Top 10 Cooking Basics
You don’t have to be a domestic diva to be able to cook your own healthy, delicious meals. Follow our top 10 tips for kitchen success.
Article by: Jodie Shield, RD via www.weightwatchers.com
With our 10 basic tips for using the greatest kitchen techniques, you’ll be well on your way to success.
1. Gear up Invest in a set of cookware that has a nonstick finish. This will enable you to prepare foods with little or no added fat. In addition, you’ll want to pick up some cooking spray, so you can coat your cookware with it for even less sticking potential.
2. Cook it right Prepare meat, poultry and fish using low-fat cooking methods such as broiling, grilling and stir-frying. And remember that both fresh and frozen vegetables taste great either steamed or cooked in a microwave oven.
3. Soak in flavor Marinate meat, poultry, and fish in low-fat marinades such as salsa, teriyaki sauce, orange juice or Dijon mustard. Marinades add lots of flavor without the addition of fat.
4. Spice it up Fresh or dried herbs are excellent substitutes for butter or oil; their addition only adds flavor to your recipes. Try adding dill to steamed carrots, saffron to brown rice, cilantro to baked fish and ginger to stir-fried chicken.
5. Skin it Remove the skin from chicken, turkey and Cornish hens before you eat it. This is a great way to ensure your choice of meat is lean and healthy.
6. Skim it Skim and discard fat from hot soups, stews, or chilies. Or chill the soup, stew or chili, and skim off the solid fat that forms at the top.
7. Trim it For most recipes, you can trim the amount of fat called for by 25 to 50 percent without affecting taste or quality. For example, substituting fat-free milk for whole milk in mashed potatoes still makes for creamy comfort food. You’ll be surprised how delicious soups can be without cream, or how good your vegetable casserole tastes made with fat-free cheese.
8. Make it sweeter Add a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg instead of sugar to fruit cups or beverages to help increase the sweetness.
9. Switch out the meat Replace one-quarter to one-half of the ground meat or poultry in a casserole with cooked brown rice, or cooked and chopped dried beans. You’ll cut back on fat and boost fiber.
10. Just add spuds Instead of flour, cornstarch or cream, try thickening sauces, gravy and stews with pureed potatoes.