It’s awesome to have foolproof recipes to follow the first time you cook something. They will help you learn the best methods for different foods, how long before an ingredient is undercooked, perfectly cooked or overcooked and also give you an idea of what ingredients go with others.
The truth is… Anyone can create a recipe of their own! Even you! It’s a new year so if any of your resolutions are to do with cooking you can pick up a couple of tips and tricks from this article. You might recognise it…. We wrote something similar a while ago on Tumblr.
So get cooking. It would be awesome for more of you to upload your own recipes to SORTEDfood and here’s where to start…
1. Get Inspired
Eat at loads of different places and buy new ingredients every week! You don’t have to go for expensive meals, I try to go to food festivals just to take a look at the food and flavours that people are using, as well as checking out new restaurants and street food. New ingredients force you to think outside of your comfort zone, or even adapt unfamiliar stuff into the cuisine that you are comfortable with.
2. Check out other recipes
Once you’ve got a recipe or flavour combination in mind then the best place to start is looking at stuff that people have already done. I usually grab 10-20 different recipes that look good at first glance, whether it’s a great looking photo, interesting ingredients or an unusual method. I’ll take the elements of each recipe that I really like, then think of how I can change them up or present the same flavours in different ways.
3. Draw Inspiration From Your Favourite Chefs
Everyone has chefs and cooks they prefer over others. Have a think about your favourites. What makes them unique and stand out? Do the have running themes? Use them to start to think how you could put your own stamp on recipes.
4. Writing your recipe
Write your recipes down before you cook anything! If you start throwing stuff into a pan before you’ve got a plan, then you’ll end up guessing at what you did after you’ve eaten it all! When you’re testing recipes it’s a lot easier to make notes on a pre-written recipe.
There are some really good rules to follow to get a really clear recipe. You want to make it as easy to follow as possible! First up, try to use shorter sentences rather than paragraphs. You don’t want to be reading wordy paragraphs when your hands are covered in flour and you just want to know what to do next.
It’s also a great idea to list ingredients in the order that they’re used so that it’s easy to see where you are. If there are two different amounts of the same ingredient, make it clear how much you’re using in the recipe steps.
5. Think About Presentation
Now might be a good time to start thinking about plates and presentation. Have at least a rough idea of what you’d like it to look like… Even if the final dish is completely different, always be aiming for something! You can even sketch it out on a piece of paper first.
6. Get In The Kitchen!
Don’t put it off any longer. Get cooking. It’s the only way you’ll arrive at that end point. Tweak flavours and perfect along the way,
7. Taste, taste, taste!
Tuck in! Get some friends over as a second opinion can help you work out things you might have missed.
8. Amend your recipes to your taste
Once you’ve tested and eaten your food, it’s time to tweak and perfect your recipes! Most of this should be done during cooking, but taste is always the final decider! If the recipe didn’t work out at all, you might want to take more time to get it right and try again… If it’s just a few small adjustments then you might be able to adjust it there and then.
9. Take photos
Try a few different versions of plating to get it right. That way, when you make the dish for your mates, you don’t even have to think about it when you’re ready to get it on the plate and serve up!
There are a lot of recipes out there… But there are so many more to be made! You can use these tips as a base, but it’s great fun to create your own process for developing and testing recipes to make them the best out there.
So now all there is to do is get into the kitchen and start cooking! Grab a profile on SortedFood, and upload your first recipe! If you’re already sharing recipes with the Sorted community then hopefully this helps you out with the next one! Don’t forget to share your photos on Twitter and Instagram too using #sortedfood.