Anyone that hopes to become more skilled in the kitchen and willing to improve their cooking habits is certainly someone who deserves all the friends in the world. This is because home cooks tend to have a blossoming passion for cooking well, and sharing that cooking with those they appreciate.
If you hope to follow this path yourself, it can sometimes feel a little overwhelming to see so many bloggers, chefs, and YouTube cooks offering such wonderful recipes. If you’ve only been cooking for a short amount of time, it can seem perplexing to see people generate such ideas with such ease, or seemingly always know what to do and what implement to use.
Learning this skill is deeply tied to creativity, to trying new things, and to experimenting. In this post, we’ll discuss three of the skills that if you perfect, you’re sure to count yourself among those home cooks you appreciate.
Knife Maintenance, Cutting & Handling Skills
If you can master your knife usage, you’ll have conquered at least 30% of what it takes to make a great chef. A good quality knife with a sharp cut and solid handle is a great investment. Learning to cut, using your fingers as a guide, will also help you avoid nasty nicks that can come from improper cutting technique and also helps your skill in the kitchen.
Safety is also important, so properly placing your knife in a safe place, not mixed in a drawer with other utensils, and making sure it’s sharpened once a week is important. This is also a measure of safety – it’s actually much better to be accidentally nicked with a sharp knife than a semi-sharp knife, because the cut is cleaner and can be treated more easily. That’s cold comfort, but it is an advantage should your responsible use accidentally falter.
Utilizing Various Cooking Methods
Becoming comfortable with a range of cooking methods is a great way of feeling comfortable in the kitchen. But you don’t have to sous vide everything or have the most expensive equipment to achieve that.
For instance, learning how to smoke chicken thighs can show you that with inexpensive ingredients, the right patience and application, you’re certain to provide a delicious meal for your family.
Spices & Herb Fluency
The more you understand herbs and spices and how they incorporate into your overall cooking, you’ll be able to add your own signature approach to crafting dishes.
Star anise in certain desserts, the right amount of cumin in your chili, using enough chili to work with a dish, and mastering a few garnishes such as basil over your salmon can help you elevate each dish with a sense of love and compassion.