Blanching

Today, Chef Lou’s cooking tip is all about Blanching

Blanching is a cooking process where you take a food, usually vegetables, fruit, or pasta, submerge it in boiling water, then after a time, submerge it in an ice bath to stop the cooking progress. There are many ways where blanching is needed but I will only talk about two uses.

 

For green beans, asparagus, etc:

Green beans are a little too crispy to eat raw, but sometimes an inexperienced cook will cook the beans too much and they turn out mushy. Blanching the beans takes out some of the crunch and cleans the vegetable of lingering bacteria.

To blanch the green beans, add the beans to a pot of boiling water. Cook for about a minute or so (asparagus takes about 30 seconds) until it changes color. Immediately remove the beans from the hot water and submerge in an ice bath (water and ice). The ice bath is very important because it stops the cooking process, keeping your beans at the right firmness.

 Cook the beans in the hot water until they change into a bright green color

 

Bonus tip: Sometimes we buy green beans at the store and they go bad within a couple of days and we didn’t even have a change to cook them. Try blanching your green beans when you get home and they will last much longer in the fridge

 

For pasta:

Add pasta to a pot of boiling water and cook as directed on the box/package. When the noodles reach “al dente”, immediately remove it from the hot water and submerge into an ice bath. Again this stops the cooking process and keeps your noodles from falling apart later as you start mixing it up.

Add this technique to your culinary repertoire and you will see improvement in your food!

 

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