All the people who read this blog are interested in cooking which means that they love to be in the kitchen. Every now and then while working in the kitchen we need quick fixes, solutions, remedies and tricks to keep us going. For instance we have guests at home and the curry that you have cooked has excessive salt, so how do you mend the curry or if the Idli dough or the curd has become too sour, how to reduce or prevent the sourness, we need tips and tricks for all of this so that we avoid wastage of food.
I do not claim to be an expert in cooking but from my experiences in the kitchen I do have learnt a few things and also a lot of theoretical knowledge was passed on to me from my Grand Mom’s, aunts, my Mom and also a few tips that I had picked from here and there too, which I’ve applied practically in my kitchen and honed my skills.
About two month’s back I decided to share the kitchen tips I knew with my fans/readers on the my Face book fan page and then it became a regular thing there and in this process I started reading and gathering many more tips which I could share on a regular basis.
Since my face book fans are enjoying the read and getting benefitted, I thought of compiling all the kitchen tips that I’ve posted till now and post them in a single page for many more get benefitted. This does not mean that I will not post more tips on my FB fan page, that will still go on. In fact one can find a direct page to Kitchen tips under the header of my blog which I will keep updating from time to time and also will love to have your inputs and tips there but for a daily read, hop on to my FB Fan page and subscribe or like it and I will also be sharing it on my Google +page from now on..
- While cooking curries instead of using only butter or only oil, if a mix of butter and oil is used, it gives a good flavor and taste plus the fear of burning the butter is reduced too.
- Breadcrumbs come very handy. These not only provide crunch by coating cutlets and tikkis but can also be used to thicken sauce.
- This was a tip passed on to me by my granny. While we 'bhuno' the masala and wait for the oil to release in the corners, if a pinch of sugar is added, the oil releases faster.
- While cooking the onions, to speed up cooking add a pinch of salt.
- While cooking Okra/ Bhindi to reduce the slimy strings squeeze some lemon juice or put a few spoons of buttermilk.
- Whenever you are using mold always grease it so that nothing sticks on it and things come off easily.
- While cooking lentils add two three drops of oil, this fastens cooking.
- I use all the parts of the coriander. The maximum flavor is in the roots, then the stem and last is the leaves. While cleaning separate all the parts. Wash the roots thoroughly, these can be added to boiling lentils and curries and later removed and discarded. Stems can make to grinding as well as in fillings. Leaves can be ground into chutneys as well as used for garnishing.
- While making pickle, roast the salt and cool, before mixing.
- If you keep a piece of blotting paper/kitchen towel at the bottom of the storage container, it will keep biscuits fresh for a longer time.
How to know if the eggs are still fresh?
a. Take a bowl of water and place the egg, if it sinks completely, it's fresh as it can be.
b. If it starts to stand up, it's still good.
c. If it floats on water, it's spoilt, just discard it.
To prevent the idli/dosa batter from souring, place a betel leaf over it.
To avoid spilling over of milk when boiling it: If you see yourself standing in front of the stove guarding it till the milk boils, here’s what you need to do. Before you pour milk into the pot for boiling, rub butter along the top edge and the inside lip of the pot. Due to this, the milk won’t overflow when it foams up.
To prevent potatoes from budding, keep an apple along with them in the storage packet.
To keep lemons fresh without a dry skin, for a longer time in the fridge, apply them with coconut oil and keep them in an open container.
At times it happens that we land up burning the rice while cooking it and the burnt smell makes it difficult to consume the rice. In that case spread 1-2 bread slices over the rice and leave for 10-15mins. The bread slices absorb the smell. Before serving remove the burnt portion.
To keep green chilies fresh for long , remove the stem before storing them.
To ripen fruits, wrap them in newspaper and put in a warm place for 2-3 days. The ethylene gas they emit will make them ripe.
To set ice cubes faster, fill in the ice tray with warm-hot water. Hot water freezes faster as compared to water at room temperature.
To reduce excessive salt in curries add grated/cubed potatoes else add balls of wheat dough, this absorbs the excess salt. Later one can remove the wheat dough balls. Also if the salt added is slightly high one can add sour things like tamarind, curds or lemon to balance the salt.
While making spinach/palak recipes always add lesser salt as the spinach has natural salts in it.
- When you have unexpected guests at home, a few things easily available at home can work as canapes..firstly the papad either roasted or fried, fried potato wafer, cracker biscuits or krackjacks, roasted or fried rotis and toasted bread too. Make an interesting topping and put over these canapes and serve.
- While you cook rice in the pressure cooker, put a small beetroot too. Peel the beet and grate/ chop it finely. Mix it with curds and salt, 1/2tsp sugar and white pepper pwd. Chill if reqd. An excellent raita is ready to go as side dish or with pilaf.
- Whisk 1 cup mayonnaise with 1/4tsp turmeric, 1tsp ground pepper, 1/2tsp ground and roasted cumin powder and a table spoon of lime juice. This mix can be used as a dip for kebabs, chips and also as a spread for sandwiches.
Coming to the winner announcement, since the previous winner Anu did not claim her win, I’m picking a new winner from Nalini’s event round up.
No.4 entry is the new lucky winner which is of Nayana’s Kaali Maa Ki Daal. Congrats Nayana, you win the Tarla Dalal cookbook. To claim your win please mail to firstname.lastname@example.org within 48hrs.