I think it is safe to say that in 2020 we spent more time at home in our kitchens than we ever have before. All that kitchen time brought on an interesting collection of new cooking adventures. I’m pretty sure we all tried to make sourdough bread at least once.
That being said, the best to come out of that kitchen time are some pretty amazing food and cooking hacks … and I want to share some good ones with you today.
Potatoes + Cold Cold Water
If you’re wanting to get your potatoes to cook more evenly .. and why wouldn’t you want to … make sure your water is cold. I mean cold cold. Chefs will tell you it’s pretty important to cook potatoes this way so they cook from the inside out. If you start off with warm or hot water, the outside cooks before the inside is done. This method will ensure your potatoes will turn out fluffy and delicious.
Safety + Large Vegetables
Do you ever feel like cutting up a cauliflower not only takes forever but it often involves risking your fingers. Big vegetables like cauliflower, cabbage, yams, squash can be hard to cut because they are round and just won’t behave on your cutting board. The key is to make sure they’re perfectly steady before wielding your knife. The trick is to cut the stem or one side of your large round veggie so that it will sit flat. This will prevent rolling and give you and your knife skills a chance to do some perfect slicing. Your fingers will thank you !
More Popcorn Please
I love homemade popcorn. It’s far better than microwave or ready popped corn. The down side is that it’s not easy to get all the kernels to pop. But then I learned this simple trick. Soak your popcorn kernels in water for approx. 10 minutes before popping.
Turns out the added moisture from the water creates more steam inside each kernel during cooking. Result … fewer unpopped kernels. So simple.
Say No to Potato Sprouts
If you’re often ending up with sprouted potatoes because you like to stock pile and store them for a while .. I have a great hack for you. Place an apple in your storage bag or container where you keep your potatoes. Surprise! The apple helps prevent premature sprouting.
Saucy Sauces = Better Sauces
Struggling to get your sauce to the right thickness? It’s just too runny? You don’t want to have to add a thickener and ruin the whole dish. Toss a dry lasagna noodle in the sauce. The noodle will absorb the excess liquid and it does it without changing the taste or texture of your sauce. Once you have the just the right consistency, pull the noodle out and discard it.
Save The Soup
Every once in awhile I get a little heavy handed with the salt when making soup. I’m sure we have all accidentally added too much salt to our savoury creation. Salt can be the difference between a bland soup and a delicious one .. but too too much just ruins it. Thankfully there is a remedy for that. Send in Mr. Potato to the rescue ! Yes, you read that right. Peel a potato and drop it into the pot. That’s it. The potato will absorb some of that excess salt. Simply scoop out the potato and toss it away. Done. Problem solved.
Creamy Creamy Hot Chocolate
Out of all the different ways to use that marvellous green goddess – the Avocado, this just might be the most creative one. Plus it’s a great tip for those who prefer to go dairy-free. Blend an avocado, cacao powder, maple syrup, and boiling water together You can also add almond butter or peanut butter and any other flavours you desire, like vanilla. What you have left is a healthy drink that’s naturally creamy and dairy free.
From Frozen to Fabulous
If you have frozen veggies but are reluctant to use them because they tend to come out soggy … this cooking tip will never let you down. Roast them. Yep, roast your frozen vegetable. It’s unconventional but it works and they come out just as great as roasting fresh ones. Best part is that you don’t even need to thaw them beforehand. Just place them on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and some good quality sea salt. Roast for 15 – 30 minutes, until crispy and brown. You can also add garlic and fresh herbs for extra flavour.
Food hacks are fun and I hope you get a chance to try a few of these out.
Central Lonsdale is loaded with some great food markets. Persia Foods and Vanak Market are just a 5 min. walk from Central Apartments. One of the great perks of living in this beautiful neighbourhood.