How to avoid simple cooking mishaps

By Naomi Biltcliffe | 30/04/2015 | Posted in Kitchen

Even some of the most experienced cooks make mistakes in the kitchen from time to time.

We’re here to help turn you from disaster to Delia, and so we’ve made a list of the most common mishaps we’re asked about and how to avoid them. Chill out, you’ve got this.

Burning your garlic…whoops!

Garlic browns in less than a minute and there’s nothing more frustrating than adding it to a pan, only to realise that your oil is too hot. Burnt or overcooked garlic can give a bitter taste to dishes, rather defeating the purpose of this tasty ingredient. 

The best way to cook garlic is to sauté it on a medium heat in either a bit of butter or olive oil. For an even easier way, use the Supreme Precision Multicooker. Insert the mixing paddle into the jug, add your garlic with a little bit of oil before attaching the lid. Select speed two, set it to 90oC and fry it to perfection for just two minutes. 

Top tip: For a quick and easy way to peel garlic bulbs, cut off both ends, place it under your knife and press down, the garlic will easily separate from the skin. Quickly chop it up and you’re ready to add it to the oil.

Never fear, the days of smooth mash are here

Lots of people struggle to make mash that isn’t lumpy. Follow these five simple steps for creamy mash every time:

1. Peel your potatoes – either Desiree or Charlotte potatoes work best
2. Chop them into small, evenly sized cubes rather than big chunks
3. Allow to boil until soft – poke the largest cube with a knife to test
4. Before adding any liquid or butter, mash the potatoes with a potato masher until powdery
5. Add a nice big chunk of butter with a splash of milk or cream before mixing in with a wooden spoon

Top tip: Keep an eye on our site in coming months for a blender which can do all the mashing for you…!

Over-boiled eggs - The hard times will be over easy

You’re never too old to enjoy boiled eggs and soldiers but getting the ideal yolk for dipping can be tricky. Whether you like them hard boiled or soft, cooking the perfect egg is all about timing. 

The difference between a good egg and a lousy one can be as little as 30 seconds. Follow these easy steps for cracking good eggs:

1. Fill a small sauce pan with water so that it’s ¾ of the way full – enough to cover your egg completely
2. Bring the water to a fast boil
3. Add your eggs to the pan and leave them to boil for 5 minutes
Top tip: Add a pinch of salt to your water to stop your eggs from cracking. 

Say hello to chicken that’s juicy and full of flavour

Lots of people overcook chicken for the fear of food poisoning, but then end up with dry, tasteless meat. 

Steaming is one of easiest ways to cook chicken. With the Intellisteam Food Steamer you can cook chicken to perfection in less than 20 minutes, all at the click of a button. Add the right amount of water to the food steamer, add your chicken to the steamer with some Cajun rub or thyme to help the flavours infuse while cooking, select the pre-set chicken function and then sit back and relax while your dinner cooks away. 

The days of drowned rice are over

Cooking rice can be stressful as the rice to water ratio can seem to be an art form, but it’s easier than you think. You just need the right quantities. 
With rice it’s all about quantities; get this right and you’ll enjoy delicious, fluffy rice every time. Add twice the amount of water as rice (half a cup of rice is sufficient for two people) and a pinch of salt to taste.
Cover the pan for 10-15 minutes until all of the water has evaporated, then use a fork to fluff up once finished. Easy.

And there you have it; our five top tips to helping you discover your love of cooking. It really isn’t that hard to get it right in the kitchen; you just need the right tools and the passion to make it tasty! 

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1 Comments / How to avoid simple cooking mishaps

  1. Jeanette says:

    01/05/2015 at 3:33 pm

    when boiling an egg..always pin prick the blunt end of the egg...this will prevent the egg cracking when going into boiling water..many hardware stores sell a little piece of equipment to make the required hole..this never fails..

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