It’s Thursday, so that means it’s Kitchen Tip Thursday! Today’s tips are all about Pantry staples. These are items you should always have on hand.
Garlic: Slice, dice it, mince it, crush it, roast it, sauté it, grill it. You can buy fresh garlic in whole cloves or already chopped in a jar if you don’t want to do the work.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil: EVOO as some call it. You need some type of fat to cook in. This has antioxidants that help lower cholesterol and give your food flavor.
Stocks or Broths: Use broths in place of water to add some zip to your dishes like rice, string beans or cabbage.
Spaghetti Sauce: Great shelf life, buy a variety of flavors to have on hand. Quick meals, just add pasta.
Dry Pasta: Yes pasta, all shapes and sizes. Just add spaghetti sauce or EVOO and you have a meal. You can add vegetables, seafood, poultry or beef.
Rice: Quick-cook, whole grain, long grain, flavored. Brings a variety to your meal, just add veggies or some meat.
Canned Tuna or Salmon: Mix eggs and breadcrumbs and you’ll have some patties. Quick sandwich to put together, add some cheese. On a Summer afternoon mix together with some pasta for a quick salad. Choose water-packed tuna.
Dry Beans: Dry beans taste better than canned beans. Allow time for beans to soak. If you are new to beans start with black, kidney and pinto beans in your pantry. You can always have canned beans on hand, especially if you are in a rush.
Peanut Butter: Great on sandwiches but get creative. Add to dishes to create an Asian flare. Use it as a snack with crackers or veggies. Also great for cookies!
Canned Tomatoes: Salsa, pasta, potatoes. Fresh tomatoes are nice but when they are out of season these are next in line.
Baking Soda and Powder: Baking recipes call for them. Helps with cleaning and keeps your fridge fresh.
Onions: Red or Yellow. Great for sauteing meats, add to pasta dishes or salads. Gives off a great flavor.
Use stock instead of water when cooking vegetables and deglazing pans.
Convection Oven: An oven equipped with a fan that provides continuous circulation of hot air around the food.
Pinch: The amount of dry ingredients you can hold in a pinch (between your thumb & forefinger). It’s equivalent to 1/16 teaspoon
Out of brown sugar, mix granulated sugar and molasses together.
Spray measuring cups or spoons with cooking spray before measuring honey or molasses.
Broccoli stalks, carrot tops, onion peelings, and celery stalks can be added to soups and sauces to give flavor.
If you need only 1/2 an onion, save the root half. It will last longer.
Roasts should be allowed to “rest” 10-15 minutes after being removed from the oven. This allows the juices to settle before carving.
Leave a thin layer of fat on steaks and roasts during cooking to preserve juiciness.
When boiling eggs, add a pinch of salt to keep the shells from cracking.