There are so many culinary tips and tricks to make your dishes quicker and easier to create, different methods of making these and ways to make them look more professional. Here are just a few tricks we think will help fast track you to Master Chef status.
1. Leave your ice cream scoop in a mug or bowl of hot water from the kettle to heat up the scoop, this helps scooping pesky, hard frozen ice cream as the hot scoop melts through the stiff ice cream, making smooth perfectly shaped scoops! This also saves microwaving your ice cream and ending up with a sloppy mess! This method can also be used for sorbets and frozen yoghurt.
2. Take advantage of your microwave! Cooking in a microwave is becoming more and more fashionable to fit in with busy lifestyles. This does not mean greasy ready meals but you can mean 2 minute scrambled eggs, brownies in a mug, steamed veggies or even a soft jacket sweet potato.
3. Lemon Juice is like a food concealer! We’ve all wanted to save half an avocado or prepare some nicely sliced apple but can’t because they go brown and look unappealing. Not any more! By putting lemon juice on your fresh fruit or vegetables once chopped, it prevents them from going brown with an added bonus of tasting fresh too.
4. When boiling water, I’m sure we have all been distracted and had an water overflow crisis. By using a wooden spoon balanced across the top of the saucepan, this prevents the water from boiling over and making a mess all over your hob. Another great water trick is to put an egg in a glass of room temperature water to see if the egg is still fresh or has gone off and inedible. If the the egg drops to the bottom it is still fresh and if it floats you know its time to throw it out; word of warning, place the egg in carefully so it does not crack when it lands at the bottom of the glass if it is still fresh.
5. If you ever are without a microwave, oven or grill but are craving a bacon sandwich then here’s the best improvisational answer for you. Simply wrap your bacon in tin foil and use an iron to heat the bacon til cooked! Such a simple technique yet something that is hugely overlooked. The iron can also be used to make paninis and gooey cheese toasties!
6. On a cold day sometimes you just need something hot and sweet but deliciously luxurious, here’s your answer. Heat a mug of milk and simply add chocolate truffles then stir til you have a thick, hot indulgently chocolatey hot chocolate that beats lumpy powder any day!
7. Once you’ve made your amazing hot chocolate using truffles, you can make it look as good as it tastes but using a cookie cutter as a stencil to sprinkle powder such as icing sugar, cinnamon, vanilla or coco. If you want to go a step further and make the ultimate treat you could use whipped cream or mini marshmallows to form the shape of the cookie cutter.
8. When on the topic of cookie cutters, there are so many things you can do with them then just make awesome shapes for your baked goods. They can be used to make fun fried eggs, if you place them in the pan and crack the egg into the cutter, it will cook in the shape of anything! They can be used to carve your halloween pumpkin, to shape a fruit salad such as watermelon or even cucumber in a normal salad, to make shapes in pizza toppings such as heart shaped pepperoni and so much more!
9. Despite tasting great, its a well known truth that the smell of garlic and onion lingers. When its on your breath mouthwash and toothpaste does the trick but then its on your hands from chopping soap does not seem to remove or even mask it, but there is a way of removing the smell without soap and this is rubbing your hands on stainless steel! As obscure as it sounds this trick really does work.
10. Another very understated kitchen appliance that can do much more than what most people think is a panini/toasted sandwich maker. These brilliant appliances can not only make delicious toasted sarnies but also omelettes and roasted chicken!