We’d love to cook up delicious, hearty and wholesome meals every single day of the week, but the truth is, we don’t always have time. These timesaving kitchen tips and tricks will do wonders for you, your sanity and, most importantly, your belly.
Ten tips to save time in the kitchen
Into lists? So are we. Make one for your meals to help you prepare for your upcoming week. It’ll make shopping easy (no more walking up and down the aisles with reckless abandonment), and prepping (that’s step two) a breeze. Just think – gone will be the days of you getting home to an empty fridge and literally no idea what to cook at 6pm.
Think about how long it takes to make your favourite meal. First you’ve got to buy or source the ingredients, chop/peel/slice/dice, simmer/boil/fry/bake, plate, grate. There’s a reason why chefs ‘prep’ before service. Imagine all of your ingredients neatly prepared before you go to cook. Onions perfectly diced, carrot sticks finely julienned, eight-hour soup stock waiting to be boiled. Boy, would that be ideal. And it can be. It all boils down to prep (we’re so punny).
Make Sunday prep day.
All this slicing and dicing is all well and good, but it doesn’t mysteriously appear ready for you to cook. Hello, Sunday. You’re already getting yourself/your partner/the kids/the dog ready for the week ahead, so why not get your meals in order too? We like to think about it like this – would you prefer to spend an hour or two preparing for your entire week, or an hour every day preparing for a meal that night?
Sharpen those knives.
When was the last time you sharpened your kitchen knives? If you’re trying to saw through a tomato and end up crushing it, it’s time to get blunt (well, actually, the opposite). Once you’re knife’s sharpened and slicing through tom like Vinofood’s Merlot jelly, you’ll wonder why you never did it sooner.
Experiment with sous vide.
Meaning “under vacuum” in French, sous vide is the process of vacuum-sealing food in a bag, usually but in no means limited to meat, then cooking it in a water bath at a consistent temperature. The results? Incredibly tender meat that’s hard to achieve any other way. The best bit? Leave your food to bathe all day, come home, quick pan fry and voila!
And while you’re at it, you might as well get a slow cooker.
Again, the joys of pre-prepared cooking! Whip out a slow cooker, chuck your favourite ingredients in and leave to cook overnight or while you’re at work. When you get home, you’re guaranteed a delicious meal, no immense effort required.
No, we’re not kidding. We enjoy a sneaky bottle of wine here and there and we’ve got to admit, having a glass of vinowhile we cook does make the time fly by! Depending on what you’re cooking, you might want to add a generous splash from your bottle or glass. Spag bol’s an obvious alcoholic, but don’t think a hearty stew or even a curry are impartial to little tipple.
Pre-heat your pan.
Pre-heated pan = faster cooking time. It’s simple science. We’ll say no more.
Use your freezer.
Technology has come a long way since man discovered fire. Enter, dear freezer. It sure is useful for storing things like prepped soup stock, lemon juice and any herbs you’ve got growing in your veggie garden. Made a big batch of your favourite stew? Portion it up and store, ready for a quick meal mid-week.
Fake it ‘til you make it.
Ok, we don’t all love to cook. That doesn’t mean you can’t create magic in the kitchen. The easiest way to achieve magic? Opt for ready made products that cut down your cooking time. Think Vinofood’s range of speciality food designed to make cooking and entertaining quick and fun. Some call it cheating, we call it smart thinking. Here’s some recipes to get you started.
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