Cooking, What is it Good For?
The best way to lose weight, get healthy, and stay lean is to cook your food using fresh, Paleo-friendly, ingredients. Awesome meals are always available when you know your way around a kitchen. My personal protocol is to cook once a day, make extra, and save the leftovers. I eat the leftovers for lunch, dinner, or both, the next day. This really is the secret to eating consistently clean! Always:
Whether you care about your health or not, you can still benefit by learning how to properly treat your ingredients and get more bang for your buck when cooking at home. learn how to prepare food at home using simple techniques that will wow and impress your friends.
Gone are the days of boring, bland meals and microwave dinners. Get in the kitchen, grab some healthy recipes, and make extra.
For simplicity sake we are going stick with the following tools and techniques:
One-pot meal or crock-pot meals are foolproof recipes and feature a style of cooking that includes throwing a bunch of ingredients in a pot and setting the timer and heat and walking away.
For the absolute novice who wants results, but cares little about learning how to cook, this is a great place to start.
Combine the oven with a accurate probe thermometer and you will have perfectly cooked proteins every time.
No guessing when your meat is done. This simple piece of equipment can take the guess-work out of cooking protein.
Get the mode with a wire cord that you can leave in the protein while it is cooking in the oven. It features a timer and alert setting to notify you when the desired temperature is reached. Then you can just walk away…
Kosher Sea Salt (Real Salt = favorite brand)
Salt is the single most important ingredient in the kitchen.
Processed salt is bad, Sea Salt is not.
Everything thing you have heard about salt and hypertension is: unproven nonsense. Yes, you should avoid processed salt used in processed foods and at restaurants, but home use of a quality sea salt is completely fine.
When you prepare your foods from scratch you are consuming a fraction of the sodium intake you would normally take in from the junk you find at restaurants or the grocery store.
These are perfect for multi-purpose cooking in the oven. Glassware is OK but can get very hot. These all-purpose sheet pans are used in professional kitchens and are only 20 bucks.
Check out my new book and start taking action in the kitchen! Action that will get you lean and mean while enjoying the food you eat!
Salt Is The Most Important Cooking Ingredient
Salt is the most important ingredient in the kitchen. Salt is not ‘bad’ for you, the good stuff anyways. Buy Kosher all natural sea salt and you are good to go. If you are cooking your food at home using quality ingredients you never, literally never, have to worry about salt in take. It’s the processed, iodized, and cheap salt used in restaurants that you need to avoid.
Below is a technique for salting. Yes, salting. It takes a bit of practice and with a little practice you’ll become a pro in no time.
Basic Salting Technique
- Grab a 3-finger pinch amount
- Hold hand over ingredient 8-12 inches and slowly release salt by rubbing fingers together while moving hand in a circular motion
- Turn ingredient as you salt to ensure even coverage
- Keep salt nearby in small prep bowls for easy pinch access
- Season throughout cooking process: Before, During, After
- Finish most dishes with a small amount of a finishing sea salt such as Fleur Del Sel
- Taste often! Adjust and taste again. This is the single greatest cooking tip I can give you.
The Crock-Pot: A Life-Saver For Busy People (Or Lazy People)
The Crock-pot is a beautiful, simple invention based on a simple concept: cooking with low heat for a long period of time. Food tends to respond better to lower temperatures. BBQ tastes amazing because of this concept. Braised meat falls off the bone because of this. Low and slow is the key to cook down big pieces of meat with lots of collagen. It melts down into yummy goodness. It’s also one of the easiest cooking methods around. You can even toss in a bunch of frozen chicken breasts into your Crockpot and after 12 you will have shredded protein for the entire week. That’s dope.
Basic Crock-Pot Technique
Step 1: Salt Protein
Step 2: Prepare veggies, herbs, spices, vinegar, beef, wine, stock, water
Step 3: Add all ingredients to pot
Step 4: Set time and heat level. Go enjoy life!
Step 5: Serve after timer goes off
- Always add an acid: Vinegar, Lemon Juice, Wine
- Taste near end of cooking process and adjust seasoning
- Experiment! Throw a bunch of ingredients in and cook on low for 8 hours….It’s hard to go wrong.
The Oven: The Most Under-Used And Appreciated Tool In The Kitchen
When I first started cooking I hardly used the oven. I started my cooking career by learning basic sauté and pan-frying techniques and thought the oven to be a mystery.
After learning the basic veggie-roasting technique below, it transformed my cooking and appreciation of the oven. The oven is powerful, simple to use, and hard to mess up.
The oven is also great for reheating leftovers.
How to reheat leftovers: Cover leftovers with some foil and reheat at 325 degrees for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes check temperature and return to oven until desired temperature.
Basic Oven Roasted Vegetables
- Preheat Oven for 10-15 minutes. *Most ovens take longer to heat to the desired setting so I always double the oven preheat timer setting
- Salt and oil vegetables in a mixing bowl. Toss to coat
- Place veggies on sheet pan and spread evenly
- Go enjoy life for 15-20 minutes
- Test doneness with knife or fork OR cook until a nice roasted char has formed on the outside
- Serve immediately and salt/pepper to taste
Basic Oven Roasted Protein
- Preheat Oven for 10-15 minutes
- Salt and pepper protein then sear on the stovetop 4-6 minutes per side until a nice crust is formed
- Place protein on a sheet pan or in a baking dish
- Insert probe thermometer into deepest part of meat. Run cord to outside of oven
- Set thermometer to desired temperature doneness
- Listen for alarm – then check protein
- Rest protein for 10-15 minutes – then Serve
- Avoid opening the oven door during cooking to often as it releases heat
- Buy a cheap in-oven thermometer to show oven temperature. Oven settings are often wrong
- 350 degrees is the most common oven setting. If unsure of a cooking time, set to 350 degrees and check for doneness regularly
Get In The Kitchen And Practice!
Cooking is a skill and like any skill it needs constant training. The more you cook, the better get, and the better your meals will taste. This skill will last you a lifetime and has the power to change your life.
Some common benefits of learning to cook:
- Impress friends and family
- Attract the opposite sex and increase your chances with him or her
- Cook healthy meals for yourself and your family
- Lose weight
- Improve blood markers
- Feel better
- Sleep better
- Stress less
- and much more…
Food is a building block of human life as well as one of its greatest pleasures. The more you learn about food and its preparation the more you will appreciate it and savor it. It will be a lifelong love affair…
There is no sincerer love than the love of food -George Bernard Shaw