People enjoy eating out even for the simplest of things. Even if they just feel like having cheese on toast or a cup of coffee, going out to have one is so much better than having it at home. While getting out of the house is one issue, the other significant factor is the taste and the quality. No matter how hard you try, it is nearly impossible to replicate the quality of a restaurant. Even if it is just a cup of coffee, the one you make at home never seems to taste as good. Even if you just feel like having some French fries, somehow getting them from that street stand down the road is so much better than making them at home. However, eating out every day is not always convenient. Sometimes you want to enjoy the same thing yet you also want to have the satisfaction of having made that food on your own. Whether you are putting together a quick sandwich or you are making a fancy steak dinner, being able to make it at home on your own is quite an achievement. If we look at the production process of commercial kitchens and professional chefs, there are a few things that we can learn. Here are some tips to help you take your culinary skills to the next level.
1. Follow Guidelines
When we are at home we tend to go with the flow, use what we have and cook in a way that we think will be suitable. While this is great if you are just looking to have some fun and the end product doesn’t necessarily need to be extraordinary, it’s not that great if you are cooking for guests. Professional chefs have a lot of food-related guidelines that they follow. Some of the most important guidelines are about food storage to ensure the quality of the ingredients and that they remain safe to consume. Even if you have the exact same ingredients at home, you won’t get the same taste if you aren’t paying the same amount of attention to storing these ingredients. Things like fresh meat, especially fish, spices, and even coffee beans need to be stored with a lot of care to ensure they remain fresh and flavorful. If you want to improve your cooking, consider learning about how to properly store raw ingredients, how to properly prep ingredients and how to properly store pre-cooked items.
2. Use The Right Equipment
With your food properly stored and sorted you now have what you need to start cooking. But before you can start, you need to make sure you have the right tools to cook. You will have noticed that professional chefs generally use stainless steel equipment or glassware and prefer to cook on a gas flame rather than an electric cooker. Similarly, they have a different knife for all their tasks and even have different cutting boards for vegetables and meats. Quantity is also very important; the folks behind American Weigh Scales suggest that you choose a proper kitchen scale that accurately measures anything when needed. In the kitchen, you have to measure everything from powders to grains to liquids to solids. Most scales are optimized to measure a certain kind of material and the cheaper versions are often not very accurate. Especially when you are using potent ingredients or you are making food that has very delicate ratios, you want to make sure you have the right equipment to guide you through the process. The money you spend on your cooking equipment is money you spend on the taste and the quality of the food that you enjoy later on.
3. Master Each Technique
The pros make it look easy. Flipping things in the frying pan, slicing through an onion in seconds, and knowing exactly when to pull out the noodles from the hot water to ensure they are cooked perfectly by the time they reach your plate. There are a few basic skills that you need to master no matter what kind of cuisine you want to cook. This includes things like knife skills, basic boiling skills, basic food processing skills, and also some dough-making skills. These are universal skills that are used in all kinds of foods and the more you practice them the better you will get.
One of the most important things to create that high-quality taste, make the food look amazing, and get the professional feel from your food is to use high-quality products. If you look at any good quality restaurant you will notice that they often work with selected vendors. Some are so committed that if they are unable to procure a certain product, that dish will not be available on the menu that day. They do not risk using the products of a different vendor and compromising the quality of the food. The quality of the ingredients is one thing that can even overcome flaws in your cooking. With the right products, there really is no way that you can go wrong unless you completely ruin the food. Lastly, get some nice dishes to serve your food in, you eat with your eyes before you eat with your mouth.