10 Solutions for Cooking Problems

10 Solutions for Cooking Problems

Who hasn’t had a few kitchen mishaps? No need to panic when you have a disaster. The most common mistakes are also the easiest to fix.

Overdone Pasta

Put in ice water or run under cold water for a few minutes to stop the cooking process and contract the starch. Then reheat in tomato sauce-the acid will perk it up further.Boil the pasta until half cooked, then put under cold water to stop the cooking. Cooking it al dente, but that will get you a much overcooked pasta as it will continue to cook inside the bird for almost an hour.

Sticky Noodles

Drain and cool immediately. Then return the pasta to a sauté pan, add at least one tablespoon of olive oil, and toss while reheating.I know I’m not alone when I say that when it’s time to make dinner, I find myself gravitating towards quick and easy meals, like my gluten free ten minute microwave enchiladas. I can’t help it.

Overcharred Steak

It’s all about spin, says John DeShetler, professor and chef at the Culinary Institute of America.  Rub it with a mix of ground pepper, chili powder, and garlic, then present as “blackened.” Or slice it up as is and use in stir-fries, salads, or fajitas.

Oversalted Soup

For clear soups, add some uncooked pasta or a raw, peeled potato to the pot. The starch will absorb much of the salt. Discard the pasta or potato after 15 to 20 minutes.

Dry Fish

Brush with a butter-and-lemon mixture, then sprinkle with chopped cilantro, marjoram, or savory. The sauce will add moisture, and “cool” herbs like these, flavor.

Overcooked Vegetables

Cool as quickly as possible, in ice water, just like with pasta, then reheat briefly in hot stock and squirt on some acid (lemon, lime, or even orange) before serving.

Stale Rolls

Wet your fingers and flick some water on them, then microwave in a microwave-safe cooking bag for no more than five seconds, or wrap in foil and heat in a 250-degree oven for ten minutes.Yeast rolls are best when fresh from the oven. Within just 24 hours of baking, they start to become stale. Because stale rolls are often unsuitable for eating with dinner, cooks sometimes use them to make bread puddings, bread salads and even homemade bread crumbs or croutons. But if you plan to bake your rolls a day or 2 before you plan to serve them, or if you prefer to eat the rolls leftover without putting them into some other recipe, you can heat them up to soften them and lessen staleness.

Limp Greens

Bathe them briefly in a bowl of very cold water (no ice, which will bruise the leaves), then wrap in a damp towel and refrigerate.

Overripe Fruit

When it’s too far gone for even fruit salad, use for smoothies, purees, sorbets, or ice cream.

Burned Bread

Scrape off the worst, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, and present as crostini; or use for croutons.

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