How to cook…google’s most asked questions

Sep 19, 2018 | Cooking Tips

Every once in a while I like to check out what people are searching for on google. I go to google and type a few words like “How to cook…” and then Google presents me with a list of the most common things people are searching for that starts with those three words. Today, I am going to answer the Top Five Google “How to cook…” questions.

How to cook…Lobster

Lobster can be cooked a few different ways. It can be boiled, broiled, or grilled. The most common way to cook a lobster at home is by boiling it. For a long time, it was common practice to put live lobsters in boiling water. It is now generally considered more humane to kill them first. Do this by putting the tip of a sharp knife on the head of the lobster and firmly pushing down to penetrate the shell killing the lobster instantly. Next, remove the elastics from the lobster’s claws and place it in a pot of boiling water. It is going to take 10-12 minutes for the lobster to cook through depending on its size. Check the lobster by pulling on its antenna. If the antenna pulls away from the lobster easily its likely cooked through. Remove the lobster from the water, drain and eat immediately.

To broil or grill the lobster first cut it in half from head to tail. Next, remove the elastics from the claws. If you are going to grill the lobster, drizzle the flesh with olive oil, salt and pepper and then grill, flesh side down for 5-7 minutes. To broil the lobster, brush the flesh with parsley butter and place under the broiler in your oven. Cook the lobster for 4-5 minutes or until cooked through.

How to cook…Mussels

The easiest and most common way to cook mussels is to steam them. This can be done with white wine and garlic, a simple tomato sauce, beer, a cream sauce, or pretty much any liquid. The first step is to clean the mussels. You want to give them a quick rinse under cold water but don’t submerge them for any longer than a minute or two. Mussels are saltwater animals, they can’t survive in fresh water. So, you might think you are cleaning your mussels but really you are just killing them.

After the mussels are rinsed inspect them for any with broken shells or for any that are open and won’t close when gently tapped on a hard surface. Discard these. Now heat a pot over medium-high heat. Add a touch of oil to the pot and saute one thinly sliced onion. Now add a tbsp of garlic and 1 lb of mussels. Saute for a minute or two and add 1 cup of white wine. Put a lid on the pot and steam for 4-5 minutes or until the mussels have all opened.

How to cook…Quiona

There are two main ways that you can cook quinoa. You can cook it like rice, or you can cook it like pasta. Both are equally as reliable but with the pasta method, you are dumping some of the nutrients down the drain.

To cook quinoa with the rice method use a ratio of 2-1. So, that would be 2 cups water or stock to 1 cup quinoa. Bring the liquid to a boil with 1 tsp of oil or butter, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Add the quinoa, bring back to the boil. Cover the pot, reduce the heat to low and let the quinoa cook for 17 minutes. After 17 minutes remove the pot from the heat and let it sit, covered for another 5-10 minutes. Fluff with a fork and enjoy.

To cook with the pasta method, bring 4 L of salted water to a boil. Add 1 cup of quinoa and cook until the quinoa grains burst about 10-12 minutes. Drain and enjoy.

How to cook…Corn on the cob

Corn on the cob is one of those things that can be cooked in a lot of different ways. The most common way is probably to boil it. To do this, remove the corn from the husk and place in a pot that is big enough for the amount of corn you have. Cover the corn by at least 1 inch with water and add 1-2 tbsp of sugar. Bring to a boil and cook for 8-10 minutes or until the kernels are tender. You can also substitute the water for whole milk.

To grill the corn you can leave it in the husk and grill it for 12-15 minutes, flipping it at least once. Once its cooked pull the husk away and enjoy. Alternatively, you can remove the husk prior to grilling, rub the corn with butter or oil, salt and pepper, and grill, for 8-10 minutes.

How to cook…Scallops

Scallops are delicious when cooked properly, but rubbery little turds when overcooked. How you cook the scallops depends on the scallops you are using. If you have little bay scallops sauteeing them in butter, and a little garlic for 3-4 minutes is fine. But for bigger sea scallops you want to sear them in a very hot pan. The idea is that you want a deep amber colour on the exterior and bright white throughout. You want the scallop to feel a bit soft, not rubbery.

The first thing you want to do is dry the scallops on a paper towel. Wet scallops won’t sear. Once the scallops are dry heat a pan over medium-high heat. Once the pan is very hot, be patient, add a touch of canola oil. Season the scallops lightly with salt and pepper. Now carefully place the scallops one at a time into the pan flat side down. It’s important that you don’t overcrowd your pan. You don’t want to cover more than 75% of the pan’s surface as this will drop the temperature too much and you will just end of steaming your scallops which is gross. Once the scallops are in the pan let them sit for 2 1/2 minutes or so. Now, starting with the first scallop you put in the pan, flip them, onto the other flat side. Cook the scallops for another 2 1/2 to 3 minutes. Remove them from the pan and eat immediately.

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