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Cooking Tips

I started this page to share all the cooking related tips I learned from my mom, family and friends. Some of them I learned by myself through experience. I will also share some tips I heard and saw on TV.
  • If you accidentally poured too much water while cooking dal or vegetables, don't just throw the extra water away. Save it and use this energy-rich water to make rasam or sambar. It not only enhances the taste but give good nutritional value to rasam/sambar.
  • Peeling a Plantain is a head-ache sometimes. So here is a neat trick. Just cut the edges from top and bottom portions of plantain and put it in the pressure cooker while cooking dal/rice. After the cooker is done, remove plantain and allow cooling down a bit. Then the plantain’s skin comes of easily just like a ripe banana.
  • If you peel a plantain in traditional way with a peeler/knife, you might notice the hands become little blackish afterwards. To avoid this, apply some oil on your hands while peeling plantains. It really works!
  • Don’t add salt to tomatoes while they are cooking. This will make the tomatoes become watery and mushy. Always add salt after the tomatoes are cooked, but if you prefer them to be mushy then you may add salt while cooking.
  • If the rasam/sambar becomes too sour with too much tamarind, add a teaspoon of sugar to lessen the sourness.
  • If you accidentally put too much salt in curries, don’t worry! Just peel and cut a potato and add 1 -2 pieces to the curry while cooking. Potatoes absorb the excess salt easily. You may remove the potato pieces after the curry is done.
  • Add one or two drops of oil while cooking rice to make the rice less sticky.
  • When boiling milk in a steel vessel on stove-top, there is a chance that milk burns easily and clings to the bottom of the vessel which makes cleaning of the vessel so tiresome. To avoid this, add little amount of water at bottom first and then add milk.
  • Here is how I store green chilies fresh for a longer time. I just remove the stalks, wash, place in a Ziploc bag and freeze them.
  • I use the same trick given above to store the herbs like Cilantro and Curry Leaves. I wash these herbs (chop cilantro) and place in a Ziploc bag and freeze. This way they remain fresh for a longer time.
  • If you happen to spill oil on the counter by accident, just sprinkle little bit of maida which absorbs the oil very quickly. Just wipe off the maida later.
  • To remove the bitterness in bitter gourds: sprinkle some salt and water on the pieces and keep aside for some time. Squeeze off all the water when cooking bitter gourd pieces.
  • Add a small ball of Tamarind to the hot oil to prevent overflowing while deep-frying.
  • To make softer Chapathis, add a little bit of milk while making the dough. Alternatively you can add 1 teaspoon of butter to chapathi dough to get softer chapathis.
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