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Pantry Parties. Our Top 5 at home Cooking Class Tips.

Pantry Parties. Our Top 5 at home Cooking Class Tips.

In the comfort & convenience of your own home, or that of kindred spirits, the atmosphere at our cooking classes is always relaxed. The kitchens buzz with anticipation & fun…. No-one panics if things don’t turn out as exactly as expected, we just turn it into something creative. The focus is always on joyous learning.

The best part is sharing our passion for food, collective kitchen wisdoms & personal anecdotes. Exchanging cooking tips, new ideas & recipes. Meeting interesting, keen & friendly people.

Naturally, given our years of experience in kitchens everywhere, we have encountered some common cooking stumbles. Ones easily corrected, adding to our newfound skills & making end results much more rewarding for us….

  • Kitchen Hygiene:

Obvious I know, but hugely important. Prepare yourself for unhindered involvement. So tie your hair back, take your jewellery off & wash your hands properly.

You even see TV personalities kneading, mixing, chopping, with rings, watches, bracelets touching the food. Not much point in changing boards or even washing your hands with jewellery dangling in the food. So remove it before you start.

And shoving your hands under a running tap is not making your hands clean. I’ve been to hand-washing school & you’d be amazed at what you miss when you see your hands under an ultraviolet light.

So wet them, use soap & give them a good scrub, back, front & between your fingers. Then a good rinse & presto…shiny clean hands!Pantry parties.

  • Use Quality Ingredients:

The phrase “Do not cook with it if you cannot drink it” is so true for wine, as well as every other ingredient!
The dishes you cook will be as mediocre, good or excellent as the ingredients you use.

Try to choose high-quality ingredients whenever available & affordable. Quality products are much more readily available these days so always shop around for the best ingredients you can find in your area.

Support the efforts of your local producers & give them the credit they deserve.

Good ingredients are the foundation of good cooking, so choose top-notch produce & your cooking will consistently be enhanced.

  • Overcrowding the Pan:

Cardinal sin…that’s probably a bit harsh, but this will make all the difference to your success.

Food releases moisture when cooking, so room must be left for the steam to evaporate, in order to prevent soggy food.

If frying, this rule becomes even more important. Adding too much food to sizzling hot oil will reduce the oil’s temperature, making it longer to fry.  The result will be oily & saturated rather than crispy & dry. Pretty yuk!

  • Stirring & Turning:

One of the basic lessons in cooking is learning to leave food alone, resisting the temptation to stir, poke or turn.

In order to develop a nice crust, you need to give it time & allow it to cook properly.
Continuous stirring interferes with the searing process, you release moisture & get soggy vegetables.

If you want your beef pieces to be a crusty brown colour & your vegetables to be crunchy golden coated ones, then stand back & visualize.

  • Taste As You Go:

With every good cook, tasting will be automatic. You taste or smell the ingredients before you start cooking… Is this cheese salty, or creamy, or the garlic sweet, the paste spicy, the lime bitter….This helps you adjust the recipe as you go.

Salt enhances flavours. I strongly suggest you taste as you go & decide if it requires more.
This “cheffy trick” of sprinkling salt more than 30 cm above the food, helps to spread it more evenly, resulting in a more consistent taste.tomatoes & basil

Remember also, that herbs, good oils & spices can help balance the flavours in your dish. It’s always a personal call for the “right” amount of seasoning.

In recipes, cooking times are often estimates, results vary greatly depending on many factors. Not only on your ingredients, but also your stove, your equipment, your kitchen humidity etc….. Taste! Taste! Taste!

Your palate is the control factor, so use it!!!

Imagine if you used salt instead of sugar & had not tasted & tested it! 

Finally… your energy is the most important ingredient! Relax & enjoy!

More tips here…

Pantry Parties. Kitchen Confidence Coaching.

  1. What excellent advice. I’ll admit that sometimes my wedding rings don’t come off when I cook. I have to spend a bit of time soaping to get them off. I’ll do better, I promise.

    I didn’t know about your pantry parties. What a great idea!

    • Lol…you’re funny Maureen :)) Great to hear from you again…. Yes the Pantry Parties are fun, (& creating quite a bit of a buzz, which is awesome) xx

  2. So blessed to have peeps that can share a lifetime of knowledge, experience and passion….in our own home!

    • Hey Carolyn, thanks so much for the appreciation. It’s fun isn’t it? Stimulating for me. And always, always learning….xxx

  3. I’m guilty of a few of these, so thanks for the reminders and advice!

    • Glad to help the ride finish more rewardingly Miss Taymour….& thanks for spending the time to read & comment :)) cheers lovely xx

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