It is natural for people to pick up some cooking habits along the way. Some of these are going to be good ones, but others are definitely not. If you want to be a good cook, the key is to identify the habits that are not working out and ditch them as soon as possible. Are you wondering what those habits are? Here, Ido Fishman has highlighted some of the cooking habits that you need to ditch immediately:

  • Cramming too much food in a pan

When you overcrowd a pan, you are going to prevent the food from browning. Ido Fishman says that the food won’t sear; instead, it will start steaming and will turn out to be a lot paler than it should. Even though it does take a lot more time, but opting to cook items in batches will result in a darker sear and improved flavor.

  • Using a non-stick pan for cooking everything

There are some things that you should make in non-stick pans, such as eggs, but this doesn’t mean that they are good for everything. It should be noted that these pans cannot be heated super-hot and they don’t always have even distribution of heat. For things that require a hard sear, such as steaks, it is best to go with cast-iron pans.

  • Stirring, flipping and poking at the food too much

It is tempting to stir your food as it cooks, but it also prevents it from getting any color. According to the Ido Fishman blog, if you are sautéing proteins or veggies, it is best to let them sit undisturbed for a minute. This will allow them to develop a nice crust. Resist the urge to stir or poke and let your food be.

  • Not waiting long enough for the pan to heat

There are situations where it is beneficial to start food in a cold pan, but these are very rare situations. For the most part, it actually helps to add them to an already-hot pan, as this makes them cook faster, gives them better color and also prevents them from sticking. For most of the items, such as vegetables, it is best to heat up the pan for at least two minutes. As far as items like steaks are concerned, heating up a cast-iron pan for about 10 minutes can result in a beautiful sear.

  • Using expired pantry staples

You should bear in mind that dried herbs, spices and leaveners will not last forever. Ido Fishman says that leaveners lose their effectiveness, while spices lose their flavor. If you haven’t cleaned your pantry for a while, you should go through the rarely used dry items and take a look at their expiration date. They may appear to be fine at a glance, but if they have expired, then they can have a negative impact on your final dish.

  • Cooking everything in olive oil

A lot of people use extra virgin olive oil for everything, but it is not always the best way to go. According to Ido Fishman, the problem with this oil is that it has a low smoke point, which means that if you heat it too high, it can burn and start smoking. Not only is this dangerous, but it also makes your food taste bad. Canola oil is a much better option when you are cooking something at a high temperature.

  • Rinsing the chicken before cooking

You may not believe it, but all experts including Ido Fishman, will tell you that you shouldn’t wash your chicken. Washing it can actually spread the bacteria that exists in the poultry juices and some of the bacteria is attached so tightly that it cannot be removed, regardless of how many times you wash it.

Learn to ditch these cooking habits and you will be able to do a much better job when you are trying to make something in the kitchen.