The tales of some old wives never go out of fashion, like “a watched pot never boils” and “you are what you eat”. Just like some old-fashioned cooking tips are still worth using in your modern kitchen. Some of these tips are from aha while others are from duh, but all are still relevant, despite the fact that home kitchens have all the latest gadgets and appliances.
We interviewed chefs and other cooking experts for their views on whether these old-school techniques still hold up today and everyone cheered on. Here are 15 clever and creative old-fashioned cooking tips that still hold true. Get ready for transport back to your grandmother’s linoleum-floored kitchen. Also, don’t miss 15 old-fashioned cooking tips you should never use and find out how 16 celebrities make the ultimate bowl of oatmeal.
This tip may be well known, says Anne Grossman, founder of Rebel Daughter Cookies, but it’s worth repeating. “Chill that dough. If you want a thicker cookie, solidify the butter before baking. In fact, try pre-dancing the dough and then freezing it, and letting it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Put the cookies in a cold oven. possible. This gives the butter a fighting chance against the hot oven. “
A wooden spoon is softer and can mix better than a metal or plastic spoon, says Michael Cook, retired chef, food connoisseur, former owner of two restaurants and blogger at My Conscious Eating. A wooden spoon also doesn’t conduct heat, which means you can use it to mix sauces without them heating up too quickly.
Professional cooks always do this and, no doubt, your grandmother did too. “Keep your leftovers, then simmer them in a large pot of water for a homemade vegetable broth,” says Emily Eggers, a trained chef at the Institute of Culinary Education and owner of Legally Healthy Blonde.
The salt helps the pasta bond with the sauce for a thicker texture. “It dissolves and is also absorbed by the paste to give it an extra flavor. A step not to be missed,” says Aysegul Sanford of Foolproof Living.
“Fruits and vegetables that ripen at the same time of year taste great together,” says Clare Ivatt, founder of Kitchen Time Savers. Recipes that use these types of combinations will be more successful – peppers combined with tomatoes, squash and sweet corn, kale and squash are all great combinations.
This classic Old World cooking technique from the Italian region of Emilia-Romagna (considered the epicenter of Italian cuisine by chefs, historians and culinary travelers) is a must for home chefs. Use this advice when making fresh (not canned) pasta, says chef Wendy Cacciatori, a native of Bologna and the owner of Via Emilia 9 in Miami and Nonna Beppa.
In New York. Most of her dishes were handed down from her grandmother: tortellini in broth, tagliatelle alla bolognese and hand-cut chicken breast with artichokes. “The water washes away the natural flavor of the pasta,” says Wendy, “while the broth, preferably vegetable and beef, adds considerable flavor to any pasta dish, even if you simply serve it with fresh butter and cheese.”
Since chicken tends to dry out during cooking, this is another classic Old World tip that results in a succulent chicken. “As it dips, the milk helps to both soften and add moisture,” says chef Wendy. “This also works well when cooking turkey.”
When you rinse, you wash away the starches. And the sauce will not adhere well to the pasta. “Alternatively, finish cooking the pasta in the sauce, with some of the reserved pasta cooking water,” says Brian Theis, author of cookbooks The Infinite Feast: How to Host the Ones You Love, and chef and food blogger of The Infinite Feast. theinfinitefest.com.
Rely on your senses as you cook, for smell, color, texture, taste, not just the recipe. “And always taste as you like,” says Theis.
“A blunt knife is more dangerous than a sharp knife,” says Theis.
If you are cooking beef or lamb, before putting it in the oven to the desired temperature, brown it in a pan. “It will seal the flavor and make sure that when the juices flow, they add flavor instead of going to waste,” says Christina Russo, co-founder of The Kitchen Community. It’s a tip she collected from her grandmother, she says.
When you cook a saucepan or stew in a pot, as long as there is enough liquid, the longer you cook it at a lower temperature, the better it will taste. “Long, low and slow was a rule my grandmother swore by, and it’s a rule that I continue, too,” says Russo of The Kitchen Community.
This is an old-fashioned cooking tip that awakens the childhood memories of Chris Viaud, semifinalist of Top Chef 18 and James Beard of 2022. As a child, Viaud helped his Haitian mother make dinner every night by grinding herbs and spices in a pilon, or mortar. He still uses this technique to prepare his Ansanm Sunday dinners at Greenleaf, his restaurant in Milford, New Hampshire.
Read the entire recipe before starting. “Quickly scrolling through a recipe only increases the chances of messing things up, like skipping a step or using the wrong measurement,” says Lori Bogedin, chef / owner of Twigs Cafe.
Ask your fishmonger for fish clippings which are the remaining parts of the fish after they are filleted. “Homemade fish broth has subtle aromas and flavors that cannot be imitated in canned or canned supermarket supplies,” says Craig Fear, author of New England seafood soups.