Cooking can be quite a joy, once you have mastered a few basic skills. This article is designed to help your hone your cooking skills. The fun will truly start once you have these items under your belt.

Protect your spice and herb collection by storing your jars at room temperature in a dark place. Elements such as light and heat can cause your herbs to lose flavor quickly, resulting in less taste being added to your favorite dishes. You can plan on ground herbs and spices retaining their potency for a year. Spices that are kept whole can keep their flavor for about three, four or five years. They’ll remain fresh longer if stored properly.

If you are working on creating more home-cooked meals, try the library for cookbooks that offer a variety of easy recipes that will be fun to prepare. Try some recipes and be patient as you develop your skills.

Do you feel you are being wasteful by discarding molded fruit? Is it possible to simply cut out the moldy, rotten part of the fruit? Unfortunately, there isn’t any way to salvage fruit that has begun to rot. Toss it in the trash; you may not be able to see all of the areas that are affected by the mold, and if you eat any of it, you can become very ill.

You can make healthier mashed potatoes with the same taste and texture you love by substituting cauliflower for potatoes in equal proportions. Their bland flavor blends effortlessly with the potatoes while taking flavor from the other ingredients. As a bonus, cauliflower is the same texture and color as potatoes, so no one will be the wiser when you improve the nutritional content and lower the caloric content of your mashed potatoes.

No matter what you are cooking, fresh ingredients are always much better than dried or frozen ingredients. Whenever possible, incorporate fresh ingredients; they enhance the flavor of other ingredients and may even be less expensive.

The downside of tasty ingredients like garlic and onions is that their flavors and smells transfer to your hands. Try rubbing your hands on stainless steel when they smell from an odoriferous cooking ingredient It both cleans your hands and helps to avoid transfer the odor to other foods.

Save time and money by freezing leftover sauce in ice cube trays in the freezer. This makes it easier for you to make a quick meal which you can reheat at a later time. The sauce is still good after it is frozen.

Using chicken broth is something you can try when you’re making vegetables. The broth will give the vegetables a delicious, warm flavor as well as extra moisture so they don’t stick to the pan. Chicken broth costs very little, and can be bought at most any grocery store.

As this article has demonstrated, culinary skills are easy to improve and expand. You just need to time and the drive to improve your skills. Take the tips you have learned from this article and you will gain the skills necessary to move around the kitchen with simplicity. If you possess the right attitude, cooking can be a lot of fun!