10 Things You Need to Know before You Start Gourmet Cooking
by Jonell Galloway
From the archives
Cooking is just applied physics and chemistry, with a little creativity thrown in.
1. Heat and temperature
Heat and temperature are important at every stage in cooking.
When browning or grilling meat or fish, oil should be very hot before adding it. This seizes it, thus preserving all its natural juices, which are where the flavor resides.
Slow cooking at low temperatures is best for tough, sinewy or fatty pieces of meat, while high temperatures are best for lean meats such as filet, where it is necessary to seize it, since it has no fat to keep it from drying out.
No matter what the ingredient, the flavor resides in its natural juices. That’s why fresh is always better than frozen. When you thaw food, part of its natural juices are lost.
There is an appropriate way to cook every ingredient, depending on its nature.