The Secret Of Good Home Cooking Isn’t Complexity, But Versatility

Posted on Friday, 14th April 2023

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Trying to rate your capabilities as a cook, especially a home cook, can be a hard ask. It’s like trying to determine if you’re a good writer or a good artist. Even if a professional may say that your work needs objective improvement, if you have fans (in this case, a family that genuinely enjoys your cooking), you’ve already won.

That said, it’s always good to try and improve. Being a capable home cook opens the door to better nutrition, time-efficiency and safety in the kitchen, as well as enjoying this hobby instead of feeling obligated to it.

One thing to remember is that improving as a home cook need not feel like a process you have to move mountains to achieve. Some simple truths can take us far. For example, preparing meals and becoming comfortable with measurements and timing is half the effort. Learning good knife skills is significant. Moreover – you don’t have to learn overly complex lessons, as versatility is the name of the game.

In this post, we’ll expand on that last point – discussing why versatility is the best lesson any home cook can learn:

Learn To Cook Vegetables Several Ways

Of course, learning to cook vegetables well is very important, and key to a healthy diet. But this food group can taste so much better if you learn a variety of preparation methods, from sauteeing perfectly to add to sauces and thicken them, to purchasing a steamer than helps you eat them  in the healthiest, most delicious manner, all the way up to roasting with a brush of homemade butter for the most intensified flavor. This way, you’ll be able to encourage even the pickiest child to eat their greens.

Utilize Versatile Carbohydrates

If you can remain versatile with simple carbohydrates, you’ve achieved the next level of a home cook’s skillset. Learning how to make dandan noodles, for example, can give you the chance to eat beautiful carb additions that are healthy and take sauces beautifully, helping you adjust and alter the flavor profile of even the most simple dishes. On top of that, learning carb pairings (yes they exist, such as parsley over potatoes for creamier dishes), gives you more versatility regarding the powerful, simple flavors you have to offer.

Limit Your Food Wastage Through Smart Methods

It’s important to limit food wastage, or at least as much as you can. It not only helps the environment, but saves you money. If you focus on achieving this, then over time you will become a better cook who thinks of diverse methods of using every ingredient in the cupboard, of ensuring you don’t waste unnecessary elements (chicken bones can be used to make a great stock for further cooking, for instance), and that basic cooking efforts, like making sure you use the fond at the bottom of your pan for sauces, become commonplace, not an effort you need to remind yourself of. There’s nothing better for versatility than working within limitations.

With this insight, we’re sure you’ll continue on to be an excellent, versatile home cook.

Note: This is a collaborative post.

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