Cooking can be a new experience for many people who have recently left the comfort of their parents’ cooking. This article provides a few helpful tips to the beginner chefs who wish to try their hand without chopping, burning, or maiming themselves in the process. Proper procedure and preparation methods are detailed within to help amateur cooks brave the insidious dangers of the culinary world.

When cutting up apples for a fruit tray or lunch box, place the slices in a bowl of lemon-lime soda, ginger ale or pineapple juice to soak for 5 minutes or so. Any of these drinks will prevent the apples from turning that unappealing brown shade, and they won’t drastically alter the flavor of your apple slices.

Always choose to cook with a wine that you would drink yourself. If you don’t even like the taste of the wine that you are cooking with, chances are that you will end up disliking whatever it is that you are making! So pick out a good wine that you know you love, and you will like your dish even more.

Cooking can be a joy if you invest in a good, sizable cutting board able to handle all of your cutting and chopping needs. If a butcher block table is out of the budget, look for a durable bamboo or sturdy maple for the job. A cutting board with a recessed groove surrounding the cutting surface is handy to catch juices from carving meats and makes clean up easy. If you will be using a cutting board on a smooth surface, look for one with rubber feet to avoid slipping. Maintain your cutting board with food-grade mineral oil (vegetable and olive oils can turn rancid) and make sure that you properly clean, and more importantly, dry your cutting board after each use to prevent warping.

To make grating blocks of mozzarella, Colby, cheddar and other cheeses easier, place the block of cheese in the freezer for ten minutes prior to shredding. The freezer will stiffen the cheese a bit without freezing it solid, so you can grate it without as much sticking, crumbling or becoming rubbery.

If you want to cook delicious steaks, use your oven broiler. When you properly heat your oven, the broiler will quickly sear the meat and keep it juicier. You should avoid using any utensil that will puncture the meat when you turn it. That will cause vital fluid loss. Use a spatula instead.

To reduce the fat and calories in a recipe that calls for a lot of mayonnaise, simply replace half the mayonnaise with sour cream. Since mayonnaise serves primarily a textural purpose in many of these recipes, replacing it with similarly textured sour cream gives you the same texture with a lighter, healthier taste.

In the best case scenario this article will provide the reader with a few good safety guidelines to prevent themselves from bodily damage. Added with some basic cooking knowledge and a few kitchen tips the reader should be well on their way to a healthy, food-filled, unscathed lifestyle that retains both taste buds and fingers.

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