Learn to create tasty meals!
Tip #3 – Learn Skills to Create Tasty Meals – Over the last 2 years of health coaching, the most common complaint I hear is that of not knowing how to prepare and cook healthy food. Eating well is definitely more difficult, if you look at a recipe and just the terms cause feelings of panic. Thankfully, in this age of technology and how-to videos on every subject, you can learn how to do just about anything you put your mind to! The WikiHow channel on YouTube has over 400 videos listed on its Food playlist, showing you how to master skills in the kitchen than may seem out of reach right now. Not one for technology? Find someone whose cooking you admire, and ask for some lessons! No one is ever sad about having an extra set of hands in the kitchen. Memories of spending time in the kitchen, learning how to cook, are some of my favorite from growing up. Having someone teach you the skills, allows for them to guide you, share extra bits of knowledge, and hopefully help you avoid some of the mistakes they made when learning to cook.
If you are already comfortable in the kitchen, learning a new cooking method can help keep your meals exciting. Or learn what flavors compliment each other, and try a new dish!
But for those that are new to the cooking world, here is a list of commonly used cooking terms that will give you a jump start to developing your new culinary skills.
Bake: cook food surrounded by hot air, usually in an oven
Boil: cooking food in a rapid boiling water
Broil: to cook with direct heat, usually under a heating element in the oven
Chop: cut food into smaller pieces of no particular size or shape
Dice: cut foods into uniform square pieces
Deep-fry: cook food by submerging it in hot oil
Grate: rub food against a serrated surface to create fine shreds
Grill: to cook with heat directly over hot coals or another heat source
Mince: cut food into very small pieces
Roast: to cook uncovered with dry heat in the oven
Sauté: to cook quickly in a small amount of fat, stirring so the food browns evenly
Simmer: cooking food in a hot liquid that is bubbling but not boiling
Slice: to cut through or across into slices, generally of uniform size
Steam: to cook with steam heat over (not in) boiling water, or wrapped in foil or leaf (such as lettuce or banana leaves) packets over boiling water or on a grill
Stew: to cook in liquid, such as water, juice, wine, broth or stock, in a tightly covered pot over low heat
Stir-fry: to cook small pieces of meat, poultry, seafood, tofu and/or vegetables in a very small amount of oil, perhaps with added broth, over very high heat, stirring as you cook
Zest: to scrape the outer rind of a piece of citrus fruit for flavoring
Cooking is a skill that can greatly impact your health. When trying new recipes, look for recipes that call for only small amounts of oil. Also opt for methods other than boiling when it comes to vegetables, as boiling can strip some of the nutrients leaving the nutrients in the water. Keep in mind that practice makes perfect. Cooking is an art and takes time to develop as a skill, but is a skill that will pay off in dividends for years to come.
Watch Promise Community Health Center’s Social Media pages as Amanda breaks down each concept and gives us tips on how we can start making some new healthier habits! And call 712-722-1700 to make an appointment with one of our Promise providers to get a referral to see one of our Promise Health Coaches today!