Upping Your Cooking Skills During Lockdown
Unfortunately, it seems that we’ve found ourselves in another round of lockdown restrictions. And unlike the first time, we know what we’re in for. We’re all experiencing feelings of fatigue and monotony, particularly as a long winter stretches out before us. Without our usual options for socializing and entertainment, home cooks might be turning to the kitchen again as an outlet, baking, trying our hand at new dishes and experimenting with new techniques.
After all, we still have to eat, giving us three opportunities a day to get creative and shake things up. Want to use this time to up your cooking skills in the kitchen? Here are some ideas.
Upgrade Your Cooking Skills
Perfecting your skills in the kitchen can be much easier than it sounds. It can be a fast and flexible activity, great if you’re a bit burnt out by the daily slog of working from home (and perhaps trying to support your kids with online school at the same time). You won’t need fancy new gadgets or complicated recipes - you can take advantage of the opportunities you have.
For example, if a recipe calls for julienned vegetables, you can pull up a video to learn the proper technique and improve your knife skills. These bite-sized investments in your kitchen know-how can make meal prepping more efficient and enjoyable.
For those looking to get serious, cooking lessons might be just the ticket—virtual lessons, that is. The Canadian Culinary Federation offers online culinary programs and resources for foodies who want to advance their cooking know-how beyond just the basics.
Invest in New Tools
The ease and convenience of takeout will never go out of style, but lockdown and other restrictions have forced many of us to get to know our kitchens better, along with their limitations. Maybe you never noticed how badly your pans stick or inefficient it is to cook a meal using several pots. Perhaps you’re looking for more all-in-one options to streamline the work involved in making meals. Our recommendation? AMT cookware for its durability and superior non-stick coating. This pan is a staff favourite. It goes from stovetop to oven for all your one-pot meals and makes it easy to finish your dishes off with a quick bake to add flavour and texture.
Another trendy item? Pressure cookers are very “in”—this one features controls that can be adjusted with one hand to make your meat, veggies and beans melt-in-your-mouth tender. It also doubles as a large pot—perfect for batch cooking or making soups.
F.Dick knives are another great choice. Known for their extensive selection of both standard and specialty knives, they’re a top choice with chefs worldwide. We suggest starting with a good chef’s knife (you’ll use it every day) and expand your collection based on your kitchen preferences and habits.
Just finding a new challenge can be the spark you need. It can be as simple as finding fresh recipes to get out of a food rut. You can also research new ingredients—vegetables, spices, or meats that you don’t usually use—and add them to your regular rotation. Or work on mastering a home version of your favourite restaurant dishes.
Above all, use your time in the kitchen as a source of engagement, inspiration, and progress— not stress! Find ways to make it more enjoyable and exciting, and make sure to keep the pressure off. The end of lockdown is coming...hang in there!