Special Report

23 Surprising Cooking Tips You Learn at Culinary School

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11. Using the right oils

Different oils have different smoking points. If you overheat oil, it can ruin the flavor. Extra virgin olive oil has a lower smoking point than regular olive, vegetable, or canola oils. Neutral oils — like vegetable or canola — are good for searing. You can mix olive oil with neutral oil to bring up the smoking point but preserve the flavor.

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12. Keeping fish moist

An easy trick to keep fish moist is to salt it 10 to 15 minutes before cooking. This will help make the fish more firm and keep the moisture inside. It’s important to know that most fish does not need to be cooked at high temperatures. Poaching and steaming are good methods for cooking fish.

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13. Grilling the perfect steak

Blotting dry both sides of the meat with paper towels before cooking helps to form a crust. It won’t happen if there’s too much moisture on the surface. Also, get your pan or grill (or oven) as hot as you possibly can if you want that caramelized crust.

14. Making scraps useful

Scraps are great for making stock. You’ll kill two birds with one stone: Making your own stock is cheaper than buying it from the store and you’ll cut down on waste.

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15. Letting meat rest

Almost anyone can make the perfect grilled steak if you are patient and let it rest — both after seasoning and again before serving. Otherwise, the juices will leak out when you cut it.

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