Category Archives for Cooking

How to Cook Salmon: 4 Unbeatable Recipes

How to Cook Salmon: 4 Unbeatable Recipes

Salmon is very much one of the favorite types of fish out there, and with so many different ways to cook it, and more ways of complimenting it into certain dishes we wanted to show you 5 different ways that you can enjoy that next piece of Salmon that you guy from the local fishmongers, or grocery store. Take a look at these 4 unbeatable ways we have explained for you below.

First of all, you need to think about how much time you actually have to cook the Salmon, by this we mean; are you in a rush? Or are you preparing a spectacular dinner party where time doesn’t particularly matter?

Oven Cook the Salmon with Aluminium

Oven Cook the Salmon with Aluminium

The simplest way, and the quickest is to oven cook you salmon. With a little olive oil on the top and some sprinkling of black pepper and sea salt you are all ready to get underway.   For each half-an-inch piece of salmon you want to cook it for a good 4 – 6 minutes on each side, and usually you find that the thickest part of most salmons usually averages around the 1-inch mark, so you can have both sides cooked in around 15 minutes.

Watch out for:  The fish becoming less opaque, and use a fork to see if the fish is flaking (key signs the fish is cooked and ready to eat.)

Now you are ready to eat the salmon you can choose some extra dressings, the obvious choice is lemon and fresh herbs that really bring out some of the flavors of the salmon, but you can also try pesto and other herbs and spices that may be in your kitchen cupboard.

Place the Salmon in a Bag

Place the Salmon in a Bag

You would be surprised at just how much this cooking option works (with any meat or fish). Find a sealable bag and place you salmon inside, now start to dress the fish in a marinating sauce. You can use garlic, salt, olive oil, pepper, lemon juice etc.

Once you have done this start moving the bag around so the juices and ingredients all start to spread evenly and the salmon is fully coated for maximum flavour.

You can then add the salmon to a baking tray and then allow the fish to cook thoroughly before serving.

Note: Another option is to put the bag into a refrigerator for around half-an-hour prior to cooking, to allow the juices to really marinate the fish.

Grill Your Salmon

Grill Your Salmon

The third option is to grill your salmon which is another popular choice for many people, this step requires you to preheat your grill, and keep the temperature at a medium to high heat in order to give it those grill lines that run diagonally across the fish.

Prepare your salmon in the usual way with some salt, pepper and oil and then place it diagonally on the grill (for those grill lines). Whereas oven cooking requires about 4-6 minutes per half-an-inch, grilling usually takes 3 – 4 minutes so keep that in mind when you are cooking under a grill. Usually you can cook a 1-inch thick piece of salmon in around 6 – 8 minutes (don’t overcook it).

To make sure its cooked, look for that flakiness and make sure that the salmon I less opaque and more firm.

Watch out for: Make sure your grill grate is well oiled as the salmon can easily stick to this and ruin your presentation.

After grilling the salmon you can add yourself some lemon juice, and the serve it with herbs, broccoli or just eat it on its own as it came out of the grill…the choice really is yours!

Additional Tip: Pan Searing your Salmon

Pan Searing your Salmon

One method not used much is pan-searing, which can take as little as 6 minutes.  All you need to do here is coat a frying pan in cooking spray or oil and then increase the heat to a medium level so its not smoking but it is hot.

Add your salmon to the pan and then cook on both sides for 3 minutes. Again, you will need to check the salmon can flake in the center when you break it with a fork, and it should no longer be translucent to the eye.

Tip: Use a spatula to pick the salmon us as tongs or any other kitchen tool will break it (especially if you need a good presentation).

How to Cook Quinoa The Best Way: Our Secret Tips

How to Cook Quinoa The Best Way: Our Secret Tips

If you are not a fan of white rice or couscous then Quinoa could be the alternative you have been looking for, but take note that you need to cook it to perfection in order to benefit from its fluffy and light texture. If you have already cooked couscous or rice before then you are half way there to getting the consistency right for Quinoa but we are going to give you a little helping hand by showing you some quick and effective tips to cooking it the best way.

How to Cook Quinoa

Firstly the process of actually cooking Quinoa is straight forward, so here is the recipe that you will need to follow:

  • 1 cupful of Quinoa
  • 2 cupful’s of water

Put a saucepan onto your hob and turn up the heat to medium and add the 3 cups mentioned above to the pan. You want to keep them on a rolling low boil and cover the saucepan with a lid so the Qunoa is allowed to simmer. After about 15 minutes lift the lid and just check to see how things are going, what you want to see is most of the liquid being absorbed into the Quino, if there is still quite a bit of liquid leave the dish to simmer for another 5 minutes.

Once cooked, take the saucepan of the heat and then fluff the Quinoa with a fork, it should be light a fluffy and enough for a good 3 servings (or 3 cupfuls).

Useful Tips for Quinoa

Using Quinoa in the same way can get boring, just like any other food type really. What you want to do is look for new ways you can enjoy this food, but bring out different tastes of this nutty delicacy.

Tip 1: Toast Them

Toast Them

It may sound absurd but you can add a lot of flavour to Quinoa just by toasting it in a skillet and adding some oil. Do this for about 5 minutes so the uncooked Quinoa becomes a golden bronze color and then add it to the boiling water as you normally would (per our instructions above).  Notice the taste difference?

Tip 2: Alternatives to Water

Alternatives to Water

You don’t have to cook Quinoa in water, instead look for alternatives such as chicken stock or beef stock cubes that can give a little pizaz to the overall taste. Other flavors can include vegetable broths or mushroom broths, anything to add a little bit more excitement into your dish. Give it a try you won’t be disappointed.

Tip 3: It’s Not Just For Lunch

Alternatives to Water

Oh no, you can actually use Quinoa to make a really tasty breakfast cereal, much like you would with oats. By adding aromatic spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger you can really bring out the best from Quinoa and enjoy it as your first meal of the day.

Tip 4: Quinoa Lasagne Anyone?

Quinoa Lasagne Anyone?

If you are a vegetarian then have you ever thought of a quinoa packed lasagne instead of meat-free or noodles? You can add cheese, herbs, vegetables and Quinoa to each layer of your lasagne and even thought it sounds stodgy it’s actually a very low calorie dish, and tasty too, Just give it a go and see what you think.

Tip 5: Keep an Eye on the Time

Keep an Eye on the Time

This may sound like an obvious pointer but take it from us, it’s the most important because of the way Quinoa cooks. Usually if you follow the 2 cups of water and 1 cup of Quinoa instructions it takes 15-20 minutes to cook on the correct heat, but don’t just take that for granted. Always lift the lid to make sure that your Quinoa isn’t drying out too much, or the water isn’t being absorbed as quickly as you need it to.

Cooking Quinoa can take some practice, but like anything, the more you do it the better you are going to become by learning from your previous attempts. Soon enough you will be cooking the perfect Quinoa dish before you realize it.

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