The secret’s in the sauce

Here my top secrets {not really} for making it look like I can cook

These are little trips and tricks my girls think I have mysteriously developed that make me a “natural” cook.  But not really.  Just my favorite 3 tips in the kitchen.

1.  Use Kosher salt.

I figure, if you are going to use salt anyway, use Kosher.  It has been blessed by the Rabbi and who couldn’t use extra blessings wherever they can get them?  Silly?  Perhaps, but I like having a box of Kosher salt nearby as I cook.

2.  To keep spaghetti noodles from being sticky – at all, in any way: PRE-COOK!

Here it is: pre-cook.  I found this out by accident.  I fixed too much spaghetti for company as a newlywed and my mom said, “No problem.  It can be frozen.”  This was revolutionary to me because there was never any leftovers in my large family growing up.  I had never seen her do this.

Throw it in a freezer bag (any excess pasta) and when you want to use it, throw it in a pot of boiling water long enough for the noodles to thaw, separate and heat through which is usually a minute or less (please do not re-cook them).  Then just drain and it is perfect for right now.

It still took years before I realized it wasn’t just a great way not to waste too-much cooked pasta, but that if you were going to serve 57 people a big Carbonara Penne and you didn’t want any stress about the pasta being perfectly al dente and ready at 7:05 pm on the dot, PRE-COOKING is your very best friend, ever!  Cook it the day before (fridge) or two weeks before (freezer), rinse it with cold water (do NOT add oil or butter-this keeps the sauce from coating the noodle later) and when you drop it into the boiling pot of water minutes before serving, you can be assurred it will be there for you, to perfection – at 7:03 on the dot (allowing time to plate and toss it with the sauce for a 7:05 presentation)!

cooking spaghetti

BUT the biggest and most wonderous part of this is – the noodles will never ever be sticky at all.  Never.  Even if they seemed a bit dry and sticky when you froze them.  They will be separate and you will look pretty darn amazing to all 57 people.

{BTW-Barilla Pasta is my fav}

3.  When baking, always be generous with shortening (or butter) and eggs.

Yolanda Gonzales taught me that.  It can both make everything denser and richer or lighter than air.  I am not sure how that happens, but if you’re baking and the eggs feel small, add more.

Nothing earth shattering here.  I don’t think they’ll give me my own cooking show, but yes, these are things I subscribe to.  Bon appetit!

2 thoughts on “The secret’s in the sauce

  1. Good advice. All recipes call for large eggs, which weigh 2 ounces apiece. When in doubt, crack them into a liquid measuring cup!

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