Oooops! Are You Making These Cooking Mistakes?

( – Few of us ever become such prolific cooks that we win the approval of Gordon Ramsay or the latest season of Master Chef. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t, or can’t, become a gourmet home cook all on your own. Whether you’ve been baking for years or you’ve never touched a stock pot in your life, chances are you just might be making one of these three super-common mistakes. Kick them out of your kitchen for best results.

You’re Frying Wet Meat

So many people thaw meat from the freezer and then chuck it straight into a cracking-hot frying pan. While that might seem logical, it’s actually counterintuitive. The moisture in the meat will create steam, leaving you with a gray, bland mess and a poor sear.

  • The Fix: Bring your meat to room temperature and dry it with paper towels before it hits the pan. Use just enough oil to keep it from sticking.

You Aren’t Weighing Your Ingredients

If you’re the kind of person who eyes out ingredients or hastily scoops out a cup of flour when baking, you aren’t doing yourself any favors. The actual amount you’re grabbing can vary wildly each time, meaning that even a tried-and-true recipe might fail now and again.

  • The Fix: Get yourself a cheap food scale and measure everything out in grams instead of using measuring cups. Your recipes will be much more likely to turn out right the first time.

You’re Working With Dull Knives

This mistake is not just a quality-killer, but it can be extremely dangerous as well. Dull knives tend to tear or mash ingredients — and fingers — raggedly rather than producing a neat, clean slice. That can affect how the ingredients cook down or disperse, especially when working with soft, plant-based foods like onions, green pepper, and garlic.

  • The Fix: Buy high-quality knives and maintain them regularly. Learn how to use knives safely and practice your skills, too. The way you cut also matters!

Your dreams of being an incredible home chef don’t have to include going to culinary school. With a little time, knowledge, and practice, you’ll be creating delectable wonders of your own to perfection. What will you make next?

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