Russell's Pro Tips

How to Be a Better Cook

What makes a person a better cook? Monogram took on that challenge to discover the top 10 things their chefs could offer to make food stand out and give you confidence in the kitchen or on the grill. Here’s a snapshot of the top 10 ways to be a better cook.  

Kitchen Sink with Herbs

#1 Don’t Be Afraid 

Don’t be afraid… to make a mistake… to fail… to try… to learn. Cooking is a craft and mistakes can lead to disaster, but they can also lead to a much better-finished product than anticipated. The trick is knowing the difference and pushing ahead.  

#2 Great Cookbooks 

Don’t underestimate the importance of cookbooks in your culinary development. Find those cookbooks that can teach you the basics and then allow you to create something with those foundation recipes.  

#3 Relax 

How can you relax when there’s so much that can go wrong? Here are a few tips. Cooking is about building upon small successes. The important thing when starting is to make something that will impress not only the person/people you’re cooking for but also yourself.  

#4 Great Product 

With mediocre ingredients, the best you can hope for is a mediocre finished product. Ingredients are the key and great ingredients can help you make a memorable dish. But what makes an ingredient great? Is fresh always better?  

#5 The Right Tools 

It’s not the tools, it’s the craftsman. Well, that’s true, but a kitchen supplied with quality tools, not gadgets, will make the craft easier and more enjoyable. Our list doesn’t serve to be a complete stocking list for your kitchen; it’s more of a guideline to get you going in the right direction.  

#6 Salt & Pepper 

How strongly do we feel about salt and pepper? A dish without salt is easy to spot, however a dish seasoned well with salt but lacking in pepper can be difficult, if not impossible, to recognize. So why use it then? Pepper has a special place in our cooking through the ages that no other spice outside of salt has occupied.  

#7 Caramelization 

Caramelization is an often neglected and/or misunderstood aspect of cooking. Why caramelize? It’s simple really. Do you prefer a nice steak stewed in water or grilled? Hopefully, you said grilled. That’s the difference.  

#8 Have Some Class 

You’re relaxed. You’re having fun. The shelves are stocked with some new cookbooks. The pantry has some great ingredients and you have learned to put a little more of yourself in your cooking. What’s the next step? Take a class. You’re committed and you need to learn more.  

#9 Know What to Take Away 

It seems to be human nature to overproduce many things in life. Something so essential as a good meal we often find ourselves not only reaching for a great dish but collecting as much as we can to make a dish great. It’s like wearing too much cologne.  

#10 Taste It 

In training, we tell our guests: “OK, so we’ve prepped and portioned the ingredients for you. We’ve guided you through the cooking process. We’ve given you the recipe. It’s done, right? Nope. Not until you taste it.”  

Before you experience Monogram’s pro-style cooking appliances in our showroom, satisfy your cooking curiosity and ambitions. Take a deeper dive into these confidence-building chef basics at allingoodfood.com/recipes