Similar to any other skill, learning how to cook can take some time and effort. So if you’re new to cooking, here’s a guide to introduce you to some simple and easy tips to follow when starting out.
1. Invest in high-quality cookware
First and foremost, it is essential to look for suitable and reliable cooking tools and equipment. For example, you can start by finding a good chef’s knife. This will make the time spent in the kitchen much easier and good- quality kitchenware can last for years when looked after. Once you’re all stocked, there are many tutorials/explanatory videos on Youtube to reference when learning how to chop or look after the various cookware. This will ensure you feel confident and comfortable with your cutting techniques. Apart from this, you would want to purchase a few other items such as a chopping board, a saucepan, non-stick frying pans, a colander, a peeler, a can-opener and measuring cups and spoons. Remember to search for high-quality tools as this will make a huge difference in your cooking experience and results.
Ensure you read the recipes you have selected from start to finish. Taking the time to familiarise yourself with the necessary ingredients, cooking times and recommended preparation will prevent you from any surprises or unexpected problems. For instance, you may be following a recipe as you cook only to find out you were supposed to marinate the meat beforehand or get a specific spice you do not currently have. This is why it is important to prepare in advance and stick to instructions and measurements.
Check out our top list of cookbooks here for some of our own personal favourites.
3. Always purchase fresh ingredients
It is important to use fresh and healthy products. This will improve your nutrition and provide you with the best possible quality. You can start by seeking out vegetables and fruits from farmers’ markets. If you have the opportunity, you can search for local farms which offer ethically-sourced meat. Apart from this, you should also make sure you are not using any old and expired spices.
4. Organise everything ahead of time
Another valuable tip is to prepare everything prior to even heating the pan. This means that you should focus on washing, peeling, chopping and dicing in advance. This will make the process much easier as you begin to cook your meal. Checking that you have every ingredient prepared and tools are organised in place will reduce stress in the kitchen significantly.
5. Turn pan handles away to the side
Safety is the most important aspect to consider when learning how to cook. When things get busy in the kitchen, you can accidentally run into the pan and knock over a hot dish. By developing the habit of turning your handles to the side, you will minimise the risk of unpleasant burns.
6. Allow ample space in your pan or baking dish
Remember not to overcrowd your dish. Your food needs space to cook evenly. If you overfill your pan, the meal may turn out soggy due to the steam which is released. When cooking, ensure there is plenty of room available for your food to be nice and crispy. If needed, you can also cook in batches.
7. Make sure your knives are sharp
An interesting fact is that cutting with a dull blade can be more dangerous than with a sharp one. This is due to the fact that there is more pressure used to cut with a dull blade. In turn, this can increase the chances of the knife slipping. This is why in order to avoid any cuts, remember to keep all knives sharp.
8. Stabilise your chopping board
In order to keep your chopping board steady, you can try placing a damp towel underneath it. This will give you a grip preventing your chopping board from moving around. By following this simple tip every time, you can reduce potential accidents.
9. Adjust seasoning as you go
You should season your salt when instructed. Don’t forget to taste your food as you cook. This way, you will know when it is best to add more seasoning and when to stop. You can always able to add more salt and pepper
10. Learn from your mistakes and achievements
Surely it will take some trial and error before you learn what works and what doesn’t. You may need to do some experimenting with spices to find out what you enjoy. Learning to cook well is a never-ending process. There will always be new recipes you would like to try out and skills you would want to develop. Ultimately, it is important to have fun during this process and give yourself grace for putting in the effort.
Hopefully, these tips have provided you with a solid foundation on cooking. As a beginner, you will face some challenges along the way. However, every failure will bring you one step closer to becoming a better and more experienced cook!
Being resilient isn’t easy. There are many people who have faced adversity and come out stronger for it, but resilience is not something that you can just build overnight. It takes time and effort to foster the resilience you need to face life’s challenges with a smile on your face. This article will give you 10 tips for building your own resilience so that life doesn’t get the best of you!
Never stop learning
Both external and internal factors that is. Understand the scenarios and surroundings that have tested your resilience before. Know when to push through and when to step back. Learn how you operate and what works for you, what helps you to move in the world in the way you would like.
Cultivate your interests
Ensuring you are focusing on the things that are bringing joy to your life is key. Having other interests and hobbies that offer some respite will help to rejuvenate you and allow you to have the energy to more easily brush things off.
Get enough sleep every night
In order to have a better outlook on life, you need to be rested and well-rested. Try your best not to stay awake for too long as it will make you feel more tired even after a good night’s rest.
Regular exercise will not only improve your mental acuity, but also the increased serotonin and dopamine will improve your mood and ability to deal with what the world throws at you.
Don’t dwell on the past
We all make mistakes and it’s best to learn from them rather than punish yourself for them. It might not be your fault but if you haven’t seen any results in changing things, there is no point in beating yourself up about it!
You can control how much positivity you put out into the world. If you surround yourself with positive people and avoid negative ones, your positivity will rub off on others too.
Focus on what’s good around you
When times are tough it helps to focus on things that make us happy like our loved ones, pets or local community projects that we can get involved with.
Don’t compare yourself to others
Comparison is the thief of joy and only leads to unhappiness, especially with social media around today! You can celebrate other people’s success without feeling like you’re less successful than them. Be happy for others but take note for your own life too.
Resilience is something that is built over time. It’s not a case of waking up and saying ‘I’m going to be resilient today’. It’s a mindset, a trait that takes time, repetition and knowledge to foster. So start small, take the easy wins, recognise small challenges throughout the day and react how you would like to, if you’d have set out your hopes in advance. The small wins will gradually build over time and become second-nature.
Be kind to yourself
Resilience is not about being strong all the time, it’s about knowing when you are weak. It takes a certain amount of courage to be vulnerable with others but showing your weaknesses will help bring down barriers and make relationships deeper. On the topic of being kind to yourself, you should also ensure you get the level of sleep that helps you function at your best. In order to have a better outlook on life, you need to be rested and well-rested.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
It’s easy to get caught up in life’s minutiae but take a step back and evaluate what is really important. Don’t let things that are out of your control hold you hostage, it will only make matters worse for yourself if you obsess over something you can never change.
RENAISSAINT RECOMMENDATIONS: These two brilliant BESTSELLERS are fantastic to supercharge your resilience: