How to Become a Wiz in the Kitchen

Let's face it, 95% of us are no Sara Moulton or Emeril Lagasse, but it would be nice to learn a thing or two. There are plenty of routes you can take to becoming a master chef, or at least a master chef in your home, and you just need to know which route to take. Ask your family, or your friends that you entertain for, what their key food interests are. From there, you can modify your arsenal or recipes. Don't forget to take notes when watching cooking shows. Even if the recipe doesn't interest you the cooking style might.You also need to make an honest effort to try new things. For most people, food is a great source of comfort so changing up the menu can seriously affect the mood in your home and in your social life.


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    Find the right hardware. Most people stick to the basics when it comes to cooking because they believe that getting fancy equipment makes the process that much more difficult and time consuming. You'll be surprised to know that by purchasing new kitchen appliances, big or small, cooking can become more fun and more time efficient. Shop for items that make foods you already prepare a little bit more interesting. A panini grill can make toasting your favorite sandwiches faster, more evenly cooked, and even dressier if you plan on entertaining. Purchasing a hand-held juicer is a great buy because it makes basting meats much quicker and a whole lot healthier. Fresh fruit juice is a great alternative to sugary, packaged marinades. Another item that I believe is essential in making your food just a little bit better is a meat tenderizer. Not all meat that we buy at our local grocer is Grade A, but that doesn't mean we have to prepare it that way. Meat tenderizers are great for chicken, beef, and pork, and are very easy to use and clean.
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    Take tips from the pros. Every chef has a different style and each one caters to a different audience. Most likely, you will find one that suits your interests and you can follow their lead. Research chefs that have similar tastes as you, but that offer lots of variety. If you don't have time to watch the Food Network, 99% of the TV chefs offer helpful tips and post recipes online. Finding the ingredients and tools you need is easy simply by looking up your favorite chef.
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    Check your local newspaper for ideas. Most likely there is a section or column in your local newspaper that features a weekly or daily recipe. Scope out your paper for recipes. Most likely the recipes are something you haven't tried before, put a new spin on a dish you have tried before, or suggest foods that are from your region. Clip the recipes that interest you and try them out. Whatever you don't like you can toss out and then keeping the ones you do like save you the hassle of buying a cookbook that is filled with items that you probably won't even glance at.
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    Try a cooking class. Cooking classes are offered everywhere, and there are even some that are available for kids. Getting the family involved in the process makes for a great bonding experience and prepares your child for bigger responsibilities. If you're single and looking for new things to prepare at home, then cooking classes might also be a great way of meeting new people. Check out your local newspaper or online for cooking classes that are available in your area. You could even host a cooking party or class in your home so that you and your friends have a fun night in and learn a little something new.
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    Try out new cooking styles. Changing your cooking styles can greatly improve the quality and flavor of your food. Stir frying food, roasting, and grilling foods you wouldn't normally grill can make a huge difference in your appreciation of very simple food items. There are tons of websites that offer an extensive list of cooking styles and different cuisines. Other websites offer suggestions for vegetarians, vegans, and cultural foods.


  • Ask friends for suggestions, especially those that have a different cultural background from you. Swapping recipes can open your eyes to new ideas and flavors.
  • Another thing to check for in your local newspaper are interest groups in your area. Most likely there is a group that exchanges recipes or cooking ideas.
  • Check out blogs and forums to see how other people are changing up their cooking and eating habits. Share your experiences as well.

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Categories: Care and Use of Cooking Equipment | Food Preparation