There are some people who can cook just about anything if they have the right cookbook on hand or the right recipe to follow — and then there are other cooks who can simply walk into the kitchen, take a look at the ingredients that they have on hand, and think up (and execute) a delicious home-cooked meal. Regardless of which type of cook you are, your ability to make a meal from scratch relies on a repertoire of solid cooking techniques and knife skills. While most of those techniques are the necessary basics (like chopping, roasting, frying, and sautéing) it also helps to have a few more advanced cooking skills in your culinary arsenal.chiffonade, for example, can be remarkably simple: just stack, roll, and slice leafy greens to produce long, thin ribbons perfect for salads and garnishes.
If you’ve got a good handle on the most basic skills in the kitchen (and you can bake, boil, fry, and grill foods like a pro), then it may be time to move on to some more advanced techniques. Learning how to flambé chicken or sweat vegetables, for example, can add a tremendous amount of flavor to dishes, and new knife skills (like cutting suprêmes from citrus fruits) will allow you to plate your food in a way that is elegant, refined, and professional-looking.
We’ve rounded up eight techniques that are perfect for cooks of any skill level who are ready to learn something new. Though these techniques are frequently used by the pros, they’re easy for anyone to pull off.
Kristie Collado is The Daily Meal’s Cook Editor. Follow her on Twitter @KColladoCook.