Category Archives: Cooking

How to Make Rock Candy

First, clean a glass jar by washing it with hot water. Get a thick cotton thread that is a bit longer than the height of the jar, and tape it to a pencil.
Put the pencil on top of the jar with the thread suspended around an inch from the base of the jar. Fasten a paper clip at the hanging tip of the thread to serve as a weight and make the thread hang straight down. You can also have a wooden skewer as the supporting structure of your rock candy. Use a clothespin placed on top of the jar to clip it into place.

Roll a wet thread or wooden skewer in granulated sugar to make a base layer where the sugar crystals will attach as they form. Set the base aside as you begin the preparation of your sugar syrup.

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a medium-sized pan. Add 4 cups of sugar, one cup at a time. Stir the syrup after adding each cup. As you do this, you will observe that it takes more time for sugar to melt after every addition. Go on with stirring and bringing the syrup to a boil until you have emptied the four cups and all these have been dissolved. Then remove the pan from the heat.

Flavorings or colorings should be added at this point. Add only ½ teaspoon or 2.5 ml of flavoring oils. Add a teaspoon of extract to the syrup. As you add the flavoring, don’t stand directly in front of the pan because the smell that comes along with the rising steam can be very strong. Should you wish to add food coloring, add 2-3 drops and stir well to make sure there is even color.

Let the sugar syrup cool for 10 minutes, before emptying it into the jar. Lower the skewer or sugared string until it is suspended about an inch from the bottom. Cautiously transfer the jar in a cool place away from lights. Loosely cover the jar with paper towel or plastic wrap.
In 2-4 hours, the sugar crystals will start forming. Allow the rock candy to grow into the size that you want. Once the desired size is reached, take it away and allow it to dry for a few minutes. Then wrap the candy for consumption.

How to Cook Snow Crab Legs

To start cooking a memorable dish of snow crab legs, pour two inches of water into a large pot with a lid. Put in 2-3 pinches of sea salt. You can also use regular salt as an alternative if you don’t have sea salt in your kitchen. Bring the water to a boil.

When the water is boiling briskly, put in the crab legs. Place the lid on top of the pot. If the legs are too long for you to close the top, cover the pot using tin foil.

When the water boils again, reduce the heat and steam the legs for at least ten minutes. If you have frozen snow crab, you may need more time to cook it thoroughly.

After steaming, take the snow crabs and drain the water. Settle the crabs onto a tray and let them cool for a couple of minutes. Be cautious because the legs can be awfully hot.

Pound a clove of garlic while waiting. Put butter that has not yet melted on a microwaveable bowl. Add the crushed garlic to the butter. Microwave until it melts. Then, blend the garlic with the butter. For a slightly different taste, you can put in lemon juice, salt, fresh pepper, or other spices.

Serve the snow crab legs with the butter and garlic sauce. Use a cracker to open the shells of the crab legs and get the meat.

If you want to relish the naturally sweet and rich flavor of the crab meat, you may just steam the crab legs. A two-piece pasta pot with a strainer is ideal for steaming crab legs. Bring 3-4 cups of water to a boil in a two-piece pasta pot. Remove the layer of ice from 2 lbs of frozen crab legs, and place the crab legs in the pot’s strainer insert. Cover the pot and steam the crabs for at least four minutes, or until they are well cooked. Serve the crab meat with clarified butter for dipping.

You may also cook the crab legs by grilling. Wrap the frozen snow crab legs in a packet of foil and seal. Then grill using medium-high heat for 8 to 10 minutes, keeping it four to six inches away from the heat. You can serve the crab legs immediately after they are cooked.

How to Cook Pinto Beans

Pinto beans are an inexpensive source of protein, vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrates without cholesterol. You can cook them into chili soups or bake them. You can substitute them in recipes that need kidney or red beans.


  1. Sort the pinto beans to remove small rocks. Pour a few scoops of beans into the table. Sit at the edge with a bowl on your lap. Slide the beans onto the bowl, removing small rocks and other impurities. Your children will enjoy helping you.
  2. Wash the beans. Put them in a colander and wash them under running water. Shake the colander gently or move the beans with one hand to make sure all the dirt is removed.
  3. Before cooking your beans, soak them in water overnight or for eight hours. Use four cups of water for every cup of beans. After soaking, discard the water and add fresh water. This should cover the beans by one inch. Bring the beans to a boil, then reduce the heat. Partially cover the pan and simmer until the beans are tender. This may take four hours. Check once in a while if there is still water so that your beans don’t get burned. The beans are cooked when you can easily mash them with a fork.
  4. If you have a slow cooker, or crock-pot, you can cook the beans on low the whole day. You need to check regularly so that the water doesn’t dry.
  5. If you have a pressure cooker, the cooking time will be greatly reduced. Soak the beans for eight hours before cooking. Follow the recommended depth of food and water in the pressure cooker manual. Cook the beans using medium high heat, and reduce the heat when they start to steam. Cook them for thirty minutes.
  6. When your beans are cooked, you can add seasoning or use them for your desired recipe.

How to Cook Asparagus

Asparagus is a very nutritious vegetable that can be found in any produce market or local grocery. It contains very few calories, has no fat or cholesterol, and is a good source of vitamins A, B6, and C. It is also rich in potassium and a good source of fiber.

Asparagus is often boiled or steamed, especially by people who enjoy the simplicity of its taste. They can also be roasted or grilled.

Choosing your Asparagus

  1. Choose spears that have not started to wilt. The stems may be thick or thin, but they should be firm.
  2. Choose fresh-looking asparagus. You can determine freshness by its bright green color.

Cleaning and Preparing the Asparagus

  1. Wash each spear under cold running water to wash away any residual soil or sand from the tips.
  2. To remove the woody bottoms, bend the spears until they snap at their natural breaking point. You may also cut the spears a quarter of an inch from the bottom.

Cooking Methods

  1. Boiling

    Boil asparagus spears in 1 inch of salted water in a wide skillet or deep pan for 3 to 5 minutes. Rinse in cold water immediately after taking them out of the boiling water to stop them from cooking and preserve their bright green color.

  2. Steaming

    Steam asparagus spears for 3 minutes. Rinse immediately under tap water to stop the cooking process.

  3. Roasting

    Roast asparagus spears and pieces in a preheated oven in 500 degree F for 3 to 5 minutes. Roasting is generally best for thicker spears.

  4. Stir-frying

    Stir-fry 2-inch asparagus spears with garlic and ginger. Toss with black sesame seed oil. Asparagus may also be stir-fried with black bean sauce.

  5. Grilling

    Pierce 4 to 5 spears with a bamboo skewer. Skewer the spears 2 inches from the top and 1 inch from the bottom. The asparagus spears should form a raft that should prevent individual spears from slipping through the grill bars. Brush the rafts with olive oil and sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Grill them over medium heat for approximately 5 minutes.

How to Gut a Deer

Gutting is part of hunting game animals. It is an important process that should be performed correctly to turn the deer into tasty venison.

Here are the basic steps in gutting a deer.

Materials Needed

  • A sharp knife
  • Cloth for cleaning
  • Plastic garbage bags with twist tie
  • A One-gallon jug
  • Hose pipe

Steps to Gut a Deer

  1. Cut the private parts.

    For male deer, hold the testicles and the penis away from the body before cutting around it. Cut a ring around the vaginal area for female deer. Then carve a ring around the anus to detach it. This will also free the stomach and the intestines.

  2. Lift the skin.

    Stick out your middle and pointer fingers and point them towards the deer’s chest. Using your fingers, lift off the skin from the stomach region. Slide the knife until you reach the chest bone. Be careful not to cut the gut as it can taint the meat with a foul smell. Thrust the gut away as you lift the skin.

  3. Cut across the rib bone.

    Make a cut all the way through the portion where the ribs come together. This will open the upper portion of the deer, making for easier cutting of the other remaining areas.

  4. Dissect the pelvis.

    Make a cut right through the pelvic region’s central portion. Cut through the hide first and then cut the belly muscle open.

  5. Cut the windpipe.

    Make a slit at the central portion of the throat. Cut away the windpipe and the esophagus.

  6. Hold the deer sideways.

    Tilt the deer sideways to find other organs that need cutting. Filled-up organs should be cut away without puncturing them. Pull out the anus through the hole made earlier.

  7. Tilt the deer up.

    Tilt the deer up after separating all the internal organs from the body to drain the blood.

  8. Spray the insides with water.

    Hang the deer upside down up on a tree branch. Using a hose pipe, spray water on the insides of the deer to wash off dirt or any remaining waste on the meat.

How to Cook Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is a type of winter squash. Its skin is hard and thick, and it is filled with seeds. Its size ranges from 3 to 5 inches wide and 8 to 12 inches long. One butternut squash can weigh as much as three pounds.

Butternut squash soup is the most common recipe for this type of squash. Here are the things you will need in cooking butternut squash soup:

  • 1 pound of butternut squash
  • 1 cup of whipping cream
  • ½ cup of chopped onions
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 2 sliced pears
  • 1 teaspoon of thyme leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon of white pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground coriander


Follow these steps to cook butternut squash soup:

  1. Rinse the squash with water and cut it lengthwise. Remove its seeds and any excess fiber you would find. You can also peel the skin if you wish.
  2. Cut the squash into one-inch cubes.
  3. In a Dutch oven, cook and stir the chopped onions in butter until they are tender.
  4. Stir in the broth, the squash, and the sliced pears. Next, add in the salt, white pepper, thyme, and coriander.
  5. Heat the mixture until it is boiling. Then gradually reduce the heat. Cover the mixture and simmer until the squash is tender. This may take 10 to 15 minutes.
  6. Place half of the mixture in a blender, and process it until it is smooth. Do the same with the remaining half of the mixture.
  7. Put the mixture back in the Dutch oven and stir in the whipping cream. Continue stirring until the soup is hot. You can serve the soup with pecans.

How to Cook Acorn Squash

Acorn squash is a type of winter squash that resembles an acorn in shape. It can be found in colors of dark green, white, and gold. It’s most common variety has a dark green ridged skin and deep yellow to orange flesh. The golden variety has pumpkin-colored skin and orange flesh.

Like most winter squash, acorn squash is one of the most colorful vegetables that can be set on your dinner table. It is also high in nutritional content and enzymes. Its nutty flavor is used to complement main dishes, or can at times serve as the main dish. Acorn squash are also often prepared as simple desserts. The ease in preparing it and it’s and short cooking time has also contributed to the popularity of this vegetable.

There are various ways to cook acorn squash.

Preparing Acorn Squash

  • Acorn squash is often cooked within its shell as its ribbed shape makes peeling virtually impossible.
  • Use a stable knife to slice acorn squash in half. For easier slicing, stab the skin in several places. Put it in a microwave oven and heat on high for 2 minutes. Let it stand for another few minutes before carving.
  • Cut through the stem end to the point when halving. Do not cut the squash across the diameter.
  • Remove the seeds and the fibers from the center before cooking.

Ways to Cook Acorn Squash

  1. Baking Method
    • Pierce the skin in several places.
    • Place the acorn squash on a baking sheet.
    • Bake the squash in an oven set in 350 degrees F for about 1 to 1/2 hours.
    • Gently squeeze the squash to test for doneness. The squash is done when it yields to gentle pressure.
    • Cut it in half and scoop out the seeds.
    • Serve it immediately or cool it for use in other dishes.

  2. Roasting Method
    • Cut the squash in half and seed it.
    • Place the squash halves on a ribbed baking sheet with the flesh-side up.
    • Rub its flesh with softened butter oil. Season it with salt and pepper.
    • Drizzle maple syrup, brown sugar, or orange juice over it.
    • Turn the squash over on the ribbed baking sheet.
    • Roast the squash in a preheated 400 degree F oven for about 40 to 45 minutes.,/li>
    • Roast until the skin is browned and blistered and the flesh is tender. Insert a fork or a knife under the skin to check if the skin is tender.
    • Peel off the skin when the squash has cooled down.

  3. Microwave Method
    • Cut the squash in half and take out the seeds.
    • Place the squash in a microwavable dish and cover it. Do not add water.
    • Cook for 13 minutes on high.

How to Bake Chicken

You can bake a whole chicken or you can chop it first before putting it in the oven. Just make sure that you don’t take its skin off to avoid drying the meat.


  • 1 2 ½ pound broiler chicken (whole or chopped)
  • Dried or fresh herbs (pepper, oregano, thyme, etc.)
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • Marinade (optional)

Materials Needed

  • Knife
  • Oven-proof skillet or roasting pan
  • Oven
  • Meat thermometer


  1. Baking
    • Preheat your oven by setting the temperature to 350 degrees F.
    • If you are using a whole chicken, remove the giblets from the cavity.
    • Place the chicken under cold running water to rinse it.
    • Pat the chicken dry using paper towels. Make sure nothing will stick to the chicken’s skin.
    • Season the chicken with freshly ground black pepper and salt. If you are using whole chicken, put seasoning both inside and outside for optimum tastiness.
    • Put the chicken in a large oven-proof skillet or roasting pan, with the skin-side up. Pour olive oil or your own marinade all over the chicken.
    • Put the uncovered chicken in the oven and let it bake for about 1 to 1 ½ hours. Check from time to time if the skin of the chicken is golden brown or if the meat is already cooked through.
    • A meat thermometer will confirm if the chicken is already cooked and ready to eat. For chicken breast meat, the required internal temperature is 170 degrees while the required internal temperature of chicken thigh meat is 180 degrees.
    • Cut into the deepest and thickest part of the thigh and see if the meat is no longer pink and the juices are clear.
    • Take the chicken out of the oven and set it aside for about 10 minutes before you carve it.

How to Pickle Okra

Okra is a summertime vegetable that yields a lot of pods. Pickle fresh okra and enjoy them in winter. Whether you eat them plain, toss them into a burrito, slice them for pasta salad, or even use them to garnish a margarita, you can be sure of a crunch in every bite.

The following is a simple recipe for pickled okra.


  • Two (2) pounds small fresh okra
  • Five (5) small hot peppers
  • Five (5) cloves of garlic, peeled
  • Five (5) teaspoons dill seed
  • Five (5) teaspoons celery seed
  • Three (3) cups vinegar
  • Three (3) cups distilled water
  • 1/3 cup pickling salt
  • ¼ cup white sugar


  1. Put the okra in a strainer and wash over with cold water. Pat them dry with paper towel.
  2. Sterilize five one-pint pickling jars together with their lids and rings according to the manufacturer’s directions.
  3. Pack the okra in the pickling jars. They should be placed in an alternating manner, with the top side up and then down, to maximize the space. Fill the jars until they are full.
  4. Put in one pepper, one garlic, one teaspoon dill seed, and one teaspoon celery seed to each jar.
  5. Whisk together three cups white vinegar, three cups water, one-fourth cup sugar, and one-third cup salt in a two-quart saucepan. Put this over medium heat and bring to a boil.
  6. Carefully pour the hot mixture into the jars. Make sure that the liquid completely covers the okra. Leave a small amount of headspace between the liquid and the top of the jar.
  7. Put the vacuum seal lids and rings on the jars. Place the jars in a canning pot and fill it with water until it reaches a level one inch above the tops of the jars. Bring the water to boil. Continue boiling for 10 minutes.
  8. Take out the jars from the pot and let cool at room temperature.
  9. Let the pickled okra stand for three weeks in room temperature before serving. You may chill them before serving for added crispness. Keep the jars in the refrigerator after opening.

How to Freeze Okra

Preparing okra for freezing does not require much effort. You simply have to wash it up and cut out the stems before putting it into the freezer. Then again, there is a method in doing this that will prolong the okra’s shelf life as well. Properly frozen okras can last up to 9 months inside a regular freezer and 14 months in deep freeze. The following is a step-by-step guide on how to freeze fresh okra.

Materials Needed

  • Okra pods
  • Sharp knife
  • Pot with lid
  • Strainer
  • Ice
  • Zippered freezer bags

Steps to Freeze Okra

  1. Use young, fresh, and tender okra pods for freezing. Do not use fibrous and mature pods as they are quite inedible. Choose ones that have little or no puncture marks on the skin.
  2. Put the okra pods in a strainer, then rinse them with cold or tepid water. Separate them into groups of small pods (4 inches or shorter) and large pods (longer than 4 inches).
  3. Cut the stems from the small pods with a sharp knife. Make sure that you do not cut the seed cell.
  4. Fill two-thirds of a pot with water and let it boil. Prepare a bowl cold water and ice while waiting for the water to boil.
  5. Blanch the small okra pods by putting them in the pot and covering it. Leave the pods to boil for 3 minutes. Prepare the large pods while the small ones are boiling. Using a slotted spoon, remove the small pods from the pot. Put in the large pods and boil them for 4 minutes.
  6. Put the okra immediately into ice water after taking it out of the boiling water. Let the okra cool for 5 minutes. Add as much ice as needed to keep the water cool.
  7. Put the okra in a strainer after cooling and strain them for 2 to 3 minutes.
  8. Put the okra inside zippered freezer bags. Push as much air as you can out of the bags. Keep the bagged okra in the freezer.
  9. Repeat steps 6 to 8 for the large pods.