There are those who say that cooking is good for the soul, takes stress and calms you down. There’s nothing better than waiting for the weekend to come and having that late Saturday afternoon barbecue or that special lasagna on Sunday with the family. However, to  be a good cook  there are some skills and competences that must be learned early on.

Some of them are: putting hygiene first – both personal and food, keeping the countertop organized and clean, being patient and willing to learn new things, having knife skills, among other examples.

Thinking about those who love cooking, we have prepared this post with 5 skills and abilities that every good cook needs to have. Learn where to focus your development to be a notorious chef!

1. Maintain proper organization and sanitation

Hygiene must always come first. Before starting to cook, wash your hands well with soap, dry them and rub alcohol in gel. Then proceed with cleaning the cooking utensils you will be using. Food must also be sanitized: vegetables and vegetables must be washed and drained, and meats such as chicken must be soaked in salt, all to ensure that no pesticides or bacteria are consumed.

It is extremely important to never forget to perform these steps, as a poorly washed spoon, a poorly sanitized pan, a vegetable that went unnoticed, can cause complications such as  food poisoning . Always preserve your health and that of those who will eat your food.

Another tip is to always keep the utensils in their proper place when cooking. While the food on the stove cooks, wash the dishes, thus avoiding the unnecessary accumulation of dirty items on the countertop. Organize the pots and ingredients  you will use so you don’t get lost in the recipe. Maintaining good discipline will make your cooking life much easier.

Below, we’ll give you some recommendations on how to sanitize a skillet, how to restore the shine to pans, and how to remove the smell of onions and garlic from your hands.

How to prevent the iron skillet from oxidizing

One way to prevent your frying pan from oxidizing when washing is to avoid using common detergent, choose to use coarse salt. It will remove odors and will not allow it to oxidize. The method is very simple, pour the salt into the pan and, with the help of a sponge or a cloth, rub it until clean. Rinse it off and dry it well.

How to remove the odors that get on your hands

It seems that the smell of onion and garlic are forever in your hands, but calm down, there is a very easy way to solve this! You can use half a lemon or a little salt and rub them into your hands. They removed all the smell. Another option is to run both hands on some  stainless steel utensil , such as a spoon, knife or pan.

We talk a little more about the advantages of stainless steel  in a post on our blog, it’s worth checking it out!

How to properly clean the wooden board

To properly sanitize the wooden board, pass a handful of coarse salt on the surface and leave to act for 10 to 15 minutes. After the waiting time, rub half a lemon and let it dry. This way, you will leave the board properly clean and free from the “impregnated” smell of food.

2. Handle the knife correctly

An exemplary cook knows how to properly use his kitchen knife. It’s still good to remember that a sharp blade presents less scratches than one without sharpening. With a properly sharpened knife (keep the  sharpener  on the bench), you don’t need to put as much force into the cut, which happens when the knife is “blind”, which can lead to an accident.

Choosing which knives to use inside the kitchen depends on a number of factors. With Damascus steel,  one of the best Damascus steel kitchen knives are made. There are several models, Damascus blades in steel and handle materials that offers smooth cutting experiences. On this subject, Ritzy Knives have crafted a super detailed post on how to choose kitchen knives, it’s worth checking it out!

After choosing the best cutting tools, skill is very important! Knowing how to chop vegetables, vegetables, among others, is essential to ensure optimal seasoning in your food. The first tip is related to the chopping board, be it any material. So the board doesn’t shake when cutting the ingredients, wet a small cloth or a piece of paper towel and place it under the utensil. This will ensure it stays in place and doesn’t slip.

Extra tip:  when cutting any round vegetable or vegetable, for convenience, make a small cut underneath, thus creating a flat surface. This way the ingredient will be firm when chopping it.

How to cut onions in an easy and simple way

Let’s briefly teach the Brunoise cut for onions. A super easy way that leaves the vegetable in the shape of cubes, great for preparing rice, for example.

  • Cut the onion in half lengthwise, preserving the root;
  • Make straight parallel cuts lengthwise;
  • 1 or 2 parallel cuts horizontally, without coming close to the root;
  • In guillotine movements (from top to bottom), finish making parallel cuts across the width and remove the root

Okay, now you have onions in small cubes in a very simple way.

3. Understand how weights and measures work

For a recipe to come out in the correct way it was created, it is necessary to strictly follow all the ingredients in their proper measures. For this, the cook must have items such as:

  • Scale for weighing food;
  • Cup meters;
  • Cups with measurements.

Only with precision meters can we guarantee that the recipe will be successful, and that it will not be just an adaptation. Remember: every gram/ml matters!

4. Know how to use the correct seasonings

Using the most suitable seasonings requires knowledge of the flavor and aroma that each one presents, in addition, of course, to the notion of possible harmonisations. The amount of salt, sugar, as well as acidity and spiciness, are important elements when creating a “culinary alchemy”, which is why it is so important to experiment with doses and combinations.

Bet on natural seasonings and escape from industrialized ones!

We’ll show you a simple way to season chicken breast with balance, without exaggeration and always enjoying its natural flavor.

How to make brine to season chicken

You will need: 1 scoop of salt, 1 scoop of brown sugar and 1 clove of garlic.

  • Mix all these ingredients well into a paste;
  • Spread the mixture over the chicken pieces;
  • Finish by placing them in a container and covering them with water;
  • Refrigerate for 20 minutes.

A good chef needs to know that the use of olive oil is the best option when frying any meat, ensuring the health of those who will eat it.

Tip:  when frying chicken, steak or fish,  do not put the cold meat directly in the pan, prefer to wait a few minutes until it reaches room temperature, this will make it much tastier.

5. Understand that being a good cook requires a lot of learning

Making mistakes is normal, after all, no one is born knowing how to cook. The important thing is to  understand these flaws and improve them step by step . Take courses, workshops, participate in lectures. All knowledge is valid when it comes to improving your skills.

Don’t just stick to the cookbook, look for videos, have a good concentration  in the kitchen, so your skills will increase and you will become an excellent cook. Know that all the time new information comes up, look for it!

We hope you enjoyed today’s post and that it helped you understand the  skills and competences that are needed to become a good cook. Now, do you want to know  how to light barbecue grills like an expert ? Check out the content!