Cooking Tips And Tricks

Joined Aug 16, 2011
I am a beginner at cooking, So I need some tips and trick./img/vbsmilies/smilies/talker.gif  Feel free to post it here.

Thank You /img/vbsmilies/smilies/peace.gif
Joined Jun 27, 2011
You are in good company! There are many tips to be learned here, to be sure, but your question is a little broad. Could you narrow it down? Is there something in particular you need help making?
Joined Aug 16, 2011
You are in good company! There are many tips to be learned here, to be sure, but your question is a little broad. Could you narrow it down? Is there something in particular you need help making?

I need help for stir-frying i don't know how to toss the pan so the food in the pan cook evenly.

Thank You /img/vbsmilies/smilies/thumb.gif


Staff member
Joined Mar 29, 2002
As for stir frying, what's your equipment? The pan you use and your heat source effect stir fry technique.

Pan tossing isn't necessarily desirable and other methods will probably serve you better. Pan tossing itself is a technique that takes a fair amount of practice.

Grace Young gives good details for stirfrying in her book Breath of a Wok.

I summarize those and some other bits
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Joined Apr 3, 2008
You want us to discuss the technique of pan tossing?  I don't think I've ever formally studied that technique I just did it.  Trial and error my friend, just do it and learn as you go. 

The real technique behind stir-frying begins by having a good heavy wok and a very hot fire.  Lets say you want to make a stir fry with chicken, onions, carrots, mushrooms, bok choy, and ginger.  First put a little oil (I use rapeseed oil for stir fries) in the wok and add the ginger and onions.  Quickly stir fry and take out of the pan.  Then stir fry the mushrooms and take out of the pan.  Repeat this with the carrots, then with the bok choy, then with the chicken.  When each ingredient has been stir fried individually then put them back in the wok along with your soy sauce, sesame oil, and other sauce ingredients of your choosing and stir fry all together for no more than a minute. 

So that's the idea, each ingredient gets cooked on its own then combined at the end with the sauce.  Plus, having only one ingredient in the pan makes it much easier to toss the pan like the pros, although hardly necessary.
Joined Sep 18, 2008
Often unstated, one essential element in a stir-fry procedure is mise en place, the actual cooking is very rapid thus requiring everything to be fully prepped before starting to cook.
Joined Apr 3, 2010
Buy yourself a wok. Put the ingredient in that takes longest to cook, usually protein first  then go down the line of ingredients in time cooking order. Then add soy or wine or stock or sauce .


Staff member
Joined Jun 11, 2001
Don't overload the wok.  With home burners you can probably do 1.5 servings at best.  Any more will drop the heat way too fast.
Joined Feb 13, 2008
Just like life where trying to do too much will spoil the effort, it's important never to overload a pan or wok.  If you're doing a saute or one of the two high-heat stir fry techniques, cook you ingredients one by one, set them aside, and assemble after everything's done -- whether in the pan, the wok or the plate.  If you're working large quantities, you can even break ingredients down into batches. There are actually two kinds of Chinese stir fry -- chao and bao.  Chao uses a very high temp, frequently involves several different ingredients in the same wok, and often ends with the lid on and a little steaming.  Bao is hotter still, and usually more sequential. 

When you're done cooking, always clean your wok by adding a little water to it and swishing it around while the wok is still screaming hot.  Don't let it cool down before cleaning.  Ever.

A flat bottom wok works better than a round bottom wok on most European stoves because it gets the pan closer to the relatively weak heat source.  There are trade offs, but "net-net" I prefer a flat bottom. You want to avoid non-stick woks like the plague.  Similarly, you want to avoid their companion flimsy plastic wok tools.  Those tools -- which don't work -- are just one of the important reasons to avoid non-stick woks. Western minds are often unprepared for choosing the right size wok. Bear in mind that a 14" wok is a medium-small, the equivalent of a 10" skillet, suitable for cooking for two. 

Woks made to match western pan sets are a waste of time and money.  The best woks are relatively light carbon steel, or heavier cast iron.  I prefer carbon steel woks, because they're easier to lift and manipulate.  The best Chinese styles are made in China and tend to be fairly inexpensive, but don't look for great workmanship or finish.

If you want to learn to toss turn, the best way is to buy a big bag of rice or beans, go outside with a broom and your pan, and practice until your wrists scream.  Clean up the mess.  Have a glass of ice water or something.  Wait 20 minutes and do it some more.  You can hold the pan handle with one or two hands, it doesn't matter.  After you get good, learn to do it with the other hand.  Then practice with a towel wrapped around the handle -- since most of the time that's how you'll actually do it.

Choosing skillets for saute involves very similar considerations.  You want something light enough for you to handle, and tough enough to take metal tools.  Not surprisingly, western makers make the best western pans.   

Good luck,

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