Take the Heat in the Kitchen: The Basic Cooking Methods

Cooking is art. Like any other art form, it deserves to be practiced to achieve perfection. It is a step-by-step process that needs total focus and concentration. From making the recipe and shopping for ingredients at the supermarket to the actual process of cooking, it takes time and patience. There is a lot to learn, but you could always start with the basics. Better yet, you could go for freshly prepared food delivery to see first how they look and taste like before getting started.

Here are the basic cooking techniques you need to know before advancing:

Dry-heat Cooking Method

Although this method can be applied to any type of food, it is important to note that they are classified further to emphasize methods that will be applied in cooking meat. This cooking method utilizes air or fat and is a technique that transfers heat without using any type of moisture to the food.

Food items that are cooked with this method contain a rich flavor since it requires a high temperature of heat, which results in the usual “browning” or caramelization of food. Some examples of this method are baking and roasting since hot air is used to create the heat. Other examples that fall under the dry-heat cooking method are grilling and boiling, sautéing and pan-frying, and deep-fat frying.

Moist-heat Cooking Method

cooking with pots

This method requires water, steam, wine, stock, or anything that involves cooking with moisture (hence the name). Compared to the dry-heat cooking method, this cooking method is usually done in very low heat — temperatures not rising than the boiling point of water.

This particular cooking method is used to emphasise the natural flavors found in food items compared to the rich ones in the dry-heat method, to increase the intake of proteins and reduce other flavors and vitamins that are soluble in water. Examples of moist-heat cooking method are poaching, boiling, simmering, and steaming.

The Combination (of the Two Cooking Methods)

By the name itself, this involves incorporating both dry-heat cooking and moist-heat cooking method. This is the method that greatly emphasizes both rich and natural flavors. Moreover, it is only usually cooked within reasonable temperature (not too hot, and not too cold).

Examples of the combination cooking method include braising and stewing.

  • Braising means cooking meat to reach a certain level of “brownness,” then adding liquid and covering the meat before putting it into an oven. This technique is usually done when you cook ribs.
  • Stewing, on the other hand, is a technique where a chunk of vegetables, chicken, meat, fish, herbs and spices, and other ingredients are mixed with water or stock and are cooked together on a covered pot — most often at a low temperature of heat. This technique is applicable to a large variety of ingredients.

Cooking takes a lot of patience, but having the right knowledge on these basic techniques would truly help in growing your skills. You may be a beginner now, but who knows what the future holds if you continue to learn more.

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