Cooking is the story of a set of basic techniques that every self-respecting cook must know, and try to master. And this, whether the cook is an amateur or a professional.
It is necessary to know how to identify certain food products of regular use (fruits, vegetables, meats, herbs, fish, …). Just to know their aspects and their names. The best place to see food regularly is of course the market, that is why it is advisable for amateur and professional cooks to go to the market often enough to develop their knowledge of gastronomic products, and especially to know how to identify them, their seasonality, characteristics, origins, etc…
All you need to know about vegetables
The word vegetables are given to all vegetable plants that are used, in part or in whole, in the kitchen for the purpose of making certain culinary preparations. Mushrooms are considered vegetables despite the fact that they are not vegetations but mushrooms.
There are several types of vegetables:
Leafy vegetables of which only the leaves are eaten, such as salads, cabbage, spinach, fennel, sorrel, rhubarb, endive, lettuce, lamb’s lettuce, etc… Root vegetables such as carrots, turnips, beet, radishes, etc… Dry vegetables of which only the seeds are edible. Such as lentils, beans, split peas, dry, white or red beans, chickpeas, soybeans, etc… Flower vegetables such as artichokes cauliflower broccoli capers Stem vegetables such as leek, asparagus, bamboo shoots … Fruiting vegetables such as eggplant, avocado, cucumber, watermelon, tomato … Fine herbs that are generally used as a condiment, parsley tarragon chives bay leaf basil chervil And finally, tubers like a sweet potato the Jerusalem artichoke. They are vegetables from a biological point of view, but from a nutritional point of view, they are considered starchy.
Nutritional values of vegetables :
Vegetables are rich in vitamins and minerals, such as iron and magnesium, and they contain small amounts of fat. Vegetables are not high in calories and contain a lot of dietary fiber which is essential for digestion. It is therefore advisable to eat vegetables daily.
It is best to eat fresh vegetables, but they are commercially available either in canned, tinned, or jarred form, or frozen, or raw ready to use peeled and washed, or steamed and sterilized or pasteurized.
When vegetables are not fresh, they are sold with an expiry date.
Preliminary work for the use of the vegetables :
Raw vegetables contain residues of mud, chemical traces of pesticides fungicide fertilizer, as well as traces of insect passage or even insect larvae or eggs. It is therefore imperative and very important to wash vegetables thoroughly before use.
To wash the vegetables, they should be immersed in a large quantity of water, taking care not to soak them for too long. Then we braise them, delicately according to their fragility. Finally, we train them by taking them by hand and putting them in a sieve. One starts again several times this operation until the water of rinsing becomes clean and clear.
Use of fats in cooking and baking
Fats are used a lot in cooking and baking, here are some uses and information about fat
The melting point is the temperature at which a fatty substance changes from a solid to a liquid state. Some fats of vegetable origin used in cooking:
Sunflower oil, soybean oil, olive oil, copra.
The smoke point is the temperature at which a fatty substance burns and becomes carcinogenic. Some fats of animal origin used in cooking:
Butter, lard, goose or duck fat,the beef white.
Some fats of mixed origin used in cooking :
Cooking margarine and margarine for puff pastry. Some oils not recommended for cooking:
Walnut oil,hazelnut oil,and rapeseed oil.
Butter is the fat used to make a roux.
There are three origins of fat?
vegetable, animal and mixed.
The fats that can be used to cook French fries are:
Sunflower oil,copra,the beef white.
The ideal storage place for oil is economic. To season a salad the fat must be of vegetable origin and fluid. It is important to know the composition of oil in order to know its use and for allergy problems.
The interests of oils composed of different ingredients are:
To increase their smoke point and bring different vitamins. The different fats do not all have the same use, some do not stand cooking. Some mentions that you must find on an oil label:
Commercial brand,composition,mode of conservation,maximum temperature. The recommended fat for cooking fried apples is duck or goose fat for its fragrance. The fat recommended for cooking fish is olive oil. Copra comes from palm trees.
Stuffings, compound butter, marinades, short broths, etc.
Stuffings, compound butter, marinades, and court bouillons are preparations that allow the flavor of food, to enhance its taste, to add texture or flavor. It is therefore important for any apprentice cook to know how to prepare and use them.
Marinades are liquid preparations in which food is immersed with the purpose of:
To give it flavor,tenderize it,and to extend the time of its conservation
Marinades fall into three categories:
Raw marinade, cooked marinade, instant marinade.
An instant marinade consists of :
Oil,lemon juice,thyme,and laurel.
A raw or cooked marinade consists of :
Aromatic garnish,Oil,And vinegar
Compound butter :
Compound butter is made from butter to which an aromatic component is added to add flavor. Compound butter is classified as follows:
Cold compound butter, with either raw or cooked ingredients,And butter composed hot then cooled.
Butter Maître hotel and snail butter are kinds of butter composed of raw ingredients.
Bercy butter and hotel butter are kinds of butter composed of cooked ingredients.
Compound butter can be kept for 3 days at +3°C.
To make a butter made of cold cooked ingredients, you must first work the butter to transform it into ointment butter, then mix it with the cooked ingredients, and final season.
The classification of fat fillings is :
Muslin stuffing,simple or common stuffing,Pâté stuffing,gratin stuffing.
The muslin fillings are used to stuff preparations and to make terrines.
American stuffing is used to stuff small poultry (pigeons, quails…).
The classification of court bouillon is :
Classic court bouillon,swimming,short simple broth,short white broth.
We use the short white broth for fish whose color we want to keep (turbot, haddock …).
The swim is a short broth that is used to cook fish or shellfish. It must be used hot.
The basic elements that make up the swim are :
Basic kitchen backgrounds. Sauces, White, Brown, Fish Fumet, Veal Juice
The funds are used as a base in many culinary preparations such as sauces, gravies, velvets, and wetting liquid.
Bottoms are liquid preparations and are obtained by cooking two types of elements by immersion in water:
aromatic garnishing elements and elements of animal origin such as bones, trimmings, bones, carcasses, offal, …
Here are some definitions and information about core funds
The difference between brown and white backgrounds is the fact that the ornaments and bones must be colored to make the brown background, whereas for the white background they are used directly without coloring beforehand.
There are 4 basic backgrounds :
Brown funds,white background,fish aroma,smoked shellfish.
Cooking times :
The bottoms are cooked for 4 hours. And the smokes are cooked for between 30 and 45 minutes. Funds can be stored for 3 days at +3°C. And to do so, a cooling process must be carried out in less than 2 hours in the cell.
IFP* bottoms are used for : (* Intermediate Food Product) Saves time,restaurants do not always have the raw material, ease of use, hygiene.
A meat glaze is a bottom reduced to a very syrupy consistency.
Some examples of white sauces:
Béchamel sauce,Poultry velouté,calf velvet soup,fish velouté.
The classification of the basic sauces is:
White sauces,Brown sauces and other sauces.
Examples of brown sauces :
Bound brown background,Spanish sauce,brown poultry stock bound.
The classification of sauces is :
Unstable cold sauce, Stable cold sauce,Emulsified hot sauce,Semi-coagulated hot sauce.
Examples of semi coagulated hot sauces :
Bearnaise sauce, hollandaise sauce.
Examples of emulsified hot sauces :
White butter, melted butter.
Some starch-based connecting elements: Corn starch,flour,vegetables.
Some protein binding elements :
A handled butter is ointment butter and flour used to rectify the bonds.
The differences between gelatine and agar are :
Gelatine is of animal origin and does not support cooking,agar-agar is a vegetable and must be cooked to act. It is important to personalize a semi elaborated sauce to avoid standardization of taste and customer fatigue.
The basic ingredients that make up a mayonnaise are :Egg yolk,mustard,oil,salt, pepper.
Eggs are used a lot in cooking and baking. In cooking, they can be found in different types of preparations, such as omelets, fried eggs, hard-boiled eggs, poached eggs…
And in pastry we use eggs, for example, to make creams, like custard, buttercream…, to make cakes like the four quarter, spoon cake…, to make pasta like pancake batter and choux pastry, and for many other preparations.
Cooking of eggs
Eggs can be cooked in the shell or out of the shell. Here are some ways to cook eggs in the shell :
Hard-boiled eggs, calf Boiled egg.
And here are some ways to cook eggs out of the shell :
unmixed :Fried eggs, Poached eggs, And eggs casserole.
Mixed :In flat omelet,Rolled omelet,And Scrambled Eggs
Constitution of the eggs
There are 6 elements constituting an egg as shown in the following diagram:
The shell, the shell membranes, the inner tube, the albumen, the yolk, And the chalazes.
The categories of eggs
Some varieties of eggs are very expensive, for example, caviar eggs, and snail eggs.
Eggs are considered extra fresh if their laying date is less than or equal to 9 days, and they are considered fresh if their laying date is less than or equal to 28 days. Extra-fresh and fresh eggs are class A. Other eggs, such as those used in the food industry, are class B.
The size of an egg has an incidence in pastry making because depending on the weight it varies the amount of egg in the recipe. There are 4 egg sizes:
The caliber S – (small) when the eggs weigh less than 53g, The M – (medium) size when the eggs weigh between 53 and 62g, L – (large) when the eggs weigh between 63 and 72g, The XL size – (very large) when the eggs weigh more than 73g.
There are 4 modes of hen rearing, each mode is designated by a number :
0: organic farming, 1: outdoor breeding, 2: ground rearing, 3: breeding in cages.
Other important information about eggs
A Canadian is a box of 360 eggs (12 plates of 30 eggs).
The criterion of the freshness of a hard-boiled egg is the yolk centered in the center of the egg.
The criteria of the freshness of a fresh egg are the small inner tube, the yolk curved and centered the white firm.
It is important to follow the name of the egg with the name of the species because if nothing is specified, it is called a hen’s egg.
Some compulsory information on the packaging:
The DCR, the trademark, AB logo, weight and quality category, storage conditions.
In the catering and food industry, so-called egg products are often used. These are eggs marketed without their shells. Different processes are used to preserve the egg products:
Refrigeration, freezing, dehydration, or brine.
There are many advantages to using egg products in the kitchen, for example:
Saving time, labor, raw materials, etc. to have a bacteriological guarantee The quality of the products is constant Removal of the contact with the shells Ease of use and storage
But there are also disadvantages to using egg products such as :
the fact that it is necessary to comply with the respect of the temperatures and especially to be careful not to break the cold chain Storage rules and modalities must be respected And they have an average quality compared to eggs.
The unit of measurement is the degree Celsius (symbolized by °C). Water, for example, freezes at a temperature of 0°C and thus becomes ice. And begins to boil at a temperature of 100°C and thus becomes steam. Between the temperatures 0 and 100°C water is in a liquid state. This measure is used a lot in egg preparations and in the cooking of sugar.
The unit of measurement is the kilogram (symbolized by the kg). Other sub-units can be used such as gram (g) or milligram (mg).
The volume is measured in liters (symbolized by l), this type of measurement applies mainly to liquid products.
Other sub-units can be used such as milliliter (ml), deciliter (dl), or centiliter (cl).
The peculiarity of water :
Depending on its temperature, water can take either a liquid form, solid (ice cubes 0°C) or gaseous (steam 100°C).
1 kg of water corresponds to the volume of 1l (and therefore 1 ml of water corresponds to 1g). This is very practical because if in a recipe we have to use 250 ml of water and we don’t have anything to measure, we can use the food scale and take 250g of water.
Preparing aromatic herbs
Aromatic herbs are used a lot in the kitchen to perfume or decorate. Depending on their nature and use, one must be able to recognize them and then know how to sort, wash, drain, chop, crush and chop them.
Aromatic herbs are often used in the form of bouquet garni to flavor preparations such as stocks or sauces. The bouquet is a package tied with a sprig of thyme, a bay leaf, and a few stalks of parsley as a base. One can add green of leek, celery, or other aromatic grass.