Not all chefs start out as experts in the kitchen. As William Shakespeare once said: “some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.” We know Old Will probably wasn’t talking about chefs, but that’s okay. The principle still applies. Irrespective of which of these descriptors best fits your cooking skills, one fact remains: In the kitchen, the little things you do are what add up to you becoming a great cook.
If you aren’t sure what “the little things” are, then keep reading. We’re about to reveal six secrets to boosting your cooking mojo, and you’re not going to want to miss it:
1. Use the Right Equipment
Just as a baseball player wouldn’t step up to the plate holding a tennis racket, you shouldn’t attempt to cook a meal without the right equipment. Start with the basics; the best cookware you can afford and a set of super-sharp knives. Once you see the difference having the right tools makes, you’ll wonder how you ever cooked without them.
2. Practice Makes Perfect
If you find yourself telling people how bad a cook you are, it’s likely that you don’t spend enough time in the kitchen. As with any talent, you need to hone your skills. Make it a point to prepare quality meals at least three times a week, and change it up between breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals to ensure that you’re utilising the full range of skills and food types.
3. Share the Love
Cooking for one can lull you into laziness and lacking the motivation to take your meals to the next level. Preparing meals for others, by contrast, pushes you to step outside your comfort zone and create delicious, visually appealing meals. Entertain regularly, and you will find yourself exploring new and exciting culinary horizons.
4. Be Bold
The difference between okay and stunning food is the chef’s instincts about how far to go before disaster ensues. For example, there’s a point when browning butter becomes burning butter or when salting a dish makes it inedible. Good cooks learn these fine lines, and are able to get the balance right more often than not.
5. Spend More on Food Shopping
When someone’s hobby is gaming, he spends more on video games. If someone enjoys scrapbooking, she probably spends more on stationary and other related supplies. It stands to reason, then, if your thing is cooking, you should spend more money on food shopping. Don’t skimp on ingredients, and always be prepared to fork out a little more for better quality. Much cooking success comes from the raw materials you choose, so don’t be afraid to wander around your local supermarket or farmer’s market exploring new ingredients, or splurge a little on them. You won’t believe the incredible difference quality ingredients can make in your cooking.
6. Get Back to Your Roots
America’s melting pot of cultures makes it difficult for cooks to tap into their culinary roots. Some of the most successful chefs, however, choose to focus on what they know about themselves and their cultural backgrounds rather than what might be trendy. This tactic produces some of the best cooks the world has ever seen.