Cooking is the ultimate hobby. It’s fun, creative, and you can express yourself through your dishes. Cooking is for everyone-kids, college students who live in dorms, singles with no roommates-everyone! This article will explore how cooking has become a multimillion dollar industry that anyone from any demographic can take part in.
Benefits of Cooking as a Hobby?
Cooking is a fantastic hobby for nearly anyone. Perhaps you’ve been cooking your whole life and find the idea of being able to do it by yourself, in your own kitchen with just a few simple ingredients can be exciting.
Or maybe you have never even turned on an oven before and want to try something new-something that isn’t based around technology but instead around relationships with friends and family.
Cooking at home has become popular again because cooking stimulates all five senses: one can see the food they are making (the colors), touch (it should be soft, but firm), smell (a good dish should make your mouth water), hear (whether it’s music or sizzling food) and taste (with all those other senses how could you forget taste?).
Why Cooking is the Ultimate Hobby?
Cooking is not only a fantastic hobby but also can be a great business opportunity. The popularity of cooking shows on television has made it more fun and exciting than ever to learn to cook for yourself.
When you make your own food or dive into a new recipe, you feel like you’re part of something greater than yourself-a community of people who share their love for food and enjoy what they do. And did we mention that there’s money in it too? According to Pew Research Center, the average American spends several thousands per year dining out; this means that if someone ate out four times a week (which add up very quickly) at an average price range of $12-$30 per meal, they would spend roughly between an extra $4,512 to $10,160 a year.
If someone wanted to avoid these costs all together by cooking at home instead of eating out, then they would save that money in their own bank account!
Who Can Cook?
Some people might wonder if cooking is the appropriate hobby for them since they are not good with hands or aren’t creative. The truth is that anyone can cook.
Cooking isn’t about being able to build cars-it’s about using your senses and creativity to prepare something delicious for yourself and others to enjoy.
If you’re not good at building things you still can learn how to build beautiful houses with Legos; so if you’re not good at cooking, why can’t you learn to cook? Sure it might take a few more tries than with Legos, but the results will be well worth it.
How to Get Started with Cooking?
Even if you don’t know where to start there are plenty of places and resources out there that can help. For those who might live in dorm rooms, this website has several recipes that can be made with a microwave or toaster oven!
Beyond the dorm room, websites like Allrecipes.com and Foodnetwork.com provide thousands of dishes as well as cooking shows to watch (and learn from) for free online. If books are more your thing Cooks Illustrated has many cookbooks for sale on their site which cover every course imaginable: breakfast, lunch, dinner, desserts and even vegetarian meals .
Another great resource is supermarkets and grocery stores themselves! Chains such as Whole Foods offer free classes and demonstrations at their retail locations that teach you how to make meals from scratch.
So whether you live in a dorm room, rent your first apartment, or are moving out on your own for the first time-no matter where you are or what equipment you have access to, cooking is always possible.
From the beginning of time humans have used food as one of our greatest tools for survival. Cooking has evolved through the centuries and today it’s bigger than ever! With technological advances comes better ingredients, more recipes, and far greater opportunities to cook creatively whenever we choose. No matter if it’s a hobby or simply to save money on dining out-cooking is not just delicious but also rewarding.
Cooking can be everything from an easy task that takes only 15 minutes to prepare, to a long and complicated process that takes afternoons of work. In any case cooking is a blast!
Cooking offers us the opportunity to express our creativity, experiment with new ingredients and recipes, smell (a good dish should make your mouth water), hear (whether it’s music or sizzling food) and taste (with all those other senses how could you forget taste?) something delicious.
Types of Cooking Methods for Beginners
There are many different ways to cook whether it be grilling outdoors or baking inside. All of these methods have their own benefits and drawbacks so read on to find out what works best for you!
First, let’s talk grilling. Grilling is a great way to enjoy eating delicious meats and veggies. But you’ll need something to light your grill up so you can start cooking! Simply purchase a lighter or use long matches to ignite the flame for several minutes until it reaches its optimum heat. Then place your meat on the grill and let it cook until it is finished-usually about 4-5 minutes per side depending on thickness.
Next time you’re craving some chicken, try baking it in the oven instead of frying or roasting it. Bake your chicken at 350 degrees Fahrenheit and wait 35 minutes (or when internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit) before pulling it out. That’s not too bad when compared to frying which takes 20 minutes per side! Next time you think about frying, use the oven instead.
You can also bake without oil if it’s not your thing. Just line a shallow pan with aluminum foil and place your meat in there to cook for 20 minutes. This method is even better than baking with oil because this technique allows for healthier cooking at high temperatures! Keep in mind that this method may take longer than usual so be prepared for that extra wait time in order to enjoy your healthy meal.
If you’re craving some fruit instead of meat, try making some dried fruit in the oven too. All you need are some fresh fruits like apples, bananas, or mangos and cut them up into thin slices or rings so they dry out evenly in the oven. Make sure to line your fruit pieces on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet to ensure cleanliness! This type of food is great for snacking or traveling so you can take it with you anywhere.
In conclusion, cooking has become a multimillion dollar industry that anyone from any demographic can take part in. There are many different ways to cook whether it be grilling outdoors or baking inside. All of these methods have their own benefits and drawbacks so read on to find out what works best for you!
12 Must-Have Tools for Every Kitchen
When you are cooking up your favorite dish, there are a few tools that you rely on to get the job done. Without these tools, it would be nearly impossible to whip up any meal. In this blog post we will discuss some of the most essential cooking tools and what makes them so important. You’ll also find recommendations for purchasing each one!
- Chef’s Knife: This knife is an essential tool for any cook. As the name suggests, it’s often used solely by chefs in a kitchen setting to slice and chop ingredients but it can also be helpful when preparing food at home (or just slicing your favorite loaf of bread). The blade should have a long edge that tapers down into a point with wide serrations and a wooden handle. The best chef’s knives will have high-carbon stainless steel blades that are hard and durable, but not brittle or prone to rusting.
- Metal Spatula: This tool is great for flipping eggs in the pan or cooking up your favorite grilled cheese sandwich! It also helps ensure even heat distribution on pans and skillets as well as mixing ingredients together with its flat surface.
- Non-Stick Skillet: A non-stick skillet is essential because it makes cleaning much easier than using any other type of frying pan. You can cook almost anything in them without worrying about food sticking onto the surface (and they produce less smoke when you’re cooking!).
- Kitchen Shears: These sheers help with many things such as cutting up vegetables, opening packages (e.g. wrapping paper), or even cutting your hair! They are also helpful for tasks such as trimming crusts from bread when making sandwiches and can be used to cut chicken into small pieces if you’re cooking a whole bird in the oven.
- Cast-Iron Skillet: This pan is great because it conducts heat very well which means food cooks evenly throughout the entire surface of the skillet with no hot spots. It’s also durable so they last forever, and some people find that these pans impart more flavor onto foods then other types of frying pans do! The only downside is that cast iron skillets need to be seasoned before first use – but this process will help give off a nonstick coating on the skillet.
- Whisk: This tool is very helpful when it comes to mixing ingredients together. They are usually made from metal wire and have a long handle with loops at the end for holding onto while you whisk away! You can use this tool to mix sauces, dressings, or even eggs over easy in the pan!
- Colander: The colander is an essential kitchen utensil because without one you would not be able to drain any liquids off of your food so it could cool down (or get rid of excess water). There are many different kind but they all serve the same purpose – sifting through liquid-containing foods like pasta or vegetables until only solids remain.
- Cutting Board: Cutting boards come in handy whenever you need to chop up any food. They can be made out of many different materials such as bamboo, wood, or plastic and may either have a rubber bottom or not (which determines if it’s slip-resistant). The best cutting boards are those that have some texture on the surface so they don’t slide around too much when you’re trying to cut!
- Saucepans: These pans come in handy for sautéing vegetables, simmering sauces, and more. You might find saucepans with lids depending on your kitchen needs because these types of pans also act like small pots which make them great for cooking one dish at a time without making a mess all over the stove top!
- Sheet Pan: Sheet pans are great for roasting vegetables, baking cookies, or even making a batch of brownies. They usually have one long handle on each side that can be used to lift the pan up and out of an oven without burning your hands – but they’re also convenient because sheet pans aren’t too heavy so you can move them around with ease!
- Box Grater: The box grater is another kitchen tool that’s essential when it comes to cooking at home (or in any restaurant!). It has four different sides which allows you to grate cheese, slice carrots or cucumbers into thin slices quickly and easily, or zest oranges if you need some flavor added to your recipe!
- Tongs: Tongs come in handy while frying foods like french fries or onions. They also help grip onto food while you’re cooking it and give you more control over the pieces that are being moved around in the pan (or on a grill). These tongs often have rubber tips so they don’t scratch up your pans!
Types of Cookware Materials
The type of cookware materials you use is important for a number of reasons. The first and most obvious reason is that the wrong cookware can damage your food, making it less flavorful and less healthy. The second reason to consider choosing the correct cooker is because different types are better suited to different types of cooking methods. For example, some pots work best with induction stoves while others are more appropriate for gas stoves or electric stoves.
The best pots and pans are made from non-reactive materials such as stainless steel, cast iron, carbon steel or copper. Aluminum cookware is less expensive but it reacts with acidic ingredients so make sure you’re careful to not let these types of preparations linger in the pot for too long before serving them.
- Cast Iron: Cast iron is a great choice for high-heat cooking. The material heats quickly and evenly, which makes it perfect for searing meats or frying vegetables that you want to keep crisp. However, cast iron also has some downsides: the heavy weight can make it difficult to handle when hot; food cooked in cast iron tends not to be as healthy due to its reaction with certain ingredients (such as tomatoes); and while the pans are durable if properly cared for, they require more maintenance than other types of cookware.
- Stainless Steel: This type of cookware does well at heating foods evenly so they will cook properly without burning on one side but remain raw on the other. Stainless steel pots and pans work best over gas stoves because of their heat distribution, and they are also durable. The downside is that they can lose some of the taste of what you’re cooking because it doesn’t interact with food in the same way as cast iron does.
- Carbon Steel: Carbon steel cookware heats up quickly and evenly but not quite as much so than cast iron or stainless steel. This type is often used for frying foods like potatoes, eggs or bacon on a stove top since it provides just enough room to maneuver without spilling out onto the heating element. However, carbon steel pans need to be cleaned with care since rust will eventually form if left unchecked; they should never be placed in water while still hot because this could lead to corrosion from inside outwards; and finally, carbon steel pans are not recommended for high-temperature cooking, such as searing or sautéing.
- Copper: Copper pots and pans heat up quickly but they’re more expensive than the other types of cookware listed here. They also tend to be heavy because copper is a denser metal. A downside to this type of pan is that it may react badly with some ingredients over time though in most cases it’s worth the investment since copper has been used for centuries by many chefs who swear by its benefits when it comes to flavor retention and even distribution on foods like vegetables or pasta dishes that need just a tiny bit of moisture before being ready for consumption.
- Aluminum: You should never use aluminum cookware for high-heat cooking because it will react with acidic foods and create harmful chemicals. However, this type of pan is inexpensive and lightweight which makes it great for slow simmering dishes like soups or sauces that require a lot of liquid to cover food without scorching it on the bottom.
- Nonstick: Nonstick pans are made from Teflon-coated surfaces that help keep your food from sticking as you’re trying to flip, turn or remove them from the pan. This material also lets liquids slide off easily so if you make sauces in these pots they won’t burn at the bottom when reducing flavors down into thicker pastes before transferring them over to another pot or serving bowl. The downside here is that these pans are prone to scratching if you use metal utensils and certain acidic foods like tomatoes can cause the coating to degrade over time.
- Glass: Glass cookware is made from a variety of materials, such as borosilicate glass or tempered soda lime silica. This type heats up quickly but not evenly so it’s best for microwaving ingredients or using on an induction stove top since this material does not react with other metals that could be in contact with it while heating. The downside here is that glass will crack more easily than cast iron when subjected to rapid changes in temperature; some types of glass also contain dangerous lead which means they need special care before being used on food preparation surfaces (though safer versions exist).
- Ceramic: Ceramic pots and pans are made from clay that is fired at high temperatures. They retain heat well so they’re excellent for slow cooking dishes like soups, stews or braising meats but only when used on a stove top since this type will not work with an oven’s typical temperature settings (though there are some exceptions). Another downside here is that ceramic cookware must be hand-washed to prevent scratching the surface; it should never be placed in water while still hot because this could lead to corrosion from inside outwards.
- Silicone: These are among the most versatile types of cookware you can buy today thanks to their nonstick surfaces which makes them great for browning meat before finishing off in a sauce or frying eggs without them sticking to the pan. Silicone is also a flexible material that can be rolled up or folded while still maintaining its original shape, which makes it easy to store. The downside here is that silicone will melt if it comes in contact with high heat so you can’t use it for searing or sautéing.
Common Cooking Terms
- Acidulate: to add acidity to foods with ingredients such as vinegar, citrus juice or wine.
- Al dente: meaning “to the tooth,” these are pasta noodles that are cooked just enough to maintain their individual shape and flavor.
- Bake blind: this is a phrase referring to the process of covering meat with dough or baking paper before it goes in the oven. This does two things- one, it keeps juices from running out and burning onto your pan while cooking; secondly, because you’re not opening up the oven too often (because then all those heat waves escape) you also end up preserving more moisture.
- Baste: when food – such as chicken – is being prepared on a grill or barbecue, basting refers to brushing it periodically with marinade or other sauce for extra flavour.
- Beat: as opposed to “cream” which means mixing butter into sugar until light and fluffy, beating by hand refers to the process of using a spoon or whisk to mix together wet ingredients like eggs, butter and sugar.
- Blanch: this is another cooking term for boiling vegetables such as carrots in water until they’re just barely cooked through – it usually takes about two minutes. The reason for blanching is so that you can peel them more easily; however if you prefer crunchy veg then don’t bother!
- Braise: an old-fashioned word for what we call “slow cook” these days – basically involves searing meat before simmering with a liquid (usually stock) for hours on end not because slow cooker recipes are hard but rather because people who weren’t home during the day often relied on their stove/oven to cook dinner.
- Broil: to cook food – usually meat or fish – under intense heat, often with a grill on top these days people tend to use the word “grill” more frequently for both electric and gas cooking appliances. If you want something that heats up quickly in your oven then just swap out broiling pans for baking sheets!
- Bruise: this is another term used when we’re talking about fresh herbs like thyme, parsley and oregano- basically means crushing them by hand so their flavour will come through better.
- Caramelise: also known as sugar melting into a liquidy brown mass of goodness! This process can involve heating butter and sugar together over low heat until it’s just melted, stirring constantly or you could get a bit more adventurous and add some chicken stock to make it less sweet.
- Cooking instructions: basically anything from “preheat oven,” to “add one egg.” Instructions like this tell us exactly what we need to do in order for our food (or other dishes) come out looking and tasting right! Sometimes there will be measurements listed with them, other times they will be less specific.
- Crust: as in “crusty” bread, this is another term for something that’s been left on the counter too long (often because we forgot about it) aka overdone toast! If your pastry is getting too brown before baking, try brushing with an egg wash – this will form a sort of seal between crust and filling so that they don’t go soggy prematurely.
- Deseed: to remove seeds from a fruit such as watermelon or tomato- usually by cutting them out one at a time and putting into the trash can instead of down the garbage disposal which would cause clogs! There are also seedless varieties of each fruit for those who prefer them.
- Devein: when we talk about the inside of a shrimp, there’s always that vein running through which is tough and inedible so you’ll need to remove it with a small knife (or your finger if they’re really tiny). The word devein can also refer to removing seeds from other kinds of seafood like prawns or lobsters- just don’t forget to save the discarded bits!
- Dilute: while we might use this term mostly as an adjective for things that are light in colour, such as “diluted juice” it can also mean adding water or stock into any liquids – think soups and sauces! This process is called ‘reducing’ and can also be used for meats or stocks.
- Dust: as in the act of sprinkling a light layer of dry ingredients over wet ones, this is another cooking term that we use to add flavour without adding calories- think freshly ground black pepper on top! Another word you might see instead is ‘pinch’.
- Emulsify: when oil (or any liquid) needs to be mixed into something else completely solid (like mayonnaise), try blending them together by hand first before removing from heat – it’s easier than using an electric mixer. This process will take about two minutes but just keep stirring so everything gets fully combined. Folding refers to lightly mixing both halves of batter together until they’re well blended; alternatively, you could try whisking them.
- Fold: when we use the technique of ‘folding’ in baking, it means to gently mix together two ingredients and then pour this mixture back into the original container- such as folding egg whites into a cake batter or folded whipped cream with caramel bits! The word can also be used to describe how our hands move while sewing clothes.
- Garnish: meaning ‘to decorate’, this term is often used when we want to add a little something extra on top of dishes like desserts and entrees it may be anything from chocolate shavings to fresh herbs (think about adding some rosemary on top of your roasted vegetables!)
- Grease: usually refers to adding butter on top of something like a pan so that food will not stick but sometimes people might refer to greased hair (i.e.: hairspray) which is another way of saying “to comb your hair down.”
- Knead: kneaded dough is one that’s been worked against itself until smooth and elastic. It’s one of the best ways to create light and fluffy bread crusts!
- Marinate: this is a process that involves soaking meat in a mixture of herbs, spices, oil (or even alcohol!) so it becomes tenderized from all those flavours seeping into its pores. The word can also be used for other foods like vegetables or tofu- just keep them submerged in liquid until you plan on using them later.
- Pare: when we use this cooking term as ‘paring’ something down’, it means removing any unnecessary bits such as peels or seeds before making a dish – think potatoes or carrots. Another way people might refer to paring away at things is “to cut off.”
- Poach: this is a cooking technique that involves simmering food in water, stock or wine. It’s one of the best ways to make eggs and fish while retaining their natural flavours! There are also poached fruits like pears which can be soaked for up to an hour before adding into desserts such as cakes or pies.
- Recipe: a list of ingredients and instructions for making something. A recipe is not necessarily written by the person who intends to make it, but is rather written by someone who intends to share it with others. Recipes are usually given in a list format, and may or may not include measurements.
- Recipe book: this refers to either an electronic cookbook that can be accessed on the internet, or one of those old fashioned paper books that you keep in your kitchen! These books contain recipes from all sorts of cooking styles – some will only have desserts, while others might cover everything from appetizers to entrees. A recipe book can also refer specifically to historic dishes and how they were prepared centuries ago (in other words, pre-industrialized).
- Recipe card: these cards come as part of packages for most boxed cake mixes. They often serve as reminder notes if you ever stop to wonder how much of each ingredient to add, or what the steps are. They’re also a handy way for children in homeschools to learn about cooking without making a mess!
- Recipe software: these programs exist on your computer and contain recipes that you can access at any time. These are often programmed to track ingredients as well, so if you purchase an item while browsing the internet but forget it when you get home, this is where they’ll be stored.
- Reduce: when we say ‘reducing’ something- it usually means boiling liquids down so all its liquid ingredients evaporate – think soups, stocks and sauces where you’ll need to keep stirring once it boils until the contents reduce by half. This will help with concentration of flavour too but do take care not to leave them on high heat because they may burn!
- Scald: this word refers to heating milk just below the boiling point so that all the enzymes are still there but not burnt and will make it easier to digest. It’s used a lot in coffee or tea brewing too- just bring water up to 95 degrees Celsius before pouring over your ground beans or bags of leaves for about three minutes.
- Sear: by cooking on top of high heat, this is another way to seal juices inside meat while also giving a nice crunchy texture – perfect for steak! Just remember only cook each side for about five minutes max otherwise it might dry out although you can always add sauce afterwards if desired.
- Score: when we say ‘to score’ something like an eggplant (or any other vegetable), it means using either a knife or some form of tool such as a fork to make a pattern on the surface. This is done so that it can be cooked more easily using methods like grilling or roasting.
- Season: this word refers to adding salt, pepper and other seasonings like paprika while cooking – but also when we say ‘to season’ someone in another context, it means teaching them new things! When you’re given a recipe with ingredients listed before instructions (i.e.: seasoning-salt), they should always come after something else rather than at the start of your list.
- Shallow Fry: by frying food quickly over high heat which only reaches 160 degrees Celsius for less than five minutes, this will help seal all those flavours inside without overcooking or drying out meat.
- Shuck: this word is typically used for seafood because once you’ve shucked off the top layer of shell, there’s actually a better chance of it retaining all its natural flavours.
- Simmer: by boiling liquids at about 80 degrees Celsius or so, we can make sure that our ingredients don’t overcook and instead just dissolve in their own juices – perfect for soup bases! This cooling technique also means food will take less time to cook.
- Steep: when steeping something like tea leaves which are usually dried first before being steeped (i.e.: herbal tea), it means soaking them in hot water until they’re boiled then removed from heat completely- the process takes around five minutes up to ten depending on how strong you want your tea to taste.
- Stir: when we say ‘to stir’ something like a sauce or soup, it means stirring the liquid ingredients together in order to combine them. It’s also usually done with some sort of tool such as a whisk or wooden spoon- think about making tomato sauce! Stirring is one of the best ways to help season your dishes too because you can add flavour without needing salt and pepper if that’s not desired.
- Stir Fry: this cooking technique involves frying food quickly over high heat which only reaches 160 degrees Celsius for less than five minutes so they don’t dry out – perfect for things like vegetables! One thing to note is always make sure you have enough oil once there’s not enough left, then stop cooking.
- Whisk: a whisk is any tool with two handles that’s used to mix ingredients together, such as eggs or sauces. They usually have wires inside the structure so they can go through food easily- one of our favourites for making everything from scrambled eggs to soups!