- Butter makes almost everything better.
- Dried beans or rice are a great, inexpensive substitute for fancy pie weights. Store them in a jar or glass bottle for easy access the next time you need to blind-bake a pie or tart crust.
- Avoid crying over chopped onions by simply brewing a nice cup of coffee. The smell of freshly brewed coffee negates the fumes from the onion that may irritate your eyes and cause you to tear up.
- All-natural store-bought or homemade soup stocks are always great to have on hand. If you have extra, don’t let it go to waste! Pour any leftovers into ice cube trays and let them set in the freezer. Transfer the iced stock cubes into labeled freezer bags and keep them frozen until ready to use the next time.
- Thaw frozen fish in milk in the fridge for 24 hours or soak fresh fish in milk for 15 minutes to get rid of any unpleasant freezer smells or fishy odors… an essential step in preparing classic sole meuinere.
- Degerm garlic to avoid indigestion, especially in raw foods. With the exception of young spring garlic, the garlic germ often tastes bitter and can be difficult to digest.
- A teaspoon or two of lemon zest can brighten up almost any dish, from cakes and cookies to pasta sauces and marinades (like the one for our fabulous grilled lamb chops!).
The next time you need fresh lemon juice, remember grate the zest first and if your’e not using any or all of it, store the rest in an airtight container or bag in the freezer for up to a year! You’ll have grated lemon zest on hand for whenever you’re in the mood to zest up a dish
- When a recipe calls for honey, molasses or anything sticky, make sure to coat the measuring cup or spoon first with non-stick cooking spray or vegetable oil beforehand so anything that goes in next will slide right out and you can avoid a sticky situation. This also means that if a recipes calls for both oil and honey, measure the oil first.
- Cook dried pasta for 1 minute less than the package instructions for al dente so you can finish cooking it in the pan with the sauce. Be sure to reserve some of the pasta water in case you need to thin out the sauce.