Anyone know or have tried these themselves?
. Salting the pasta water. I've learned this trick some time ago and it has been critical to producing the best-tasting pasta. I really want the pasta to be the point of the dish, with the sauce an accompaniment, and the getting salt in the water from the start is the way I get the best flavor in my pasta. In fact, I find that salting the water quite generously works very well as long as I am... speculated--rather, the starch emulsifies the fats into the sauce (consider if I have, say, tomato sauce, cheese, and olive oil) and it also adds a rich mouthfeel. I've really had great success adding some
top is unique for this pastry. Recipes online tell me that it's confectioner sugar and egg whites, but I think it's something else. It's solid, yet soft. You can see your tooth print in it. It's white and sweet. I can't exactly explain how it differs from regular egg white/sugar icing, but in my opinion it does. Does anybody have a clue what I'm talking about? Do you know what's in it? Or is it just a basic egg white/sugar icing, and is my mind playing tricks on me?
A cook I know always discards the core of the onion when chopping it. Is there any reason for this? In professional demonstrations and cooking classes, I've never seen it done. From observation, it does seem to make chopping or mincing the way I've always been taught a bit easier, as the core can be awkwardly shaped, but other than that is there anything besides personal preference to it?
Can someone tell me how to minimize nitrate concentration in raw vegetables before cooking them? I need this advice very much because I'm cooking vegetables for my infant son, and I've heard that high nitrate concentrations are especially toxic for infants. Some say that soaking vegetables in salty water with ascorbic acid can help, is that true? Also, is there some technique that allows to neutralize nitrates during cooking? Like, maybe, changing the water.
I've been making this simple chicken soup dish for years. I learned it from my dad, who got it from my mother, and who knows how far back it went beyond that. But, I really don't know what its called. I'm curious because I'd like to look up similar recipes to get ideas on how to tweak it. We've always called it "goulash", but it doesn't look like the goulashes I've seen on the net. (Sorry about.... Put a few big spoonfuls of cucumber salad into it. Eat it and smile. So, what the heck have I been cooking?
Some cookbooks give advice, but it is conflicting. Some say "it should coat the back of a spoon", which I find terribly confusing - my best try to imagine the result will work with a wide range of consistencies. Others don't give instructions at all. I've had recipes say "then add milk to reach cream soup consistency", and I have no idea how much milk to add. Eating out doesn't make it easier. Our cafeteria offers stuff I would classify as vegetable puree at the soup bar. I'm sure I've had "cream of mushroom soup" somewhere which had the consistency of half-fat dairy cream. What