What To Do After You’ve Discovered Your Recipe Book is Lying to You

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Let's say that you are depending on a teacher or a mentor…someone you trust. What would happen if you found out that they're not telling the truth, or at least, they aren't telling you the whole truth? If you're depending on a book to teach you a new kitchen culinary skill, you need to know now that the book isn't telling you everything you need to know about cooking meals at home. In fact, it might shake your faith and think, well, I can't even cook water now!

I want to help to restore your faith in recipes. I know I often bash recipes, but recipes are useful for trying to duplicate meals that you like, for duplicating restaurant meals, and for getting new ideas on what to cook. However, the reason I have issues with recipes especially for a home cook that doesn't understand basic cooking method is that there are things that recipes do tell you and there are things that recipes don't tell you.

Unfortunately, if you really take a look at the components of a recipe, you can begin to see that they are really a bunch of steps without explaining any nuances. For example, a recipe may say to cook shrimp until pink. But if they are large shrimp, the shrimp are going to turn pink before the inside of the shrimp is completely cooked. The recipe may say nothing about this. The recipe may tell you to add onion and parsley at the same time and cook until the onion is tender. NO! If you do that, the parsley will be obliterated by the time the onion is ready.

Most cookbooks assume a basic knowledge of cooking methods that you just may not know. This is what I want to help you to understand.

Here's another example, in one of my cookbooks it says to cook the chicken for 45 minutes or until done. Until done? How are you supposed to know if it's done? The recipe doesn't tell you. What does medium heat mean? Again, the recipe doesn't actually explain this.

A lot of times, the cookbooks that are made by a company that contain a lot of name brand products are often the worst offenders of not explaining all that you need to know. That doesn't mean that all cookbooks are like this. I have several books that are very clear and concise about explaining how and why you do something. Here are a few examples from my collection:

• The Sauce Bible
• On Cooking
• The Flavor Bible
• Professional Baking

All of those are very specific and explain what I need to know to cook food by method and by combining flavors, etc. I also like to get cookbooks that are specific to a region to help me to understand how to create flavors from that region. Here are just a few examples:

• Celebrate San Antonio
• Tropical Cooking
• The New Orleans Cookbook

So, if you can't completely trust your cookbook, what do you do?

• You have to be smarter than your cookbook.
• You have to know when it's lying to you.
• You have to know when it's pretending that it knows and it really doesn't
• You have to know when it's left something out

Next time, I'll show you ways to be smarter than your recipe book, improve kitchen culinary knowledge, and restore your faith that you can cook water! I'll also explain to you how to use a recipe's shortcomings to your advantage.

Chef Todd Mohr is a classically trained chef, entrepreneur and educator. Chef Todd's simple philosophy - burn your recipes and learn how to really cook - has helped many home cooks and professionals alike finally achieve success in the kitchen. Learn his 1 Secret for Free and discover how online cooking classes can really teach you to cook!

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I am thrilled to be an E-zine Expert Author and have a number of articles published on a variety of cooking topics (and write new ones all the time!) Page down to see the entire list and click the ones that are helpful to you.

Before I became Chef Todd Mohr, I was Todd Mohr - a guy who liked to cook. A lot of people, including me, even thought I was a pretty good cook. For starters, I had my five meals, well, recipes, I suppose, that I could make well. Being a creative person, I also used some of the techniques from my tried and true \"recipes\" to experiment a bit with new dishes. Some were good and some not so good, and I usually never knew what the difference was.

Through a series of events, I decided to change careers in 1996 and pursue my passion for cooking, so I enrolled in Baltimore International Culinary College. 18 months later, I emerged: Chef Todd Mohr.

The greatest thing I learned in culinary school was the \"how\" and the \"why\" that had been missing from my cooking all those years. My recipes only gave me the \"what\" - which left so much out! The greatest thing I gained in the years after culinary school, was the practical experience from working in kitchens and experimenting at home. Being observant, I learned even more \"hows\" and \"whys\" in addition to \"whats\" along my culinary journey. This experience and experimentation, more than anything else, is what turned Todd Mohr into Chef Todd Mohr.

My experience includes kitchen experience - all the way up to Executive Chef, as well as college teaching experience, starting and operating a successful catering company and then finally, the culmination of all of my passion: opening The Cooking School in Cary NC in 2007.

From The Cooking School, came \"Cooking Coarse\", my daily video blog that quickly gained a loyal You Tube following due to the uniqueness of the instruction offered. It was through feedback received from \"Cooking Coarse\" viewers that I decided to launch WebCookingClasses.com and provide this information to the world.

When I started getting emails that my videos had changed people\'s lives, I knew I was on to something and that was when WebCookingClasses.com was born.

This is my passion - I am excited to share it with you!

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