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General Cooking Tips and Tricks

  • To cut down the amount of grease splattering, Sprinkle a bit of salt in the wok before adding meat.
  • Chill chicken for 1 hour after coating it. The coating will stick better when cooking.
  • When a recipe calls for adding oil, garlic, and onions to wok, always add garlic last. This keeps it from burning and tasting bitter.
  • To be able to pour out honey easily from the measuring cup just dust your measuring cup with flour or cooking spray.
  • While cooking rice add a few drops of lemon juice. The color of the grains become bright white.
  • When a recipe calls for soy sauce, use light soy sauce and not dark soy sauce or it will spoil the dish.
    • For really successful short-cooking Chinese dishes, all of the ingredients should be cut or chopped to as near the same size as possible to ensure that they are all cooked to the same degree.
    • For a very crispy-texture, food is deep-fried, removed from the oil and drained. The oil is then reheated and the food deep-fried again.
    • The rule of thumb is: always add cold oil to a hot wok and never cold oil to a cold wok. Pre-heating before adding oil will prevent food from sticking.
  • To measure flour, always spoon the flour into a measuring cup and level off the top with the flat side of knife. Do no scoop the flour with the cup.
  • Always preheat your oven unless a recipe tells you otherwise.
  • Do not use metal bowls when mixing salads. Use wooden, glass or china.
  • Deep fry food in batches and let the oil return to its proper temperature between batches.
  • Coatings stick to fried food better if you coat the foods 15-20 minutes prior to frying time.
  • To slice meat into thin strips, as for Chinese dishes - partially freeze and it will slice easily.
  • To prevent or reduce splattering, food to be deep-fried should be at room temperature and dry (use a paper towel). If the food is coated with batter or seasonings, use a perforated spoon to drain excess liquid before putting it in the hot oil.
  • For better flavor, always stir-fry seasoning ingredients such as garlic and ginger before you add other ingredients.
  • Noodles, spaghetti and other starches won't boil over if you rub the inside of the pot with vegetable oil. 
  • To hasten the cooking of foods in a double boiler, add salt to the water in the outer boiler. 
  • When braising meat, cook it at a low temperature for a long time to keep the meat tender and have it retain all the juices.
  • Drain deep fried foods on brown paper grocery bags as opposed to paper towels to retain crispness.
  • Whenever possible, warm your dinner plates slightly in the oven before serving so the meal stays a little bit hotter.

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    Last Modified: 11/28/11.