We all would have at one point tried new cooking recipes, but did you ever try new methods of cooking? The culinary world is filled with opportunities to learn new techniques.
Having vast knowledge of different cooking techniques equips you with the skill to work with various ingredients and kitchen equipment to produce flavorful results in your cooking making you a master in the kitchen. such mastery and Understanding are essential to becoming a great chef or home cook.
The Grilling method involves cooking food over direct heat. The food is exposed to flames.
The heat comes from coals below the grate. This method of cooking is fast, dry, and hot. Grilling is done over an open flame or in a grill pan. Grilling equipment is made up of an open grate with a heat source located beneath the food. The food can be marinated or seasoned before being grilled then flipped to cook on both sides and grill marks from the hot grate or rack are desirable.
Different sources of heating like wood, burning, coals, gas flame, or electric heating or can be used for grilling:
It is suitable for cooking fruits, meat, seafood, and vegetables. If you notice char lines on your meats or veggies, it was probably grilled.
Broiling deals with transferring extremely high heat onto food.
It’s similar to grilling but with broiling the heat source is located above the food.
The food cooks one side at a time. Browning comes quickly, so a timer would come in handy and it should be watched closely. Commercial kitchens mostly use salamander or broiler ovens for broiling.
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Roasting is done with an oven and it involves the use of indirect heat that cooks from all sides for even browning. This method of cooking works slowly and it coaxes the flavors out of meats and vegetables. Roasting is done at a temperature of about 200 – 400 degrees, though most dishes are around 200 – 350 degrees on the heat setting. Roasting can be regarded as a high heat form of baking. The food is cooks until it gets a beautiful golden brown color.
Boiling is straightforward. The food is submerged in water that has been heated to boiling point(100℃). The food is kept in motion by the bubbling boiling water while it cook. The food is completely immersed in liquid and boiled until it is soft and tender.
This is either done via a slow boil, in which the water has just started to bubble up. Or, via a
full, rolling boil.
Simmering is a moist heat method very similar to boiling. It is also a gentle method of cooking foods but uses higher temperatures than poaching. Here the water doesn’t quite make it to the point of boiling. Instead, the heat from the water is just below what it would take to make things boil. To achieve a simmer, the water is brought to the boiling point and then the temperature is lowered.
This method is ideal for eggs, grains, vegetables, and pasta.
Baking is used for cooking pastries, bread, and desserts. It usually involves cooking food (usually uncovered) in an oven using dry heat. Baking uses indirect heat to surround the food and cook from all sides. Technically the baking and roasting methods of cooking are similar, but baking is usually performed at lower temperatures than roasting though both involve applying a dry convection heat to your food in an enclosed environment.
The dry heat process gives the outside of the food a brown color and keeps the moisture locked in.
Stewing and braising methods are closely similar. stewing involves smaller cuts of meat immersed in the pot. While braising involves larger chunks. The result of stewing brings about a delicious, tender meal that comes with its gravy. Stews are often made with meats and vegetables. Ingredients are usually first seared before being cooked in liquid.
Braising is similar to searing. Braising is a great method for getting fork-tender meats. High protein foods are usually braised. Firstly foods are seared in a hot oiled pan then transferred to a larger pot where it cooks in hot liquid only partially submerged in simmering water, broth, or stock using low heat. The foods soften over an extended cook time and the liquid reduces retaining its intensified flavors.
Steaming is a unique cooking method where the heat from boiling water is used as steam for cooking. It’s a favorite among Asian culinary chefs. Vegetables, fish, desserts, tamales, and dumplings can be steam cooked. This method typically deals with cooking your food in water vapor over boiling water.
This method is one of the gentlest, moisture-friendly cooking methods.
Here water is boiled continuously to produce a steady amount of steam.
A steamer will come in handy here, it is a cooking vessel that has a perforated bottom that is placed on top of another containing water.
The steam cooks foods evenly while retaining moisture. A pot and steamer basket, using a microwave, or wrapping foods in foil so they can steam in the oven are other methods used for steaming in absence of the standard steaming pot.
It is a gentle method of cooking. The food is submerged in water heated between 71° Celsius and 82° Celsius and remains in the water until it’s well cooked.
The low heat works perfectly for delicate items and helps preserve moisture and flavor without fat or oil. Funny how the illegal hunting act poaching is a gentle cooking technique that submerges food in hot (but not simmering or boiling) water. Poaching is one of the best ways to conserve flavor without adding calories for people on a diet.
Frying is one of the most popular methods used in fast food, a quick trip to McDonald’s and you will see why. It is one of the fastest ways to cook food using very high temperatures.
The food is cooked by putting it in a bath of oil, often after breading it. A shallow pan or a fryer is often used. Though similar to sautéing, frying adds crispiness to food rather than softening it up.
Frying can be done with almost any food with success.
Sautéing involves cooking food in a well-oiled pan, you can either use butter, oil, or other types of fat to even out browning. Performed over a stove in a hot, shallow pan and a small amount of oil to cook food for even browning.
This is one of the fastest ways to cook food, so food must be regularly flipped and turned over. The pan needs to be oiled and hot before adding any food to achieve the desired result, don’t overcrowd the pan with too many items, and stir or toss frequently.
It is a great choice for veggies, poultry, and meat.
Searing refers to the browning of food. It is perfect for meat, seafood, and certain types of vegetables. If you ever visited an upscale steakhouse, the chances are that you have seen seared steak on the menu.
Here the surface is heated to a very high temperature (sometimes hotter than 800 degrees) and placing the food on the surface until a crust forms. Searing gives the food a brown and caramelized appearance from the outside. This gives the steaks the meaty “bite” people adore while locking in the moisture.
Blanching is an advanced cooking method performed in two steps. The food is first boiled for a short time, which is referred to as “scalding.” then it is submerged in an ice bath to stop the cooking process.
This cooking method is perfect for vegetables.
15. Slow Cooking
This is the perfect cooking method for people who want a “set it and leave” style of cooking.
Food is heated over low temperatures and higher pressures using a slow or pressure cooker. It makes the food is tender and can cook over a long time, and tastes delicious.
Pressure cooking is perfect for almost everything including, meats, stews, pasta, and dips.
With a basic understanding of these cooking methods, you can choose a method that suits the dish you wish to prepare and gain complete mastery of your kitchen.